An Echo Of The Fae Book Release Tour!: An Interview With The Author

good morning, cyberspace!

Remember a few weeks ago when I helped reveal the cover for Jenelle Schmidt’s newest release, An Echo Of The Fae? Well, today I was given the chance to go even deeper into the creation of this story! I’ve never really been part of a book release tour before, but if there is one book that I seriously want to help boost out there in the great, wide Cyberspace, it is this one.

I was initially supposed to do an author interview/book review post today, but because Life is a cruel mistress and Time hates my guts, I am unable to do the review portion today. I will, however, be posting that in the near-ish future, so please stay tuned for that! (seriously. y’all NEED to read this book.)

But, despite my inability to complete my tasks on time, I still have an absolutely LOVELY author interview to share with you all today! And I am so so excited for you to read it, because–as I’ve mentioned before, and as I shall keep mentioning until it is known world-wide–Jenelle is literally the Fairy Godmother of Indie Publishing. She is an absolutely hUGE inspiration to me in my own writing journey, and I am so incredibly blessed to have had the opportunity to get to know her better over the course of the past year or so.

(not to mention we actually KNOW PEOPLE IN EACH OTHER’S IRL CIRCLES??? the world is eerily small sometimes, my dudes. XD)

So when the chance came for me to help promote her book and interview her on ALL OF THE WRITERLY things, I couldn’t pass up the chance. I still have a multitude of things I’m going to have to pick her brain on in the future, but for today, allow me to introduce you to our first ever Smudged Thoughts Author Interview!

(I feel so profesh now. look at me, guys, I’ve actually interviewed a real-life author!!! …ahem. moving on.)

LET’S CHAT!: featuring Jenelle Schmidt

Kenzie: Good morning, cyberspace, and welcome back to yet another episode of LET’S CHAT! This is a very special episode, however, for today, our interviewee is actually alive.

*collective gasp from the crowd*

Kenzie: I know. It’s quite shocking even to me. So before our lovely star has a chance to completely rethink this entire decision, let’s dive right into the interview! Ladies and gents, boys and girls, let’s give a giant, warm welcome to the one–the onlyJenelle Schmidt!

Kenzie: First thing’s first, our first question! How do you balance family and overall chaotic crazy Life-ish-ness with your writing life/goals and dreams? (I would absolutely love to hear how you juggle family and life with writing and blogging and just ALL OF THE THINGS, because you are a huge authorly inspiration to me, not gonna lie.)

Jenelle: Aww, well, thanks! 

Balance is always a hard thing to find, and it’s not always easy to keep things properly balanced. I will be the first to admit that there are many things to do, and at any given time in my life, there’s at least one important thing that’s not getting done or being neglected.

Usually it’s house work.

Pretty much always house work, actually. And sometimes it’s cooking. We probably eat take-out more often than we ought to. Which is a bummer, because I actually like cooking and am pretty good at it.

But, that aside, there are a few things I do that I think help me.

  1. God comes first. When I slack off in reading my Bible or spending time in prayer, everything else in my life suffers. Usually, when things begin to tip out of balance, this is the reason. I’m not making time in my day for my Lord and Savior, and that throws all the rest of the things out of whack.
  2. Limit time on social media. This one has been a major problem for me the past few months during the quarantine, and my time on social media definitely got way out of balance, which meant that a lot of other things did not get done in a timely fashion… or at all. So it was a good reminder and wake-up call to set limits on how much time I spend on social media.
  3. Protect your writing time and do whatever you need in order to make sure that time is spent writing. This is a two-fold key, because when those moments come that you’ve set aside for writing, you have  to be proactive to make sure that you actually WRITE during that time. Don’t let other things get in the way. If you know you’ll be distracted by a messy house, make sure you do your cleaning before you get to your writing time, otherwise you’ll spend your writing time cleaning! (And nobody wants to do that!)

I also have a super incredibly amazing supportive husband who loves my stories and loves the fact that I’m an author and helps make sure that I get time to work on my writing.

Kenzie: Oh my word, I LOVE this answer!!! I definitely need to start limiting my social media time, as well. (specifically youtube…aha.) And THANK YOU for mentioning the part about putting God first. That is such a crucial point and I feel like it really needs to be discussed more…

Kenzie: What does your writing process typically look like on a day-to-day basis? (I’m probably being kind of selfish, here, because I absolutely love insider looks into author lives.)

