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  • Writer's pictureGrace A. Johnson

friends & forbidden projects | august updates

Updated: Aug 7, 2023

July is actually over, folks. Not only that, but we’re already five days into August. Summer is practically over—although where I live, the feeling of summer will still last for another couple months. And I don’t mean long days and pool parties. I mean heat. And thunderstorms. And bugs.

But there are still some benefits to summer, believe it or not. Like being able to go on random trips to peach farms…making peach sherbet...fresh flowers...and visiting virtual friends ✨in real life✨.

Nevermind my ugly mug - ISN'T ISSABELLE GORGEOUS?!

That’s right, folks!!! Last weekend, I met the insanely amazing, one-and-only ISSABELLE PERRY in actual, real-life, physical person.

Was I awkward? Heck, yes. But was it absolutely fantabulous (and kinda awe-inspiring, if our random moments of silent staring were of any indication)? YOU BETTA BELIEVE IT.

Here’s a picture as proof. ->

Our visit was by far the highlight of my month, if not my year!!! She's even sweeter and more precious in person than she is online, and if you've had the pleasure of virtually connecting with her, you'll know that's saying something because this girl is an ANGEL!


~ gratitude ~

  • Naturally, number one on my list is meeting Issabelle in person!!!

  • Delicious peach ice cream

  • Vitamin Water (seriously, their zero sugar raspberry dark chocolate flavor is divine 🤤)

  • Let Me Be a Woman by Elisabeth Elliot (such a good book!!!)

  • Springtime in Surrey (more on that in a bit!)

  • Sky’s the Limit Press

  • Annotating books

~ accomplishments ~

Truthfully, more was left undone than done in July (no surprise there). My #1 goal was to be (or at least feel) productive—and for the most part, I think I did. I’m not as disappointed in July as I was in June, so that’s a good thing.

My second goal was to write consistently...and, yeah. About that.

It never happened.

I mean, I wrote maybe thrice throughout the entire 31 days of July.

And the worst part?

It was in a brand-new project that I 110% should not be writing.

I’m supposed to be working on Something Bright & Beautiful, right? I even have alpha readers for the sole purpose of keeping me motivated + accountable. But what have I gone and done?

Created a new story.

Or, well, technically...I’m completely revamping an old, old story. My first finished manuscript, in fact.

And, Y’ALL. It has totally captured my heart. 😭 No offense to SB&B, of course. But more on my writing progress later.

I did design another website (no, not Sky’s the Limit Press’), which was SO fun! It’ll be unveiled soon by the lovely author, Joy Calle Martinez, so make sure to subscribe to her newsletter for updates on her new website!

And I got a lot of blog posts together—90% of which were guest posts, so I didn’t do any writing, although you could argue that organizing/scheduling posts is about as time-consuming as writing them.

I edited a book for a client, and...

I not only launched the Instagram for Sky’s the Limit Press—I also opened submissions for OUR NEXT ANTHOLOGY!!! 🥳 I am SOOOO excited for this, and I’ll be sharing an official announcement post soon (Lord willing), but until then, you can learn more about it and follow STLP on IG below!

~ goals ~

  • Finish Chapter 3 of SB&B

  • Write 2k more in my forbidden project

  • Launch Sky’s the Limit Press

  • Write at least two blog posts

  • Write two book reviews

  • Redesign my website

  • Launch my author services

~ writing ~

So, I wrote just over 2k in the aforementioned forbidden project—The Forsaken. If you’re interested in reading those two thousand words + checking out the Pinterest board (arguably my favorite part 😜), click the buttons below!

Aaaaand I only managed 537 words in SB&B. 😭

~ reading ~

I had fully intended to read three books in July—and I ended up only reading one that wasn’t even on last month’s reading list. 🤦‍♀️

The Cairo Curse by Pepper Basham. I absolutely adored the first book in this series, but while I enjoyed the sequel, it wasn’t quite as good (#sorrynotsorry). Here’s hoping #3 will be just as good as The Mistletoe Countess!

~ upcoming reads & posts ~

I’ve already read two books this month (that I can’t wait to gush about soon!), one of which I read all in one 3-hour sitting...which is the first time I’ve managed to do that in forever. But I also hope to read the other two books on my July list: Sky of Seven Colors by Rachelle Nelson and Legal Guide for Starting & Running a Small Business by Fred S. Steingold. And one or two other books—maybe Cities of Smoke & Starlight by Alli Earnest and A Solstice of Fire and Light by Angela R. Watts. We shall see!

I’m still hoping to share the following posts:

  • an introduction post for Sky’s the Limit Press;

  • my author website Q&A post;

  • a post about my novella, Her Heart’s Home;

  • as well as a post about The Girl in the Pages, my short story in Heard in Silence anthology, and a post about Of Storm & Sea, Sky’s the Limit Press’ next anthology!

~ guest appearances ~

Of course, I had a couple guest posts go out last month in honor of Springtime in Surrey! A post about the theme of surrender on Erika Mathew’s blog here and a post about writing tips from Hallmark (shocking topic, I know!) on Rachel Leitch’s blog here! Make sure to check them out to learn more about Springtime in Surrey and my novella, Her Heart’s Home!

~ follower updates ~

First off, Springtime in Surrey is HERE!!! If you haven’t yet, make sure you snag yourself a copy so you can explore the beautiful countryside of Surrey through the eyes of Regency-era newlyweds, a WWI veteran, a retired ballerina, and more intriguing characters! Their stories are all so sweet and entertaining, and there’s something for everyone!

