2022 50 Precious Words

Well, it’s been a minute. But this return-of-the-blog post is brought to you by none other than Vivian Kirkfield’s amazing #50PreciousWords contest. The challenge is to write a story with a beginning, middle, and an end, in 50 words or less! It feels impossible at first but pop over to Vivian’s page to see howContinue reading “2022 50 Precious Words”

Susanna Leonard Hill’s 2021 Holiday Contest

I like to joke that Susanna Leonard Hill is my personal patron saint of inspiration. Her 2018 holiday contest is what got me back into writing for others. Her challenges have just enough structure to spark an idea but enough freedom to let my imagination roam. The sparse word count forces me to focus onContinue reading “Susanna Leonard Hill’s 2021 Holiday Contest”

Just write. Or, at least think.

I’ve been meaning to write a blog post for months. But, I haven’t felt like I had anything worthwhile to say. It feels like my words, these posts, should carry some sort of weight. They should be entertaining or inspirational or just downright delightful. But, that is also kind of daunting. I’ve been working withContinue reading “Just write. Or, at least think.”

Susanna Leonard Hill’s 2020 Holiday Contest

Pulling out my coziest socks, admiring the lights around the neighborhood, making little people-shaped ginger cookies to devour… ah yes, it must be time for Susanna Leonard Hill’s Holiday Contest! Are you tired of me raving about her contests yet? There’s something so freeing and FUN about having a limited amount of time and aContinue reading “Susanna Leonard Hill’s 2020 Holiday Contest”

#KidLitHoliYAY: Day 4

I am so excited to host the fourth day of #KidLitHoliyay with some of my Critique Sisters: Maryna Doughty, Dedra Davis, Sarah Meade, Sarah Heaton, and Ciara O’Neal! And I am very excited to feature HAPPY LLAMAKAH! by Laura Gehl, Illustrated by Lydia Nichols I love this book. It’s sweet, it rhymes, it’s punny, itContinue reading “#KidLitHoliYAY: Day 4”

Happy Halloweensie!

[UPDATE: THRILLED to share that this story was given an Honorable Mention for Great Read for Younger Readers!] It’s one of my favorite times of year: Susanna Leonard Hill’s Halloweensie contest for children’s writers! I love these contests. They challenge my brain to think in new ways and almost always inspire multiple stories. Plus, thisContinue reading “Happy Halloweensie!”

Talking about BIG things with little kids

Another deviation from writing for fun but very necessary things. Some of this is copied and pasted from my school social work blog (you’ll probably pick up on that vibe). Big things are going on. Big things that are terrifying and overwhelming. As adults, when we can’t wrap our minds around them, how can weContinue reading “Talking about BIG things with little kids”

Showing Up for Yourself

Sometimes I like to think that there is a parallel universe where parallel-universe-Nicole is still going to work and interacting with extended family members in person and grocery shopping without a mask while listening to news updates about our first female president. I hope she’s happy. She has a lot to be grateful for. And,Continue reading “Showing Up for Yourself”

Resources for Talking with Young Children about COVID-19

You may or may not know that I am a mama to two toddlers and a school social worker currently working with Early Childhood/Preschool-aged children. I know this blog is supposed to be about writing but if there was ever a time for a crossover-episode, this is it. So here goes: How are you supposedContinue reading “Resources for Talking with Young Children about COVID-19”

Happy Halloweensie!

Susanna Leonard Hill, a true kidlit treasure, hosts these amazing holiday contests that challenge writers to think creatively and efficiently. With a limit of 100 words, I wanted to try some free verse this year. But then I wanted to see it rhyme. Rhyming is SO HARD!! I won’t even tell you how many “practice”Continue reading “Happy Halloweensie!”