This Is Really Happening


Every once in a while I forget. I am busy with the business of life; with grocery shopping and cooking; with cleaning the kitchen and feeding the dogs; with sorting, washing, drying, and folding laundry. Putting it away.

I get caught up in revisions on a new project or reading blog posts, catching up on social media. Liking. Sharing. Commenting. Offering support.

My daughter needs to be driven to school and picked up. Again. And then again. I still have two children living under this roof (even though one of them is a legal adult) and as long as they’re here, I’ll stop what I’m doing when they enter a room.

(Okay. I try to stop. Sometimes I can’t. Or don’t want to. But still. Try.)

“How did you sleep?” I ask. “How was your day?” “Do you need a sweatshirt?”
“What can I get for you?” “How about a sweatshirt?”

Sometimes they roll their eyes, but usually they’re pretty great. And this isn’t some face I’m putting on to fool you. I could tell harrowing tales about the trials and tribulations of raising kids. To what end? You have your own harrowing tales and the truth is Jack and Karly are wonderful NOW. And helpful. Respectful. Loving.

I’m not being fake or boastful.

I’m sending out hope. Hope that you too can get through rough patches; you too can reach the light at the end of tunnels you’re staring down.

You can survive rejection from loved ones or dear friends; from critics you invited or did not. I understand. You put your soul out there, your work, your dreams, the very best stuff you’ve got, and it gets rebuffed. Our hearts break.

You want to scream MAKE IT STOP!

(But the only way to make it stop completely is to stop trying. Also, this is the only way to guarantee you never get where you needed to go.)


After 18 years of being a parent, I find the job getting easier. In fact, it’s getting awesome. Just in time for my babies to move out into the world all by themselves. (They’ll come back though, right? This is why I keep Cheetos around and Peanut M&Ms. Well. Part of the reason.)

I sit with this truth and the day grows quiet around me. I’m done feeding the dogs and the laundry’s put away and that’s when I remember.

That after seven years chasing my goal of publishing a novel, I’m two weeks from the preorder date of Letters for Scarlet. March 14th. *Edited to add the link!

And a little over a month from the launch date. April 4th. 34 days.

Yes. I’m counting. Also, please forgive my happy dance.

(You can picture it. No, it’s more awkward. No, even worse than that. I promise. Mine is the worst, happiest dancing you’ve ever imagined.)

But you guys. It’s almost here. And today I’m sharing the cover of the book I’ve been waiting for all my life. The first book.

Not the last.

If I have anything to say about it.

Now. Once more, just because. Here’s the cover.

Happy dance.











*To keep up-to-date with my publishing news and receive a free sample of my memoir, sign up for my newsletter here!

*Edited to add the link here!

36 thoughts on “This Is Really Happening

  1. Yay! Fantastic! Love it. And can’t wait to order it. Julie, I am so happy for you!

    • Kerstin!
      I can’t wait for you to order it either – because then it won’t just be happening, it will have happened!

  2. I’m totally tearing up with little tears of joy and relief and triumph for you. YAY!!!!!

    • Thank you thank you thank you for knowing exactly how I feel. I’m so grateful to have you in my life!

  3. Squeeee!! I am beyond thrilled for my friend!

    • Thank you, Lex.
      I can’t wait for your book either!
      Let’s do this thing!

  4. You gave me hope this morning. Parenting is hard sometimes and, well, I have a fiercely independent 12 year old. I needed to read about Better and Hope. Oh the timing. Thank you.

    This author thing is scary and wonderful all at the same time. I have happy tears for you. You DID this. You persevered. You are a gifted writer and now more people will know.

    Hugging you hard.

    • Parenting is soooo hard. I hope no one sees this post and thinks I’ve got it all worked out. I’m just saying “this too shall pass” in my own way.

      Both the bad and the good move through our lives and we rely on each other to get to the good stuff!

  5. Diane

    You already know how incredibly excited I am for you; however, I will repeat what I have said from the beginning, “when, not if you publish a novel.” April 4th is right around the corner and I will be there!

    • I do know! And I hope you know how much I love and appreciate your constant support.


  6. Jamie Coleman

    Gave me chills! I can’t wait to order it. And share it. I also started reading it…but then my kids woke up… again, and again, and again. For weeks now. So I’m still 20 pages in 🙂

    • Oh, Jamie. You’re so sweet! Please don’t worry – 20 pages is a miraculous amount considering your job, your babies, your adorable family.

      The book can wait.
      Time won’t!

  7. Jen

    Some will chase their goals for a life time. You, 7 years, and you did it! Cheers to new goals & making them a reality too! I can’t wait to have that beautiful book in my hands. See me happy dancing just for you! XO

    • I can picture your happy dance. I’ve seen your happy dance! I can’t wait to be moving chairs with you again.


    (I can’t wait to read my ARC. And brag that I have one.)
    I want to drop in and hug you, I’m so pleased for and proud of you. And it’s not just because you have Peanut M&Ms.

    • I love my cover, too! Thank you!
      And you are welcome anytime. If I have enough notice, I’ll even ship in some Sputnik.

      (From Portland, ME. Of course.)

  9. SQUEEEEEEEE!!! Also, 13 is hard, yo. Thank you for letting me know that this too shall pass. xoxo

    • 13 is super hard. And then four years later you’re like “Wait! Don’t move out! Be 13 again! Forever.”

      Well. Maybe not forever. But I would take a visit from 13 once or twice a week…

  10. That cover is pure perfection. I’m so very, very happy for you.

    • Thank you! I love the cover. So glad to hear it resonates with others.

      Can’t wait to be sharing your cover reveal…

  11. Look at you all fancy and published. Color me jealous.

  12. I love this post and I love you. May I share this dance with you? (I’ll be the even awkwarder one!) 😉

  13. Kristi

    Happy dancing for you here in St. Paul (and hoping my moves looked better last night at the Springsteen concert, but it was mostly dark). Can’t wait to share your book!!!

  14. You DID it. It’s happening. My heart is bursting for you!

  15. Courtney

    Love it! And it keeps getting closer to the day! xoxo

  16. Laurel Janssen

    34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days.34 days!!!!

  17. Woohoo! Love it! Congrats, Julie!

  18. WHOOP! I am so excited for you. And you inspire my #lifegoals, because we are living parallel lives.

    You know, without the book release.

    OMG! ::does happy dance for you in private, because nobody needs to see that::

  19. I love the cover! I’m so excited for you! I’d happy dance with you but I’d step all over your toes, so I’ll just happy clap over here…..xo

  20. The cover is gorgeous, as is the hope you offer in so many ways. I’m so excited for you and the next month! (And the rest of your books that will come later of course, but yes, the first book!)

  21. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the cover. It’s perfect, which I know because I was lucky enough read the book!

  22. Cover is amazing. This, oh I can imagine this: the words inside will be like dessert.

    Julie, count me in on whatever you need . Anyone that reads you knows the promise in this book: superb, honest, vulnerable and vivid storytelling.

    I cannot wait.

    Congrats. I will remember this , to not give up on dreams. Because when they come true, ahhhh – it’s the meaning of life.

    CONGRATS, friend!

  23. I’m so excited for you! I will be getting my preorder game on come mid-March.

  24. I remain thoroughly impressed with, proud of, and happy for you.

  25. That is pretty damn cool.

  26. It’s absolutely beautiful, just like you! I am sorry I have not had a chance to read it yet, life has most certainly gotten in the way. I hope to read it soon. I am so inspired by and and impressed with you!! XOXO

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *