Sometimes You Gotta Refocus…

Rethink.

Refocus.

Move Forward.

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So I have some more guest posts coming in the next week or two but I thought I should pop in and share some thoughts with you as well as a verse of encouragment. As I’ve mentioned a little bit here and there, this year I really focused on upgrading some high school courses so I could attend college this fall and I have arrived! But with that, I want to talk about focus and priorities.

Reaching your goals takes a lot of doing what you don’t feel like doing and also hard times. And when that happens, sometimes you’ve gotta refocus. I really learned that over the last year as I had to buckle down and do work I didn’t want to do and meet deadlines that feel almost impossible to meet. As I sit here at college having survived the first week of classes I’m realizing that it’s all the same as before. Slightly harder work and lots of it but still the same. And in those moments of stress and frustration when I feel like I’m drowning in all I have to do I’ve had to learn to stop, take a minute or two to just breathe and then reflect about why I’m doing this all and what it’s for. – What the point is behind all this paperwork and daily readings for classes the next day.

Refocus on my goals then move forward knowing that this is not pointless. That there is a plan and final goal in mind.

A long-term plan.

So just remember that if you feel exhausted, or swamped with homework, studies, work or even just life to stop and take a minute to breathe and reflect on what will come from what you are doing right now.

11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” – Jeremiah 29:11-13

 

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Mrs. Potato Head

Oh, Mrs. Potato Head, tell me, is it true that pain is beauty?

 

Melanie Martinez album titled Cry Baby is one of the best albums I’ve listened to. Not only for her unique sound and lyrics but the message in a lot of her songs. One of those impactful songs is called Mrs. Potato Head, which I quoted above. The approach this song takes is eye opening in the way that she shows what society defines as beauty or that if you don’t have anything going for you, you can just pay thousands of dollars to fix whatever you hate about yourself.

We see this daily in the celebrities so many people idolize. It’s a common thing in our society and I think it says so much about how messed up and confused our society is and it’s actually sad. The media is telling us we have to look or act a certain way in everything we do, say, like, wear, and what we look like and it’s heaIt’sreaking. It’s heartbreaking because we are all made to be ourselves and not one of us is the same in appearance, personality, likes, talents or whatever!

We were not all created to fit in and be the same but to be ourselves and stand out!

Because of society and its ideas of what beauty should be, I know some amazing women who don’t believe that they are beautiful. Even I don’t always believe I’m beautiful even though I know that everyone is unique and different and that in itself is beautiful. There are days where I look in the mirror and wish my tummy was smaller or my thighs weren’t as ‘jiggly.’

I know a girl who I feel hasn’t been told enough times that she is beautiful…and because of it, she covers her face in layers of makeup and always changes her hair (whether cut or style) Even though she is stunning with or without makeup, dressed up or in sweats and a t-shirt, she doesn’t believe it because society gives this image of beauty that she doesn’t ‘fit’ into and through her 19 years of life not many people have told her she is beautiful just the way she is.

So I just want to encourage you and say: Don’t define yourself by society’s definition of beauty. Embrace you and your body and be beautifully and unapologetically you!

 

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Loving People Like Jesus

Hello there!

I’m so sorry it’s been so long since I’ve blogged. My priorities have been to focus on my upgrades for college and now that those are done it’s a waiting process to get my marks back. Since that’s done I’m hoping to be able to put a bit more of a priority on my blogging and novel writing. But today I’m gonna work on writing up some posts and finishing up ones I started so today my friend Cori has written another guest post so I’ll let her share what she’s written.

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Growing up I learned that people are not always the easiest to love all the time. I was taught that you have to love everyone, even if you don’t like them.

One of the most important commandments is to love your neighbors as yourself. God said that himself. Treat others the way you would want to be treated is something my youth pastor would say often. Although not always the easiest route, it is the way that Jesus lived himself.

Jesus hung out with people that you wouldn’t really expect. He made friends with the liars and cheats. The outcasts. The people nobody wanted to be. I think He did this to set an example for us today. He didn’t have to love on those people. But he chose to show them the love and respect every person needs.

Now that doesn’t mean that Jesus took crap from people either. He would correct them when they were wrong, in a very polite yet clever way most of the time.

