On Life, Romance, and New Projects

Hey everyone.

I know. It’s been a long, LONG time since you last heard from me. I’m not even sure if anyone’s still here to read this post. If you are, thanks for not unfollowing two years ago when I suddenly dropped off the face of the earth and left without much of an explanation.

So. You’re probably wondering what I’ve been doing for the past year and a half. And while the answer is far from simple (part of it comes down to the fact that I’ve been raising two awesome boys who are now 4 and 2), it can be boiled down to this:

I’VE BEEN WRITING.

I finally gave writing a serious try, and now, almost four novels (and some 300k words) later, I’m finally getting ready to self-publish my first paranormal romance in January 2019. You can add TRUST THE WOLF to Goodreads now! It doesn’t have a cover yet but the blurb is there.

The reason I’ve been quiet here and on all my social media accounts is that I’ve created a whole new pen name – and all the things that come with it (I even have Facebook now!). Writing and maintaining a presence online takes a surprising amount of time, and though I’m still reading tons of books (duh), blogging had to be pushed aside to make room for what has now become my favorite hobby/work ever.

If you’re still here, reading this, I’d like to invite you over to my website, where you can meet me – Zoe Ashwood – and maybe follow me on your preferred platform, and possibly give my books a try when they’re out in the world. And if you’re a romance reviewer, I’d be happy to send you an ARC if you’d like.

This site has been a wonderful, wonderful place where I met hundreds of interesting people – you were amazing. You made me understand that I wasn’t weird for sometimes preferring books to people, and I’m certain that without being part of the bookish community through my blog, I never would have gone on to write my first novel. So for that, I thank you. Thank you for all the book recommendations, comments, and general kindness. I’ll miss this place, and I hope you’ll say hi over at Zoe’s.

The site is HERE.

Lots of love,

Kaja/Zoe

  • Omg you’re back!! I thought you might end up being a blogger who disappears and no one would know why which is always sad. I can’t believe how old the boys are now that’s crazy! I can imagine they’re a handful so that’s a good reason for disappearing. A far better reason for disappearing is writing a book though! You know I’m going to read (and will be incredibly nervous about it because like I know you… I know it’s only internet knowing you but even so what about if I didn’t like it?) but I am excited because you’re a writer now so I’m off to stalk you everywhere I can even though I’ll forever be confused about your new name.

    • YES I’m back – sort of, I mean, I’m not going to be posting here anymore. Sorry my new name is confusing, but my real one (not the first name itself but my wonderful surname which NO ONE but Slovenians can pronounce) really isn’t good for putting on covers. :/

      The boys are great, the youngest has firmly entered the Terrible Twos – temper tantrums all around. He’s also completely different from Kid#1 (personality-wise), so the stuff that worked with #1 doesn’t work with #2. :D But we’re having lots of fun.

      You know, I’m still subscribed to your NL so I’ve been lurking and keeping track of your travels and checking what your ratings are for books. :) (Sorry for creeping.) How have you been?

      And yes, my god, I’m a writer now! How strange.

      As for the book – do you want an ARC? They should be ready in maybe a month, with the publication date in January. As for liking it: you know I’ve been a reviewer (and a harsh one sometimes!) for years so I’m fully prepared for all sorts of reviews, good (hopefully) and bad. I also know that liking a book is different to liking an author. :D I would never expect a good review just because you know me – I was always of the opinion that you have to be honest with your blog’s readers. Or you could just choose not to say anything.

      Also: thanks for following my accounts and all, you’re a star! :) Have a very nice week!

      • You may not be back here but it’s always so nice to know where people have gone. That’s one thing which sucks about the internet it’s so easy for folks to disappear. And you’ve moved to bigger and better things! I will forever remember you as you’re unpronounceable name but I get it. You want folks to be able to say you’re name and spell it really when you’re writing.

        And not the terrible twos! There’s always the hope kids will skip that stage. Whilst it sucks that the tricks you’ve learnt kid #1 won’t work for kid #2 it is good to know that they both have such distinct personalities even while they’re young. Kids just like to keep you on your toes.

        Feel free to lurk away on my blog we all do it and it’s nice to know. I’ve been good I’m now going through the lull after looking forward to a holiday for so long because now I’ve been I now just have Christmas to look forward to! I need to book another trip.

        You know I will be dying to read so if you’re offering an ARC I will never say no. If I don’t like it I’d just awkwardly avoid mentioning it. I highly doubt you could write anything I could hate though and I’m pretty certain I’ll like it and I’ll keep my fingers crossed I love it.

        I did say I was going to follow you everywhere. I need to stay informed!

