03.17.2014 Last December I had the chance to participate in TEDxRVA Women with some amazing women! My talk combined two passions: the James River and writing with middle school students. Thank you, TEDxRVA for a transforming experience!

11.15.2013 I ♥ Middleburg, VA! Last night my daughter and I drove up to Loudon County for a Macadoo book talk. So many smart, curious readers! We discussed writing and revising, our favorite fonts, “research” (aka riding), and the many reasons to love horses. The best part? A beautiful handmade gift! Chelsea made me my first rainbow loom bracelet - a white one to remind me of good memories of My Sweet Albert. I will always remember Albert and YOU, Chelsea. Thanks to Gum Spring Library, Second Chapter Books, and everyone who came out for an amazing night!

Here’s my rainbow loom bracelet. It glows in the dark!

My dear friend, Albert and me. A few years ago, when he still had both eyes.

11.14.2013 Just thinking about our little pit, Cola, who is no longer w/ us. Man oh man, what a honey. Whenever I’d roll out my #yoga mat, she was right there. We loved #savasana together!

image10.13.2013 We’re just back from a whirlwind of trip to the Southern Festival of Books, where I spoke to audience of readers and writers of all ages - poets, picture book writers, diarists. They were a fantastic group and made me feel so welcome in Nashville.

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If you’re in my hometown, Richmond VA, this week you don’t want to miss the Virginia Literary Festival. There’s so much to choose from! One festival event that I hope you’ll check out is TEEN ‘13, a celebration of new middle grade and young adult books by seventeen Virginia authors.

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09.13.2013. Lucky Friday the 13th! If I can’t be with my family or my horse (also my fam), chuck me into a room full of library services professionals! Defenders of the 1st amendment, freedom fighters, Knights of Access to story, information and technology. Can you tell that I ♥ library-folk? Today, I spent the morning with staff from the Central Rappahannock Regional Library System. A delightful day it was, and delicious, too! (I ate too many brownies, blondies, and YES, MAPLE BROWNIES. Let’s call them mayppies. Heavenly.) Perfect way to skip into a weekend of reading, researching, and writing. Ok, everybody to the library! Go!

image09.02.2013 I’m always a little sad to see summer go. I cut what I figure will be just about the last of the flowers from the garden this year. Time to do one more round of weeding and start planning for next year. Lots of travel coming up between now and the end of the year to promote Macadoo of the Maury River! I hope in between events that I can find time to enjoy the lingering feeling of summertime and get out on the trail with the super pony, Angel.

08.28.2013 1 horse. 1 girl. 10,000 outfits. The possibilities for fun are endless! Check out the new Chancey of the Maury River app for iPad now $1.99 in the in the iTunes store.

08.13.2013 Summer days = river time! Life here in RVA has always been defined by our incredible river. We know it as the James. The Algonquin people called the river Powhatan.   Recently, my husband and I had the opportunity to spend a morning discovering bald eagles on the James with Captain Mike. Such beauty. We saw dozens and dozens of egrets, herons, cormorants, & ospreys. And, about seven mature bald eagles. I can’t wait to go back!

Last weekend, my mom and I went down to Rocketts (this is the part of town that Gabriel had targeted to set on fire as a diversion in his plan to seize the State Capitol and then-Governor James Monroe). We wanted to check out the Dragon Boat Festival but arrived with a fast-moving westerly storm. And, didn’t stay long!

Next week, I’ll be on retreat in Norwood, Virginia and will get to walk along a beautiful stretch of the James in Nelson-Buckingham counties. Happy last days of summer, y’all!

image08.01.2013 Last week, I had an amazing day in Charlottesville researching at Albemarle Historical Society, breaking for lunch with friends, and writing with middle schoolers at Writer House. Thanks CVille for being so awesome! & Thanks Henrico County Public Library for a fantastic evening yesterday at your Dumbarton Branch talking with readers about Come August, Come Freedom. Lots of upcoming fun this fall. Especially looking forward to Teen ‘13 organized by Meg Medina and A.B. Westrick. Join fifteen YA authors at Richmond Public Library on October 17, 2013.

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