Dear Diary is truly a piece of my heart. I can’t believe my debut chapter is coming to an end. The past year, since the release of “Will I Ever,” has been magical. I’ve grown so much as a person, songwriter, and artist through the creation and release of this album. Even though I’m about to kick off my second chapter, the songs on Dear Diary will always be special to me. I wanted to revisit the songs and share what inspired them, favorite memories, fun facts, lyric graphics of some of my favorite lyrics, and more.
The Entries of Dear Diary
I love to call the songs on the album “entries.” All of them are so personal and vulnerable, like diary entries are. Each entry has a story of its own, but overall, the tracklist of the album tells a story.
Now, let’s flip over the cover of my musical diary and dive deep into the entries.
Entry 1: “Will I Ever”
The Dear Diary chapter began when I released “Will I Ever” as the lead single on May 21, 2021.
“Will I Ever” is still one of my most vulnerable songs. Falling in love is something I wonder about a lot, and I wanted to express my thoughts and feelings in a song. “Will I Ever” came together in a special way. Because the subject matter is emotional for me, I struggled to write a song about this topic for a very long time. One day, the chorus of “Will I Ever” came to me so naturally, and the rest of the song fell into place.
Even after I wrote “Will I Ever,” I held on to it for months. I knew it was a special one, but I had a rough time finding the courage to share it with others and record it. Finally, I found the strength inside me to do so.
A fun fact about this song is that I rewrote the second verse about a week and a half before my studio session. I always enjoy rewriting my songs to make them the best they can be, but making the decision to rewrite a section so close to the day I was going to record was something I haven’t done before. I can’t put into words how happy I am that I did this because the second verse has some of my favorite lyrics of the song. When I wrote the lyrics, “I fall for dreams, trust butterflies, keep counting my clouds, but they don’t add to nine,” I had no idea what they’d blossom into. This is how butterflies became such an important part of my brand. I’m standing in front of a butterfly wall in the “Will I Ever” artwork, there’s a butterfly on my Dear Diary merch, I call my supporters “Butterflies,” and more. The fact that butterflies became a symbol of my brand so unexpectedly is one of my favorite highlights from the whole process releasing Dear Diary.
The studio session was such a blast. “Will I Ever” is a perfect representation of the pop music I love the most, so my producer, Bob, and I had such a fun time bringing this one to life. The production of this song is outstanding, and I loved every second of the process.
Also, another fun fact is that “Will I Ever” was the last song I recorded for the album. I recorded it in March of 2021, and it got released in May. This song had such a quick turnaround time from recording to releasing it.
I love “Will I Ever” so much. From the writing process to recording the song and everything that came from it, I’ve had so many special moments. I never dreamed a vulnerable song that I wrote in my bedroom could turn into something so special. I couldn’t have written a more perfect lead single and first track for Dear Diary. “Will I Ever” will always be a favorite.
Entry 2: “Perfectly Imperfect”
“Perfectly Imperfect” is one of my favorite songs on the album. It was inspired by wanting to feel loved and accepted, despite all my flaws and insecurities. Sometimes, I find myself getting trapped in my head, thinking about the things I would change about myself if I could. It’s hard to feel perfectly imperfect, and this song is about yearning for someone to tell me that I’m perfect the way I am.
I really enjoyed writing this song. The lyrics are extremely unique and full of fresh imagery and metaphors. I allowed myself to be super creative and a little out of the box. My favorite lyrics from “Perfectly Imperfect” are, “Instead of floating on clouds, I’m holding hands with my doubts in a downpour.” I have to say that those are some of my favorite lyrics on the whole album.
The production of “Perfectly Imperfect” still blows my mind. Bob and I got so creative with the vibe and instrumentation. It’s so percussive and fun, and I loved layering all of the instruments and exploring different sounds. Also, recording vocals for this song was one of my favorite vocal recording moments from the whole album. I had a blast doing all of the background vocals and changing the tone of my voice for different parts of the song. Recording vocals is an art of its own, and I got my first real taste of some different techniques while singing this song.
A fun fact about this song is that I started writing it on New Year’s Eve 2020 and finished it on New Year’s Day 2021. It’s cool to think that even though I wrote it in two days, it was written across two years.