Don’t think I’m telling you to hang around a murderer and be best friends with them. But I am telling you to love that person no matter the sins they struggle with because, in the end, his sin is the same as mine. Even if mine seems minuscule in comparison God sees all sin as the same.

When I was in grade school the teachers would always pair the new kids or the weird kids with me because In my house you treated everybody the way you would want to be treated, therefor I was always the nice one in class, even when I didn’t want to be I was paired with them. Now I was a very shy kid. It was pretty hard for me to do this. But I felt the call that God put on my life to follow him at a young age and I knew it was the right thing to do.

There was this one kid who nobody got along with. I’m not gonna share her name but she was a nice kid. Just a bit strange. Once one of my friends asked me why I hung out with her so much. I simply told them that she deserved to have friends too. At the end of the school year, we went our separate ways but her mom came up to me and thanked me for being so nice to this girl. She was a bit hyper and talked A LOT but I did enjoy her company and learned to love her very much.

I wish more kids would give each other a chance rather than judging a book by its cover. It’s so hard for me to see all the bullying and abuse that goes on In schools these days. It’s sad.

I learned pretty young that it’s honestly so rewarding and worth getting to know a person no matter how much they annoy you.

Now I know we aren’t all in grade school here. That was just one example. I have another. Take homeless people for example. I have worked and served homeless people for as long as I can remember. But some people won’t even look in their direction. Some Christians don’t even see them as people.

I’ll never forget the day that I went up to a homeless man and gave him some food and he looked at me with tears in his eyes. He said nobody would even look at him that day. He searches in his bag for a ring he had made and he gave it to me saying that he wishes there were more people like me in this world.

I’ve given people on the streets Christmas presents that haven’t gotten anything for 25 years and they’ve broken down and asked me to watch them open it. It wasn’t much just some essentials and little things and a book but he was so thankful for his gift. He said that maybe there really is a God that loved him all because I treated him like a normal person for a few minutes.

I love these experiences. Ones with people who think they don’t even deserve it anymore. Broken people. I see them as a beautiful creation of God and it’s almost magical seeing these moments.

If people could just open their eyes and see them as people in a bad circumstance the world would be a much more beautiful place. But let’s move on to another example.

Now we’ve all had that one neighbor that everybody hates right? I have anyways. Those people are one of the hardest to love. Just the meanest most annoying people you’ve ever met right? Well God calls us to love even them. I know crazy right?! Well, I know for a fact that Jesus would have gone up to that guy and said: “I love you no matter what the sin you are struggling with.” So we are called to do the same. That’s not always the easy thing to do but sometimes the hard choice is the best choice.

So many times in the Bible the Pharisees would scold Jesus for hanging out with “that guy” like why would a guy like you hang out with a guy like them? Love, that’s the answer. Unconditional unfailing love.

I know these words aren’t really something easy to read but it’s very important. So next time you just can’t stand someone, pray for them. It not only changes them but it changes your heart towards them. I’m not saying you have to like them, but you must love them.

“Lord help me to love like you do. Help me to love my enemy’s and pray for them. Help me to go up to the weird kid and be their friend. I thank you for your love and grace on us. We don’t deserve it but you made us deserve it by dying on the cross for us. Help me to spread love through out the world and shine your light through me. In Jesus name, I pray, Amen”

A to Z Challenge || Letter Y: Youth

Hello Readers!

YSo, I was going to title today’s post ‘Young’ but I thought it didn’t sound as nice so I went with youth for the title. Anyways. The post is just another little writing inspiration post type thingy as I really didn’t know what to do for it otherwise 🙂

 

 

It always seems that, as a teenager/young adult, we’re still to young to do something. Too young to do this. Too young to do that. I’ve heard that a lot with my writing.

“You’re too young for anyone to take you seriously.” or “You’re too young to be a professional writer. Leave it to the people who kno what they are doing.”

Some I very often have heard about my novel ‘Holding on To Grace‘ which discusses rape is this: “You shouldn’t be writing that.”,   “You’re too young to know about that.”, and “A kid like you shouldn’t write that. Why would you write something so cruel.” (<—I’ve got a good answer to that but it doesn’t matter at this moment)

When I hear these things, what I really want to know is Why and How come people put an age range or limit as to what I can and can’t write or if I should write at all.