Jenelle: I’m never quite sure how to answer this question. I just… erm… write. I open my computer, pull up my document, and pick up where I left off. (If I’ve been consistent and disciplined, I don’t even have to re-read much of what I wrote before… though lately so much time has passed between writing sessions because of getting ready for this release that my other projects have suffered a little).

I used to be a revise-while-you-draft writer, where I would spend a couple of hours writing, then the next day I would start out by going over what I had written the day before, editing and tweaking before moving on to write new stuff, but then I discovered the amazingness that is word sprints (thank you, Anne Elisabeth Stengl!) and ever since then, I have implemented those into my writing process with a lot of success. I don’t do much revising or editing when I’m drafting now, though I definitely do a lot more outlining! 

I tend to have a very basic overall outline for the story, and then as I’m writing I’ll create more detailed outlines for the next scene or the next several scenes so that I know my next immediate destination with regards to the overall plot, and then I write as fast as I can to get there.

Kenzie: *INTENSE FLAILING* WORD SPRINTS!!!! YES!!! I absolutely ADORE those, as well! Goodness, next time I’m going to have to ask you about your outlining process. I definitely need help, there. XD

And finally: they say that each new book teaches you something new. Did this particular novel teach you something about writing/your creative process that you hadn’t yet realized?

Jenelle: Yes! An Echo of the Fae taught me a lot of things. But the thing it taught me the most was the beauty of creating something with my Creator. I really feel that God laid this story on my heart, and He was with me every step of the way throughout the entire process. I didn’t write a single scene without talking to Him about it first.

If you haven’t read Allen Arnold’s “The Story of With” I highly recommend you get a copy of the audio book and give it a listen. (Or you could read it, but the audio book is fantastic). It’s a book about what it can look like when you choose to pursue your creative identity with and for God, rather than for yourself or for the acclaim of the world. It’s one of the things that has been extremely inspirational in my own life over the past couple of years. 

Why do I bring this up, a book recommendation sort of randomly in the middle of my answer to this question? Well, I felt like the things I learned while listening to The Story of With sprang to life in my own creative process as I wrote An Echo of the Fae. It was a transforming experience, and one that I am sure I will have to relearn again and again. I don’t know if I’ll ever have the same sort of writing experience I had while writing Echo… but I’m glad I got to experience it once.

Kenzie: …I absolutely love this, and am totally checking out that book now. Thank you so much for chatting with me today, Jenelle! All of your answers were so inspiring and helpful, and I cannot WAIT for the world to meet Echo!

Kenzie: As for the rest of you, don’t forget to snag your own copy of this amazing book over on Amazon, and also make sure to check out this post right here over on Jenelle’s blog to find the rest of the blog tour stops! There’s an insta challenge and a TON of fun content coming your way, so head on over to Jenelle’s site so you don’t miss anything!

Kenzie: As always, let us talk about ALL OF THE THINGS!! down in the comments below, and until next time. . .

Kenzie: *flings cookies in the air and disappears*

>>> <<<

talk to me, peasants!

GUYS!!!! AN ECHO OF THE FAE IS OFFICIALLY OUT IN THE UNIVERSE!!!! I am so impossibly exited about this, and I can’t wait to get my own copy… Having this book on my shelf is going to be my reward for finishing my own novel, methinks. XD

But anyway!!! Questions!!!

  • how do you balance life and family and the overall chaotic craziness of existing with your writerly dreams?
  • have you ever read The Story of With? (I’m gonna be checking my library for this as soon as I can. It sounds like a book I’m desperately in need of right now…)
  • do YOU like writing with word sprints? (if not, you should really try it. I’m gonna form a word sprint club that meets every Monday night. I’ll bring the cookies and the punch. XD)

And finally, most important of all–


I am ridiculously excited about this book, guys. I don’t think I’ve been as excited for a new release since The Boy Next Story came out last year. XD But anyway. I DIGRESS.

As always, let’s talk about ALL OF THE THINGS! down below, and until next time. . .