“Perfectly Imperfect” is one of my most unique songs, and I know I’ll always love this one.
Entry 3: “Sensitive”
“Sensitive” is one of the first songs I wrote and recorded for the album. The title says it all. This song was inspired by recognizing that I’m a super sensitive person. Things can get under my skin easily, and I wish that I wasn’t so sensitive. I feel like I’ve become less sensitive since writing this song. That’s one of the most beautiful things that came about through writing Dear Diary. I’ve become a stronger person, and my journey of self-discovery has changed me. Overcoming some of my sensitivity was definitely part of this.
I still remember how much fun recording this song was, even though that was back in 2019. Recording “Sensitive” was one of the first times I was able to be active in the production process. Until I started working with Bob, I didn’t have the opportunity to be extremely hands on with my music. I felt like a whole new world was opened up to me when I finally got to basically co-produce my music. Getting to explore different sounds and play the instruments myself on “Sensitive” gave me freedom and made me realize that the production process is truly where the magic happens. I’m so lucky Bob lets me work so closely with him. We’ve done too many songs to count at this point, and every single one turned out exactly how I envisioned it.
A fun fact for “Sensitive” is that it’s one of my favorite songs off my album to play acoustic. The studio recording is super poppy and percussive, so playing it live with my guitar gives it a whole new feel. I almost always play “Sensitive” during my live shows.
“Sensitive” is a very honest song, and I’m glad I found the strength to open up about my sensitivity because this is one of my favorite songs on Dear Diary.
Entry 4: “Be Yours”
“Be Yours” is one of the first songs I wrote for Dear Diary. It’s so wild looking back now and seeing how far I’ve come since writing this song. “Be Yours” captures the moment right before a relationship either happens or it doesn’t. It explores the feelings of starting to fall for someone and the thoughts of wanting to be with them. There’s something special about this moment because there’s no way of knowing what will happen.
A fun fact is that this is the very first song I recorded for Dear Diary. It literally blows my mind that this is the first one Bob and I recorded for the album. I remember feeling a bit anxious during the session because for the first time, I got the chance to contribute to the production. Because this was so new to me, I shared my ideas and Bob made most of the decisions. Having the freedom to contribute made me feel out of my element at first. Back then, I didn’t know anything about production. I was nervous and not completely confident as an artist. It’s so wild how far I’ve come since recording “Be Yours.” Now, I’m much more knowledgable about production, and I co-produce every single one of my songs. Being able to voice my opinions, share my vision, and work with my producer and musicians is the best feeling in the world.
Also, I have to share another super fun fact for this one. While Bob and I were going through different sounds, we stumbled upon a cello pluck. This sound is heard in many of my songs. Once we found it, we both loved it and it became one of my so-called trademark sounds. When I’m working on pop music, Bob and I always try to find a way to get cello plucks in there somewhere. It’s cool to think that an instrument used in my first song I recorded for my album is still getting used in my new music.
Even though “Be Yours” is the first song I recorded for Dear Diary, it still means so much to me. When it came time to choose the songs for the album, I knew right away “Be Yours” was one of them.
Entry 5: “Nobody Like Me”
I wrote “Nobody Like Me” during quarantine in 2020. This is one of the more sassy and confident songs on the album. It was inspired by recognizing that I’m one of a kind. Continuing the story from “Be Yours,” “Nobody Like Me” is the part when I wish whoever I have feelings for will notice what’s in front of them.
This was a fun one to record. I wanted it to be string-focused, and that’s exactly how it turned out. I wrote this song on my guitar, so it was the best feeling hearing it unfold the way I envisioned it.
I don’t have any other songs like “Nobody Like Me.” That’s super fitting, given the title. I always aim to make my songs unique, and the approach Bob and I took for this one made it something special.
Entry 6: “Obvious”
Okay, I couldn’t be more obvious that “Obvious” is obviously one of my favorites. Like… obviously!
I love this song so much. It’s hands down one of my favorite songs on the album. Like “Nobody Like Me,” I wrote “Obvious” in quarantine. I seriously couldn’t wait until the Vault opened again so I could record it.
This song was inspired by the feelings that come with being completely obvious about liking someone. I channeled lots of sass and exasperation while writing it. I mean, the chorus lyrics are golden, if you ask me.
