For me, the final week of every year has always meant looking back and looking forward. The end of one year is coming (and coming very quickly) while a new year is just around the corner and comes with the promise of new things to do, new places to visit and new people to meet, not to mention new challenges.
It's time to take that sigh of relief over what we have gotten done in the past year and rather than thinking of the things we didn’t quite get done, I always like to think of the things that DID get done.
Usually when we take the time to count up accomplishments versus things we didn’t get done, we end up finding there was a lot more that got accomplished than we realize. The secret is to take the time to think of them and then applaud what we did accomplish, rather than focus solely on what didn’t get done. (Even those things we didn’t do we still have time to get them done next year!) Confusing? Maybe, but the key is to keep looking forward rather than focusing on what was left behind. We can always start the new year promising to get those things done!
For me, while last year was a crazy, confused and sometimes frightening time, it also provided some new opportunities that will pay off in the future. For instance, while I still couldn’t physically attend conferences that I often enjoyed in the past, I was still able to attend MORE conferences because so many offered virtual opportunities. I couldn’t attend my local writing group meetings, but once they began putting them on virtually,I was still able to see the programs. I was also able to attend virtual conferences and meetings given by other groups all around the country. (I even attended one given in Canada.)
No, it’s not the same as spending time just chatting with other writers, but the conferences still presented a great opportunity to learn from master teachers and best-selling authors and to get to just chat with other writers about some of the challenges they are facing.
Being forced to stay in also gave me more time to focus on the writing process itself. I was able to finish two non-fiction books as well as three works of fiction that I had been working on for several years.
The non-fiction book, Pitching Your Fiction will soon be available, as well as my co-authored books, Writing a Great Villain, and Writing Tips for Authors.
To me, one of the most exciting developments in the past year was getting two new fiction books completed, edited and sent on the road to publication. They will both be released in the new year.
was a book I started writing years ago – the story of a young woman who keeps seeing a ghost with a secret from the past. It’s a romantic suspense novel that will be coming soon from Wings ePress.
When Marianne Lopez arrives in the small Colorado town where she was born and raised, she knows she must face Brad Calhoun, the man who once broke her heart. Rancher Brad Calhoun has never forgotten the special time he spent with Marianne, but he also knows they want different lives. Deserted by his mother and an ex-wife, Brad wants only a calm life to raise his children. Both carry memories of a night of stolen love… and a special connection that draws them together. But there is something…or someone… watching them… Do the secrets of Sara hold the key to their future?
My second book, coming next year also from The Wild Rose Press is the second in my Dead Man series—Dead Man’s Treasure. It is currently in the editing stage, and I’m already working on the final story in the Dead Man trilogy – Dead Man’s Secrets. That is my primary goal for this next year—to get it finished and edited.
Good luck with all your goals for the new year, but don’t forget to look back and celebrate what you accomplished in the last year. You’ll probably find you did a lot more than you realized. So here’s to the old year, and bring on the new one!