THE END OF CAMP NANOWRIMO: Episode VII – The Final Interview

This episode of LET’S CHAT! is sponsored by Miss Marple Syrup! When your pancakes and attitude could use some sweetening, pour on the Miss Marple! Guaranteed to be your family’s favorite since 1949!Read More »


This episode of LET’S CHAT! is brought to you by Agatha Crispies! Start your little sleuth’s morning off right with Agatha Crispies–a breakfast they’ll never forget! (now available: Chocolate Agatha Crispies! Now with 50% less fat!)

KENZIE: Good morning, Cyberspace, and welcome back to another episode of LET’S CHAT! Today I am joined by special guests Sam and Eugene as we continue our journey through Camp NanoWriMo! Sam, Eugene, thank you both so much for being here today.

SAM: Thanks for having me.

EUGENE: She was talking to both of us, you idiot.

SAM: *waves him off* Eh.

KENZIE: So, as you both might already know, you’re here to answer some of our viewer submitted questions. We’ve been sitting on these for over a year now, so hopefully you guys feel up to answering them with the utmost respect and civility.

EUGENE: If you were hoping for civility, I have no clue why you forced me to be interviewed alongside him. That was a very poor choice on your part.

SAM: The shirt you’re wearing was a poor choice on your part, old man.

EUGENE: Oh, for the love of–

KENZIE: QUESTIONS! Who wants some questions?

SAM: Oh, I have some questions, all right. . .Read More »


This episode of LET’S CHAT! is brought to you by . . . Sir Arthur Conan Doilies! Now available in 221 different colors!

KENZIE: Good morning, everyone, and welcome back to another episode of LET’S CHAT! In our last interview, we got a sneak peek into the lives of Ed, Shelby, and Beau–three of the main characters within the universe of SK! Today, we’re going to be interviewing two new characters from that very same cast!

KENZIE: Ladies and gents, boys and girls, please give a big, warm welcome to Eleanor and Liam!Read More »

CAMP NANOWRIMO APPROACHES!: Episode I #campnano2020


How on earth did we get to the middle of March already? Some wizard out there is laughing maliciously at us all whilst twirling his magical time clock, I swear. (and once I find him, that little man is going DOWN.) But I digress. It is the middle of March, we are nearing the perfection that is April, and–if any of you know me at all–you know precisely what this means. . .


Read More »

Let’s Chat! – The End of March Hare Madness (feat. the cast of everlost)

This episode of Let’s Chat! is brought to you by Hertz Ice Cream.

Hertz Ice Cream. Ice cream so good it Hertz.

Kenzie: Good morning, Cyberspace, and welcome back to yet another illustrious episode of Let’s Chat! As usual, I have some very special guests with me this morning, who I am sure are super excited to be here today. Ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, please put your non-existent hands together once more for the glorious, the wondrous, the inconceivably magnificent cast of everlost!

*children screaming*

*woman fainting*

*one man sobbing*

Thao: Wow.

Kenzie: Thank you. Thank you. That will be quite enough, everyone. *turns towards the interview bench* Ah yes. Thank you all so very much for coming. As I’m sure you’re already quite aware, today marks a very significant milestone in each of our careers. Today — this beautiful, wonderfully bright Tuesday — marks the very day that March Hare Madness officially ends.Read More »

March Hare Madness! – Week Four: The End. . .?

good morning, cyberspace!

Ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, cookies and creme puffs, cyborgs and androids — welcome one and all to the grande finale of the glorious, the wondrous, the most amazing and spectacular event of 2018 — March Hare Madness!

I know, I know. This comes as quite the shock to you all. After all (this is too many all’s in one paragraph. . .), March only started a few short weeks ago. It can’t possibly be over yet. Not now. Not right when we’re beginning to get into the swing of Spring.

But alas, my friends. It is true. March, though we love it dearly, is ending, and March Hare Madness shall end along with it.

And boy am I grateful.

I don’t know about you guys, but I am getting ex-trem-ely bored of all these March Hare Madness updates. It’s the exact same thing every. single. week. There’s no diversity. No off-beat. No enticing rhythm. I’m over here snoozing and growing a few grey hairs because I have to write yet another post on how my writerly week went. (or didn’t go. aha. [we’ll get into that later.])

It’s just ew. I want this to be over with. And thankfully, this is the last week! (sort of?)


So! Let’s just get this over with, shall we? I’ve got an awesome interview due next Tuesday, and after that, we can finally get back to the usual fun and spontaneity that happens in this tiny corner of Cyberspace.Read More »

March Hare Madness! – Week Two: Hatchdays and Time Change and Writing, OH MY!

good afternoon, cyberspace!