“I couldn’t be more obvious. I’m curious, are you really that oblivious? I’m serious, ‘cause I couldn’t spell it out clearer than this. You’ll get the message if you listen. How could you possibly miss it? I’m being o-b-v-i-o-u-s.”
I love songs that spell words out. I thought spelling out “obvious” was such a clever move because I’m talking about being obvious. Okay, I’ll get off my high horse now.
The lyrics as a whole are some of my favorites I’ve written. Like with “Perfectly Imperfect,” I got super creative with the metaphors and imagery in this song.
Don’t even get me started on the production. I’m still not over it, and I’ve listened to this one quite a lot. It has such a cool vibe. I love the percussion. The instrumentation is amazing. Bob and I had a blast with this one.
So, in case I didn’t make it clear enough, “Obvious” is obviously a favorite and will always be.
Entry 7: “Can’t Get Over You”
“Can’t Get Over You” was inspired by a situation where I couldn’t get over someone I had feelings for. Sometimes, no matter how much time passes, feelings won’t go away completely, and that’s what this song is about.
This song definitely stands out on the album because of its Latin-pop vibe. I’m actually a huge fan of Latin-pop songs. I even listen to some songs that have Spanish verses. When I started writing “Can’t Get Over You,” I didn’t initially envision it as Latin-pop, but when I started doing the demo before my session, it kind of happened unexpectedly.
I wrote and recorded this song pretty early on in the process. It was one of the last songs I recorded before the pandemic hit. Still, even though it’s an older one, I love it so much and knew it belonged on Dear Diary.
Entry 8: “Since I Met You”
I’ll forever love “Since I Met You.” When I can’t get over someone, I find myself feeling like my whole life is a mess. That’s what this one is about. In the chorus, I say, “My life has become one, big mess, since I met you.”
Much like “Will I Ever,” this song represents the pop music I love. “Since I Met You” is true contemporary pop. Bob and I had fun producing this one. I had such a clear vision for it, and we brought it to life in the best way. Even though the concept is a little sad, I wanted the studio recording to be a fun pop song. That’s exactly what it is.
A fun fact about this song is that it’s one of my favorite songs to play live, both on piano and guitar. It’s a super emotional song, when you stop and listen to the lyrics. The fun pop production masks the emotion a little, which is what I was aiming for with the studio recording, making it lively and uptempo. Still, I never miss a chance to play “Since I Met You” with piano or guitar. I slow down the tempo and make it much more raw. Down the road, if I would ever record a reimagined version of one of the songs on Dear Diary, that song would be “Since I Met You.”
I truly love “Since I Met You,” and I can’t wait to keep playing it live.
Entry 9: “I Don’t Know Why”
“I Don’t Know Why” is one of the first songs I wrote for Dear Diary. It’s about wondering why my heart is never enough. It’s hard to stand on the sidelines, watching everyone else fall in love, wondering when it’ll be my turn.
I wrote this song on guitar, so taking it to the studio was quite an experience. This is one of the most contemporary pop songs on the album. It has such a bright, lively sound. I always knew I wanted it to be poppy and fun, even while writing it on guitar.
A fun fact about “I Don’t Know Why” is that it’s my first original song I ever performed live. Back in 2019, I participated in a singer-songwriter competition in Pittsburgh, and I played this song. It’s so cool looking back and seeing how far I’ve come as an artist since then. Now, I’m playing live more, and it’s always a great time.
I’m so glad I decided to include “I Don’t Know Why” on Dear Diary because it’s a special one.
Entry 10: “Find Love”
I released “Find Love” as the second single off Dear Diary on August 20, 2021. This song is so close to my heart. After all of the thoughts, feelings, and insecurities I’ve shared on the album, I wanted to write a song that was hopeful. “Find Love” is that song. I say, “I’m gonna wait, however long it takes, for me to find love with you.” This song is basically written to the person I’ll fall in love with one day.
The writing process for this song was quite a journey. I wrote the first draft of it in the summer of 2019. At the time, it was more pop, and the melody and key were different than in the studio version. I was about to record this song when the pandemic hit. So, I revisited it and changed it completely. This was around the time I started to fall in love with country music. I could tell my writing style was beginning to shift from contemporary pop to pop-country. I kept the lyrics of “Find Love” mostly the same but completely rewrote it to be a pop-country song.
