J. L. Willow

Author ~ Blogger ~ Storyteller

Today, I am super excited to announce my next project! My next book is going to be (drumroll please) 

A collection of short stories!

I know, exciting right?! If you’d like to learn more about the collection (like how many stories there will be, what genre it’s in and more) check out the YouTube video that I posted earlier today! I go into a lot more detail about it 🙂

But that’s not even all of it. I’m also getting the collection illustrated!

I’ve been working closely with the extremely talented Crina Magalio to have an illustration for every story in the collection. She’s been doing amazing work and it’s really going to enhance the reading experience! Be sure to check out her website HERE!

Are you excited to learn more about my short story collection? Let me know in the comments! I can’t wait for you guys to read what I’ve been working on.

— Julia

The end of the year is here, and that means it’s time to reflect on my resolutions! And although I don’t have 20-20 vision (haha get it?) I’m also going to write some resolutions for next year! First, though, I need to look back over what my goals were for 2019 and see how I did.

If you would like to see me talk about these in person, you can watch my YouTube video HERE!

New Year’s Resolutions for 2019:

  • Launch Missing Her: This is an easy one — yep! Missing Her was launched on May 8th of this year. I set up a street team, gave away ARCs, and even made a book trailer. I’m really proud of how this release went. It lived up to all my expectations and more!
  • Draft next book: I am excited to say that not only is there a new book on the horizon, but the first draft has also been completed!! I’m hoping to release some more information soon, but for now, I’m knee-deep in edits. Wish me luck!
  • Attend an author event/con: Although things got a little crazy toward the end of the year (with the whole college thing going on) I did attend BookCon in NYC June. I had a blast and I’m planning on attending in 2020 as well, so be sure to keep an eye out for more information on that in the future!
  • Host a giveaway: I actually held two giveaways this year: one for the release of Missing Her and one more recently for the two year anniversary of The Scavenger! I love giving back to fans and it feels great to get my books into the hands of excited readers.
  • Host a live stream: Although I didn’t host a live stream on Instagram or YouTube this year, I was present and interacting with viewers during a few Premieres I held on my YouTube channel, so I’ll count it!

Alright, 5/5! I’m really proud of all that I was able to accomplish during 2019. And it doesn’t look like I’m planning on slowing down in the next year! Let’s take a look at new resolutions:

New Year’s Resolutions for 2020:


  • Finish edits on current project: Although I can’t give many details on what I’m currently working on (hopefully I will in the next couple of weeks, keep an eye on my YouTube channel) I’d like to have most of the edits done by the mid-point of this year. Hopefully, this goal of having them complete by the end of the year is doable!


  • Finish secret project: In addition to my current project, there’s a secret side project that is something completely different from anything I’ve done before. I’m super excited to see how it goes and I would like it to also be completed by the end of the year.


  • Attend an author event/con: I’m already planning on attending BookCon again this year, but I’d love to go to a few other author events too! I will say, though, that I’m actively searching for internships this summer for my studies as a mechanical engineer, so that would take priority. But hopefully, I’ll be able to carve out some time!


  • Make another book trailer: I had such a blast making the book trailer for Missing Her, and I definitely want to do another for the project I’m currently working on. I have some great ideas for it, and I can’t wait to put them onscreen. There’s something so exciting about seeing a visual representation of your favorite stories, don’t you agree?


  • Take a writing retreat: I’m not sure when or where this will happen (or maybe it’ll be virtual!) but I would love to take time during my year and fully dedicate it to writing. At least a few days, maybe even a week. Obviously, this is going to have to be something that’s planned carefully in advance so I have the time. But I think it’s definitely doable!

Alright, that’s all I got! We’ll see how many of these actually get done. I hope all of you had an awesome 2019! I look forward to the new year and all of the possibilities it holds.

Have you made any resolutions for the new year? Let me know in the comments!


2019 NaNoWriMo Facebook Cover

October has arrived and any seasoned writers know what that means: it’s almost time for Nanowrimo!!

If you’re not familiar with Nanowrimo, it’s an event where writers around the world challenge themselves to write 50k words in a month (or 1667 words a day). It’s about as crazy as it sounds, but it’s a ton of fun!

It’s become a tradition for me and I’m excited to announce that I’ll be participating again this year! You can check out my end-of-Nano reflection from two years ago HERE and my daily vlog from last year HERE! I also just released a new video talking about my plan for this year, which you can watch HERE!

I’m going to be approaching Nano a little bit differently this year. Instead of just slamming out as many words as I possibly can, I’m going to find a pace that’s writing quickly but not so quickly that I lose quality. The two drafts I’ve completed in Nanos past have been good, but they really needed a lot of work. I’m hoping that if I slow down the pace a bit, it’ll help the quality (and also keep me from going insane with the added college work-load).