And welcome to Week Two of March Hare Madness! As it happens, I completely forgot to write this blog post over the course of the weekend/Monday like I normally do, and am now sitting at the computer, trying to hash this out on Tuesday morning/afternoon.

Right before this smudge is supposed to be uploaded. So. Be prepared for mass amounts of typos and awful sentence structures, peasants.

But anyway, enough dilly-dallying. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover in regards to all of the wonders that have happened this past week, so let’s dive straight into the smudge, okay? Okay.Read More »

March-Hare Madness! – Week One: The Humble Beginnings (feat. the cast of everlost)

good afternoon, cyberspace!

And welcome to Week One of the glory that is March Hare Madness!!! I am honestly SO excited to share this whole experience with all of you (and have even recruited some of you to join me??? whaaaaaaat…?) and cannot wait to begin.

So let’s jump right into all of the action, shall we?Read More »

Let’s Chat! – NaNoWriMo Approaches (feat. the cast of everlost)

This episode of Let’s Chat! is sponsored by Yogurt Pretzels.

Yogurt Pretzels. The delicious Yum Yum that makes writing Fun Fun!

Kenzie: Good afternoon, Cyberspace, and welcome back to Let’s Chat!–your go-to channel to get the latest scoop on all things writerly! Today I happen to have some very special guests with me, who I’m sure are super duper excited to be here this afternoon.

Kenzie: Ladies and gentleman, boys and girls, cookies and cake crumbs, please put your hands together for. . .


*crowd cheering*

*babies screaming*

*one man dying*

Thao: We are not the entire cast.

Kenzie: Last time on Let’s Chat!, we interviewed Thao Crowe, the broody, over-the-top doctor from the Locket–

Thao: Hey!

Kenzie: –who loves Jar Jar Binks and has a fetish for fish sticks.

Thao: Okay, this is just uncalled for.

Kenzie: It was during this particular interview that I asked all of you which two cast members you would like to see appear side-by-side for the next character inquiry, and finally, after weeks of procrastination waiting, I have in my very hands the results we have all been waiting for.

Kenzie: But we’ll get to all of that later. First, allow me first to introduce our lovely cast members! Why don’t we start off by going down the couch and having each of you say something special about yourself? Sort of like a little ‘get to know you’ type of game, yeah? Sound good?

Adaline: *clasps hands together* I love games!

Thao: Wait–no, don’t–

Kenzie: Lovely! Let us begin! Peter, you’re up first.

Peter: Oh. Okay, well, my name is Peter

Thao: Obviously.

Peter: I’m 19 years old, and I’ve been renowned as something of a computer and science whiz for. . .well, my entire life, really.

Thao: *snorts like a donkey*

Thao: Wait a minute. . . Okay, NO. I am not putting up with this again! Get that stenographer out of here right this instant, chipmunk, or I swear I’ll–

Kenzie: Thank you so much for your input, Peter! Bella?

Thao: *falls back into couch cushions whilst grumbling profusely*

Bella: Um. . . Hi. My name is. . .er. . .Bella. I’m. . .well, there’s really nothing that great about me, to be honest. I don’t necessarily like talking about myself, so. . .yeah.

Bella: *scrunches back into the couch*

Kenzie: That is perfectly fine, Bella. I’m sure we can weedle more out of you later.

Peter: Excuse me?

Kenzie: You’re up, Adaline.

Adaline: Oh! My turn already?

Adaline: *wriggles forward in anticipation*

Adaline: Hello! My name is Adaline. I like butterflies and pudding and squishy guts that look like pumpkin paste.

Kenzie: . . .

Peter: . . .

Bella: . . .

Thao: Well, isn’t this going to be fun.

Kenzie: Adaline, would you possibly like to clarify on that–

Thao: *shoves Adaline back*

Thao: No, actually, she really wouldn’t. My turn, isn’t it?

Thao: Hello, folks. My name is Thao, and you already know more about me than what I’m sure any sane person would be comfortable with, so if you could just leave me alone and let me suffer through my feeble existence in peace, that’d be great. Thanks.

Kenzie: . . .

Kenzie: Okay. I think that wraps up our getting to know you session. Thank you all for your input.

