paper crowns // a book spotlight

A dear, dear friend of mine has recently had her novel published! To honor this accomplishment I’ve agreed to do a spotlight of her shiny new novel here on my blog. Take a gander!

paper crowns cover
Isn’t it to die for??


Ginger has lived in seclusion, with only her aunt Malgarel and her blue cat, Halcyon, to keep her company. Her sheltered, idyllic life is turned upside-down when her home is attacked by messengers from the world of fae. Accompanied by Halcyon (who may or may not be more than just a cat), an irascible wysling named Azrael, and a loyal fire elemental named Salazar, Ginger ventures into the world of fae to bring a ruthless Queen to justice.




Mirriam Neal is a twenty-two-year-old Northwestern hipster living in Atlanta. She writes hard-to-describe books in hard-to-describe genres, and illustrates things whenever she finds the time. She aspires to live as faithfully and as creatively as she can and she hopes you do too.









Publisher’s page:


Barnes & Noble:

books, Fiction, Love and the Sea and Everything in Between

love and the sea // on wattpad

So, I recently published the entire second draft of Love and the Sea and Everything in Between on Wattpad so I’m just gonna leave the link here so ya’ll can take a look at your leisure. It will remain up until one of the agents I will be querying in the future requests an “exclusive reading”, which means they would like to be the only ones to read it at a set time. So, enjoy! Votes, comments, and messages are always welcome! Read it HERE!

LATS new cover

books, Thoughts, Writing

what if books are magic?

What if books are magic and writers are magicians?

What if the stories we write become real, somewhere, somehow? What if the characters we create are born and as we write their stories, they’re living them? What if the worlds we create are real realities that have yet to be discovered? What if every time we set the pen to the page, a new life, a new story is born somewhere out there and we don’t even know it? What if writers have the ability to create something with just their imaginations and a pen? What if that is their magic?

No, not “what if”… Writers /are/ magicians. Because every character we create /is/ real, a soul without a body. They feel and they think and they react and they interact with other real people and they change lives. Because every story we imagine is real and it’s happening somewhere to someone, both within and without the pages of a book. Because every world we create /is/ real and your readers experience them as vividly as if they were standing on that soil themselves. Because every time you set your pen to the page, magic flows from your veins and spills like ink onto the blank pages, weaving lives, worlds, emotions, and stories together into a new reality. Because writers /do/ have the ability to create something with just their imaginations and a pen, with sheer willpower and means, with creativity and striving. That is their magic.

books, Love and the Sea and Everything in Between, NaNoWriMo, NaNoWriMo 2015, Novels, Uncategorized, Writing

nanowrimo // the end

It’s over. It’s done. It’s finished.

Well, it was two days ago. I just did a horrible job of blogging about it. (I apologize.)

I finished NaNoWriMo Friday night with, I think, three days to spare. I also happened to finish the first draft of Love and the Sea and Everything in Between. I ended at 51.5K, which is just 10K under my ultimate novel-length goal.

Then, two days ago, I began the second draft. I know, I know. Most people say you should wait between drafts, but I’m not most people. So hush.

I’m really satisfied with the story and with my plans for fleshing it out. I’m excited to see how it ends up and once it’s all polished, I’m going to be querying to agents. So, do keep me in your prayers. I would so appreciate it.

Now, for some snippets!


// It’s a funny thing. Even the darkness seems brighter since I met her.

// You can’t explain the harmony of it all, life and love, joy and sadness, anger and madness, but it’s all there, working together like the sun and the moon as they create the waves and the tide.

// I see her eyes as clearly as if she were sitting in front of me. They’re sirens, spurring me into maddening curiosity.

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books, Fiction, Love and the Sea and Everything in Between, NaNoWriMo, NaNoWriMo 2015, Novels, Stories

nanowrimo // day sixteen

*pops head in* Well… hello there, strangers. It’s been awhile, hasn’t it?

I suppose I could make the typical excuse that “I’ve been writing for nanowrimo and have had no time to blog”, but, while that’s true, I’ve had plenty of opportunity to post an update… I just didn’t feel like it at the time. In any case, I’m back now with an update and some snippets. (YESSS)

So after taking the weekend off Love and the Sea and Everything in Between is just about to 30K and I hope to reach that goal by tonight. (fingers crossed)

The two-day break was well-needed. Before, my writing had grown to feel awkward and dry. Now, though, it feels deep and therapeutic once more. I can feel the magic in my veins making its way to the words on my pages. What a wonderful feeling. There really is nothing else like it.

Also, I hope to make a more personal blog post later this week, so stay tuned for that!




// I stand on the edge of the earth, where everything ends. Where the
earth has been cut away and the sky swoops down to fill the void.

// And our hearts move to the beat of the rain.

// I think of her. Because if I don’t, I would lose myself.

// Adventure starts here: with a choice to depart the Now. Goodbye, Now.

// I think this is what love must sound like: the beating of our hearts mingled with the crashing of the waves.

// Isn’t that usually the way it goes? After a while, the numbness just… becomes normal. It becomes right.

// The sky tonight is a masterpiece to behold and I feel lucky to behold it. It’s funny; when you’ve experienced such brilliant life, the colors all seem brighter, more brilliant. Now, it seems, I stand in the afterglow of that experience and I can’t help but wonder when it will fade.

// This is why life has to be more than just survival: because when we spend our entire lives trying to just survive, we don’t know how to do anything else. We don’t know how to live.
There has to be more than just survival. There has to be. Or else it isn’t worth it.

// I wonder who I could have been if I lived back when there was still so much wonder in the world. When there was still so much yet to be discovered. I wonder if, maybe, I could have been the one to discover the Americas, or discover electricity, or create the telephone, or build the pyramids, or lead the Israelites out of Egypt.
I wonder who I could’ve been if everything was different. If this world, today, the one in which I exist never existed. Not to me, anyway. If the only world I ever knew, or ever thought could be known, was a world full of endless possibility, a world full of discovery and wonder.
I miss it, the wonder. I miss it even though I never discovered continents or built pyramids or discovered electricity or mapped the stars. I miss it like an orphan misses the mother he never knew. I miss it like the housecat misses the wild it never wandered.
It’s a strange feeling, to miss the things you’ve never known. It feels like remembering, but in reverse; like remembering something that hasn’t happened yet.

// Is this what love is: a hurricane to the soul? Is this what love does: lay to ruins everything you thought you knew about love?

books, The Starcrafters' Saga, Writing

dominion // cover reveal

If you’ve been following me on Facebook, you know that I’ve been editing Dominion, book two in The Starcrafters’ Saga and preparing it for publication.

The original plan was to release the book by the end of the year, but… due to recent events I don’t think that will happen. And that’s okay! Rather than stressing out about a self-imposed deadline and letting the pressure overwhelm me, which would take my focus away from editing the story, I can spend more time fine-tuning the things that need fine-tuned. And trust me, it will be so worth it.

If you’ve read Paradox (book one), expect greater, bigger things in book two. I’m very excited to get this book into your hands!

In the mean-time, I’ve got a cover for you! I will be self-publishing through my own imprint, Avalon Legacy Press, and I decided to purchase a professional cover design because, let’s face it, we do judge a book by its cover.

So, at long last, here it is!

Dominon full frontal