Jill Weatherholt

Writing Stories of Love, Faith and Happy Endings While Enjoying the Journey

Welcome Jacqui Murray #NewRelease


Today I’m excited to help our friend, writer and the queen of world-building, Jacqui Murray as she launches Against All Odds, book three of her Crossroads series. This trilogy takes the reader on a journey into prehistoric times where survival is never guaranteed.

Before I share a little about the book, here is a question I posed to Jacqui.

You often say these people squat. Don’t they sit?

There is nominal physical evidence showing that early man squatted rather than sat. This includes tell-tale divots and scratches in the femur, tibia, and ankle bone of Neanderthals that would result from squatting a lot. Though Neanderthals are a more recent Homo species than Xhosa’s People, I make the assumption if they didn’t sit much, neither did Homo erectus. Another reason we presume earliest man preferred to squat than sit is because it’s far more natural for the body, even now, and it’s quicker to get into and out of a squat should danger arrive. Try it—you’ll agree.

Here’s a little about the book: 

Xhosa’s extraordinary prehistoric saga concludes, filled with hardship, courage, survival, and family.


A million years of evolution made Xhosa tough but was it enough? She and her People finally reach their destination—a glorious land of tall grasses, few predators, and an abundance that seems limitless, but an enemy greater than any they have met so far threatens to end their dreams. If Xhosa can’t stop this one, she and her People must again flee. 

The Crossroads trilogy is set 850,000 years ago, a time in prehistory when man populated most of Eurasia. He was a violent species, fully capable of addressing the many hardships that threatened his survival except for one: future man, a smarter version of himself, one destined to obliterate all those who came before. 

From prehistoric fiction author Jacqui Murray comes the unforgettable saga of a courageous woman who questions assumptions, searches for truth, and does what she must despite daunting opposition. Read the final chapter of her search for freedom, safety, and a new home.

A perfect book for fans of Jean Auel and the Gears!

Title and author: Against All Odds

Series: Book 3 in the Crossroads series

Genre: Prehistoric fiction

Available digitally (print soon) at: Kindle US   Kindle UK   Kindle CA   Kindle AU


Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers, and the Man vs. Nature saga. She is also adjunct professor of technology in education, blog webmaster, an Amazon Vine Voice,  a columnist for  NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Laws of Nature, Book 2 in the Dawn of Humanity trilogy, Winter 2021.





Social Media contacts: 

Amazon Author Page:        https://www.amazon.com/Jacqui-Murray/e/B002E78CQQ/

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Website:                                 https://jacquimur ray.net


Why I Don’t Get Writer’s Block

By Jacqui Murray


An efriend writer originally published this as a guest post on their blog to help me launch Against All Odds August 2020. In case you missed it there, here are my anecdotal thoughts on how to add drama to your story:


I should get writer’s block. I write twelve hours a day, pretty much every day. Where it used to be a hobby, it’s now What I Do. Well, I teach also but that requires a lot of writing (because I teach online).

Before I explain why I escape that horrendous malady that over half of writer’s anecdotally report they suffer, let’s talk a little bit about writer’s block.

What is Writer’s Block?

Writer’s block is where you stare at a blank page for long periods of time, trying to write but are unable to find the right words. To put that academically:

“Writer’s block is a condition, primarily associated with writing, in which an author loses the ability to produce new work or experiences a creative slowdown. This loss of ability to write and produce new work is not a result of commitment problems or the lack of writing skills.” —Wikipedia

According to Terry Pratchett:

“There’s no such thing as writer’s block. That was invented by people in California who couldn’t write.”

Why (I think) I Don’t Suffer From it

I write a lot of different stuff, fiction and nonfiction, for myself and others, blog hops and my own articles. Each seems like a break from the other. I divide my day into thirds, each devoted to a different writing event. That way, if I get stale on one task, I move to a different one.

