Julia Karr's Blog

July 7, 2017

Aha! Found the next writing project! A Young Adult mystery. It's a completed draft, in the edit/rewrite stages, and it's a story I love! A teaser...

           "For the first time ever, I’m glad Mom and Dad insisted I take every first aid course the YMCA offered. I kneel next to her and place two fingers on her throat. Her skin is cool, too cool. There’s no pulse. I check again to be sure.  
           How long has she been dea… I can’t even think the word. A cold thrill runs up my spine. What if she’s been mur-- Don’t go there, Cait! My hands shake so badly it’s hard to hit speed dial."

More to come... But in the meantime, blackberries from the garden... I see muffins in my future!

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Published on July 07, 2017 04:07 • 48 views

July 3, 2017

Still waiting for word on XVI - Homecoming (book 3). But, I haven't been letting my fingers (or my brain) get rusty. Nope - I just typed "The End" on an historical, middle grade book. While that simmers on the back burner, I'm going through several other partials and story ideas... I wonder what will be next?

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Published on July 03, 2017 18:49 • 13 views

June 15, 2017

While I am waiting to hear from my agent about her thoughts on XVI book 3 (XVI - Homecoming) - I have been busy on other projects!

The one I am mainly focusing on is a Middle Grade historic fiction.To give a bit of a hint about the era - there was radio, and Billboard was putting out lists! Here are a few songs from the list for the year in which the novel is set. Can you guess what year it was from these three chart-topping hits?

Duke of Earl - Gene Chandler
Johnny Angel - Shelley Fabares
I Can't Stop Loving You - Ray Charles

How'd you do? Did you have to Google them, or did you know? Let me know in the comments!

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Published on June 15, 2017 04:37 • 21 views

May 29, 2017

If any of you are still hanging in here with me... I just five minutes ago sent off the completed manuscript to my agent!

Tentative title is XVI - Homecoming.

I hope to have more news soon!

And, for those of you who haven't given up on me - thank you! The journey is drawing to a close on Nina's adventures & I can't wait to get this book into your hands!
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Published on May 29, 2017 07:56 • 25 views

June 23, 2016

Just sent the draft of XVI Book 3 to my beta readers! It won't be much longer (I hope!) I'll keep y'all posted on progress to publication!
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Published on June 23, 2016 10:26 • 92 views

December 23, 2015

As a writer, I always have my dictionary close at hand. Sometimes looking up familiar words is a good thing. Today I revisited Peace. The Webster's definition: (in part)

Peace [Latin pax, pacis, peace] A state of quiet or tranquility; calm, quietness, or repose; freedom from war or hostility; a cessation of hostilities; absence of strife; tranquility of mind; harmony; serenity; public tranquility and order. This Peace is what I wish for the whole world, today and every day! And, I hope to live my life as a reflection of this peace.

Image from this website
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Published on December 23, 2015 06:55 • 40 views

August 27, 2015

If you're in the neighborhood... I'll be at Village Lights Bookstore in Madison, IN this Saturday from 1-3 p.m. Village Lights is an awesome place and I am thrilled to be doing another event with them. It promises to be a beautiful weekend, so if you're close by - you should come to Madison. It's a wonderful walking/shopping town - and there are some good eats to be had - and I'd love to see you!
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Published on August 27, 2015 07:04 • 35 views

April 22, 2015

It's been awhile since I posted anything - period. Just wanted to let y'all know that book 3 is simmering on the back burner - taking a needed rest before editing/revising begins on May 1st.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch - or more accurately, back at the 1890's bungalow I call home - I have been hard at work on a contemporary YA novel, the first draft of which I will (hopefully) have completed by April 30th.

Flipping back and forth between book 3 & new book reminds me of changing partners when ballroom dancing. Here's an excellent post about why that's a good thing. I think the reasons listed in the article translate well to writing, also.

Changing things up forces one to focus - and writing well requires focus.
Changing partners in dancing requires one to adjust to a different style - writing in a different genre, on a different story requires style adjustment, too.

Change, while not necessarily comfortable, is the only way to keep from stagnating. No writer wants to stagnate!

So - on to more Dancing with Manuscripts!

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Published on April 22, 2015 10:38 • 78 views

March 19, 2015

Just so y'all know... the first draft is cooling its heels - waiting for a week or so until I jump in and start edits / revisions.


Wei looked as scared as I felt. “Skivs,” we whispered, simultaneously.

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Published on March 19, 2015 17:28 • 10 views

February 19, 2015

There is a connection, but first... a couple of facts.

1. I love to cook - specifically, I love to bake bread.
2. I am short. (almost 5' 2")

Today I decided to try a new recipe--Spiced lentil, sweet potato, and kale whole wheat pockets.  Because the pockets are yeast risen, the dough must be kneaded. Kneading dough is fun for me for a couple of reasons. I love the repetitive motion of press, fold, turn, repeat... and I find it meditative. It's also the perfect time for creative ideas to bubble up.

Unlike many bakers though - who move the dough effortlessly from mixing bowl to their kneading surface (mine is a big old board reserved exclusively for bread and/or pie crusts), I have to get out my trusty stool to stand on. Why? Because my kitchen counter is too high for me to get good leverage on the dough.
trusty stool
This morning, as I was kneading, I thought about Laura Ingalls Wilder. When my daughters were little (way too long ago for me to admit), on the way back from visiting family out West, we drove to Mansfield, Missouri to see the Laura Ingalls Wilder Home and Museum. It was the last place Laura and Almonzo lived, and he built this farmhouse there.

picture from the Laura Ingalls Wilder Home & Museum website
One of the things that most impressed me about the house was the kitchen counter. Apparently Laura was short, like me. Well, actually a lot shorter! (4' 11") And, Almonzo built the kitchen counters so that they would be comfortable for her to use. (What a guy!)

So - today, while the dough is rising, and the outside temps are frigid (1° F), I am at the dining room table writing what I plotted earlier while kneading the dough.

Teaser from XVI Series Book 3:

"Every muscle and sinew was poised to leap on him, to destroy him. But, that was exactly what he wanted me to do—fight. I would fight, but not with my body."

Keep warm & have a FUN Thursday!
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Published on February 19, 2015 08:28 • 130 views