A fun fact is that this is the first song I worked on with my friend and guitarist, Luke. I remember being terrified before Luke got to the studio because I’ve never worked with a guitarist before. Also, “Find Love” is such a personal song, and I was nervous to record it with someone I didn’t know. Bob and I have worked together for almost a year before this song, so I was comfortable with him by that point. Luke and I didn’t know each other yet, so it was a tough session for me emotionally. Now, Luke and I are friends, and we’ve done so much music together. I’m grateful Bob brought Luke on board for “Find Love” because I couldn’t imagine creating my new music without him.
I decided to release “Find Love” as a single because it captures how I’m shifting my sound. The concept of the song and pop elements allow it to fit perfectly on the album while also signaling the direction I’m taking my music on my next project. This is also the reason why I chose to make it the last song on the tracklist before the acoustic version of “Will I Ever.”
I love playing “Find Love” live, and I perform it at most of my live shows. I wrote this song on guitar, so it’s natural to play it live.
“Find Love” will always be a special one. It’s very vulnerable, but that’s what Dear Diary is all about. I allowed myself to open up in this album, and I’m glad I did.
Entry 11: “Will I Ever (Acoustic)”
The last entry on Dear Diary is the acoustic version of “Will I Ever.” This version is one of my favorite things in the whole world, I swear.
I always enjoy when artists release acoustic versions of their songs. I wanted to do this for my album, so I decided to do an acoustic version of “Will I Ever.” Also, it was such an easy choice deciding to do the acoustic version for this song because it’s one of my favorite songs I’ve written and the main song on the album.
I wrote “Will I Ever” on my guitar. Even though the single version is a contemporary pop song that I love so much, it doesn’t capture the raw vulnerability and authenticity of the song. I wanted to share “Will I Ever” the way I wrote it.
Luke did such a perfect job with the guitar and bass. Even though Bob used my same lead vocals from the single version, the song sounds completely different. With just my voice, the guitar, and bass, the emotion shines through.
I adore the acoustic version of “Will I Ever.” Recording it as a bonus track for Dear Diary was one of the best decisions I’ve made.
The Closing Entry: “Four Leaf Clover”
Even though “Four Leaf Clover” isn’t on the album itself, I consider it to be the closing entry of Dear Diary.
“Four Leaf Clover” is such a vulnerable pop-folk song that explores love through the metaphor of a four leaf clover. One day, I was thinking about feeling lucky, and a four leaf clover popped into my mind. I grabbed onto that inspiration and ran with it. Instead of referring to love itself as a four leaf clover, I decided to make the metaphor refer to me, saying, “All I can do is wonder if someone will ever feel lucky to find me, like I’m a four leaf clover.”
“Four Leaf Clover” was originally supposed to be on Dear Diary, but I decided to hold onto it and release it on March 17, 2022. The beautiful imagery and metaphors in this song remind me of spring, especially because the inspiration for the song came from a four leaf clover. So, I held onto it and released it as the closing entry of Dear Diary.
A little fun fact about “Four Leaf Clover” is that it was originally going to be more produced. That all changed when Luke recorded the guitar and bass, and I heard it fully acoustic. Like the acoustic version of “Will I Ever,” the fully-acoustic nature of “Four Leaf Clover” brings out the raw vulnerability. I love this song so much, and I’m happy I decided to leave it acoustic.
“Four Leaf Clover” is such a special song to me, and it’s the perfect one to close the Dear Diary chapter.
So, there you have it. Thank you for revisiting the Dear Diary entries. This album will forever hold a special place in my heart, and my musical diary will always be yours.
You can download and stream Dear Diary on all platforms. If you’d like your very own signed copy of my album and Dear Diary inspired merch, head over to my shop.
I seriously can’t believe the sun is setting on Dear Diary. I’ll never forget all the memories I’ve made through this whole journey. This album truly shaped me into the songwriter and artist I am now, and I’ll forever be proud of it.
I can’t wait to look back on this album in the years to come to always remind myself where I started and how far I’ve come.
Always remember, “Spread your wings and dream!”