“The wonderful thing about writing is that there is always a blank page waiting. The terrifying thing about writing is that there is always a blank page waiting.” ― J.K. Rowling

Here’s how to get rid of it

Jack London has this to say about curing writer’s block:

“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.” 

The folks at Master Class offer eight EASY ways to overcome Writer’s Block. I’m always suspicious that something labeled ‘easy’ isn’t but they had some good ideas including take a break, jump ahead in your novel, and freewrite. Still, I wondered if they would work so kept searching…

Darren over at ProBlogger suggests you make a habit of finishing any writing that you start.

Here’s an idea from Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature:

“One of the most difficult things is the first paragraph. I have spent many months on a first paragraph, and once I get it, the rest just comes out very easily.”

Mark Twain suggested:

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”

Here’s what I’d try if I got Writer’s Block

  • Pet my dog more often. It’s centering.
  • Read the entire Twitter feed from Thoughts About Dog. Here’s a favorite: “gooooob morning. if you think i won’t lie down. where the sun shines through the window. with these paws crossed. all day long. you are out of your mind”
  • Figure out what the heck “a bridge too far” means. I have no idea. Or find a way to defeat a Mobius Strip.
  • Create a false post hoc–like the fallacy that a rooster crowing causes the sun to rise. In my case, it would be that writer’s block means you can’t write.

More on writer’s block

University of Illinois’ Center for Writing Studies

10 Ways to Beat Writer’s Block from Penguin Random House

7 Ways to Overcome Writer’s Block from Writer’s Digest


Author: Jill Weatherholt

My name is Jill Weatherholt and I’m a writer. I have a full-time job, but at night and on the weekend, I pursue my passion, writing. I write contemporary stories about love, friendship and forgiveness. I started this blog as a way to share my journey toward publication and to create a community for other new writers and artists. Raised in the Washington, DC area, I’ve lived in Charlotte, North Carolina since 2004. I hold a degree in Psychology from George Mason University and a Certification in Paralegal Studies from Duke University. I write stories filled with love, faith and happy endings for Harlequin Love Inspired. What can I say...I love happy endings. My sixth book Searching for Home will be in stores December 28, 2021, details can be found at JillWeatherholt.com. I've sold seven sweet romance stories to Woman's World Magazine. I was the first place winner in the Dream Quest One Short Story Contest in the Winter 2014-2015 competition. In 2014, I placed second in Southern Writers Magazine Short Story Contest. I was also a top ten finalist in Southern Writers Magazine Short Story Contest in 2012 and 2013. I’m a 2010, 2012 and 2016 winner of the National Novel Writing Month Contest. I love to connect with readers. Visit me at jillweatherholt.com and sign-up for my newsletter. Follow me on Amazon.com and Bookbub.com.

144 thoughts on “Welcome Jacqui Murray #NewRelease

  1. Hi, Jill – Thank you for sharing Jacqui’s book launch with us. Thnk you also for the question about squatting vs sitting. As Jacqui suggests, I’m going to give it a try to see which position I can move in and out of more easily.
    Congratulations, Jacqui!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Congratulations, Jacqui! 🙂

    Thanks for sharing, Jill.

    I certainly find it easier on my back to lift things from a squat!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi Jacqui, I know the Asian, at least Southeast Asian people squat more than sit. So I’m not surprised if the prehistoric people squatted rather than sat.

    Okay, Californian writers are bad to invent writer’s block. I agree with you, Jacqui, that I write different things, so when I can move on with one subject, I just write “to be continued” then open another file to write something else, or do some research and take notes.

    Thank you, Jill for hosting Jacqui. I enjoyed the interview.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m happy you enjoyed the interview, Miriam. Knowing Jacqui, I can’t see her ever having writer’s block. Your idea is a good one. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy the weekend!


      • You’re welcome, Jill. I’ll do some gardening this weekend. My milkweed seedlings are doing well. I hope to have a butterfly 🦋 garden next year. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh Miriam, I wish you could see the beautiful butterfly that’s been visiting our patio garden. I got some great photos and videos of her going from flower to flower. She came back today, so I named her Bonnie. 🙂 I’m happy your milkweed is doing well. I know you’ve started the count down for your big trip!


