Stepping into Fantasies – March 2023 Wrap

March unfolded into a fantasy-packed month. From releasing my first single of 2023, “Fantasy,” to revising my novel manuscript, there were so many magical moments. Here come the glittery highlights.

My Acoustic Fairy Tale “Fantasy”

My fully-acoustic single, “Fantasy,” released on March 23. After playing this song live for over two years, I’m beyond happy a studio recording is finally out in the world.

You can download and stream “Fantasy” on the major platforms here.

Fantasy Cover Art

I filmed a behind the lyrics video because I love sharing inspiration, stories, and more exclusive details about my songs. Check it out to get a special glimpse into “Fantasy.”

“Fantasy” is close to my heart, so I hope it makes you feel like you’ve stepped into a fairy tale.

The “Fantasy” Press

I’m so grateful for the “Fantasy” opportunities that came my way in March. After a few months off from releasing and doing interviews, it feels amazing to be back at it again.

First, I did a fabulous release talk with COOL TOP20. In the interview, I share why I held off on releasing “Fantasy” until now, what the lyrics mean to me, memories from recording in the studio, the inspiration for the cover artwork, and more. You can read my release talk here.

Next, Eddie interviewed me for Hearts of Nashville on Heart of Indie Radio. I always love being interviewed on the station, so this was super special.

During the interview, I talk about the inspiration for “Fantasy” and what I hope listeners take away from the song, updates on my author journey, new music plans for the rest of the year, and more. This is one of my favorite interviews I’ve done on Heart of Indie Radio.

Last but not least, Jess shared the most lovely review for “Fantasy” on Fierce & Fabulous Revolution. A release isn’t complete without a review from her since she’s supported me from day one. You can read the review here.

Thank you to everyone who has given “Fantasy” and me a platform this month. I’m forever grateful.

My Mini Vocals Session

March brought me another studio day at the Vault. Rather than my usual ten hours, I had a mini session for four hours instead. During the session, I recorded vocals for “Kind Heart” and “Rain on My Parade,” two songs that’ll be on my next project.

Demi Michelle in the studio wearing headphones and smiling by the mic

As always, I wrote a blog post all about the session. This one may have been shorter, but it was still a total blast. You can read the exclusive details here. I’m so thankful I got to record again this month. Studio days make me the happiest.

Six Weeks for “I Hope You Know You’re Lucky” on the Heart of Indie Top 10

Words can’t express how grateful I am for the love “I Hope You Know You’re Lucky” received on Heart of Indie Radio. It held a spot on the top 10 for six weeks, which is a massive accomplishment.

“I Hope You Know You’re Lucky” is one of my favorite songs I’ve written, and seeing it be embraced worldwide means so much. Since it isn’t a single, landing on the top 10 was an achievement in itself. I never expected it to stay for six weeks, but that proves this song is a special one. Thank you so much to Heart of Indie Radio and the listeners for supporting “I Hope You Know You’re Lucky.” I’m definitely feeling lucky.

My Radio Show Curation Debut with Spring into Spring

The Heart of Indie news continues with one of my all-time favorite highlights. I got the opportunity to curate a radio show for the first time with Spring into Spring, a special to kick off the spring season. I’ve co-hosted shows in the past and always dreamed of curating a show. Spring into Spring made that dream come true.

I had the most fun curating the show and working with the Heart of Indie team to air it on March 20, the first day of spring. I learned so much about the radio show production process and enjoyed every moment.

Spring into Spring is an hour of fantastic spring-themed music and conversations between Eddie and me. Please give it a listen on MixCloud.

Spring into Spring Graphic

Curating a radio show is much more involved than choosing songs and topics for the station breaks. Since this opportunity gave me a behind-the-scenes glimpse into what it really takes to produce a radio show, I wrote a blog post breaking down the process. I loved writing this one, so I hope you find it fascinating.

Sometimes, my favorite memories are the unexpected ones. Spring into Spring definitely makes this list. When I presented the idea for a spring-themed show to Eddie, I didn’t expect him to let me curate the show. This unfolded into a fun and educational experience I’ll never forget. Spring into Spring is officially the best start to spring ever.

