2017 did not start off happy or calm for me. 2017 was a year long exercise in seeing how much outside events can seriously mess with your head and make one feel instantly drained in a creative sense. I'm referring to the political climate in this country and around the world this year; the balance between staying informed, researching the news to gain accurate information, but also needing some space for self-care is not a balance I've yet perfected.
On a personal note, my grandma was declining and died in January. In November, my aunt and uncle moved out of the house they'd shared with my grandparents for over forty years, a house I grew up in because grandma's house was my afterschool. It was a bit sad to sell the house, but also good in other ways.
But there were good things about 2017 as well!
The big news of the year is this:
Guys, that's my name in a paperback!!
Which was published on October 30th in Full Dark.
"Haunted Lake" was the one short story I wrote during my weeklong try in 2016's NaNoWriMo.
If 2016 was the year of distraction for me, then 2017 was the year of exploring. I was still working on my Victorian idea at the beginning of the year, but that quickly went on hold and I started drafting a Regency-era romance--related to my previous historical fiction efforts--which dragged and dragged. The draft floundered, I grew bored, the characters had no chemistry, and then I had a new idea--a contemporary series. I could include the diversity that I so believe in. I could do "research" instead of Research. Still outlining that idea. I will talk about it in due time.
But outlining--me, the long time pantser--actually outlining.
Exploration--I went with my family to Japan in March to take my grandmother's ashes back to Japan. We stayed in the Tokyo area for ten days. Our family's not from Tokyo, but we have friends there and they took such good care of us. (I now require some fruit or even a small salad with my breakfast, thanks to what I was eating in Japan for breakfast).
In August, my cousin and I went to Ireland. We had a great time! (I now do not wake up in the morning without a big cup of Irish breakfast tea.)
Closer to home, me and my best friends saw five Broadway shows this year--Amelie, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Groundhog Day, Bandstand, and Once On This Island.
I finished my 35 book reading challenge.
This year, I've also become hooked to the romance novel review site Smart Bitches, Trashy Books and its accompanying podcast, which I listen to almost every week and enjoy tons.
I also had two friends release books this year--two from Ms. Krystal Jane Ruin, No Rest For the Wicked and Winter's Siren. My friend Emily Steers released her second novel, Pursue the Unknown End.
I had five guest posts this year, all five pertaining to those three books.
Here's to 2018!