field_of_dreams_quotoPeople always ask me, ‘what inspires you?‘ And the answer varies at times, because life in general inspires me. Everything around me. Trees, rivers, oceans, people, photography, art… But there is one thing that remains consistent. One thing that never fails to get my heart racing and my mind flowing with an eagerness to put my pen to paper. And that is country music.

Maybe it’s because I live in the country. Maybe it’s because the lyrics of Kenny Chesney or Brad Paisley seem to directly coincide with the theme of my surroundings and moments I have lived. Telling stories that could very well be my own. Summer nights on a dropped tailgate around a bonfire or hitting mud-holes wide open with my brother. Country music fills me with nostalgia and wraps its arms around me like a hug from grandma. It feels like coming home.

Magic in the Backyard was written, for the most part, with country music in mind. I wanted to be a storyteller. I wanted my words to reach out from the pages and touch people. I wanted you to feel what I was feeling. So far, the response has been positive and according to your feedback, I did that. And every time I hear someone say so, I get all giddy inside, a lump forms in my throat and I am so pleased that I achieved what I set out to do. Now, moving forward and working on new projects, I keep you all in mind when I write. Though the new work is different in content, my goal remains the same…to give you something real. Something that resonates with you. Like country music does for me.

Following the release of Jagged (March 20th), I have three more projects on the table. Including my first novel. Since I first began sharing my work in the blogosphere just a few short years ago, this journey has opened many doors and introduced me to possibilities and people I never imagined would play a role in my life. I am completely humbled and grateful for what has been laid before me and I cannot express enough how much each of you mean to me. I could not, nor would not have reached this point without you. Your encouragement, your support and readership, (and of course, our little community we have created on Friday’s), your help and consistent loyalty is so overwhelming. My cup runneth over. Never stop dreaming.

I leave you with a video (of one of many country songs) that has left an imprint on me. I hope you enjoy.

I carry you on the tip of my pen,

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P.S. Happy Birthday Johnny.