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Update – August 2017

Howdy! In case you haven’t seen my numerous tweets and Facebook posts, Catalyst Moon: Breach (Book 2 of the CM Saga) is OUT! You can snag the ebook right here, or even grab a physical copy if you’re into that sort of thing. πŸ˜‰ If you’re reading this and didn’t realize there’s a book 1, thank you for stopping by! You can grab BOTH books in a handy bundle right here!

Naturally, now that much of the “business” bit of publishing is behind me, I’m turning my full attention back to drafting the third rewrite of Book 3, tentatively subtitled “Storm.” My hope is to have the draft completed by late October, if not sooner, and into my beta-readers’ hands before the holiday season picks up. Since this is the third rewrite, I feel that the book is in a more solid place than Breach was at this point last year, so hopefully the betas won’t have too much work to do. Famous last words, I know. πŸ˜‰

In non-writing news, I recently had the opportunity to view the solar eclipse that passed through the US earlier this week. The weekend before the eclipse, my husband and I drove up to North Carolina to hang out with family. We ate lots of yummy food, watched a King Kong movie, and climbed a mountain.Β On Monday, the day of the eclipse, we all went to a little town called Sumter, South Carolina, which was in the path of totality. A local park was hosting a (free!) event, so we were lucky enough to watch this amazing natural spectacle with lots of other people. We were doubly lucky because the sky was almost totally clear the entire time, (though it was beastly hot), so we got a perfect view.

My awesome sister-in-law had the foresight to order the special glasses so none of us would burn our retinas, so we got the full effect. The glasses are dark, much more than any sunglasses, so that literally the only thing you can see is the sun; it looked like a small, gold sphere in a sea of black. As the moon crept across it, the sun took on what one of my nephews called a “Pac-Man” look, the “mouth” widening as the moon moved, until the sun looked more like a crescent moon than anything else. As the moon crawled across it, the crescent’s points shrank into nothing. Even at 99%, the tiny bit of sun was enough to illuminate the entire area. The light was dim, not dark; sort of like that you’d see before a bad storm, and the air was slightly cooler.

Once the eclipse reached totality, cheers erupted through the crowd and it was deemed safe to remove our glasses. Pictures like the one above don’t really do it justice and I can say with 100% honesty that this was one of the most incredible sights I have ever witnessed. I’m still trying to process it, but I’ll try to explain. The sun was gone, replaced by a black sphere, surrounded with a silver-white halation; the purest, most perfect circle of light you can imagine. Flares of radiation, some longer than the diameter of the sun, stretched out on all sides. The sky was not black, but a deep blue, like twilight. In fact, it was twilight everywhere; every horizon was flushed gold and pink as if with sunset. All around us, the other eclipse-watchers stared at the sky in wonder. I swear the world held its breath, waiting for the sun’s return.

We experienced totality for about two minutes. When the first gleam of the sun emerged, everyone cheered again. I’m normally not one for crowds, but there was something special about witnessing this event in a group of like-minded people; a sense of community that ran deeper than state lines or skin color. Humanity, turning out for something special.

For more information about when and where you can view solar eclipses in the US, check here. I’ll be there; I hope you are, too.

Take care & stay awesome,

Lauren

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