Tag: Brown Design


Friday Favorites: Bemidji Favorites

See ya later, Paul & Babe!

See ya later, Paul & Babe!

This Friday, I want to focus on all my favorite parts of our time in Bemidji. Though we were only here for ten months, it really has been a wonderful experience–mostly because of all the truly AMAZING people we’ve come to know and love. So, here is a look back at our days in the North Woods!

The Little Red Duplex

We were incredibly lucky to find such a great place to live. After living in apartments since we got out of college, Shane and I were ready for more space and a yard of our own. It is cozy, inviting, and really became our home in just a short period of time. Here’s a (terrible) video that I shot during our first weeks in Bemidji. Shane has since critiqued my camera work (which is pretty hilariously bad), but it gives you an idea of what our house looked like between all the blurred images. Hey, I never said I was a photographer. I do words, people. 🙂

Region 2 Arts Council

I couldn’t have done any of my marketing or publicity without the generous folks at the Region 2 Arts Council. They awarded me the Individual Artist Grant back in March so I could hire my wonderful publicist, Krista, to plan my book tour, and Christy of Brown Design to create the Seven Stones Book Trailer. Without the financial and professional support of the Council, I definitely wouldn’t be able to reach as many readers!

Check out the original post about the Artist Grant!

My First Book Signing

The table!

Thanks, Kat’s Book Nook!

My very first book tour stop was at Kat’s Book Nook in Bemidji. I was SO nervous and excited to actually be doing my first ever book signing! So many people showed up to support me, and I ended up having a wonderful time. I can’t thank Kat enough, or the community for their amazing support. Bemidji gave me a great start to my book tour, and helped boost my confidence as an author!

Check out the original post from May 16th!

Evening Horse Rides

We're BFFs

We’re BFFs

Imagine riding through a lush, forested state park at sunset on a gorgeous chestnut mare with a great friend by your side. Afterwards, a group of tiny, fuzzy kittens literally romp all over you in the stable. Yup, I got to live a 12 year old girl’s dream thanks to my friend and fellow Packer fan, Kori. I had SUCH great times with her, the horses (my best friend, Firefly, is pictured above), and the barn cats. It was beyond amazing to be able to hit the trails anytime we wanted.

I got to take my very last ride (*sob*) Wednesday night while the sun was setting in brilliant oranges and reds. It was cool, windless, and quiet–a perfect night for a ride, and one that I badly needed. I was super stressing about the move and packing, but once I was in the saddle, everything was okay. I’m sure going to miss our rides, but I’ve got great memories to take with me to Mankato!

Bemidji Community

Northern Lights Farm

For a little town, this place provided us with AWESOME amenities. My favorites were the beautiful Harmony Co-Op, the local board game store (Accidentally Cool Games), the Bemidji Public Library, and our fresh from the farm CSA. I hope Mankato treats us as well as Bemidji!


We love you, Bemidji Friends!

We love you, Bemidji Friends!

Last, and most importantly, we are going to miss all of our friends! We have met amazing people during our time here, and have had some great times! Some of the highlights of our months here:

Jane Austen Tea Party

Outdoor Movie & Video Games

Thank you to everyone who made us feel loved and welcome. We will miss you from the bottom of our hearts! Friends will ALWAYS be welcome in Mankato! Stop by anytime. I’m sure I’ll have something delicious cooking, a board game to play, and a pot of tea to share.

Happy Friday!



Seven Stones Book Trailer!


Seven Stones has an official book trailer!

I have been waiting for this day ever since I learned that I had been awarded the Region 2 Arts Council Individual Artist Grant back in March. I knew what kind of trailer I wanted, and I knew exactly who I wanted to work with. For the past month, I’ve had the great fortune to have the wonderful and talented Christy Brown of Brown Design in Brainerd, Minnesota craft an absolutely stunning book trailer. From the first rough proof to the finished product, being a part of the design process has been incredible! Christy not only understood the heart and essence of Seven Stones, she also makes me look and feel all swanky and important every time I view her creation (which is about once every five minutes).