Yes, I chose to write topics that make people uncomfortable. Maybe I chose to write things that feed my childish fantasies and imagination. Why are either of these things bad? Why do I have to risk being bashed and judged by saying that I’m a teen writer?  Cause here is the thing, I don’t see them as bad.

Every story/poem/script you write is telling a story that has caught your mind. Grabbed a hold of your imagination and wont let go. Everything you write is your own and is special and you are never too young (or even to old) to write what you want to write. I see writing as freeing, beautifull and a great skill and accomplishment. In a world of Instant Message and Texts, writing a novel is something special where we take a long time to work on writing and try and craft it all as beautifully as we can by careful word choice and imagery. You are NEVER too young to write your novel.

Camp NaNoWriMo || Where Did I Get The Idea for My Novel?

Hello Readers!

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So, yesterday I shared the first Chapter of my Camp NaNoWriMo novel ‘More At Home With Strangers’ and Introduced you to one of my five main POV characters, Paisley Moore and A couple weeks ago I shared a little bit about each character in the Beautiful People Link-up….But I realized something missing in those posts.

That certain thing that was missing was: Where did the idea come from? and Why am I writing a story like this?

Well, the wait is over and you can stop wondering because I am going to tell you all right here, right now!

 

More At Home With Strangers ( MAHWS )

 

Synopsis:
Four teenagers, Mackenzie, Paisley, Tarryn and Maiya can’t stand each other upon meeting which makes having to live together hard. But they don’t have much choice considering the foster system is a hard, complicated issue. None have any valid excuse to leave, except their hatred for each other, so in the same home they remain. With the help of Gabrielle and David Harrow, the girl’s foster parents, they fight their own demons and face things they would much rather forget….and soon find that not only friendship starts to bring them together but that they are more at home with these strangers than anyone else.

 

That is the basics of my story and now that you know that (and have possibly seen the posts about my characters) I’m going to tell you where I got the idea for this story and how it all came together. (The idea…not the novel cause the novel isn’t done yet 😉 ) So it’s time to interview myself. Heehee!

 

Where did you get the idea for the novel? Was there anything in particular that came to you first? I first got the idea when I was sitting at home doing schoolwork. (Seriously) Suddenly the thought just came to me. What if a young couple wanted to foster some kids? What if those kids ended up being some very troubled teens who needed help?  <– And that thought process is what kicked off the idea for More At Home With Strangers (Or MAHWS. If you see that, It’s just me shortening the title.)

Why these characters? What about them made them deserving of being main characters? I’m not really sure why them and why the stations they are going through but I feel that mainly some of the things these girls struggle with are something other people know. A pain people may not have experienced first hand but might know someone. I think in a way that will make the characters more relatable.  But I think what made them deserving of being the main characters is that they simply are. They simply showed up and are adding something to the story that really is made specifically for that character….Wow. Here I go with my whole ‘trying to be inspirational but sounding like a dork speech’ Anyways. Moving on…

Are the Characters based off of or inspired by anyone you know? Any Dedications for this novel? The characters themselves are not based off anyone I know. But there are people close to me who I see struggling and somehow my love for those people and the notice of the pain they go through somehow leaks into the characters.

This book is, in fact, dedicated to three of the most amazing girls I know. (Destiny, Cori, and Amelia I don’t know if you girls are reading this but this book is dedicated to you. You three have really showed me what true strength is and have the heart and spirit of a fighter.)

All these struggles these characters have to face! Are any of these struggles an experience from a personal battle(s)? I have battled (and still do) with depression so I can definitely say that that has been incorporated from my experience. The eating disorders, health issues and other things are things I haven’t battled personally but I know people who I love dearly who have. So this novel does actually hit home for me a little. Just because, when I write these characters struggles I’m seeing my loved ones so yeah…

Why is this novel so depressing, Adriana? The reason I deal with the topics I do is for the same reason I dealt with rape and teen pregnancy in my novel Holding on To Grace. It’s to shine a light on these problems and show people that there is a light and things will get better. That is my goal with these stories. Sad and depressing, yes but I also hope it will be a source of hope for people as well.

