Hi! If you have clicked on this link, you are wanting to find out something about the person who writes on this website. My name is Alisa Russell, and I suppose I have written in some form or fashion for most of my life. It has only been in the last ten years that I have started to get serious about it though. When I first started writing fan fiction and my own stories in 2009, I was never far away from a notebook and pen. If I was out with my sons, they would say ‘Oh, that’s our mom. She likes to write.’ When we moved to the city we are living in now in 2011, my older son was starting high school. I homeschooled them both, and thoughts began to invade my mind about what I would do with my life after I was done. I first started acting on those thoughts in 2012 when I started the blog Write What You Know. I wrote about anything and everything, but mainly about the things I was learning about writing. Topics came frequently at first, but then I would get stuck, and not publish anything for weeks or months. I was a busy homeschool mom who was becoming re-acquainted with her faith. I wanted to write, but couldn’t seem to find anything to write that fit with my first blog title.
Then, I decided another blog was in order, and I started this one in 2014. The topics were mainly faith related, but I wrote about other things in my life too. I was writing blog posts and short stories any time I had a minute with my pen and my notebook. My work load lessened in 2015 with the graduation of my oldest son from our homeschool. He went off to college, and it was just me and my younger son. For the years he was still in high school, we would often work together at the table, him on his school work and me on my writing. But, there was something that was holding me back from submitting any of my stories to be considered for publication. Part of me knew I still had work to do, but the other part was simply afraid. I don’t know what I would have done if someone had told me my writing was terrible. I didn’t have any trepidation about publishing on my blogs, but turning in one of my stories, no, I wasn’t ready.
But, 2018 came, and I knew I had a decision to make. My younger son was going to graduate, and homeschooling would be done for me. What was I going to do next? Was I really serious about this writing thing, or should I consider something else? I decided I was serious. I blogged through the devotional 100 Days to Brave by Annie Downs and had my first experience of someone not liking my writing. I survived! 🙂 I know some of you who are more experienced are laughing, but I had to have the experience myself so I could understand that my life wouldn’t be over if someone didn’t like my writing. I submitted my first stories for consideration and started the novel that had been in my head for years. I had the most consistent blog publication schedule I had since I first started in 2012. People told me they had seen improvements in my writing. All in all, 2018 was a good year for me and my writing.
But, now it’s 2019 and time for me to step up my game. I have folded my Write What You Know content into this page and will publish solely under Thriving in Grace. While some posts will be Christian based, I also want to write messages that are positive and encouraging to all of us. I will continue to write about my experiences with writing and how they relate to my life. You might even see a short story or two as I continue to practice in public. Thankful for all of you who follow me. Many blessings for you in this new year!