A Sample of my Writing in High School

I’ve been doing some spring cleaning lately.  Because, it is after all, Spring. FINALLY!

One delicious discovery I came across was a file folder filled with old writing assignments.  In a moment of pure lunacy, I’ve decided to share one of  them, in all its glory. Enjoy!

~ P.S. Remember, I was still a novice. And this was high school (9th grade).  Have mercy!

My Bedroom

As you walk into my bedroom you see a revolting pigsty that looks like a parent’s worst nightmare.  My bed is trapped in the corner of my room by a set of old blue bunk beds ominously waiting for someone to bump into them during the middle of the night.  Clothing surrounds the bed except for a narrow pathway leading from it, two feet wide, and cleared so that no junk will be stepped on in the middle of the night.  With shadows that overwhelm the corner, the variety of colors and textures from pants, shirts, and underwear, socks, coats, skirts, and sweaters appear to be a blob piled halfway up to the ceiling. Shirts sleeves and pant legs infest the edges of the bed where they hang lifeless, waiting to be put away.  Papers from previous assignments suffocate unnoticed under the weight of the clothing.
teddy bear pexesl

At the foot of the bed the majority of the ghastly mess becomes bunched up and wrinkled.  Another blob consisting of a baby blue, fuzzy, electric blanket and a light blue quilt, with tiny white flowers covering the top of the quilt, infests the middle of the bed. Resting at the head of the bed lies a lone, white teddy bear.  The only splash of color it carries is his red paws and matching red bow-tie with dots of silver sparkles.  A grey, overstuffed pillow sits under the teddy bear. Next to the pillow, my red, blue and white baby blanked with holes worn through it, an attempted sewing job along its edges – performed by me before I knew how to sew – waits to be snuggled during the night. As you walk out of the room, you look back at it and shudder to think that any form of life could exist in there.

How I Began Writing

I wish I img_0143could tell you I have a Masters in English, or I’ve been writing all my life. I don’t, and I haven’t. However, I can tell you I’ve always had an interest in writing. I just happened to get sidetracked along the way.

As a child, I grew up in Lynnwood, Washington, which is about 20 miles north of Seattle. While in elementary school, I was selected to go to a regional young writer’s camp – and loved it! Though I don’t remember much, I recall thinking how much fun it was to write stories and be creative.

While other kids signed up to be crossing guards, or some other fun job in 6th grade, I signed up to be a librarian. Maybe it was because I had nine siblings, and my home was constantly chaos and mayhem.  Or maybe it was because I loved to walk down each of the rows of books, lining the spines up flush with the edge of the bookshelf. For whatever reason, the library was my happy place.

Then I moved to Walla Walla, Washington. I still loved writing creatively (I’ll post one of my old high school papers at a later date – just for giggles!), but life was filled with sports, JROTC, boys, and work.

I went to college, double majored in Education K-12, and Special Education, with a minor in English.  I didn’t get far though. I met my husband, got married, and immediately started having children.  One of those kids was a little girl named Elisha.

Elisha was a spitfire from the beginning, and an overachiever at everything. She was in the “Gifted” program in elementary, played volleyball (all conference, went to state in high school), sang (went to state as a soloist and ensemble), track (won state in 2 events, 4th in another, went to a division 1 college, and is currently a 3-time JUCO All American), was ASB President, and succeeded at virtually everything she put her mind to.

Still, she struggled. She struggled with friends, being a teenager, boys, people being mean. You know. Life.

When Elisha was about 15 or 16, my sister, who actually DOES have a Masters in English, e-mailed me and told me about this thing called NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). She knew I’d always  toyed with the idea of writing a book and she thought it would be fun for the two of us to write our stories together.  It was simple. 50,000 words in one month.  How hard could that be?  Ha! Little did I know.

Though I don’t know the actual numbers, the experience was pretty similar to this:

Day 1: Patty wrote:  350 words.  Me: 125 words.

Day 2: Patty’s word count: 350 words.  Me: 450 words.

Day 3: Patty’s word count: 350 words.  Me 1,200 words.
Patty e-mailed, informing me she was done and didn’t want to finish. I was on my own.  The problem was, I’d was in the thick of it now.  I’d decided to write a book about Elisha, and I was on a roll.  Now, approximately 4 years later, Unleashed! I about to be published!

Define Normal

buttsintheairTo say that 2017 will be a busy year for me is an understatement! The goal is to publish three books this year; two YA novels from two difference series and one non-fiction, written with my two sisters, Peggy Cady Kendall and C.Grace Cady Naegle.

Define normal is a gut-rolling book filled with vignettes about life growing up in a family with ten children.

Stories include everything from game nights, to how siblings terrorized one another, to ten children and one bathroom, Cady curses, and the list goes on.  If you don’t have tears streaming down your face (either in horror, or from laughter), then we haven’t done our job properly.

Courting Disaster

Hot on Unleashed!’s heels is my next book: Courting Disaster.

I’m half-way through the editing process and hope to have it published by the end of the year, either traditionally or independently. Either way, I’ll be unleashing Courtney on the world!

Courting Disaster Contemporary YA Novel by Susan Cady Allred
Courting Disaster

Seven-year-old Courtney is a child prodigy recruited by the government to oversee a department only the President knows exists.  The problem? Her mother doesn’t know she works for the Agency, and insists Courtney act like a normal child.  Courtney must run the Agency, avoid capture by her ex-boss-turned-mercenary, and save her mentor’s daughter, all while convincing her mommy she’s a normal second grader. Failure is not an option!

Click Here to Read:  Courting Disaster Sample

Unleashed! Is Ready to Publish!

I have finally put the finishing touches on my Contemporary YA Novel, Unleashed!  

I’ve finally finished THE book. I’m well into the query process, and have had a few nibbles, but nothing definitive yet.  I’m too excited to just sit on my haunches and wait. So…I’m sharing my excitement and a few things you won’t find in the book with you!

First, the Book: 

Unleashed! YA Novel written by Susan Cady Allred
Unleashed! Contemporary YA Novel written by Susan Cady Allred

Black Widow Meets Mean Girls

17-year-old Aleasha Summers was groomed to become a spy and never even knew it. That is, until her family died in a car accident and the Agency sends a handsome agent to collect her.

Tasked with infiltrating a high school and its seedy underbelly, Aleasha finds herself caught in Cecelia’s cross hairs.  But Cecelia is no ordinary high school bully. She’s a child of the Mexican Mafia hell-bent on controlling the city and destroying Aleasha in any way she can.

When her boyfriend, her family, and Agency members disappear, Aleasha must take on the Mafia to save her new spy family, or lose them and leave the city helpless against the Mexican Mafia’s reign of terror.

Interesting Fact #1:  Aleasha Summers is modeled after my daughter. The girl ON THE COVER!  

There’s so much to tell; so many tidbits to include about Unleashed!  And I’m so excited to finally be able to share them!  So take a moment, sign up for my newsletter so I can let you in on the secrets too. By the time Unleashed! completes the publishing process and is on the shelves, you’ll feel like you already know her.  I guarantee you’ll love her as much as I do. 

And, if you want to read the first five pages, read the  Unleashed 5 pages here!

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