The Hills & Valleys of the Writing Life

Edie here. Today you are in for a treat! One of my all-time favorite YA authors has agreed to share some of the things she’s learned while traveling this writing road. 

She also has a new book, The Revisionary (don’t you LOVE the title!) and I’ve shared all the information about it after the post. Please give her a warm TWC welcome!

The Hills & Valleys of the Writing Life
by Kristen Hogrefe @kjhogrefe 

Driving home during one of my Sunshine State’s summer downpours, I heard Tauren Wells’ “Hills and Valleys” on the radio. How well those lyrics fit the writer’s life!
Our writing journeys are often a series of highs and lows. I love seeing the wide-eyed excitement when my writer friends post that they’ve signed with an agent or contracted with a publishing house. 

I remember the almost surreal feeling when I signed a three-book contract with Write Integrity Press and celebrated with a friend over coffee.
Then, the demands of perfecting a proposal or the grind of deadline writing sets in. We grit our teeth, excited to make the most of the privilege before us but also wonder when we might find some relief from the pressure.
To our delight, hilltop moments dot the writing landscape. We reveal the brilliant cover design, return the last galley to our editor with all edits approved, 

and receive our first raving review from an advance reader. Then there’s release day, launch parties, and congratulations from friends and colleagues on a job well done.
However, valleys don’t trail far behind. Maybe we receive a low review, or someone posts negative feedback that slices our heart in two. Sales may not peak the way we’d hoped. The deadline for the sequel weighs us down amid all the other demands of life.
If we get caught in the emotional yoyo of the writing process, we lose sight of our purpose and ride waves that crest and crash one after the other.
We know where our attention needs to be, but Wells’ words provide a much-needed reminder. On the mountains, we’re to “bow” or recognize that we didn’t get there on our own two feet. 

God “set” us there and allowed us to experience his blessing on our work. In the valleys, we’re to “lift” our eyes to the One who remains with us even in the dark places.
The contrast paints a beautiful picture of the proper perspective: Bow our heads when we’re high. Lift our eyes when we’re low. Both actions focus our attention on the Lord, our Constant through the journey.
Whether you’re on the mountaintop or in the valley, keep these steady truths in mind:
  1. God’s help and grace have brought you to this place. (2 Corinthians 12:9, Philippians 4:13)
  2. Everything God allows is for your good and his glory. (Romans 8:28, I Corinthians 1:31)
  3. God is faithful to complete the work he’s begun in you. (Philippians 1:6, I Thessalonians 5:24)
  4. When God is your guide, you never walk alone. (Psalm 23:4, Psalm 42:8)
Yes, he’s God of the hills and valleys.
Where are you in your journey? What advice can you share about riding the highs and lows of the writer’s life? Join the conversation!

The Revisionary
by Kristen Hogrefe

A Revisionary rewrites the rules. A Rogue breaks them. Which one is she?
Nineteen-year-old Portia Abernathy accepts her Revisionary draft to the Crystal Globe with one goal: earn a Dome seat so she can amend the satellite rules and rescue her brother. 

Her plan derails when Head Gage Eliab brands her as a suspect in a campus Rogue attack, and in her quest to clear her name, she questions if the vigilante Brotherhood responsible might not be the real villain.
Her shifting loyalties pit her against Luther Danforth, her Court Citizen ally who believes in reform, not revolution. Joining the Brotherhood makes a future with him impossible—and Portia must decide if it’s better to rewrite the rules or to break them.

Kristen Hogrefe is a YA novelist and speaker. She also serves as a mentor for Word Weavers International and teaches English for Alpha Omega Academy. 

Her new release, The Revisionary (Write Integrity Press), is the first book in her YA trilogy The Rogues

The novel is a dystopia of a different kind—one where characters look back to their civilization’s heritage for hope to move forward. 

You can find Kristen outdoors in the Florida sunshine or online at where she challenges young adults and the young at heart to think truthfully and live daringly.    

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