    • Didn’t know that about SE Asians. Thank you. It makes sense. Never having thought of the subject before writing this series, I had to do a Find for all the times I mentioned ‘sit’. Change those!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, It was my observation during my travel. In the early days, the restrooms were squatting rather than sitting in the toilet seat. Now there are both with the signs on the doors. I took photos.😅 I saw men squatting next to each other along the sidewalk to smoke or rest from walking.
        It makes sense for the early people to squat when rocks or other objects not available to sit. Chairs are later inventions.
        I haven’t thought of it before I made this comment. So I’m not the expert. 😂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Congratulations, Jacqui. ❤ Thanks for sharing, Jill. ❤
    Good stuff about writer's block…

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Thanks for sharing, Jill. Interesting stuff, and congratulations to Jacqui.
    I haven’t ever had really writer’s block either. I also write lots of different material. If I have a deadline and must write, I just start and see what happens. Other days, if it’s not working, I take a break. Walks often help–and showers. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I enjoyed reading Jacqui’s comments about writer’s block. I don’t get writer’s block, just the occasional failure of imagination, which taking a shower usually resolves.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I’m going to try the squat vs. sit thing although at my age I may have waited too long. It’s true that you can get away faster from a squat. If I’m sitting on the floor it takes me a while to get up! Loved the info on writer’s block too

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Congrats to Jacquie for another successful launch and thanks to Jill for sharing this.

    About squatting; I’m glad I practiced that posture before I encountered “grounded” urinals in Ukraine.

    Also, I’m a fan of author quotes, especially those that club writers over the head about complaining of writers’ block. My philosophy: Sit down and write something., even it stinks. You can always rewrite! If that doesn’t work, take a walk, which often re-starts the writing engine.

    Again, congrats!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Big congrats, Jacqui, on your book launch. Thanks for hosting, Jill. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Very interesting. How exciting to learn about Jacqui and her writing. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Years ago, I enjoyed the series by Jean Auel. Jill, thanks for introducing me to another prehistoric fiction author. Congratulations, Jacqui, on your new release, and thanks for the great writerly quotes!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Good to see Jacqui here, Jill. All those posts make me want to hurry time so it’s my turn to share 😉
    I used to squat a lot as a kid. If you take a look at all the photo albums of when I was a kid, you’ find me squatting. Now, if I try that for more than a few minutes, my knees weep in torture.
    Great tips about writer’s block. I haven’t suffered it yet – at least, I don’t think I have, though sometimes I procrastinate over a scene, unsure how to best move forward…. hmmm, I wonder if that’s writer’s block. In any case, I usually go back a few scenes and either read it, or start editing it. That way, for me, it’s like pushing back the swing far, then letting it go – it gives me the momentum I need to pass that scene into the next.
    Now, I wonder why Terry Pratchett said that about Californian’s.
    Anyway, thanks for sharing, Jill, and good luck with the tour, Jacqui, it’s looking good!

    Liked by 2 people

    • That’s true with the squatting. Best started early in life so our knees are limbered up!

      I don’t think procrastinating is writer’s block–you’re safe. I do that too as I let the pieces of the story find their place.