What are your plans for November? Are you taking on the Nanowrimo challenge? Comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

— Julia

This update is about giving you guys a heads-up that things may be a little different around here — ’cause I’m officially studying to be a mechanical engineer! I’ve been preparing for this time in my life for a very long time, and as I’m writing this, I am currently sitting at my new home for the next several years. Since you guys are along with me for the ride, I figured I’d give you a run-down on how things are going to change (and stay the same) for my platform and my work!

First off, I’m definitely still writing, so don’t worry about that. At the moment, I have two projects in the works, which I will continue working on around my class schedule. But if I go air-silent for a few days at a time on social media, that’s just because I’m working hard to stay on top of my courses 🙂

One thing I’ve gotten a lot of questions about is my YouTube channel: am I still going to be posting weekly videos? You’ll be happy to know that the answer is yes, as shown by the fact that I’ll be posting my official “Dorm Tour” tomorrow afternoon! At the moment, it still looks like I’m going to be able to keep up with one video a week. But as things start to get busier, I might have to change that to one video every two weeks. If that becomes the case, I will let you guys know, so just keep an eye out on social media!

Besides that, I’m really enjoying life in college! I’ve learned so much already, met a ton of new friends, and even put copies of my books on consignment at some local bookstores. This is only the beginning of what’s to come, and I can’t wait to see where life takes me next.

Thank you, as always, for sticking with me and supporting me! It truly means the world to me 🙂

— Julia


Title: The Stolen Kingdom: An Aladdin Retelling

Author: Bethany Atazadeh

Genre: Fantasy, Fairy Tale, Retelling

Review: When I heard that The Stolen Kingdom was a retelling on the classic Aladdin, I was interested to see how Atazadeh would approach it. Some of the retellings I’ve read recently are less “retell” and more “rehash,” and I find that I enjoy the story more when authors take a risk with the original story rather than playing it safe. But I had nothing to worry about. The Stolen Kingdom takes a completely new direction to the classic fairy tale, one that is familiar, refreshing, and unlike anything in the current YA genre.

The Stolen Kingdom follows princess Arie, who is struggling with both protecting her kingdom and protecting the secret of her Jinni’s gift which, if it gets out, could mean certain death. When a king from a nearby kingdom attempts to force her into marriage, she realizes the only way out is to leave the safety of the castle she’s known all her life and escape into the surrounding lands. it’s there that she stumbles across a group of mischievous and (surprisingly) heartfelt thieves that may be her key to removing her gift — and, perhaps, finding true companionship along the way.

Atazadeh’s writing is clean and smooth, telling the story so effortlessly that there’s no effort on the reader’s part to keep the pages turning. There’s a collection of great quippy moments among the characters which contrast against some of the genuinely darker parts of the book. It’s clear from the carefully crafted balance maintained throughout that Atazadeh is seasoned in the art of storytelling.

A story that captures both the essence of a timeless classic and the intrigue of a new tale, The Stolen Kingdom is sure to wonder and inspire as it pushes the boundaries of how we define the fairy tales of our childhoods.

The Stolen Kingdom: An Aladdin Retelling will be released on August 20th, 2019. Pre-order it HERE.

Good Choice if You Liked: A Curse so Dark and Lonely, Cinder, Dorothy Must Die

Rating: 10/10



Image result for long way down

Title: Long Way Down

Author: Jason Reynolds

Genre: Poetry, Paranormal Fiction

Review: To be honest, I’ve been in a bit of a book slump recently. I’ve had trouble connecting to what I was reading, and I was really hoping for something new that would draw me in and surprise me. Long Way Down was just what I was looking for.

Written in prose poetry, Reynolds uses format, repetition, and even anagrams to bring the reader into the mind of Will, a 15-year-old struggling to cope with the sudden death of his brother. In Will’s mind, there’s only one way to move on: kill the man who took his brother’s life. But as he descends on an elevator on the way to do what he feels must be done, he finds himself face-to-face with literal ghosts from his past. Each person that enters the elevator continues to challenge Will’s belief that this is the only way to find justice for his brother — and the other lost people in his life.

Although the book only took me a few hours to read, by the end of it, I felt like I knew Will inside and out. Reynolds’ clear, concise writing holds back nothing from the reader and starkly portrays the pain of grief and loss. He has a clever take on language that can’t be found on any other pages out there (expect, of course, his other work). It kept me enthralled from the very first page to the very last. It was one of those books that had me sitting there, mulling over what I had just read long after I closed the cover.

