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Danielle Miceli

🌼 May 31st, 2019 🌼


What’s New?

Good news! The baby is sleeping more at night. Bad news: he’s sleeping less during the day...when I need him to nap so I can work. 🤦🏻‍♀️This right here is a classic example of the ebb and flow of motherhood--it will always be hard, all that changes is the how and why.
  1. Caleb Tax: You know how Imgur has a “cat tax” that encourages people to add cute pictures of cats to unrelated posts? I feel like my newsletters should start having a “Caleb tax” at the end, at least while he’s growing so fast, so I can still share cute pictures of him at the bottom of these emails without getting too distracted. You know, in case babies aren’t your thing and/or you’d prefer if I dove right into more relevant topics. 💙
  2. #FantasyWIPJune: My birthday is next month! 😊 To celebrate, I teamed up with fellow June babies, @penningfate and @apocalypsycho, to host the June Fantasy WIP Instagram challenge! If you’ve never participated in a daily IG challenge before, it’s a fun way to get to know other people with similar interests (writergram and bookstagram have tons, but I’m sure there are other categories out there). I also find it extremely helpful when debating what to post. It takes the edge off of my usual decision paralysis. 😅

    Fun fact: I met almost my entire writer tribe through completing one of these challenges last autumn! Hopefully #FantasyWIPJune will bring even more writers together within our incredible IG community. 💞

    I’ll drop the graphic here in case you’re interested in joining us (or curious to see the prompts we came up with). 
#FantasyWIPJune prompts

Novel Update

Current stats: 598 pages. 320,155 words. That means this draft is now down almost 100 pages and over 35,000 words from where it started. 🙌🏻

  1. Halfway Through Draft 3: AT LAST. I finished editing chapter 38 out of a current total of 76 chapters just last night. I can’t believe it has taken me so long to hit this midway point! I know, I know: baby. But you’d be surprised how quickly that excuse can become frustrating, even though it’s completely valid.
  2. Anticipating Criticism: I am basically the queen of disclaimers:
    “I’m sorry to bother you with all this unnecessary exposition…”
    “I know this is the worst part of my book, sorry you have to plow through it…”
    “You don’t have to read any further if you don’t like the first chapter…”

     For some reason, if I’m insecure about something, I often feel compelled to express it. As if I need everyone to forgive me when I’m not perfect, and by acknowledging my imperfections first, I can somehow prove I’m capable of doing better. I’m not sure if that makes sense, but it’s a common train of thought for me, particularly when sharing something as vulnerable as my writing.

    Frankly, I’m stunned by how positive my CP feedback has been thus far; I was not expecting the beginning to be so well received. But one of my amazing CPs has flown through the early chapters. She came upon one that I knew had a lot of excess information. I wanted to chop it up and weave segments into later chapters, to make it easier to digest. But I left it as is for now because I wanted to see what bits, if any, early readers found useful in that scene.

    So I did what I do. I warned her about the chapter like it was some great evil. I braced myself for her to confirm what I already knew needed work, and when she did, you’d think I’d have been prepared to handle that, right?

    Nope. I freaked out. Not to her, of course. I was genuinely grateful for her feedback. I was expecting it. But I crumbled inside myself. That whole rest of the day I was convinced I didn’t know how to write and my book was trash. My husband couldn’t talk me out of it. I felt so ridiculously dejected.

    Maybe I’m the only crazy person who struggles with such irrational reactions. But since I doubt it, let me remind you that you’re not crazy, either. We writers are a strange and sensitive folk, and I think any artist can relate to the keen desperation of wanting other people to like your work. It’s all well and good to remember we create for ourselves first and foremost, but the nature of this profession is that, well, we’re not just creating for ourselves. It’s inevitable to crave outside approval--otherwise we probably wouldn’t go through the trouble of publishing our work.

     No, that info-dump section did not ruin the book for her. No, she didn’t suddenly regret becoming my CP. She moved on to the next chapter and seemed to enjoy it as much as ever (and only then did I feel better 😅).

    If you take nothing else away from this embarrassing anecdote, remember that you are always, always your biggest critic. No one will fixate on your shortcomings more than you, so please, don’t waste your energy. Focus on how grateful you are for this chance to improve your work before complete strangers lay eyes on it. Make your book the best it can be, so that you can release it into the world with NO disclaimers. 💜

May Reads

I wonder when this section will contain books that have already been published again? 🤔 Not that I mind beta reading! I love it, honestly; it reminds me of college workshops and enables me to give back to members of our fantastic writing community. But I do miss being able to read a book with non-critical eyes every now and then. I think once I finish this round of WIP self-edits I will make it a goal to read at least 1 published book a month.

For now, I’m pleased to say I’ve been keeping up with my Critique Partners, often reading more than 1 of their chapters a week (a pleasant surprise). It helps that they’re all so damn talented! I’d love to feature their unique and engaging WIPs here once I finish them, and cannot wait to buy published copies. 😍

I’ve also taken on a new beta! This time, I’m reading a YA high fantasy (and you know I’m all about high fantasy) in an expansive world by an absolute ray of sunshine. But I’ve only just begun to sink my teeth into it, so more on that next month! 😉


I will never stop thanking all of you for the love and support you’ve given me. My author journey truly would be far more lonely and unforgiving without you.


Caleb tax:
Caleb wearing dino hoodie
Swaddled Caleb
Caleb smiling


Upcoming fantasy author, new mom, D&D addict, Gemini, Slytherclaw, lover of raw dough, wants to be your friend. 💗

Copyright © 2019 Danielle Miceli, All rights reserved.

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