      Liked by 2 people

    • It’s my pleasure! We’ve got to help out our friend Jacqui, she does so much for others. I think we might be related, Jina. I don’t get writer’s block, but boy am I good at procrastinating. I’ll scour the house for every dust bunny there is before I’ll sit still and write. Thanks so much for stopping by. I’ll look forward to Jacqui’s visit to your blog. Enjoy the weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Hi Jill and Jacqui – how exciting for you! I enjoyed your post very much. I think you are right about squatting and sitting although I’d never thought about it until now. I think the “danger” argument is the most convincing. This is a series I definitely want to read and I promise I will get to it. Great points of view on writer’s block – I enjoyed those too! Hope you both have great weekends 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  14. This post has been very entertaining. I’ve learned about squatting vs. sitting, had a laugh about writer’s block being invented by people in California who couldn’t write, and enjoyed Miriam Makeba’s Click Song. That would be Xhosa singing, if she weren’t so busy surviving one danger after another. I have to add once more that I loved this Crossroads series. If you haven’t read these books, start with Survival of the Fittest and download it right away. You will automatically “have” to DL the next two books. You won’t be able to stop yourself. Great post, Jill. Wonderful books, Jacqui.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Lovely to see Jacqui here again!
    I’m moving so will be signing off! Have a great weekend!

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Nice to see Jacqui here. Fascinating to learn about her research on squatting. I just read an article about squatting and the good it does a body. Seems to be the IN thing. Everything old is new again!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Great post, Jill and Jacqui. I’m not surprised that ancient people squatted rather than sat. My mom grew up in Indonesia, and she said squatting was quite common and comfortable in the countryside. When I was a kid, we often squatted around campfires or when playing games outside. Lol. Sounds so weird to say that.

    And such an informative discussion of writer’s block. I never get blocked either. Partly the result of discipline, but also because I write from an outline – so I always know what comes next even if I don’t feel like writing.

    And, of course, Congrats, once again, on the new book, Jacqui!!

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Thank you so much for hosting me on my big day, Jill. I love visiting with your community!


  19. Thank you, Jill and Jacqui. Congratulations on you book Jacqui. I enjoyed the discussion on writer’s block. I never had the condition. I have grown weary of a story but never blocked of ideas. Thanks, Jill for hosting Jacqui today.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Nice to see Jacqui here with her new release. Thank you Jill, you are an awesome friend.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. I have to agree you can get up faster from a squatting than sitting and would make sense that’s what they’d do, Jacqui. I’m starting this book tonight:)

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Hi Jill, I have briefly met Jacqui on other blogging sites reading the comments. Also, a few introductions to her books. I did read and enjoy one of Jean Auel’s books. Very interesting about the evidence for squatting versus sitting. I have done many squats in yoga and I find it very challenging on my older knees. I likely need to practise more. 🙂

    I appreciate all of Jacqui’s information on Writer’s Block and the additional links. Congratulations Jacqui! Have a great weekend Jacqui and Jill! xx

    Liked by 1 person

  23. It’s so wonderful to see Jacqui featured here, Jill! I love following her everywhere, as I’m intrigued about her Crossroad series and can’t wait to get started. But, wait I shall, as I have a big writing project to finish myself first. 🙂

    My thoughts about squatting versus sitting: I totally agree with Jacqui, when there are no chairs around. Which there weren’t way back when. Even in less developed countries now, people squat when they rest and converse. I always wondered why they didn’t just sit on the ground and initially figured it was because the ground was too filthy. Then, I tried it myself and with some practice, one could get used to it. If there weren’t any chairs around.

    My thoughts about writer’s block. Again, I agree with Jacqui. I’m as destined to get writer’s block as I will get bored. Never. There is just too much to do, think, plan, write, occupy oneself with in this world. I’m sure most writers have heaps of ideas, either in the foreground or tucked away, that “need” attention and scream to be written about. My advice to prevent the block is to dig into a different writing project. Or, tackle something easy first.

    My thoughts about you, Jill, the host. You are awesome!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Aww…that’s so sweet, Liesbet. Thank you! I appreciate you stopping by to help celebrate with Jacqui. I think you’ll really enjoy the Crossroads series. I have a feeling there’s going to be many of us practicing our squatting now, thanks to Jacqui!😉 I can’t imagine ever being bored! I’m looking forward to helping with your book promotion one day soon. Enjoy the weekend! ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Wonderful launch post and series!

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Congratulations, Jacqui! Very interesting about squatting. I have resorted to a little foot rest if I have to be low down to dust or be down to do things on the floor. Maybe I should give squatting a try. I have had writer’s block with my blog for a long time… and photographer’s block, too. We are packing up house and I am realizing I am doing more squatting than I realized! Good Morning, Jill!