Sounds like an insanely huge story! Is this going to be a series? Now, why would I ask myself this question? Well because I thought I would mention that there will be a MAHWS series. More At Home With Strangers will be a novel in itself but there will be four (possibly five) prequel short stories that give us a look into the characters backstories. So far, Tarryn’s short story (currently titled ‘Lost’ just so I can call it something) is half way completed but on hold now because of Camp NaNoWriMo

 

 

So, that is a little more about MAHWS! Anything I left out or that you want to know more about? Feel free to ask me some questions and I’ll answer them in the comments! 

Until Next Time!

Adriana Gabrielle

Interview- Laura Anderson Kurk

Hello Readers! I am still here, I promise. I apologize for not doing any writing posts as of late but I have been a crazy busy person and especially now with my cousins visiting and thanksgiving this coming weekend!  (I’m in Canada Y’all 😉 ) I am also gonna see if my cousin want’s to do some sort of discussion/review of a movie or book while he is here…cause I think he would be all for it. Anyways, This is me trying to apologize for my absence and mention that I will, in fact, start posting very very soon but until then, here is another interview from author, Laura Anderson Kurk 🙂

LAURA ANDERSON KURK, author of Contemporary YA laura1Laura Anderson Kurk is one of those lucky souls who gets to live in a college town. In fact, it’s her college town—College Station, Texas, where she drove in under cover of darkness when she was way too young and proceeded to set the place on fire. (Actually, she stayed in the library stacks for the majority of her tenure as a student at Texas A&M University, but in her imagination, she was stirring things up.) She majored in English for the love of stories, and due to a massive crush on F. Scott Fitzgerald. She continued on to receive an advanced degree in literature. She writes contemporary books for young adults, a genre that gives her the freedom to be honest. Her debut novel Glass Girl is an unconventional and bittersweet love story, and its sequel Perfect Glass makes long-distance love look possible. She’s crazy about her husband and her two ginger-headed kids. Laura blogs at Writing for Young Adults (laurakurk.com). On twitter, she’s @laurakurk.

                 1.Could you tell us a bit about your novels?

Glass Girl

new2 Glass GirlGlass Girl is a story about all the ways grief changes us. When Meg Kavanagh finds herself in the unthinkable role of grieving sister, she discovers some harsh truths—parents aren’t perfect, life’s not always sweet, and the dead don’t write back. Her famous artist mom grieves by slowly disappearing, and her dad copes by moving them to a small town in Wyoming.   What she finds in Wyoming blindsides her.   His name is Henry, and he’s a rancher’s son who pulls Meg into his larger-than-life world and shows her that being sensitive is not an excuse to sit this one out. Meg learns that the best things in life—like falling in love and finding mercy—require uncommon courage. And with the help of a strange set of friends, a locker room disaster, and a trip she’ll never forget, she finds that the things she thought would break her—school violence, loneliness, and separation—can be overcome.

Perfect Glass

new Perfect GlassThe sequel, Perfect Glass, follows Meg and Henry through the next stage of life as they learn what they’re made of. Things get messy when Meg gets involved—first with Jo Russell, the eccentric old artist, and then with Quinn O’Neill, the intriguing loner who can’t hide how he feels about Meg. Her senior year doesn’t turn out like she planned it, but sometimes the best parts of life happen in the in-between moments. Henry has committed to one year in an orphanage that needs him more than he ever dreamed. Thousands of miles from Meg and the new punk who has fallen for her, and absent from the ranch that’s in his blood, Henry finds out what it means to trust. When you’re so far from home, it’s terrifying to realize you’re not who you thought. But the perfect glass of calamity makes the best mirror.   An identity crisis, long distance love, new temptation, and growing pains teach Henry and Meg how to hang onto each other and to what really matters.

  1. I loved both novels, so I now have to ask, what inspired you to write Glass Girl and Perfect Glass

I was curious about survivor grief, especially sibling survivor grief, in a culture of school violence that seemed to be occurring more and more frequently in the U.S. I had watched the siblings of some of the Columbine victims as they moved numbly from interview to interview and it made me wonder about their emotional landscape and the kind of grief that had to be peculiar to these kids. When I released Glass Girl, I never really thought I’d write a sequel, but I knew that there was a story behind Henry’s perfection in the first book. We had so far only seen him through Meg’s weary eyes and he stepped in as the hero in so many ways. The second book gets real and shows what happens when the All-American boy is stripped of all his crutches and must rely on himself in a foreign land. And I wanted Meg to grow and mature and share her deep-water compassion with someone who truly needed it.

