What is the cost of art? Not the cost of a paperback book, or a painting on a museum wall. But what is the cost of art to the artist?


In November 2012, I set out to write what I knew would be a different kind of story for me. A story that had a definite end before I even began. A story that had to be written a certain way, though I knew not what for at the time. A story that I did not want to write but penned anyway.

What is the cost of art? Sleep to Dream, a young adult horror/romance novel, explores that very question when seventeen-year-old Pepper Montgomery finds what she believes to be the greatest love of her life only to lose him. Out of that devastation is born both passion and talent for art beyond Pepper’s wildest dreams. But what does she ultimately trade to make the things in her head tangible to the world? What do I? What does any human cursed with this romantic notion called creativity?

I write stories because I cannot help myself, and publish to let go. It is with great pleasure that I let go of this story, put it on a shelf, give it a tangible reality so I can free up some real estate in my mind. I may never know the true cost of art, what it actually takes of me, what it actually takes of any of us, but I sure as hell feel it with every book I create. So, here’s a toast to that brief, incomparable high I get every time I finish a novel, and to the decades of my life lived working toward those moments. Cheers.

Full paperback cover art (with bleed) • Paperback trim size: 5.25" x 8"
Cover Design, Photography & Painting - Michelle Roxanne Bredeson

For more information, including how to purchase the paperback or Kindle, please visit the | BOOKS section.


While I have a tendency to binge-read a book I find particularly interesting, I took my time digesting Sapiens. I consider Harari's look into the past essential reading for humanity.

"A second theory agrees that our unique language evolved as a means of sharing information about the world. But the most important information that needed to be conveyed was about humans, not about lions and bison. Our language evolved as a way of gossiping. According to this theory Homo sapiens is primarily a social animal. Social cooperation is our key for survival and reproduction. It is not enough for individual men and women to know the whereabouts of lions and bison. It's much more important for them to know who in their band hates whom, who is sleeping with whom, who is honest, and who is a cheat...

The gossip theory might sound like a joke, but numerous studies support it. Even today the vast majority of human communication — whether in the form of emails, phone calls or newspaper columns — is gossip."

— from Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari

While there's plenty to learn about writing from writers and their creations, there's also plenty to learn about writing from people who understand people. After all, it's people I'm writing about.

Harari's Sapiens left me with an enormous amount to consider, but his research also enabled me to reflect on a life-long question that just keeps nagging at me: Why am I so obsessed with storytelling? As it turns out, it's not about me at all. All humans are obsessed with telling stories because that's very possibly how language evolved. We were telling stories before we thought to write them down, and long before the world wide web existed, enabling us to share them globally.

How humbling to imagine the millions upon millions of stories both told and written under these very stars. Photo by Benjamin Davies on Unsplash

I'm a storyteller not because I'm special or talented; I'm a storyteller because I'm humoring my hardwiring and giving in to one of the most basic impulses we all share. We're all driven by storytelling, by characterizing people and situations in order to categorize them in our minds. The ending will differ depending on who's a hero and who's a villian, and there are times when keeping track can mean the difference between life and death.

As a child, I was told gossip is a sin. As an adult, I owe gossip for the craft I've chosen to dedicate my life to. Writing novels is a way to pay homage to gossip without engaging in it and hurting someone's feelings and/or reputation. Evolution isn't something that happened a long time ago—it's happening right now, to all of us, whether we like it or not. I am growing and changing as an individual while the human race grows and changes collectively. We are all in this together, and I am fortunate beyond measure to live in a time and society with the acumen to make that observance. Hindsight is still 20/20, even in the virtual age.



The Kinks

I think I'm sophisticated
'Cause I'm living my life
Like a good
Homo sapiens


Legacy: Bloodline Book 1 and Legends: Bloodline Book 2 are now available for purchase in both paperback and Kindle formats!

Paperback Trim Size: 5.25" x 8". In order to determine trim size, I took all the books in my home off their shelves and held each one in my hand. This is the size I prefer as a reader, so it's the size I chose as a designer. Though I've made my manuscripts available in electronic format, they were intentioned to be paperback books. I've always loved the feel and smell of a book in my hands, and am pleased to present that same experience for the reader.

In 7th grade, due to circumstances beyond my control, I transferred from a public middle school of several hundred kids to a nondenominational Christian school with twenty some kids in my combined 7th/8th-grade class. There I found friendship with a group of girls who not only loved to read (like me), they also loved to write (like me). And so we spent our formative years writing and swapping stories and asking questions and spurring one another on. Their affection for the craft pushed me to explore the parameters of my own, and my sentiment for storytelling soon grew from like to love.

It is with that same love that I present Legacy: Bloodline Book 1 and Legends: Bloodline Book 2 for the curious reader. These books evolved into something I didn't see coming, and I feel like I've finally written the story my main character, Carly, deserves. And now that I've accomplished that goal, it's time to let these books go and move on to the next thing. So, if you're interested in catching up with Carly, or perhaps getting to know her for the first time, please check out Legacy and Legends. If young adult dark fantasy isn't necessarily your thing, maybe it's time to sit down and write your own story. ;)

For more information regarding Legacy and Legends and where to purchase, please visit the |BOOKS section.