Wow, what an end to 2023! December was packed with Christmas memories and lots of music and author highlights. I can’t wait to unveil my festive and fun month to tie the bow on a magical year.
Being Added to the Wall of Fame in My Middle School
This month, I had one of the most special experiences of my life. I visited my middle school to see where I got added to the wall of fame, along with spending time with some of my teachers and the performing arts students. I have no words to express the gratitude I feel. When I walked the halls as a student, I never dreamed I’d one day be featured in the Wall of Fame. Also, getting the opportunity to share my story and play some songs for the performing arts students was such a gift.
Since this experience meant the world to me, I put together this blog post with all the details and a special video from my visit. I can’t thank the Franklin Regional Middle School faculty and students enough for making this magical day happen. Once a panther, always a panther.
The “Tinsel Heart” Magic
I’m forever thankful for the love “Tinsel Heart” received this holiday season. From the song being streamed worldwide to airing on several radio stations and shows, I’m glad this one found its way into so many people’s lives.
While my Butterflies were embracing “Tinsel Heart” in so many ways, I shared the studio vlog and behind the lyrics video. I had a ton of fun filming both of these.
Seeing “Tinsel Heart” take on a life of its own was such a special Christmas gift. As a songwriter, I can only hope the songs I write and release reach listeners and touch lives, and “Tinsel Heart” definitely did. I’ll never forget how meaningful this release was, and I can’t wait to see this song continue to shine during Christmas time for years to come.
My Original Christmas Music Medley
Since I’ve released four original Christmas singles, I decided to film a special medley. I mashed up the songs in order from newest to oldest, starting with “Tinsel Heart” and following it with “Winter Cold,” “Snow on Christmas Day,” and “All I Want This Christmas.”
Doing this made me super excited because I can film more medleys like this in the future with new Christmas songs. This holiday season, I already wrote two more, “Candy Cane” and “Meet Me At Christmas Time.” I can’t wait to share these when the time comes.
My Voice of A Woman Christmas Special
Over the years, I’ve really enjoyed doing radio show specials and takeovers. The Christmas special I got to produce and host for Voice of A Woman is definitely one of my favorites I’ve done. Getting the opportunity to play “Tinsel Heart” and “Winter Cold” and songs by some of my favorite female artists, along with sharing stories, made me beyond happy. Christmas is my favorite time of year, so this opportunity was truly a gift.
Huge thank you to Linda for allowing me to do this special. Since she gave me my first airplay in 2020 with “All I Want This Christmas” on her special, this became a full-circle moment I’ll never forget. I’ve made some wonderful music industry friends over the years, and Linda has always been in my corner. I know I’ll always look back on my Christmas special because it’s one of my most meaningful music memories.
Christmas Fun With Heart of Indie
During December, I had the chance to be part of three very special Heart of Indie projects. First, I curated and co-hosted Sleigh Bells Ring, the Christmas morning special. I had the most fun chatting with Eddie during the station breaks and playing all original Christmas music. The show is available on MixCloud.
Also, I participated in Indie Christmas, an annual Christmas concert by independent artists. This has become one of my favorite events each year, and I shared my Christmas music medley for the concert.
On top of all this, I had three features in the Christmas edition of Heart of Indie Magazine. I’ve contributed to all eight issues so far, and this one is one of my favorites. I did a written interview, shared an adorable Christmas love story, and contributed an article on writing original Christmas songs. My music and writing passions intertwined in this issue, something that made me so happy.
As if all of this wasn’t perfect enough, “Tinsel Heart” got voted into the top ten chart, landing at number eight. After all the love this song has received and being part of such fun and festive projects for Heart of Indie, making the chart was a total surprise that made my Christmas extra bright. Huge thank you to everyone who voted and listened to “Tinsel Heart” this year.
I made so many memories with Heart of Indie in 2023 and know more adventures are waiting in the new year. The team is like a second family to me. I’m forever grateful I get to be part of such a lovely station that does so much for indie artists and beyond.
My Interview on the Highway 40 Show
I got to wrap up my year with one of my favorite radio interviews ever. I can’t thank Ray enough for inviting me onto the Highway 40 Show on Nashville Worldwide for a chat all about winning at the ISSA Awards, my music, author adventure, butterflies, and more. Also, he played “Tinsel Heart” and told me I reminded him of Taylor Swift. I’m still not over that compliment and don’t think I’ll ever be.
Ray has been so supportive of my music, especially since I won my music award. I’m grateful I got the chance to be interviewed on his show and can’t wait to share more of my music with him in the future.
I believe it’s very important to give back during the holidays, so I donated toys. I know special kids got Simba from the Lion King and Daisy Duck on Christmas Day, which makes my tinsel heart so happy.
This year has been magical in countless ways. I’m glad I was able to give back by giving these adorable stuffed animals. I’ll for sure donate toys again next holiday season and find ways to continue giving back all year round.
Author Land Updates
Last month, I accepted my wonderful agent’s offer of representation. Since then, I’ve had some more author highlights.
First, the Penn-Franklin News printed an article about me signing with my agent. This made finally being represented even more meaningful. During the summer, the newspaper also shared my ISSA Awards win, putting me on the cover, so receiving support for reaching another milestone meant the world to me.
Also, I did another revision of my Little Red Riding Hood reimagining after talking over edits with my agent. I finished revising the weekend before Christmas. After some time away from this book, I loved returning to the story and polishing it even more. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next once my agent reads the new version next year.
After I finished my edits, I turned my focus to developing ideas for two new manuscripts, both previous ideas I had started exploring. I’ve decided my next book is going to be the young adult locked room thriller I was originally going to draft during NaNoWriMo. On New Year’s Eve, I spent hours creating a rough plot outline for the entire book. Words can’t express how excited I am to write this one next year. I already know I’m going to have a blast drafting it. Since I’ve been in fantasy land for most of 2023, returning to my roots for this book feels like home.
So, that’s a wrap on December and 2023. Reflecting back on this year, so many dreams came true. I’m very happy with where I’m at right now, both as a songwriter and author, and plans are already in place for the new year, from releasing my album to taking next steps on my publishing journey. Now, it’s time to pop the champagne and ring in 2024!