Currently drinking: Builder's Brew tea blend from The Moody Cow (the best gastropub in the whole world), stored in a Royal Wedding tea tin, which used to contain a special blend from Ahmad Tea...because it doesn't get much more British than that.

Currently listening to: Steampunk playlist from Spotify.  It's pretty interesting, very old-timey sounding.  Really eclectic and enjoyable.  If I've done this right, you too can hear it here.

Oh, you guys.  So much excitement around here.  I've been so busy lately, I'm losing track of the days.  It is Friday, however, and today that means I start vacation!!!  My bestie Sally is coming from England to visit for two weeks!!!  YAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!  The text on this screen is insufficient to properly express my enthusiasm.  It'll be really nice to be away from the day job for so long.  And we have lots of plans, so maybe you should follow me on social media - @danafraedrich on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram and whatiftales on Facebook - to keep up with all the craziness. ;-)

Firstly, my books are going to be on sale at the Southern Festival of books.  Huzzah!

 My little babies, all boxed up and ready to go meet a wider world!

My little babies, all boxed up and ready to go meet a wider world!

Sally and I might swing through and take a gander.  I'm not going to hover, though.  No one likes a hovering author.  And the booth at which my books are going to be displayed has rules about authors being there.  This is a good thing.

Also, the botanical saga continues!  My lemon balm came back!

I've moved my plants inside since it's started to get cold outside...well, cooler in the mornings and at night.  This is Tennessee we're talking about.  It doesn't really get cold until about November.  I don't think I've told Sally how hot it's going to be...oops.

Speaking of October, did you know this month is #PoweredByIndie ?  Well, according to Amazon it is.  They've invited us indie authors to share why we love being indie authors.  So here goes!

I first decided I needed to take steps to get published when I was 26 years old.  I'd been a chicken up until that point, a chicken with two finished books just sitting on my computer.  What if someone said they thought I was a crap writer?!  It's honestly one of my biggest insecurities.  I was reading the back matter in one of Robin McKinley's books - I think it was Rose Daughter - and I read that she was in her twenties when her first book was published.  Robin McKinley is one of my most favorite authors, so this was a massive inspiration for me.  Now, I am by nature a very independent person.  If I don't like something (a situation, my position, whatever), I will push the boundaries, see how far I can go.  I tried for a little while to follow the traditional publishing path, but I can't stand waiting on other people.  Why should I have to wait on other people to tell me my writing is good enough to be published, I thought.  That's assuming the right person ever comes across it in the first place.  What if no one ever "discovers" my work?  I could be waiting forever.  That's when I decided to take matters into my own hands.  I started researching independent publishing options, and the rest is basically history.  I'm about to release my third self-published novel, and I feel very free and incredibly proud.  I have the freedom to set my own deadlines, choose who I work with, make the final decisions.  It's really stressful sometimes because  it's all on me.  And I am most definitely my own worst critic.  Like, 2am editing session wonderings of why am I doing this?  Am I even halfway decent?  I've lost all perspective worst critic.  It's when I have those moments of this cover looks so great; I'm so glad I did this; oh, I really love this line I've written; that's my book I'm holding, I did this that I remember why I self-publish and why all the work is worth it.

Well, that's all for now, friends.  Thanks for reading!