Kelsea Ballerini’s Heartfirst Tour

It finally happened on March 18. I saw Kelsea Ballerini live on her Heartfirst Tour. I went to the concert with one of my best friends from middle school, Savannah. Please clap for our outfits.

Demi and Savannah before Kelsea’s concert

Concerts always make me feel amazing, but nothing beats seeing my favorite artists live. After hearing “Homecoming Queen” for the first time years ago, Kelsea became my favorite country artist. Singing the lyrics to my favorite songs along with Kelsea and the other fans filled me with such joy. Some of my favorites live were “Subject to Change,” “Weather,” “Muscle Memory,” “The Little Things,” and “Miss Me More.” Okay, I’ll stop there before I type her whole setlist.

I didn’t mention “Homecoming Queen” in my list because this one deserves its own moment. I crossed all my fingers and toes because I’ve wanted to hear this song live for so long. I didn’t realize how much I needed that until the music gods answered my prayers and Kelsea performed it. If you’re wondering if I cried my eyes out the second she started her “Homecoming Queen” intro speech and didn’t stop until halfway through the next song, I definitely did. “Homecoming Queen” changed my life and still means everything to me. Singing along with Kelsea while tears literally poured down my face was magic. This will forever be one of my favorite concert moments ever. I’m so blessed I got the chance to attend Kelsea’s show. It was such a magical night I’ll always cherish.

Revisions for My YA Fantasy Manuscript

March wasn’t only full of music memories. I had fantastic author moments, too. A huge focus of mine this month was doing my first full revision of my YA Fantasy manuscript, which is the fairy tale retelling I drafted during NaNoWriMo last November.

After receiving feedback from two authors I swapped manuscripts with and taking notes of my own, I dove into revisions. Revising is my favorite part of the writing process. I love seeing a story’s transformation while revising. The other authors’ feedback was extremely valuable and insightful, and combining their ideas with mine allowed me to transform my first draft into a revised story that’s more polished.

A few days after I finished revising, I connected with another author looking for a beta reader. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect. She and I swapped manuscripts too, and we already left comments in each other’s documents. We’re going to chat over our stories sometime in April, and after taking a peek at some of her notes, I’m already eager to do another revision.

The manuscript is getting extremely close to being ready for querying. My plan is to do another pass in April and have one or two more authors read it after that. I’m so proud of this story and want to make it the best it can be before pitching it to agents. My goal is to begin querying in August. Keep your fingers crossed for me. I’d love nothing more than for this book to land on shelves one day.

More Author Highlights

Along with revising my manuscript, March brought other author highlights. I’ve found myself more immersed in the publishing world than ever this year.

First, I participated in an annual pitch event called RevPit. Basically, I pitched my manuscript to three editors for the chance to be chosen for a professional developmental edit. Working with an editor would be such a fantastic opportunity, so I took the leap. I won’t find out until mid-April if my manuscript gets selected, but no matter what happens, I’ve enjoyed every second of the event so far. On Twitter, there are daily prompts while we wait for results. It’s been so fun meeting other authors who pitched their manuscripts, too. Also, the editors have been doing ask editor sessions, which have provided so much valuable information about writing, revising, querying, and the publishing industry as a whole. I’m looking forward to learning more during the final weeks of the event.

Also, I wrote another short story for the monthly contest I started submitting to in January. I love how the contest prompts make me think outside the box and explore concepts I’d never write on my own. The short stories give me the chance to write something new every month. Like any art, it’s important to keep working at improving craft consistently. Through writing the short stories while revising my manuscript. I’m constantly immersing myself in various aspects of the writing process and growing along the way.

The publishing industry is a rough place. Being an author requires dedication and perseverance. I’m going to keep chasing my dreams, no matter what obstacles get thrown my way. Writing is a true passion of mine, so my love for the craft keeps me going while I ride the roller coaster of the publishing world.

So, that’s a wrap on my March highlights. I can’t believe the first quarter of 2023 is over. I’ve had amazing music and writing memories so far this year, and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for me in April.