Maya’s Blog

Here I share insights into my writing journey and the creation of my novel, Painting Celia. These posts offer a deeper understanding of the book, revealing the symbolism, character development, and lyrical language that define my work. They also explore my process of balancing introspection and action, crafting authentic characters, and navigating the ebb and flow of creativity. At least, they explain how I try to do all that!

I hope my perspective inspires and encourages you on your own creative journey. And maybe, to pick up the book!


Writing Process

a painting of a woman sitting in the middle of a deseted city street, writing

The Privilege of Expression

Feeling stuck during the pandemic, I wrote a novel to transform my life. Learn how it changed me at the launch celebration in May 2024.

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a painting of a lion with a rose in its mouth

The Lion, the Rose, and the Deadline

A laugh, a lion, and a rose—a skeptic author finds insight (and humor) consulting the Tarot.

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a painting of a woman looking anxiously at the viewer over her laptop screen

My Name is Maya, and I’m a Perfectionist

No battle plan survives contact with the enemy.

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five photos of people generated by ai

My Characters, Brought to Life through AI

I used an AI art generator to create inspiration images of my characters. Is AI an ally or competition to artists and coders?

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a painting of a young Latina woman crossing the finishing line in a foot race

I Heard You’re Writing a Book. When Will It Be Finished?

Step into the world of writing a novel, where 'I should be editing' is the anthem and 'finished' is a word always on the horizon.

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a painting of sparkling blue water from the bottom of a swimming pool

Blue Is More Than a Color

What is color symbolism in literature? Read how the color blue takes on multiple meanings in Painting Celia.

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Plotter, Pantser, and the Power of Spreadsheets

In the life of a Plotter, the joy of writing plots with a spreadsheet is a game-changer.

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a painting of maria from the sound of music standing on top of books

I Have Confidence in Me

Like Maria in The Sound of Music, I'm stepping into the unknown, armed with my manuscript and a hopeful heart. Will my story resonate?

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headshot of a smiling black man with a shaved head, in front of an abstract painting of blue and pink ceramics

Stop Honoring the Rules on Bisexuality Awareness Day

Bisexual pride is not just an identity, but a story. Witness its echoes in the lives of my characters.

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a painting of a woman in a robe, painting.

The Rebel Muse

Ever wondered 'What makes a muse?' They're more than just a spark of inspiration. They've got their own flame.

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a painting of a girl looking at an empty pair of shoes

Father’s Day Without Dad

As Father's Day approaches, some of us have only memories to honor. And how complex they can be! Even in their absence, fathers continue to shape us.

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a painting of a pot of golden curry

Recipe Time! Celia’s Butternut Squash Curry

This squash curry is a gluten-free, vegetarian delight. Sweet roasted squash, spicy curry, and earthy greens come together in a delightful harmony!

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painting of new york city skyline

Travel and Writing: Inspiration in New York City

Escape with me to NYC, where inspiration lurks in every corner and every ordinary moment is extraordinary. Ready for an artistic journey?

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The Magic of a New Romance Novel

Whether writing or reading, new romance novels captivate us all. The thrill is in the dreams and the drama!

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a painting of a cabbage

Recipe Time! Celia’s Cabbage Slaw

Step into the world of Painting Celia with Celia's own homemade Caesar Cole Slaw recipe! It's a gluten-free delight with a unique twist.

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a painting of a pool and palm trees, from above

Published! My Research Trip to Los Angeles

In her article published at Women Writers, Women('s) Books, Maya retells her research journey to LA to "visit her characters."

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Admitting You’ve Written a Sexy Novel

Maya's heartfelt novel allows her to embrace vulnerability in the face of curiosity from her family.

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an ornate brass doorknob on a blue door

Writing Research or Procrastination: Which Is It?

A detour of delightful diversions can derail even the most dedicated writer. How do we avoid procrastination's siren song?

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writing perfectionism: an abstract painting of a blue scale, eggs, and pastries

The Prose and Cons of Perfectionism

Finding harmony between polished language and raw emotion.

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