Playlist: Shell Shocked (Sophia’s War, #7)

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Here’s the playlist to the seventh and final installment in my Sophia’s War series, Shell Shocked! Hope you enjoy!

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All of Me – John Legend (with Lindsey Stirling)

All Fall Down – OneRepublic

Atlas – Coldplay

Baby Mine – Alison Krauss

Beautiful, Beautiful – Francesca Battistelli

Bleeding Out – Imagine Dragons

The Broken Beautiful – Ellie Holcomb

Broken Together – Casting Crowns

Busted Heart – for KING & COUNTRY

Change – Taylor Swift

Dark Days – Punch Brothers

Devil May Cry – The Weeknd

Diamonds in the Dust – Diane Birch

Dream – The Boxer Rebellion

Elastic Heart – Sia ft. The Weeknd

Everybody Wants to Rule the World – Lorde

Everytime – Britney Spears

Family – Noah Gundersen

Fight the End – Christon

Final Days – Matt Wilcox

Fire and Dynamite – Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors

Flightless Bird, American Mouth – Iron and Wine

Found – Christel Alsos

Halt dich an mir fest (Hold On To Me) – Revolverheld ft. Marta Jandová

Heart By Heart – Demi Lovato

Holding On and Letting Go – Ross Copperman

I Could Live With Dying Tonight – Emma Lee

I Don’t Deserve You – Plumb

I Need You – LeAnn Rimes

I Still Believe – Jeremy Camp

In the Stream – S. Carey

Innocence – Avril Lavigne

It Plays On – Diane Birch

It’s You – Michelle Branch

Keep Holding On – Avril Lavigne

Kingdom Come – The Civil Wars

Lights – Josh Ritter

Little House – Amanda Seyfried

Love is Marching – BarlowGirl

Love Remains the Same – Gavin Rosalie

Lullaby – Dixie Chicks

Lullaby – Nickelback

Mirror – Ellie Goulding

More Time – Needtobreathe

Mundscheinsonate (Moonlight Sonata) – Beethoven

My Immortal – Evanescence

Never Say Never – The Fray

Oblivion – Bastille

Only One – Yellowcard

Out of the Woods – Taylor Swift

Place For Us – Mikky Ekko ft. Ammar Malik

Read All About It (pt III) – Emeli Sandé

Recover – Natasha Bedingfield

Say (All I Need) – OneRepublic

Say Anything – Ashley Nite

Set No Sun – UNKLE ft. Elle J and Joel Cadbury

Silhouettes – Of Monsters and Men

Skinny Love – Birdy

Still Holding Out For You – SHeDAISY

Sweet & Wild – Dierks Bentley

There You’ll Be – Faith Hill

Things We Lost in the Fire – Bastille

True North – Jillette Johnson

Turning Pages – Sleeping At Last

Underneath – Jessica Simpson

Walking Blind – Aidan Hawken and Carina Round

What Hurts the Most – Rascal Flatts

Wheel of the World – Carrie Underwood

When I Look At You – Miley Cyrus

Whispers – Dave Baxter

Who Did That To You – John Legend

Who We Are – Imagine Dragons

The Wine We Drink – Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors

With Love – Christina Grimmie

You – Switchfoot

 

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Get Shell Shocked on Amazon here!

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There’s Always a First…

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So…since this is my first night with my new author blog, I figured I should go ahead and say something. Christen it, if you will.

I have been writing (seriously) since 2006, and I feel simultaneously prideful and humble to state that my writing itself has improved dramatically in that span of time. My first novel, A War Worth Fighting, ended at 578 pages. It may not sound like much to an avid reader, but translated into an actual paperback format, that would be OVER A THOUSAND PAGES. I go back and read the original draft and cringe at my monotonous attempts at good descriptions. (I considered posting a sample, but after reading over it, I decided not to, because I just waterboarded myself in the process). Anyway, though I adored the characters, it was such a behemoth of a manuscript, I pretty much archived it, deciding it would be for my own personal reading pleasure, never to torture an unsuspecting victim again…besides my closest friends and family.

While researching for its sequel, I read Nazi Prisoners of War In America by Arnold Krammer (an excellent read). It was in the midst of learning about the life of a Nazi POW that I was inspired to write A Captive Heart (which you can find on Amazon here: (http://www.amazon.com/A-Captive-Heart-Stephanie-Baumgartner/dp/1934449334/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1370061117&sr=8-1&keywords=a+captive+heart+stephanie+baumgartner) (There’s more to the development of that series, which I’ll touch on later, but this is the first recollection I have of it materializing in my mind). It kind of snowballed into something I never expected after that, becoming a trilogy. Honestly, I fell in love with Cassie and Friedrich so much that I still go back every once in a while to skim through their most pivotal scenes and relationships in the series just to hold on to some part of them now that their story is over.

So, by the time I finished the trilogy, I had written 5 novels in my unnoticed writing career, and immediately went on a hiatus that only I was aware of, because I had been working straight for 4 years on research and writing (in between getting married, working, moving, etc.), and my brain had become unbelievably muddled and burned out. I decided then to focus only on getting A Captive Heart picked up and published (which I succeeded at…sort of…not really…I’m still hoping to find someone who will love it as much as I do). Anyway, soon, Taylor Swift (one of my biggest muses–I know we would totally be best friends if we ever met 😉 ) came out with her third album, and the moment I heard Enchanted (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3yHJ5YzvfY), I was struck with another idea–a story about an English fighter pilot and an American diplomat’s daughter who meet during the Battle of Britain and fall in love. So I decided it was time to get back to researching yet another facet of the war–the air battles over Britain. I am still continuing to research for this novel, because I feel like there is so much to learn about the culture as well as the history of the period. Anyway, when I was this close ([—-]) to writing it, I felt as if God was leading me to write yet another idea that had been simmering in my mind for years. I just finished His Strength is Made Perfect a few months ago (a story about a 16-year-old who gets pregnant, and the way her church and the town react to the news). I was hoping, after having researched and prepared to write The Diplomat’s Daughter (title will be changing), that I would finally be able to write it, however….

It was then that I realized publishing my first novel(s), the gargantuan A War Worth Fighting and its sequel could help provide me with a platform and a following, especially if I broke it up into a series of smaller novels…which is what I’m in the process of doing now. The first two books of Sophia’s War will be published on Amazon soon as an ebook and traditional paperback, and I couldn’t be more excited!! This is a novel/series that I never expected to see the light of day, but after more editing than I could even describe to you, I feel that it is finally ready to be shared with the world. Thankfully, I’ve had the help of my wonderful editor friend, Lindsey, who has helped mold it into a better read as well.

So that’s where I am now. Six novels later, with one idea still being researched and another being dissected and broken up, I’m preparing to publish once again. I can’t wait to share a new adventure with those who have been keeping up with me and my progress!

Anyway, here’s my end for the night, and here’s to the future! Ultimately, I DREAM of seeing my characters on the big screen some day…but in the meantime, creating them for the rest of your enjoyment will suffice 🙂

BBL, buckaroos…

Steph**

PS: Check out my friend Heather’s Facebook photography page!! She very kindly did a photo shoot inspired by my characters in A Captive Heart! http://www.facebook.com/neverthereyetphotography