  1. Did you write an outline before writing the novel?

I don’t typically outline novel-length works. I often wish I did. I kind of start with a beginning, middle, and end in mind and then attempt to write in a linear way. Although my chaotic brain ends up skipping around a lot more than it should. An outline would help. But I feel like a book that begins with a skeleton framework but builds in lots of room for surprises and organic realism is the only kind of book I can write. An outline might force me to ignore interesting tangents that make all the difference in the end.

  1. What was the hardest part of writing both Glass Girl and Perfect Glass? 

Writing is the easy part for me. It’s all the nonsense that happens after writing that is difficult. If I had to pick one thing that’s hard during the creative process, it would be finding enough consecutive hours in a day to get into a true state of flow.

  1. What is one way you relate to your main character(s)?

I relate to Meg’s over-sensitive nature and her inability to turn off her empathetic radar even when she needed to for her own survival.

  1. Thats how I related to her as well! I am very much like that. So, Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

That help is all around. That we all struggle at different moments in our life with things like anxiety and depression and grief, but that help comes from all kinds of places if we’re willing to accept it. That it’s okay to throw your whole heart into loving others.

  1. Did you learn anything from writing Glass Girl and Perfect Glass and what was it? 

I learned a great deal in the process of writing both books. I learned about storytelling and craft. I learned that there’s no need to fear honesty in writing. That I’m not alone. That some stories will gnaw at your soul until you tell them. That young adult readers are some of the most open-hearted, soulful people in the world.

  1. If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?

Laura L. Smith is definitely one of my writing mentors because we are able to share so much of this journey with one another and we keep it real and relevant. She’s a true gift to my writer’s soul.   I also consider certain writers to be mentors even though I’ve never met them. Sara Zarr, Deb Caletti, Jandy Nelson, and others whose work I adore and who are open enough of their own process that I feel like I can sit at their feet and learn a lot.

  1. Yay! So I’m not the only one who would choose Laura L. Smith 🙂 What is one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members?

I’m deeply connected to Jesus and I feel like my work has a role to play in a larger scheme. I’m not sure how that all comes together or what exactly is happening behind the scenes, but I trust that He is using me for a purpose and that he’s given me words and love for story for a reason even if it’s just to touch one life in a meaningful way.

10. Do you have any advice for other writers out there who are looking into publishing or just writing a story in general?

  Read constantly. Read great literature. Read short stories and poetry. Read about craft. Follow writers on social media who love words and meaning. Follow Anne Lamott. Read Toni Morrison. Find stories that stir something in your soul and figure out what it is that makes that so special. Then practice. No one is born a writing prodigy. It’s a skill that is earned through hard work and patience and keeping your eyes open for meaning. You’ll find the story you were meant to tell.

11. Where can we as readers stalk you on social media? (Pinterest, Goodread, FB, Blog etc etc.)

  website/blog: laurakurk.com.   Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Laura-Anderson-Kurk-Writer/215071391875250   Twitter: @LauraKurk   Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/authorlaurakurk/ Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4092458.Laura_Anderson_Kurk   Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Laura-Anderson-Kurk/e/B003FGA86W/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1412087043&sr=8-1

Interview- Laura L. Smith

Hello Readers!

Today I am interviewing yet another author and I am pleased to get this opportunity to talk to Laura L. Smith, Author of novels ‘Hot’,’Skinny’, ‘Angry’ and the ‘Status Update Series’

IMG_1920Hi Laura, So great to have you here! Could you tell us a bit about your novel?
It’s Addicting is the third book in the Status Updates series. It revolves around four college roommates and the struggles and triumphs they encounter as they navigate the demands and freedoms of college life.
What inspired you to write ‘insert title’?

