Brandyn Blaze

Life Between The Scenes

Category: Other (page 1 of 2)

Special Announcement: There’s Some Big Changes Going On!

“I need to write a new blog post soon,” I told myself, sitting down in front of my computer Tuesday morning. “I have about 80 drafts started, if I get my head in the game I can get a bunch of them finished.”

I typed in the address and attempted to log-in, shocked when it took me to a screen declaring my website was down.

I immediately hopped over to Bluehost and found that my hosting fees had been due on the 4th…not the 9th like I had written down on my calendar. With a sigh, I closed my laptop. It was two days ’til payday, nothing could get done until then.

I quickly shook it off and busied myself with housework. It didn’t take long until I was ready for a break, which lasted about 5 minutes before my 4 year old daughter needed me to get her some milk.  As I poured her drink, I couldn’t help but think about how far off track I’ve gotten with my blog and social media posts lately. In fact, I hadn’t really worked on the next novel much either.

I carried the beverage back to my child and collapsed on the couch, feeling exhausted. She curled up beside me and I smiled. At least I hadn’t gotten too off track with her.

I took a moment to remind myself that it’s okay to slip every now and then. Sometimes we need rest. Especially when there’s a lot of big changes going on.

With my daughter starting preschool a few weeks ago, I have been busy adjusting to a new routine. A routine that will undoubtedly be shaken up again in the very near future as the changes taking place in my body culminate in a brand new life.

Hold up…does this mean?

Yes, ladies and gents, yours truly is pregnant with Baby #2!

I found out shortly after the Fourth of July and it has been so hard to keep it in!

In fact, we went against all the usual advice and told immediate family and our closest friends very quickly. After going through multiple losses, I found that for me personally, I’d rather have the uncomfortable conversation if something goes wrong and have the love and support of my family and friends, than go through it alone.

However, we waited to tell everyone else until after we had our first ultrasound and entered the “safe zone”.  Now that that is done, I can share with you!

 

simple pregnancy announcement

My little princess is so excited!

I am now a little over 14 weeks along and everything is going smoothly. All the nausea and exhaustion is starting to subside and I’m finally feeling like a functioning human again. Of course, that’s likely to change again in a number of months, but I’ll take the reprieve, no matter how brief!

Ever since I took that first test, I have been unable to focus on anything else. I’ve been making my lists and worrying about everything I need to have done before the little one gets here. There’s all sorts of housework and decluttering to be done, a new budget to work out, and a name to choose. There’s changes to account for in the timelines of some goals.

And of course, there’s a lot of work to catch up on in terms of my career! Posts to write and schedule, a book to finish, and a few other projects to deal with…to say I’m a little overwhelmed is an understatement!

Of course, I felt this way when I was pregnant with my daughter as well.  I was a nervous wreck and had a huge list of things I wanted to do before she arrived. I wound up knocking out a good chunk of that list, and ultimately none of it was as big a deal as I’d made it out to be.

This time, I think I have some reasonable goals and am so excited to get everything in place!

Over the past couple weeks I’ve finally gotten my writing groove back and am back to work on the fourth book in my “Instruments of Life” series. In the interest of not taking on more than I can chew at the moment, I’m aiming for it to be out in March, however I am hoping to have it ready sooner than that if possible. I’m really excited about this one and I can’t wait to wrap it up and share it with you all!

With so much going on, I’m sure to have more than enough fodder for blog posts between now and then, so be on the lookout for new posts! In addition to finding them on my Facebook and Twitter pages, you can also subscribe to this blog via email at the bottom of the page.

I look forward to sharing this journey with you all and as always I want to extend a huge “Thank You!” to my wonderful readers for all your love and support!

Let the new chapter begin!

 

 

Branching Out: Finding My Place As A Hobby Collector

Hi, my name is Brandyn and I’m a hobby collector.

What’s a hobby collector you ask?

Well, I am the sort of person who is constantly trying out new things, especially when it comes to artsy endeavors. My office is jam-packed with boxes and totes full of supplies for various projects, half-finished products, and random things “I can use someday”. My bookshelves are lined with how-to’s and instructionals on a wide array of subjects. My notebooks are filled with sketches and lists of new ideas and the supplies I would need to bring them to life. When I get set on something, I get set on something and it is my only focus…until something new comes along.

We talked before about how I’m not cut out for the workforce, and this is another large part of that. I get bored easily and need to keep things constantly moving. I need to switch things up often. There’s a whole world of information out there and I want to know it all and learn how to do everything under the sun.

 

branching out, hobby collector, diy, craft projects, jack of all trades, eclectic career

 

Lately, I’ve been working on organizing all of my craft stuff and finishing up a lot of projects that have been hanging around for god-knows-how-long. Some of these half-finished creations have been hanging around for decades, just like my first book did before I finally got it polished up and sent it out into the world.  As I look at the ever-growing list of tasks to complete, I can’t help but feel weighed down and, at times, overwhelmed.

I also can’t help but feel that these things work to keep me stuck in the past. In order to move forward, I need to either complete them or let them go. Or, in some cases, both.

I’ve gone through and eliminated a few things that I no longer had any interest in finishing, and now I’m set on knocking as many of them off the list as possible. Some of them I will keep for myself, others will be gifts for loved ones, and still more will be listed for sale on my new Etsy shop, hopefully by the end of the month.

I’ve often felt like the idea that a person must pick one thing and do it for the rest of their lives to be a bit absurd. I refuse to trap myself in any one box, and instead choose to embrace all my interests and talents and share them with the world. Remember what I said about bad art? As far as I’m concerned, it doesn’t exist. There’s a market for everything, even if it’s a market of one. Somebody out there is waiting for my art, and I’m going to deliver. I may even offer some tutorials on this site along the way.