Second, if you love writing stories of high-seas adventure, bravery and cunning, mysterious sea creatures, and swashbuckling we have a show for you! Okay, not really a show. Not a show at all, but a novella collection! We’re looking for writers and poets who love nautical adventures (and pirates!) to submit their stories to our anthology, Of Storm & Sea! Learn more about the anthology and the story guidelines below!

Lastly, I’m debuting several author services—from visual branding to marketing to editing—and if you would like to be the first to learn more, book a slot, AND get a special discount, drop this emoji down in the comments below: 📝 You’ll be added to the waitlist, where you’ll receive information and special offers before anyone else!


Welp, that sums up all our announcements and activities. *wipes sweat from her brow * All that’s left now is for you to buy all my books and sign up for everything and write a nautical adventure story—I mean, comment below! What are you grateful for this past month? Any exciting new reads? What are your goals for August? Did you read my snippet of The Forsaken? I’d love to chat with you! 😊

Praying you have a blessed August, my lovelies! 💕

yours in spirit & script,


(As an Amazon affiliate, I will receive a small commission from any purchases made through my affiliate links at no extra cost to you!)

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14 則留言

Issabelle Perry

Your July sounds MUCH more productive than mine. ALSO I LOVE FORBIDDEN SO I AM NOT UPSET THAT YOU'RE WORKING ON IT. Even though I also love SB&B.... aaaah, girl, why are you such a good author???? I just want to read all your books!!! SO excited that Sky's the Limit now has an official Instagram page. *squeals* It just makes everything feel much more real..... I CAN'T BELIEVE ALL OF THIS IS ACTUALLY HAPPENING. Are you sure we're not dreaming??

I still need to read The mistletoe countess, though I'm sad to hear the sequel wasn't as good. :( Can't wait to read all your upcoming posts!!


Grace A. Johnson
Grace A. Johnson

Well, I didn't plan and play a Clue game and visit three different people, so sounds like you still managed to get out very accomplished. ;) GOOD. THAT MAKES TWO OF US. Awwwww, haha, you're too kind!!! ME TOO!!! IKR!!!!!!!! Honestly, no. *pinches herself* Nope, not a dream! XD

YES!!! Oh, the sequel's still great, just nothing can top the magnificence of TMC. *swoons*

YESSSSSSSSS AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!! (Girl, same. XD) ISSABELLE MARGUERITE PERRY. You are one of the most amazingest people, and it is a true honor to know you not only virtual but in real life too, okay. So it's not a miracle at all, trust me. (*groans* You gotta stop pulling the oldest card, man! C'mon! XDD)



It's been a bit full up (or down, or over ?;) ) here but I'm finally catching up on some things!

Happy August (You're birthday month! When's the day again? :D)

Wow, so awesome that you and Isabell could meet! How cool that that worked out!

And another anthology?! It sounds epic, just saw a new post on that come in, I'll have to go check it out!

Looking forward to reading the Forsaken snippet when I can grab a moment, but I looked at the pinterest board-- ahh, looks amazing!!

So much fun stuff in the post! Thanks for sharing <3 <3

(oh and things I'm grateful for this month, hmm, getting to visit my aunt up in Cambridge…


Ps, both you and Issabelle are gorgeous in the photo ;D


M. C. Kennedy

Ahh, so exciting to hear what you’ve been up to!! Just remember to pace yourself and not try to do too much. (And yes, I know I’m not your mother…)

I’m super pumped for the anthology! I’m dreaming up a story for it. 😁

Grace A. Johnson
Grace A. Johnson

Thank you!! 😂 The reminder is still very much appreciated, mother or not! 😊

Oooh, yay!!!


Saraina Whitney

1) YOU AND ISSABELLE MET EACH OTHER IRL?!!! LUCKY YOU!!! <333 I'd be so awkward too 😂 But oh, how thrilling. *happy sigh*

2) That sneak peek from The Forsaken is everything. Just so beautiful and aughhh the characters. I was ready to cry from page one! I love Kirk and Arielle already. 😭 Bless you for sharing that with us! Also, I bet that writing some in this new forbidden project will bring you fresh inspiration for SBaB. Sometimes a change of pace does wonders! ;)

3) I'm so excited for Of Storm and Sea!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hopefully I'll be able to submit something!!! 😍


Grace A. Johnson
Grace A. Johnson

1) YES WE DID!!!!! *sighs with you* If you ever get the opportunity to meet someone IRL, TAKE IT!!!

2) AHH THANK YOU! Oh, you're right about that! And I need the fresh inspiration, believe me. 😅

3) EEE!!!! That would be soooo awesome!!! *tries to rein in her enthusiasm* *fails miserably*


Eloise Thom

Oh, my goodness, yay!! You got to meet Issabelle! You are both so lovely! And I agree, she is so sweet! Mmmm, peach ice cream sounds delicious! Ooooooh a new project! I totally understand starting something new when you're supposed to work on your WIP. *squeals and gasps* A new anthology? *runs off* *comes back* A new nautical anthology? *more squealing and gasping* *Is trying to get up the courage to maybe, maybe, maybe consider trying to write a story to submit* Ahhhhhhh I love The Forsaken so much already!! The characters, and your prose is so beautiful, Grace, and the vibes...ahhhhhhhh <3 Is it ok to say a book is your favorite if you haven't read it yet? A…

Grace A. Johnson
Grace A. Johnson

Aww, yay!!!



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