I am very proud to share this trailer with you, and hope you share it with others! 🙂

What do you think?!

Happy Monday!


Seven Stones: Coming to a Book Store Near You!

Phew! Yesterday was crazy but SO amazing. Because of the grant I was awarded by the Region 2 Arts Council, I was able to set up meetings with my very own publicist and book trailer designer. Real meetings, discussing real author things.

I was on the road at 8:00 a.m. to drive down for my first meeting of the day was with Krista Soukup from Blue Cottage Agency in Brainerd. Man, is she inspiring! Krista looked at every aspect of my marketing campaign and website. Her suggestions and ideas are really going to transform the number of people I can reach and how. The first signs of Krista’s marketing plan are going to be some small changes on the website that are going to make a BIG difference. Look for new and more interactive content, individual pages for author events, videos, and press information. In short, her suggestions are going to make it easier for people to find what they are looking for much faster. And, of course, Krista is going to be helping me get the book into more stores and add more locations to my book tour event. Stay tuned for exciting updates!

Immediately after my meeting with Krista was lunch at Christmas Point with Christy Tobin. Over some seriously delicious food (I’m a sucker for bread bowls), we outlined some great ideas for the book trailer she will be designing for me. I love book trailers, and can’t believe that there will be one for Seven Stones! Christy’s work is beautiful, and she is a pleasure to work with (it’s always a treat when you get to work with friends!). I can’t wait to post the finished trailer on the improved website.

After the meetings, I ran to drop off some signed books and picked up another box to bring back with me. The AWESOME news is that we are already beginning to run low! What a fantastic problem to have. I know I’ve said it before (and I’ll probably keep saying it), THANK YOU to everyone who keeps getting the word out about Seven Stones. Every person who reads my story, writes those reviews, and tells other people helps make my dream come true. 🙂

What a seriously MOMENTOUS day! I think I’ve earned a cup of tea and a night off of homework.

Happy Wednesday!


Friday Favorites!

Happy Dance!

Can EVERYTHING about this past week be considered my favorite things? Well, almost everything (homework is not making the list). Seriously, between the book release, online sales, and signing orders, I’ve been dancing through this week. I’d be lying though, if I said there weren’t two things that top my list this week. Two pieces of news I received this week absolutely blew my mind and are possible because of the wonderful people at the Region 2 Arts Council.

I am very excited to announce that I am the recipient of the 2015 McKnight Foundation Individual Artist Grant!

I applied for the grant back in February to help boost my publicity budget. I asked for $2,000 to hire a publicist to organize a book tour, cover gas expenses, and hire a graphic designer to make an online book trailer. On Wednesday, I got a letter from the Arts Council telling me that I was awarded the full amount!!! Thanks to the generous support of the arts in Northern Minnesota, I’m going to be able to expose my novel to a wider audience and take my writing career to the next level.

I am happy to say that I will be working with the lovely and fabulous Krista Soukup from Blue Cottage Agency and Christy Tobin from Brown Design to help bring Seven Stones to as many readers as possible. I can’t wait to begin working with these wonderful ladies!

Writing Mentor

In addition to the grant (I know, what could top that?!), I was asked by the Arts Council to be a mentor for aspiring writers in the Bemidji area. I’ve already been paired with my mentee, and will be meeting with her for the first time this weekend. I can’t wait to dust off my teaching skills and share my experiences with a fellow writer. It is such an honor to be offered this position!

As you can see, I’ve had a pretty awesome week. I cannot believe that I not only was chosen to receive the Individual Artist Grant, but was asked to be a mentor as well! The level of support for the arts that exists in such a rural area of the state is just astounding. I am incredibly grateful for both opportunities–I actually feel like a real professional. 🙂 If you are an aspiring artist, I highly recommend checking out the local art grants available in your area. You might be surprised by what you find!

That’s my week! Do you have any fabulous news to share?

Happy Friday!