Seven Steps is a Young Adult Romance Author. Her series, St. Mary's Academy, mixes fairytale characters with edgy, contemporary young adult stories that satisfy both teens and adults.
She also writes Historical Romance under the pen name Mildred B Lewis.
Monday, April 9, 2018
Sneak Peek of The Secret Lives of Princesses
Sneak Peek of The Secret Lives of Princesses
I'm popping in to show you what I've been working on lately. Here's a sneak peek of The Secret Lives of Princesses, book 3 in the St. Mary's Academy series. This is Princess Jasmine's story, and it releases in June. It's also available for pre-order. Check it out:
I was late.
The Winter Formal started two hours ago, and I was late.
Breathless, I jumped in my red Maserati, a Christmas present from my dad, and sped through the moonlit streets of New York City. Heat from the vents wrapped my toes in pure warmth while Freedom 90 by George Michael blared through the stereo. I sang the lyrics, feeling them deep in my soul.
“There's something deep inside of me. There's someone else I've got to be.”
As usual, the magical, mind-reading app known as Pandora perfectly predicted what mood I’d be in and gave me the exact song to match it. With only a few well-placed notes and verses, George Michael became my spirit animal. This was how I felt at this very second. Restless. Unsettled. Like there was something else I was supposed to be doing. Someone else I was supposed to be. Some fun, exciting girl who actually lived her dreams.
Not this boring mess that had somehow taken over my body and paraded around in my skin.
Yes, I said it.
How do I know I’m boring?
Because the one person in the world that I idolize told me so.
Last month, I submitted one of my paintings to a citywide art contest sponsored by the goddess herself, Devinta Holly. She is my absolute favorite modern artist. Like ever. The grand prize winner would receive an internship with Devinta’s art studio for the entire summer. Granted, it was probably just lame office work like fetching coffee and picking up her dry cleaning, but I didn’t care. I’d scrub toilets just for the opportunity to study at the feet of the woman New York Times called, This Generation's Most Sought After Artist. Devinta Holly was my paragon. My own personal deity, and this morning I received my comment card back from the first round of her contest.
I opened the yellow envelope, my hands shaking with trepidation and fear.
What if she didn’t like it? What if she thought I sucked? What if she told me to give up on my dream of becoming a famous painter? God knew I’d heard that commentary from my parents a million times before.
I shook the contents of the envelope, a sheet of paper and what appeared to be a business card, onto my bed and decided to examine the paper first because it was larger and would take longer to read.
I admired the beautiful letterhead before scanning the rest of the letter:
Dear Ms. Patel,
Thank you for submitting your art piece to The Next Big Thing Art Competition.
I am pleased to inform you that your picture, Jasmines In Blue Vase, has been selected to advance to the final round of judging.
I squealed. Literally. I fell onto my back, kicked my feet in the air, and squealed. This contest was a once in a lifetime, never come around again opportunity. My one shot to get up close and personal with Ms. Devinta Holly, and I had moved into the final round of judging. My entire life turned into one big bubble of delight.
Personal comments from Devinta Holly:
Excellent execution, but boring. This piece didn’t move me.
Like a light-switch flipped off, my happiness and joy turned to despair and misery. Hearing my mentor say that my art was boring hurt. Like, really hurt. It was like she’d taken a peek into my soul and found me lacking somehow. I know I wasn’t the greatest painter in the world, but I’d studied hard and practiced daily. I’d even had a few sessions with a private art tutor. And now, to hear Devinta say that my work was boring… it made me question everything.
If my work was boring, what did that say about me? Was I boring too?
In the last few hours since I’d received my letter and contact card, I’d analyzed my life and came to one heartbreaking conclusion.
I, Jasmine Patel, was indeed boring.
If I was an emoji, I’d be the circle with just the face and the eyes. Don’t know which one that is? Of course not. Do you know why? Because no one ever uses it because it’s the most boring emoji ever.