Kenzie: *shuffles index cards*

Kenzie: Now, I’m sure you’re all extremely curious as to why I’ve called you here.

Peter: I have a few assumptions, actually.

Thao: Let me guess–we’re all going to die.

Adaline: Are you cancelling our story?

Kenzie: Er. . .no. I have actually gathered you here today to talk about something that involves each and every one of you. . .and me. Something terrifying. Something so frightening it is enough to give a grown man nightmares.

Thao: That actually doesn’t take much.

Kenzie: Something deadly.

Adaline: Onions?

Kenzie: No. Again.

Adaline: *sighs*

Kenzie: I have summoned each of you here today to talk about. . .

Kenzie: . . .NaNoWriMo.




Thao: Where in the world did the creepy sound effects come from?

Peter: The title kind of gave it away, didn’t it?

Bella: Oh, I love NaNoWriMo! It’s where we all met!

Thao: Joy.

Kenzie: Now, now, settle down, everyone, settle down. As I’m sure you’re all aware, NaNoWriMo is in precisely–

Kenzie: *hastily tallies on fingers*

Kenzie: 14 days.

Thao: 14 DAYS?!

Peter: We’re doomed.

Adaline: I had pudding 14 days ago. . .

Bella: I thought we were going to plan this year!!!

Kenzie: Guys! Please! I know what I’m doing, here, okay?

Peter: That’s what you always say.

Kenzie: Yeah, well, this time I mean it.

Thao: Doubtful.

Kenzie: Oh, please, you don’t even know what I’m doing for this year’s NaNo yet.

Thao: Let me guess. . .

Peter: Finishing our second draft?

Thao: Rebelling against everything you’ve ever known and editing instead of writing 50,000 words of utter nonsense?

Adaline: Eating candy. . .

Kenzie: I. . .how did you. . .?

Peter: It’s kind of what you say every month. Like when you said you were going to finish our second draft back in September.

Adaline: And the month before that, too. . .

Peter: And the month before that.

Adaline: And the month–

Kenzie: Okay, okay, I get it.

Thao: I’m still not over the prune juice.

Kenzie: But this time things are going to be different.

Peter: *sighs*

Peter: Kenzie, I’m sorry. Truly, I am. But you’ve said this so many times before. How can things possibly be different this time around?

Kenzie: Because this time there’s incentive.

Peter: . . .

Thao: And what is that supposed to mean, exactly?

Peter: I thought finishing a book would be incentive enough for you. . .

Kenzie: Of course it is. But with NaNoWriMo approaching, and my rebellion quickly appearing on the horizon, well. . .

Kenzie: I want to shake things up a bit.

Thao: Isn’t being a NaNo Rebel shaking things up a little too much, already? I’d really rather not have everything we’ve worked for implode like a fizzy soda can at the end of the month.

Thao: You know. Like last time.

Kenzie: That. . .isn’t going to happen.

Kenzie: All that I’m saying is, since I can’t necessarily validate my win this year–

Thao: If you win.

Kenzie: —due to being a rebel, I’m going to turn next month into a game of sorts. A way for us to connect with our fellow audience.

Peter: A game.

Kenzie: Precisely.

Kenzie: At the end of the month, if I’ve completed my goal of finishing the second draft of everlost, I get to give the audience a fun, bloggerly dare. Something that they can all do on their own blogs. Something fun. . .embarrassing. Whatever my little heart desires.

Peter: . . . That actually doesn’t sound half-bad.

Bella: It sounds fun! . . .sort of.

Adaline: Can you make them eat worms?

Thao: *elbows past Adaline to lock eyes with Kenzie*

Thao: And might I ask what happens when you lose? Because I’m pretty sure we can all attest to the fact that you will.

Kenzie: Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence, Thao. However, if it really does all boil down to that, well. . .

Kenzie: The audience gets to dare me.

Peter: Okay. I can understand why this could provide some incentive for actually finishing, but are you seriously going to take bets on whether you win or lose? You do realize that you have half the story to go through, right? What makes you think that you can do in one month what you’ve failed to do in half a year?

Kenzie: Because this is NaNoWriMo, Peter. All things are possible in NaNoWriMo.

Bella: She’s got a point there.

Kenzie: Besides, this will all depend on whether the audience is up for such a challenge, anyway.