        • Ah, I agree, people on the internet just drop off the face of the earth and suddenly they’re gone. :/ But that’s how internet friendships are these days.

          Yep, I want readers to be able to easily remember my name – and then I had to pick one that wasn’t already taken by some politician or actress or whatever, so when people search for me, my site (and future books) are at the top of the search results.

          With kids, it’s good that all these tantrum stages are just that – stages. They change so fast!

          Christmas is still far away, but I always feel like the last 3 months of the year rush past faster than usual. This year will also be super busy. I’m translating Jojo Moyes’ THE GIRL YOU LEFT BEHIND, btw, and that, combined with my writing plans, will keep me plenty busy.

          Well ok, I’ll add your email (the one you used for newsletter signup?) to my ARC list if that’s okay. And if you never review, I’ll just assume you didn’t like it and we can keep chatting about other authors and I won’t bother you to read the sequel :D The ARCs should be ready by the end of the month, I think. Thanks!

  • Greg Hill

    Hey Kaja- congrats on your writing (and your book is coming out in January- how cool is that???). Awesome news! :) Hope you and your family are well- I’ll definitely come check out your new site!

    Good luck w/ the book!!!!!

    • Hi Greg! Welcome back :) Thanks – yeah, it’s a surreal, the book is becoming book-shaped (I got it back from the editor and the cover will be made in November), and I couldn’t be happier!

      And yep, we’re doing great – kiddos are growing up at an alarming pace :) I hope you’re doing good as well!

      I think I followed you on Twitter today. Your name popped up in my recs. Anyway, thanks for checking in, I’m just glad some people are still here!

  • Oh wow, what amazing news! I was so sad when you weren’t blogging anymore as some bloggers stop and never come back. But I’m so happy to hear you’ve been spending all this time chasing your dreams. Will you be posting on this blog at all or will you be sticking to your author website? Congrats on your upcoming novel. Wishing you lots of success!

    • Hi Alicia! Thanks for stopping by. Yeah, blogs go silent all the time, it’s just how internet works, and then you have no way of contacting that person…

      Um, I won’t be using this blog anymore, I don’t think. I just don’t have the time – and honestly, I think being both a reviewer and an author is kind of hard. You know? I’d hate to be anything but very honest with my blog readers – I would write negative reviews and so on – but as an author, I don’t want to shit all over someone else’s book, it’s just not done. So I’m giving up one passion for another. :( I still read loads, obviously, and write about it on various social media platforms, but it’s mostly when I read a very good book and want to share the love. And I’ll be working with bloggers for my release – at least I know to expect all kinds of ratings and reviews, I’m prepared for the worst. ;)

      I followed you on Twitter, so we can keep in touch there. And I’m still subscribed to your newsletter – I lurk around your reviews, and am now listening to The Undead Girls’ Gang on audio because I saw it on your blog! :)

      Thanks for the nice wishes, I’m really looking forward to being a published author.

  • That’s wonderful news! I’m glad you and the family are doing well, and that’s awesome that you’re publishing! I can imagine the time it takes to keep up an author social media presence, not to mention writing more. Best of luck on this new path, and I look forward to checking out your book!

    • Hi Kel! I’m so happy you saw this post! :)

      Yeah, we’re doing well, kiddos are good and keeping us on our toes every day!

      And yep, building an author platform is a long process, I’ve been doing it for 2 years now and it’s been fun!

  • Congratulations on your new book! And I’m glad you came back to let us know what you’ve been up to…. and that I hadn’t deleted your blog from my Bloglovin’ feed!

    • Hey Lark, thanks for stopping by – and yeah, thanks for not deleting my dusty little blog ;) I didn’t think this many people would still be here!

      And thank you – I’m excited about the book! :) It’s been a fun two years. I hope you’re well!

  • I’m sad to see the end of my all-time favorite blog! I’m glad we’ve been chatting anyway, but I do still miss your posts and the ensuing discussions. I’m so happy for for you, though, and I can’t wait to read your book! :D

    • That’s a really sweet thing to say, Maraia, especially knowing how many blogs you’ve read over the years! :) And yeah, I miss blogging as well. I’m thinking I’ll start some sort of a similar thing over on Zoe, probably in the newsletter, because I need to start doing that anyway (holy hell there are a lot of things to do! but I’m enjoying it, so it’s all good).

      And THANK YOU! Can I send you an arc when it’s ready? :o

      • I’m looking forward to it! But no rush. I know you’ve got a lot on your plate. I’m really proud of you for making this dream come true!

        I’d be honored! Eep. <3

        • Okay! Great! *quetly starts freaking out* :D