So, what kind of art am I producing?

The short answer: lots of different things.

Well, as most of you know I love to doodle. Recently, I’ve digitally traced and colored a few of my hand-drawn designs and have uploaded them to my Zazzle shop for use on t-shirts, mugs, tote bags, and buttons. I love the few that I have up so far and will definitely be adding more in the future! You can check them out via the “Merch” tab above, or through the widget in my sidebar (for mobile users, it will appear below the posts).

 

brandyn blaze shirt designs, mugs, buttons, art, hand drawn, unique, hobby collector, craft projects

A few of the designs I have available.

 

Sewing is another thing I’ve always enjoyed, especially reconstructing t-shirts. I will be selling one-of-a-kind refabbed articles of clothing, as well as handbags, throw pillows, and other soft goods. I also have quite the collection of beads, brooches, and other random items that I will be turning into jewelry and using as embellishments for various projects, including home decor items.  These items will appear in my Etsy shop in the very near future, so keep your eyes peeled for updates, as I will post the link as soon as the collection is ready.

Of course, you can still look forward to new posts here, as well as more novels and, hopefully, some music in the very near future.

Life isn’t one-size fits all, so why should work be? If you take away one thing from this, let it be that you can do whatever you want with your life. If you want to do 50 billion things, find a way to make it work. This is your life, create something you love!

 

 

We’re Almost There! Book Update and Giveaway!

As you’ve probably noticed, I have been quite a busy lady as of late. With birthdays, holidays, and various projects–not to mention every day stress–I feel like I’ve been going non-stop. It’s amazing that I’ve found any time at all to work on the next novel, but somehow I have managed to chip away at it, despite a few set-backs.

The next book will be called Lo-Fidelity and is the followup to “Broken Strings“. Maggie’s saga continues as she and the band set out on the road for their biggest tour yet. Along the way she gains confidence in her skills, encounters a few surprises, and uncovers some harsh truths that leave her questioning all her relationships.

I am beyond excited to share the next installment with you all and to move on to the third book in this series. These characters have become such a big part of my life, and watching them develop has been an amazing experience.

I am hesitant to give you a set release date, as things seem to keep blowing up around here, but I can tell you that the second book in the series will be released by the end of the year. As soon as things become a little more clear on my end, I will give you all an update both on this blog and through my social media channels.

win a free book, broken strings, brandyn blaze

In other book-related news, I have updated both the print and ebook versions of “Broken Strings” to correct a few errors that were missed before it’s release. Aside from an error on the cover of the first edition, there was also a doozy of a spelling error that led me to comb through the entire novel. The whole re-editing process was a bit of a headache, but it was definitely an eye-opener!

In order to celebrate the progress I’ve made, I thought I’d offer you all a chance to receive a signed copy of the newly revised edition of the first book in the “Instruments Of Life” series.

To enter, simply choose one or more of the following options in the widget below. The more options you choose, the bigger your chances of winning! This giveaway will end at 12am CST on Tuesday, November 22.

Don’t be stingy, be sure to share this contest with other romance readers as well!

Happy reading and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

How Time Flies

I opened up my computer this morning with a bit of trepidation. Over the last few months I had let this blog and its related social media accounts become dormant as life dragged my attention to other matters. Every day I’d promise myself that I would get back to it “tomorrow”…and then tomorrow brought more distractions. The longer this went on, the more unsure I became about what to say. For awhile, I thought about giving it all up completely. All work on the next novel in my series ground to a halt. The house work piled up. My performance at my day job suffered. In short, shit got real.

Part of it was probably due to my ongoing battles with anxiety and depression, but the majority of it fell squarely on the shoulders of stress. Between a job I wasn’t happy with, the wedding planning, and all the day-to-day hoopla that comes with being a mother, I was wiped out. I knew something had to change.

When I started my first blog, I was a stay-at-home mom who was striving for perfection, both at home and with my writing. Without the skill of setting boundaries, I quickly burnt out and found myself performing at half my capacity in each arena. I then added a job to the mix. I set myself a schedule to keep everything flowing and that worked for awhile. Then, as they say, life prevailed. Suddenly I was doing a half-assed job at work and at home, and all work related to my writing went by the way-side.

After careful consideration, I realized that I needed to restructure my priorities. I decided that after the wedding, I would return to staying home with my little one and focus my energies on making my writing career successful. Armed with new knowledge regarding time management, I feel I can now juggle work and home much more efficiently.

I’ll never forget the relief I felt when I walked out of my job for the last time. I new I was moving on to bigger and better things, and that my wedding day would signify a fresh start for our family.

The wedding turned out beautifully, but let me tell you something I’ve learned about big events like this. All the work and stress that goes into it is really silly compared to how quickly it goes by! Thank god for my amazing photographer, Mindy from MRB Photography, or I wouldn’t be able to remember half of it!

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Our rings!

Our rings!

First dance, kiss

So much love!

wedding picture mother and child

My daughter and I

We left the morning after the wedding to drive to New Orleans so we could board our cruise ship and start our honeymoon. The trip was amazing and gave me some time to really think about what kind of life I want to create. Having that time to relax and let go of the idea that life has to be a struggle was amazing and allowed me to return to the real world with a much better attitude. Honestly, I think all the pretty drinks helped!

fruity drinks are the best

Of course, the views at each of our stops (Cozumel and Progreso) were inspiring as well.

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Beach in Cozumel

Mayan ruins Progreso Mexico

Mayan Ruins, Progreso

We had such a fantastic trip and I can’t wait to do it again!

That said, it is my goal to create a life I don’t need a vacation from and it starts with this post. Today marks the beginning of a new chapter in my life and a renewed focus on my dreams. It’s time to make those dreams a reality and I can’t wait to share this journey with you all!

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