Thao: *mutters* Right. Because I’m sure absolutely no one in Cyberspace would like to see you eat a worm.

Adaline: Bears eat worms. . .

Kenzie: If no one in the audience is willing to participate, we won’t have to worry about me getting any weird dares, now will we?

Peter: It’s your life, I suppose. . .

Kenzie: Exactly. And I control yours.

Peter: What?!

Kenzie: But anyway, we’re getting ahead of ourselves, aren’t we? Today isn’t about setting up dares and whatnot, but interviewing you guys about NaNoWriMo!

Thao: What could you possibly have to interview us about with NaNoWriMo?

Kenzie: Why, I am so glad you asked, Thao!

Kenzie: Everyone knows to expect the usual flooding of NaNoWriMo posts to swamp their newsfeeds a few weeks prior to November 1st, and while those posts are some of my absolute favorites to read, they are also all about one major thing.

Adaline: Watermelons. . .

Kenzie: . . .

Kenzie: The writer.

Adaline: Oh.

Kenzie: So this time around, I wanted to do something a little bit different. Instead of asking myself what I’m most looking forward to when it comes to NaNo, I thought I would take into consideration the lives that I shall be mutilating embellishing.

Thao: Did you just. . .?

Kenzie: So I decided to ask my lovely cast members what their thoughts and opinions on NaNoWriMo were!

Peter: I’m slightly concerned about this.

Kenzie: Not at all, not at all. This will be fun, I promise.

Thao: Don’t believe her. She’s full of lies.

Adaline: And sparkles. . .

Bella: Go ahead, Kenzie. We’ll do our best to answer your questions.

Kenzie: Wonderful! Let’s begin, shall we?

Kenzie: *shuffles index cards*

Let’s Chat! – NaNoWriMo Approaches (feat. the cast of everlost)

Kenzie: Ah. Here we are. Question one. ‘What are you most excited about for this year’s NaNoWriMo?

Kenzie: Bella, since you appear to be the most on board with this idea, we’ll start with you.

Bella: Oh! Uh. . .okay.

Bella: I think I’m most excited to simply continue the adventure. I know you’ve already finished the first draft, but there’s just something so. . .new about a second draft, you know? It’s like we get to live everything all over again.

Thao: The horror.

Bella: And there have been some major additions and cuts this time around, so I’m really eager to see how everything pans out in the end.

Peter: Some of the characters could use some major development revamps, however.

Thao: Yeah. Like you.

Kenzie: All right, boys, settle down. Thank you, Bella. That was a wonderful answer. Peter, would you like to go next?

Peter: I’m rather eager to see how Crowe’s character arc turns out. Personally, I think you have a long way to go with it, but then again, I’m not the author. . .

Thao: That’s it, Glasses! At least I’m not some stuck-up, spoiled rotten nobody who–

Peter: You call being a puppet to your grandfather spoiled?!

Kenzie: Children, please! We’re on live TV. Peter, is that your final answer?

Peter: *casts sideways scowl at Thao, who is muttering under his breath like some strange guttural monkey*

Peter: I guess I’m also rather fond of the NaNoWriMo feeling. The rush and exhilaration of creation. I like the strange mix of isolation and community. The excitement is contagious.

Kenzie: Beautifully put. Adaline?

Adaline: I love eating the pudding. It’s my favorite part.

Thao: Of course it is.

Adaline: And I can’t wait to spend more time with my friends.

Adaline: *clasps hands beneath chin*

Adaline: Especially the bear. He’s my favorite.

Kenzie: Aw. How adorable. And as the author, I can personally assure you that there is plenty of you and bear time in the future, Adaline.

Adaline: *eyes light up maniacally*

Thao: Wait, what?!

Kenzie: Ah, yes. What are you most excited for, Thao?

Thao: *scoots away from Adaline*

Thao: I’m excited for it to be over.

Kenzie: Seriously? It hasn’t even officially begun!!!

Thao: The way I look at it, NaNoWriMo is what started all of this. It’s only right that NaNoWriMo will end it.

Peter: That was uncharacteristically poetic of you, Crowe.

Thao: Don’t get used to it.

Kenzie: Okay. Let’s move on to question two: ‘What snacks do you prefer to consume whilst working, procrastinating, adventuring, ect.?

Thao: Well, that’s easy. Low calorie snacks are usually my go-to, but I have to make sure they’re small enough to stuff into the oversized pockets of this lab coat, because technically I’m not allowed to snack on the job, but–

Kenzie: Ahem. *points*

Thao: Er. . .what are you–?

Kenzie: *points pointedly towards back wall*

Thao: Is that. . .a teleprompter?

Kenzie: . . .

Thao: Yogurt. . .pretzels. Why does that screen say yogurt pretzels?

Kenzie: Yogurt pretzels are a delicious snack, Thao. What a lovely choice.

Thao: Wait a minute, that’s not what I–

Kenzie: Peter?

Peter: M&M’s all the way.

Thao: Are you kidding me?!

Bella: Same!

Adaline: I love vanilla pudding. . . 

Thao: Really, Loony? We never would have guessed.

Kenzie: Hush, Thao. No one picked on you for liking yogurt pretzels.

Thao: Okay, I never said that I–

Kenzie: Question three.

Thao: Of course.

Kenzie: This one pertains more to the story creation elements of NaNoWriMo, but I’m quite eager to hear your input: ‘What scenes are you most looking forward to reenacting this November?

Peter: The Prune Juice Fiasco was always a personal favorite of mine, actually. . .

Thao: Don’t you even dare, Glasses.

Bella: They actually had to cut that one out this time around, remember? They couldn’t get the timelines to match up.

Peter: Drat.

Thao: Hallelujah.

Kenzie: How about you, Adaline? Any scenes in the second half that you’re looking forward to?

Adaline: I always liked the part where the bear murders a man. . .

Thao: Okay, WHAT?!

Adaline: The blood is very realistic.

Kenzie: . . .

Kenzie: How. . .lovely.

Kenzie: Does anyone have anything else they’d like to add? Something that doesn’t deal with death and gore, perhaps?

Thao: How about the scene where I get off this blasted island and never return?

Bella: That never happened. . .

Thao: Shut it, cow-belle.

Kenzie: Hey, now.

Thao: Or how about that lovely little bit where I strangle Glasses’ neck with a piece of rope? That scene is largely overdue, in my humble opinion.

Kenzie: I think we’ll just move on to question four now. . .

Peter: That might be for the best.

Thao: Or the one where Loony starts singing that creepy song under her breath in the elevator? That was always a favorite. Really freaked out the children.

Kenzie: *flips index cards*

Kenzie: Question four: ‘If you could trade roles with any one of your cast members, which would you pick and why?

Thao: Geoff.

Peter: But he’s dead.

Thao: . . .

Thao: Exactly.

Bella: I don’t know as if I’d want to trade places with any of my castmates, actually. I like who and where and how I am. My past might have been. . .difficult. . .but the things that I’ve gone through have only made me stronger. I like being me.

Peter: Agreed.

Kenzie: Adaline?

Adaline: *tilts head* I would switch with Rose. She likes to come out and play sometimes, you know.

Thao: *groans*

Thao: Does switching roles with a castmate automatically change your current physical location, because I would literally switch with anyone on this entire planet to get away from this filthy, cramped sofa of lunacy.

Kenzie: Hey! I just had that sofa cleaned yesterday.

Kenzie: The cat vomited on it, so it was a necessity, you see.

Thao: . . .

Thao: On second thought, dead Geoff really does sound like a delightful option at the moment.

Kenzie: *sighs*

Kenzie: All right. This next question is one that I’m hoping you will all take very seriously, as it is one that–if answered properly–has the potential to help out both NaNoWriMo characters and their writers.

Kenzie: And we all know that us NaNoers can use all the help we can get, amiright?

Thao: How many more questions are there?

Kenzie: Question 5: What is your best possible survival advice for a character who is preparing to undergo their very first NaNoWriMo?

Peter: Technically, a character should only undergo a NaNoWriMo session once, as their story should be completed within the course of a single month.

Kenzie: Yes, well. . . *coughs* That’s not the case in this current situation, now is it?

Thao: That’s never the case when it comes to you. What is this? Our. . .what? Third NaNoWriMo?

Peter: Fourth, actually. There was the July session, too.

Thao: *shudders* Right.

Kenzie: All right, all right, I think we get the picture. You guys have undergone many NaNoWriMo’s. Just answer the question, will you? Please.

