Tuesday, September 26, 2017

How to Write with Kids: A Guest Post by Jessica Therrien

September has been an exciting month for book birthdays, and today we have another great one. To celebrate the launch of her latest book, Carry Me HomeJessica Therrien is telling us how she writes with young kids in the house. I'm sure a few of you would love tips on that! Scroll down after the blog post to read all about Jessica's new book.

by Jessica Therrien

How do you find time to write with young kids in the house…

Simple. I don’t sleep. Ever.

Ha! If only that were true. Unfortunately I’m 100% mortal human, so sleep is required, but I do push my limits. My work hours are usually from 10pm to midnight. I try to get as much done in those two hours as possible. But two hours a night isn’t much, so here is what I’ve done to be more productive while playing Mommy to my 2-year-old and 4-year-old, who are home all day with me.

  1. Adapt – I used to only write when I felt inspired. I’d listen to music, set the mood, settle in with my coffee and snacks and try to find the zone. The idea of getting a moment of peace and quiet during the day is laughable to me now. Instead of music, my background noise has become the sound of my wild boys screaming and chasing each other around the room with loud dump trucks. But hey…if they’re busy playing, that’s time. So I’ll take it.
  2. Butt In Chair – As I mentioned, the only guaranteed time I get for writing is from 10pm to midnight, so I NEED to make those hours work. Most of the time I’m exhausted, but I force myself to do it. Once I started doing this, I realized how much time I was wasting “waiting to be inspired” or not pushing forward because I was stuck being a perfectionist. Even if what I’m writing is not my best, I force it out and move forward. I can always go back and fix things later, but getting the first draft out is essential. It’s a different strategy, but it’s worked for me.
  3. Write On Stuff – No seriously…napkins, receipts, notes in my phone. If something comes to me, I scribble it out on anything I have. My brain doesn’t have enough room to save ideas for later. It’s too busy with Mom stuff.
  4. Keep Going – Part of my honestly believes some of my writer friends are part robot. I mean…a book every few months?! I WISH I could produce quality work in that amount of time, but it’s just not a possibility for me. My two hours a night means I’m a LOT slower, but as long as I keep going, little by little, I’ll get there. One of my favorite things to remember is that if I write a page a day, I’ll have a book in a year. Not only is that doable, but really inspiring! A book a year is a GREAT goal.

So to all you writer-mamas out there, you can do it! Don’t get discouraged. Don’t give up. 😊 Sentence by sentence, page by page…one day you’ll look up and have a book.


CARRY ME HOME is a fictional novel inspired by the true story of a teenage girl’s involvement in several Mexican gangs in San Jose and Los Angeles. The members of her crew call her, Guera, Spanish for “white girl” and it doesn’t take long for her to get lost in their world of guns and drugs.

* * *

Lucy and Ruth are country girls from a broken home. When they move to the city with their mother, leaving behind their family ranch and dead-beat father, Lucy unravels.

They run to their grandparents’ place, a trailer park mobile home in the barrio of San Jose. Lucy’s barrio friends have changed since her last visit. They’ve joined a gang called VC. They teach her to fight, to shank, to beat a person unconscious and play with guns. When things get too heavy, and lives are at stake, the three girls head for LA seeking a better life.

But trouble always follows Lucy. She befriends the wrong people, members of another gang, and every bad choice she makes drags the family into her dangerous world. 

Told from three points of view, the story follows Lucy down the rabbit hole, along with her mother and sister as they sacrifice dreams and happiness, friendships and futures. Love is waiting for all of them in LA, but pursuing a life without Lucy could mean losing her forever.

Ultimately it’s their bond with each other that holds them together, in a true test of love, loss and survival.

Add Carry Me Home on Goodreads.

Buy Links:


Jessica Therrien is the author of the young adult series Children of the Gods. Book one in the series, Oppression, became a Barnes & Noble best-seller shortly after its release. Her trilogy has been translated and sold through major publishers around the world, such as Editions AdA (Canada), EditionsMilan (France), and SharpPoint Press (China).

Aside from her Children of the Gods series, Jessica is the author of a kid’s picture book called, The Loneliest Whale. Her award-winning stories can also be found in a published anthology of flash fiction.

Jessica currently lives in Irvine with her husband and two young sons. She is working on an a YA suspense thriller series and a middle grade fantasy series.


Author Links:


  1. Time goes by so fast and managing it well is key. You tips are very practical and should be useful for everyone really. Great book review too, thanks for sharing!

    1. Even without kids around, it can be easy to let the day go by without getting writing time in. Time management is an art!

    2. Bah! I'm so late to the comment game. Sorry!! My release has been busy...not to mention the kids, lol!! Glad my tips were helpful!

  2. Congratulations, Jessica! I don't have to deal with that problem, but it does force one to make time rather than just finding time.

    1. I don't either--although my dog does seem to always want to go outside every time I get on a good writing roll.

    2. That sounds so challenging! Kudos to Jessica for making it work.

    3. It's so true...even without kids, people can manage to waste a day. Make time is right! Thanks for stopping by Alex & Jennifer! :)

  3. Congrats Jessica! And good for you for finding the time/patience to keep writing.

  4. What an inspiration you are to other writers who might be facing the same problems as you. Take the time whenever you find it. Great advice. I don't have that problem, but it's easy to make excuses for not writing. Congratulations on your latest book. It sounds fascinating. Oops, the cat just crawled onto my lap wanting attention. :)

  5. Congrats Jessica! I don't have young kids, but I have older parents. I guess we all have to manage our time!

  6. Thank you SO much for having me on your blog, Stephanie!! I'm going to get your books for my little nieces for Christmas! :)