If you’re looking for a quick read that’s sure to keep you intrigued and perhaps even touch you in an unexpected way, I highly recommend Jason Reynold’s Long Way Down.

Good Choice if You Liked: The Graveyard Book, Crank, City of Ghosts

Rating: 10/10


Hello, everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve made a blog post and I feel like I owe you guys an update on how I’ve been doing — and, of course, what I’ve been working on!

Ever since the release of Missing Her, I’ve been quite busy. Not only with the continuation of the marketing for both my books, but also with going to BookCon and graduating high school! That’s right, I’m going to be heading to college in just a few short weeks, and that means there’s going to be some changes.

As I’m getting adapted to college-life, I most likely won’t be posting as much on my blog or my Instagram. I won’t go totally air-silent, but there is a chance that I might not be posting as much as I have been recently.

This also means that I’m not going to be able to keep my YouTube background! If you’ve ever watched any of the videos on my channel, you’ll know that I film in front of a bookshelf housing my collection of books. This will not be the case in the future as (obviously) I will not be able to take the bookshelves with me into such a small dorm. But I have a few ideas that I’m going to try out so don’t worry — to the best of my ability, I will continue to post weekly videos!

Now, the real question: what have I been writing? I’ve actually been working on two projects simultaneously (something I’ve never tried before, and it’s definitely taking some extra brain power) but I’m making steady progress on each of them. I actually made good progress on the larger of the two projects today when I completed Mandi Lynn’s 10k Writing Challenge! Keep an eye out for a video this Thursday to see how I did it.

Besides that, I’ve been having a great summer. I’ve been hard at work, but I’ve also definitely taken some time for myself to spend with family and friends. The weeks are going by really fast, but I’m trying my best to enjoy each day as it comes.

How has your summer been going? Let me know in the comments below! If you haven’t been hitting your goals for the summer, don’t worry! There’s still plenty of time to catch up 🙂

Just keep writing, just keep writing . . .

— Juia

I know I’ve said it a hundred times but I’ll say it again: what an amazing weekend!! If you had told me years ago that I would be signing and selling my books to excited friends among some of my best friends, I probably wouldn’t have believed you. But that’s exactly what I got to do this last weekend. I am still on an emotional high after all of the love and support I was surrounded by. For anyone who was able to make it, you were all lovely!!

I’ve posted my full vlog from the weekend on YouTube channel (it was a LOT of footage) so if you’d like, you can check it out HERE!

I’ve also posted a bunch of photos from the weekend on my website, which you can check out HERE!

I already can’t wait til next year. Thank you all, for everything!

— Julia

Now that Missing Her is out in the world, many people (including myself) are asking the same question: what next? All of this time and energy has gone into getting this book off the ground, so what do I do now?

Lucky for you (and also myself) I have many plans! I’ve given myself a little time for a break, but I’d like to update you guys so you know what to expect from J. L. Willow next.

There are definitely more books coming in the future. My ideas right now are from a variety of genres: horror, psychological drama, perhaps even another paranormal. Right now, I’m spending some time with each of them, trying to decipher which one is ready to become fully fleshed-out. Several of them are the start of a series, which would be a change of pace from The Scavenger and Missing Her, both of which are stand-alones! I guess you’ll just have to wait and see . . .

But for now, I have some more exciting news! One of my short stories has been traditionally published by Z Publishing! It’s currently in a collection called Emerging Suspense Writers: East Region. My story is titled “The Lover’s Box.” If you would like to purchase a copy, you can HERE!

As you can see, there’s a lot of exciting stuff in the works!! I’m super excited for what the future has in store 🙂

— Julia

Woohoo! FINALLY it’s May 8th!! For a while, it seemed like this day would never come, but these last few weeks flew by! I’ve been busy doing giveaways, posting YouTube videos, and sharing the news that my second book is almost released. And now it is!

If you need to catch up on the behind-the-scenes videos I’ve been posting about Missing Her, you can check out my YouTube playlist HERE! I also did a special reflection about today, which you can watch HERE!

If you’ve pre-ordered Missing Her — thank you, thank you, thank you! I know you’re going to love it 🙂 I’m happy to send you a signed bookplate so you can turn your pre-ordered copy into an autographed one, so shoot me an email at jlwillowbooks@gmail.com if you’re interested!

Still need to order your copy? You can now!! It’s available in hardcover, paperback and eBook. Click HERE to check it out!

For everyone that’s been sticking by my side through this journey, I am forever in your debt. I’m incredibly honored that you would choose to read my work, and I truly hope you enjoy reading my books as much as I enjoyed writing them.

Well, that’s a wrap on book two! Onto the next one!!

Just kidding, I’ll probably take a few months off … or days …

Or maybe just a few hours 😉

— Julia


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