Bella: I’ll go first, if you want.

Kenzie: Thank you, Bella.

Bella: *stares down at folded hands* I think my advice to any new characters would be to trust your writer. . .and also vice-versa. A story is a relationship between both writer and character. If there’s no trust on either side, the fabric of the entire tale will crumble. Trust is essential to a good story, to a creative world. . .and to a successful NaNoWriMo.

Thao: That’s ridiculous. You seriously expect me to trust this chipmunk? She’s mental.

Peter: Thus the Prune Juice Fiasco of chapter 26.

Thao: . . .

Peter: My personal recommendation for new characters would be to get a lot of sleep and drink a lot of water. You’re going to be doing extreme amounts of action these next few weeks–tons of line-learning and choreography. It’s going to wear out both your muscles and your mind faster than you could ever anticipate. People say that caffeine helps with the mental fatigue, but I’ve found that water hydrates a lot better than coffee when it comes to a parched mouth after giving a three-page monologue in Act Two.

Peter: And as for sleep, what with all of the excitement and fast-paced drama, there’s going to be very little time for rest. So get as much as you can whenever you can. Your story can wait, but your mental health can’t.

Thao: And to think I was about to deny the fact that you were capable of delivering a three-page monologue.

Peter: *scowls*

Kenzie: How about you, Adaline? You seem awfully quiet over there.

Adaline: Oh. They should follow the butterflies. The butterflies always know where to go.

Kenzie: . . .

Kenzie: Right. Thao?

Thao: Get out. Get out as fast as you can and never turn back. Believe me, absolutely nothing good waits ahead.

Peter: That is literally the worst advice you could have given them, Crowe. They’re most likely frightened enough, as it is.

Thao: Exactly. They deserve to know the truth.

Kenzie: *claps hands together* All right, folks, I think it’s time we began wrapping this episode up.

Thao: Finally.

Kenzie: Our final question is. . . ‘In a single word, describe what NaNoWriMo is to you.

Adaline: I don’t think that was a question. . .

Bella: Exciting.

Peter: Different.

Adaline: Magical!

Thao: Pain.

Thao: Death.

Thao: Torture.

Kenzie: I said one word.

Thao: I’m a rule-breaker.

Peter: You’re a lot of things.

Kenzie: Okay, then! Well, folks, that does it for our everlost interview. I hope you enjoyed our lovely guests’ answers to some rather spontaneous questions. I know I sure did.

Kenzie: But before we officially sign off for this afternoon, I have some very exciting news to share with all of you!

Kenzie: I have–right here in my very palm–the poll results we have all been waiting for. And so, without further ado, allow me to present to you the names of our next interviewees. . .

Kenzie: *slits open envelope*

Kenzie: And the next interview pair to appear on Let’s Chat! will be. . .

Kenzie: . . .

Kenzie: . . .

Kenzie: . . .


*crowds cheering*

Adaline: *squeaks in delight*

Thao: *face pales to the shade of a ghostly ghoul*

Thao: What?! NO!!!!

Thao: *lunges out of seat*


Peter: Can we have some security in here, please?

Kenzie: And that, folks, officially wraps up this week’s episode of Let’s Chat! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful time getting better acquainted with our cast members.

*men in uniforms enter stage-left and begin carting the squealing man away*

Kenzie: I know I’ve sure made some interesting discoveries.

Kenzie: As always, until next time. . .

Thao (somewhere off stage): I am NOT doing this again! She can’t make me! Not with that. . .that THING!

Peter: I’ll go help them knock him out.

Bella: Peter!

Adaline: *waves* Bye!

Kenzie: *flings cookies in the air and disappears*

the end.

talk to me, peasants!

Well, then. That was quite different.

So what do you think, Cyberspace? Are you participating in NaNoWriMo this year? If so, are you planning on joining the rebellion, or being a traditionalist? What are your top tips for surviving NaNoWriMo? Can YOU describe the NaNoWriMo experience in one word? (or LESS?!)

Let us talk about ALL OF THE NANOWRIMO THINGS in the comments below!

And don’t forget to watch out for a special petition coming at you on Thursday, in which I begin taking signatures for the NaNoWriMo Dare Squad!

Are YOU up for the challenge?

*flings cookies in the air and disappears*