    • Hi Pix! I didn’t realize you were moving. I hope everything goes well. I really appreciate you taking the time to visit during this busy season for you. I can’t imagine you having photographer’s block. I’ve always loved your photos! Take care and stay well. ❤


  26. Thank you, Jill, for sharing Jacqui’s book launch with us. What fun! Congratulations, Jacqui. Your book looks fabulous. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  27. I agree with the JK Rowling quote you chose:

    “The wonderful thing about writing is that there is always a blank page waiting. The terrifying thing about writing is that there is always a blank page waiting.” ― J.K. Rowling

    Glad that you are able to write without blockages stopping your passages! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  28. I have read Jean Auel ‘s books years ago. Very intense. This sounds like an interesting series too. Thank you, Jill for the introduction to Jacqui Murray. Quite the accomplished author and love all the information on writer’s block. The other links will also be very helpful. There is a lot here to contemplate.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s been my pleasure, Marlene. Jacqui’s series is excellent! I highly recommend it. Her teaching and writing credentials are quite impressive. Thanks for stopping by to celebrate. I hope you and your daughter have a peaceful weekend. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Another lady who obviously has more hours in her day than me. A wonderful list of achievements to her name too 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  30. I get writers block all the time (I am from California, after all 🙂 ) but it’s usually because I overthink things. Jacqui’s series sounds interesting. I remember reading the Clan of the Cave Bear series when I was young and really enjoyed them. All I can say about squatting vs. sitting is that, if I had done more squatting vs. sitting in my life, my upper legs would be much firmer and my butt would be less soft now. Darn!

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Fun ideas to break writer’s block, Jacqui! I would take a walk or transition from dialog to description, or vice versa. Waving to both of you. Hope you’re having a great weekend
    Sorry I’m late to the party. Recovering from and gearing up for another week with our Big Guy. 🤣😴❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re not late, Dora! I appreciate you stopping by to celebrate with, Jacqui. You’ll have some celebrations coming up on the 11th…oh, and also the 18th. I can’t keep up with you, girl! Enjoy your special time with your Big Guy! ❤


  32. A great interview, so thank you both for sharing it. I love the sound of Jacqui’s whole Crossroads series, The idea of books set in prehistoric times is fascinating and I’ll certainly add the series to my TBR list. Some great information about writers block and advice on how to deal with it, too. It isn’t something that has affected me, yet, but I suppose there’s always a first time. As for squatting, I’m afraid my old knees would object vehemently, and I’d be another ten minutes before I could stand up again. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  33. How lovely that you’ve featured Jacqui’s book launch on your blog, Jill! Congratulations and good luck to you, Jacqui!

    Liked by 1 person

  34. I was interested in the discussion on squatting. When I lived in Japan people squatted all the time, especially the older generation. They sat like that for hours.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Congrats on the new release, Jacqui!


  36. This is so great! I love Jacqui’s writing – her prehistoric books are so well researched. I agree about the squat, and notice that in any exercise program we are encouraged to practice lots of squats.
    Lastly- ❤️❤️ the advice on writer’s block. Write on❣️


  37. Jill, it’s lovely to see Jacqui here on her blog tour with her latest book! I’m in awe how she has not written one but three books set in such a long-ago era – a remarkable feat and congratulations to her! Best of luck to Jacqui with her latest release.

    I loved reading famous authors and their opinions about writer’s block – chuckling at Jack London’s solution! Now I just need to go and find a club … more procrastinating, me fears!

    Wishing you both a lovely and safe weekend! Happy Writing and Reading! hugs xx ❤️


  38. Congratulations on the new release, Jacqui! Thanks for sharing, Jill.


  39. I am not sure if I can get that easily out of a squat, Jacqui, or into one either. Another lovely post. Thanks for hosting, Jill.


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