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Danielle Miceli

☀️ July 31st, 2020 ☀️
⚡ Happee Birthdae, Harry! 


What’s New?

July has definitely been the fastest month of 2020 for me so far. I am in shock that it’s about to be August. Summer’s almost over and I haven’t even been to a beach (thanks, pandemic). I won’t lie, every day this month felt like a colossal struggle to go through even the basic motions, let alone get work done. Huge shout out to my old friend @ladykapdragon for coaching me (gently, yet insistently, which is what I needed) to identify my personal motivations and re-set goals this past week. It’s been slow-goings, but I’m just happy to have any type of “goings” at all right now!   
  1. Getting Back on the Horse: The hardest part is often just trying again. After spending so much time “off,” recovering from burnout, or hiding from everything that comes next, confronting the work ahead of you can feel like an insurmountable obstacle. Writing (or in my case, editing) doesn’t always come back like riding a bike. Sometimes, it feels more like learning to ride a horse for the first time. Like you’ve forgotten how to even start, and have no experience taming this wild animal.

    I spoke with a close friend about this the other day, lamenting how despite all my recent efforts, I’m still not back on that horse yet. She said: even standing near the horse is a first step.

    It helped me, and I hope it helps you, too, when you need to hear it. At the beginning of July, I didn’t want to approach the horse with a 20-foot pole. Now I’m standing firmly beside him. Do my feet keep slipping from the stirrups when I try to mount? Yup, a lot, and it’s frustrating as hell. But I keep lifting myself up anyway. That’s how I know I will get back in the saddle; it’s only a matter of time. And you will, too, so long as you keep trying. Only once we reclaim the reins can we ride forward.

  2. Future IG Lives: I’ve been invited to 2 Instagram lives by writers I admire in the past few months, and I loved both experiences, despite my intense “stage fright” leading up to them. 🙈 In August, I’ll join another dear friend on an extremely special occasion and I CANNOT WAIT.

    This led to brainstorming future lives I might co-host, and I’ve already got two ideas (and partners!) in the works. One covering a beloved, much-discussed part of the fantasy writing process, and another on a topic I rarely see people discuss directly, to the point where it almost feels taboo. I’m truly excited about both!

    To be honest, I’ve been ruminating on a much larger idea for an event in our incredible writing community that I’d love to tackle, but I don’t currently have the time or mental bandwidth to coordinate it. Once I do, however, you will be the first to know my plans! ✨

Writing Update

As I’ve already mentioned, I spent July convincing myself to start working on my novel again. It took me the whole damn month, but finally, at the very end, I began reading through those final beta emails. I’ve still got more than half to go, but resolving to open that first one was a massive step for me. 

  1. Compiling Beta Feedback: I hope to finish sorting through (and replying to!) those “End of Book” beta questionnaires during the first week of August, and then move on to alllllll the chapter surveys, of which there are, um, many. 😬 By the end of next month, I want all my beta feedback organized into an editing outline. I know some of you have asked how to go about that process, so I plan to include all my sorting tricks and tips in next month’s newsletter!
  2. Another Short Story?: I know, who am I, right?? Yes, I still hate writing short stories--but a friend is in need, and I’m going to try my best to answer her call. Part of me still believes my Nordic siren story for Project Winter Solstice was a fluke of the muses, but now it looks like I’ll be testing that theory. 😅 So not only will I revise my existing short story this August, I’ll also attempt to draft a new one--a dark retelling of the Greek myth of Pygmalion and Galatea (the sculptor who fell in love with his statue). Please wish me luck on this dubious endeavor. 

July Reads

Actual quote from last month’s newsletter: “Maybe if I don’t vow to finish [Godsgrave] next month...I actually will.” Hmm, well GUESS WHAT I BOOK I FINISHED THIS MONTH, EVERYONE?! 🙃
  1. Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐: This is one of those satisfying cases where the sequel is even better than book 1. I loved Nevernight, but Godsgrave is in a league of its own. I broke down my thoughts in great detail for my Goodreads review. Check it out if you’ve been on the fence about whether or not this series is for you (I’ve reviewed book 1, too).
I also began buddy reading an ARC of my incredible CP Lina’s upcoming debut, Daughter of the Deep, with my husband. It releases in just two weeks on August 15, and I cannot wait to post an official review and sob many tears about it. The experience of holding a book I’ve watched my friend labor over and pour everything she has into has been unlike any other. I’m so proud of her. 💖


I will never stop thanking you for the love and support you’ve given me. My inbox, DMs, P.O. box, etc. are always open to each of you!

Caleb tax:
Caleb in a pool with floaty.
Caleb standing in a cat-stronaut shirt.


Upcoming fantasy author, new mom, D&D addict, Gemini, Slytherclaw, lover of brunch and afternoon tea, wants to be your friend. 💕

Copyright © 2020 Danielle Miceli, All rights reserved.

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