- I hope you’re spending some relaxing time with family or friends or both.
- I hope cookies are finished, houses are prepared, and you’re in the fun part of the holiday season and not the “wow, this is so much work” part of it.
- I hope if you work retail you’re still sane and haven’t been arrested for assault yet. (Hold strong. I know the temptation is almost overwhelming at times.)
- I hope you’re looking forward to the new year.
- I hope you have some really great books to read when you get a spare moment.
And I hope you’ve enjoyed being part of this blog community. I always enjoy posting here because I get great comments from readers, enthusiastic feedback, and so much encouragement. Thank you for being part of my writing journey in 2014.
- A boxed set of the four Elemental Mysteries novels
- A short story in the Cambio Springs series
- Three novellas in the Elemental series
- Two full novels (one in the Irin Chronicles, one in Cambio Springs)
Estimating things, that’s around 255,000 words of new fiction written this year. Or almost 700 new words a day if I wrote every day. Not bad, but not my most prolific year. At the same time, I also did these things:
- Took a month-long research trip to China for Shadows and Gold and the new Elemental Legacy series.
- Took a week long research/writing trip to the desert for Cambio Springs.
- Took a five day research trip to Vienna for The Secret (which I’m working on right now)
- Went to the RT Conference in New Orleans
- Attended one signing
- Went on two field trips with my son’s class
- Attended a couple of family vacations
- Celebrated lots of birthdays
- Watched lots of AYSO soccer for my son and various nieces and nephews
- Got a new dog
- Finished taking down the really ugly wallpaper in my bedroom (The plaster is still a work in progress.)
- Finished decorating the new house (mostly)
- Started a barre physique class and got back into yoga
- Took a few more walks than I did in 2013
2014 was all about balance for me. The more I publish, the harder it is to find time to write. That makes me frustrated at times, but I think it’s also inevitable. The business of writing takes time, whether you’re traditionally or independently published. Life also takes time. I’m coming up on my third year of single-parenthood, which is not something I talk much about, but it’s challenging. I balance a lot at home and to do that, sometimes writing time suffers.
It’s all about balance.
So my hope for the new year is that I balance a little better than I did last year. A little less time worrying, a little more time writing. A little less time in front of the computer and a little more time out in fresh air. More time with my son and as little time as possible doing paperwork.
And as much as I’d like to put out four books every year for you guys, I have to realize that, where I am now in life, that’s not realistic. So I’ll focus less on quantity and more on quality. I want to write the best books I can. I want to keep growing creatively. Part of growing creatively is living life. And I can’t do that if I’m shut up in my writing cave all the time. So I have to allow myself that and accept the words I put on paper will be better for the time that I’ve spent living. I also have to hope that you guys will accept that. I’m pretty sure you will, because I have great readers.
As my thank you for being such amazing readers, I’ll be doing a 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway starting tomorrow for my VIP Readers. (If you’re not signed up for the VIP Reader List, you can sign up here.) I’ll be picking a winner every day for the next 12 days to win paperbacks of different books. I have thirteen different paperbacks now and I’ll be giving away one of each (with the two Elemental novellas combined into one day). You don’t have to do anything to enter, just be signed up for the list! I’ll be announcing winners every day, so just check your inbox and email me if you see your name.
I’m also doing a giveaway here on the blog for a COMPLETE signed four-book set of the Elemental Mysteries. Leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite holiday tradition and be entered to win. This contest will run for the next week, and it is open to international readers. I’ll announce a winner on New Year’s Eve.
Happy Holidays, everyone! Thanks for being part of this amazing journey.
So much love to you all,