Ahh… it’s summertime again! I have to say, this year it really snuck up on me. While I’d like to blame the majority of that surprise on the move and everything that entailed, the truth is that this year has FLOWN by! Can you believe we’re nearly halfway through 2018?!

That said, here’s an update since I’ve been woefully neglecting this blog all year long. (Woefully, y’all.) A little about all that’s new with our family, about what we have ahead of us for the summer, and (what you’re really wanting to know) about my upcoming books. Woo-hoo!

We bought a house a couple of weeks ago after nearly two years of living in our church’s parsonage. Why the move? Because we want to actually have a place to live once Wes is too old and senile to continue pastoring this church. Simply put, y’all. The house we bought wasn’t even for sale back when we started looking, but as it happens in a small town, word got out that we were hunting and people suggested that we look at this one. The owners (who are church members) were considering selling and building a house out near aging parents, and they’d told their neighbors to go and “pick” their new neighbors. Those neighbors (also church members) told us about the house, and before we knew it, we were looking at the house, making an offer, and under contract. We didn’t use a realtor with this sale, which was a first for us, but because we all knew one another, it went really smoothly. Less than a week after closing, we were moved in. Just in time for summer!

Our girls finished up another school year, and with it, the Faulk family said goodbye to elementary school. Unreal. Ana and Emma will be in seventh and sixth grades next year, both at the junior high and both in the youth group at church. What?! (Can you tell that it’s a wild revelation for me?) We’ve all put together our summer reading lists, and I’m not above using time in the pool to bribe them into finishing each and every book they’ve got listed. They’ve got a few weeks blocked off in the summer for camps – youth camp in New Mexico for Ana and children’s camp in Mississippi for Emma – and they’re both participating in the children’s musical in June. I’m hoping to write a ton of stuff when they’re out of town, but with them being gone separate weeks… we’ll see what happens with that!

My plans for a summer trip to Israel were dashed to bits and pieces when we didn’t have enough interest to make a viable group. That ended up working out, though, because the IRS was happy to take the money I’d saved for the trip. And then some. How kind of them, right? I’ve been proactive with the taxes this year, paying in quarterly rather than waiting for a giant surprise at the end of the year. I’ve probably mentioned this before, but all of this is thanks to the fact that last year was the first year I made a real income as a writer, something that had never happened before, which is why I had no idea that I even needed to be paying taxes. But I know what I’m doing now! Always a good thing…

And speaking of books, here’s what you REALLY want to know. I had high hopes of writing ten new books this year. I didn’t know that we’d be moving when I came up with that, and I certainly didn’t know that packing everything up would take so long. (It took months! Unpacking was so much easier.) So, we had Taken out at the first of the year, First Love at the beginning of spring, and All My Days here recently. Sawyer’s book is halfway done (it’s been halfway for a while, sigh), and I’m in the deep with a project I’m working on with some other writers. I’m hoping that Sawyer’s book will be in your hands in June, this other project will be out to you in July, and maybe (quite possibly!) Bradley’s book will be done in August. Holly’s book is slated for the fall when it’s cooler in Dubai (because how can I release a book set in Dubai when it’s, like, 113 degrees there, right?), and I’m writing a Christmas book set in Namibia. (Yes!) If there’s more time this year, I’d love to revisit Nate Huntington from All My Days and a character you’ll meet in Bradley’s book… which would make ten books for the year, like I said earlier. But those last two… it just might not happen. And that’s fine because then you’ll have something to look forward to in 2019, right? (Oh, and I already have a great plan for a book to follow up the Namibia Christmas. Eeee! I know, I know. I said I was going to leave these characters behind, but you’ll LOVE it!)

Sigh. So that’s where we are. I’ll try to keep up the blog and write more often, but if it’s a choice between this and the books? You probably want me to focus on that. With that said, I’m heading back to Sawyer’s story…


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