I live in a college town and am surrounded by vibrant college women. They are so full of potential, energy and life, yet plagued with so many pressures to perform, to fit in, to juggle school, social and family life. These women inspired me to write this series tackling some of the things they have to deal with like relationships and homesickness, grades and finances, sharing a small living space with new friends and knowing how far is too far. Specifically, It’s Addicting deals with the little things in life we enjoy or use to comfort us or build ourselves up. What happens when those small pleasures become vices? When we rely to heavily on a habit or a relationship or a mindset? When do they cross the line to become addictions that dominate our decision making? And how do we deal with that? It’s Addicting follows Claire, Hannah, Palmer and Kat in their sophomore year of college. It explores the various coping mechanisms and pleasures they seek ranging from exercise to boys and how that changes them. It is a faith-based novel, so it really explores how worldly things can come in conflict with our faith and how challenging it can be to balance living in this world, but not being of this world.

Did you write an outline before writing the novel?
No. I’m not an outline kind of girl. But I always have an idea, a sketch of what the book is going to be about. It’s Addicting had characters, and each of them had a specific “addiction” she was going to deal with long before I started writing it. Since it was the third book in the Status Updates series, several of the ideas evolved as I wrote the first two books, thoughts like, “at some point Claire is going to have to face this,” or “Kat’s going to have to watch how hard she trains. It’s awesome, but it seems to control her sometimes.” I took those ideas and nuances of the characters and started brewing their sophomore year. I had some ideas for a spring break trip, because it’s an integral part of college, and an international travel program to Germany, because all of these books have an international element, but the details come as part of the writing process.

What was the hardest part of writing It’s Addicting? 
I always find the editing process to be the hardest part. It’s difficult to cut scenes or dialogue that I worked so hard to craft. It’s also challenging to add to scenes that I’d hoped were completed. But editing is also so rewarding! It’s like taking a rough, rocky gem from a stream and polishing it until it’s smooth and glossy. Editing truly improves writing. In fact, it is an integral part of the writing process.
Editing is definitely a struggle for me but once I do it it feels great to have finished 🙂 So,I absolutely love the characters in this series meaning I have to ask, what is one way you relate to your main character(s)?
Wow! There are a million ways I relate to all of my characters, and yet, they are also so different than me. There are slices and shreds of me in all of them. I was a ballerina, like Claire. I am a writer, like Palmer. I have a close relationship with my older brother, who is my only sibling, like Kat. Hannah is kind of the “mom” of their group, getting people tea, writing notes on their white board. I actually am a mom, so I do those kinds of things for my family all of the time. I love to travel, and all of the places the characters have ventured are places I’ve visited; Paris, Barcelona, Berlin, the beach. I love chocolate and coffee houses and going for runs and music, and the girls all find themselves doing these things, because these are experiences I want them to have.

That is great! I love how as the writer you are also a little bit of all your characters. 🙂 So,  is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
My hope with this novel, with all of my books really, is to remind readers that they are beautiful creations in Christ, that their identity doesn’t have to be wrapped in the world’s expectations, but can be wrapped in Christ, that they are wonderfully and fearfully made by their Creator, and that we need to keep our eyes fixed on that, because when we do, all of our struggles are easier, there is more peace and strength and joy in our lives.
What is one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members?
God. He is the author of the universe. All of my ideas come from Him. Literally. I’ll be sitting and writing and entire scenes and characters spring forth where there was nothing. He gives me divine inspiration. I write for Him.

Do you have any advice for other writers out there who are looking into publishing or just writing a story in general?
Write. Write. Write. And then write some more. The more you write, the better you get. The more you comment on blogs, write your own blogs, write letters, enter short story contests, write poetry, etc., the more you’ll exercise your writing muscles.

Where can we as readers stalk you on social media? (Pinterest, Goodreads, FB, Blog etc etc.)
Just about every where 🙂
My website and blog are http://www.laurasmithauthor.com
FB https://www.facebook.com/pages/Laura-L-Smith/41514076249
Twitter @LauraLynnSmith
Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/laurasmithbooks/
Instagram http://instagram.com/laurasmithauthor
Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5577597.Laura_L_Smith

 

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LAURA L. SMITH, author of New Adult/Young Adult Fiction

Laura L. Smith loves God, her husband, her four children, writing and speaking. She writes real stories for real girls. Her previous books include Skinny, Hot, and Angry. She is a featured columnist at Choose Now Ministries and speaks at schools, churches and campuses around the country. Smith lives in the college town of Miami University, Oxford, Ohio.