Happy New Year! to all of you reading my blog entry. Worry not that I will speak of resolutions to set for 2017. Skip the guilt about missed opportunities in 2016. Let’s have a little fun laying blame on circumstances beyond our control in 2016 and expect the same with 2017.
This picture is me, my brain exploding at the surprises that hit me in 2016. Here's my Blame Fest:
Foremost: the upending results of the presidential election. I hadn’t planned on a political focus in 2017, yet already on my calendar is a women’s march Jan. 21. New, as yet, mostly unnamed, activist tasks will turn up on my To Do list and I must put my time and energy into them.
I’d planned on releasing two books a year, which I successfully accomplished in 2015. Even though I worked as hard as I could to unveil both Cezanne’s Ghost and Bad Lies by December 31st, you won’t see them until 2017. What the hell happened? I partly blame the stunning National Parks. The two-month journey my husband and I took to explore our country’s treasures robbed me of some writing time, and even when I carved out hours to write, distractions abounded in the tiny hotel rooms: where to set up the computer, how to keep the light and noise from bugging my late-sleeping husband; working while my husband watched TV. You get the drift. So many details I couldn’t juggle well.
Way out-of-control event: My website software wasn’t being supported/updated (dang those iWeb Mac people), so I had to start from scratch with a new website builder and host. I was astonished how much time and effort that project took!
My editor’s available time sometimes didn’t jibe with mine; my beta readers wanted hard copy and the printer I’d taken along on the trip died, so I had to learn how to make copies at Staples. Worse, my beta reader responses got lost in the mail. What's up with the post office system?
Makes me chuckle about resolutions and goals. So many circumstances beyond our control throw us curves…we give wry grins, straighten our spines and shoulder on!
So tell me, what blameworthy circumstances upended your 2016 and altered your writing plans? Does 2017 look as challenging to you as it does to me? Whew, thank goodness we’re in this together. Happy 2017!
BAD LIES, coming soon (she said hopefully):
Italy’s haunted caves spell danger for an American golfer and a NATO geologist
Sophie Maxwell is a late-blooming, unorthodox golfer, and mother of a precocious thirteen year-old. Determined to put divorce, bankruptcy, and a penchant for gambling in her past, Sophie goes to Italy for a qualifying golf tournament.
Jack Walker turned his back on a pro golfing career to become a geologist. As a favor to his ailing father he’ll caddy for Sophie; off hours, he’ll find caves on the Mediterranean coast, suitable for NATO listening posts for terrorist activity.
Someone is determined to stop Jack’s underground hunt and ruin Sophie’s chances to win her tournament.
On a Rome golf course and in the Amalfi coast’s haunted caves, all the odds are stacked against Sophie and Jack. In their gamble of a lifetime, who wins?
Six Suspense Novels Spiked with Romance
Soldier on, Rolynn, soldier on! I'm confident things will eventually work out for the better. An unexpected health issue is my current curve ball, but even that isn't insurmountable. I'll definitely soldier on too.
Bad Lies sounds like a terrific new read. On my list. There were plenty of curves and obstacles for me in 2016 also. The political disruption did throw me an emotional upheaval and will not end any time soon. My daughter in law had two terrible health set backs. We sold the farm, both the preparation and move were crazy. We helped our son move twice to and from Colorado long distance. There were good times too, but even good times like your vacation disrupt the writing process. I did get my two books published but it'll be tough to hit that this year because of my lack of writing in 2016. We just have to hunker down when we can. Good luck.
It's early morning here in Philly. I'm reading your post and having my first cup of coffee in 2017. After about the third cup, I'll start on my 2017 "to do" list (smile)! Happy New Year, Rolynn, and best wishes for a great 2017!!!!!
Life throws crap at us. It happens to us all. But see my post tomorrow about how to accomplish our writing goals. Maybe there's a glimmer of hope in there! Happy New Year, everyone! Here's hoping for a productive 2017!
Margo, thanks. See, I never get those idioms right. I was thinking 'shoulder to the wheel' and shortened it, but 'soldier on' is probably better and more recognizable. From what I understand, 'shoulder to the wheel' comes from needing to push on a wheel stuck in the mud. That fits perfectly with 2016's morass. Happy New Year!
Brenda, I think you have more circumstances to blame in 2016 than anyone on Roses. I have read about your journey, wincing with you along the way. Yours, JL's and my response to the political picture are remarkably similar. I'm still blinking like a frog in a hailstorm. Brushing off knees, here. Onward and upward.
Angela, you are approaching 2017 brightly. Hang on to that attitude, girl...we need you around to pep us up! Happy New Year!
Jannine, I look forward to your upbeat treat on how to accomplish writing goals. Happy New Year!
The title Cezanne's Ghost intrigues me. When will it be released?
In the long run, your trip through the National Parks was well worth the adjustment in your publishing schedule. The other annoyances, not so much. I was waylaid by the election, too, as well as the huge fire that burned for months just across the ridge. Right now wishing for a happy new year seems frivolous to me. Instead, I'm planning to gird my loins and face 2017 head-on.
2016, a year that shall go down in Trumphamy. The election was a week after Calvin got home from the hospital for his heart attack and I feared his watching the results. He's doing better, thank God and we see a Cardiac Electro-Rhythm Specialist in a few weeks. My publisher decided they didn't want another wounded warrior book since pre-sales of book one were poor, so they wanted me to write a book like "Stuck Up Suit" only different since everyone in NYC was gushing over it. Well, my editors didn't gush over my version. So they said I should write another bear shifter book and I was half-way through when they asked to see a few chapter...to check up on me, I'm sure. Well, they didn't like what they read. They didn't want any secondary characters. Didn't I get that? I asked to be released from my contract and they were happy to be rid of their errant child. So, I'm looking forward to 2017 in many ways.
Jeanne, my editor has Cezanne's Ghost right now for a second go-around. I think I'll have that book out in March! It was such fun to write...I hope my readers enjoy it.
I hear you Alison. Girding is exactly what I'm doing. I can certainly control what happens to my books, but for the first time, I'll need to step in to the political arena. I remember my protests when I was a teacher...demanding higher salaries. Small potatoes compared to what might be ahead. Now I have to go find out what 'girding' is and if women can physically do it (Hee, hee!)
Vonnie, darling, you raise me up every time. When I hear your stories about your publishers' crimes and misdemeanors, I want to smash those people in the face...and encourage you (and myself) to write the stories we WANT to write. By God I'm going to gird my loins just like Alison said. And now I've done the research...if I'm wearing a long tunic, girding is a method or taking up the fullness of the tunic and 'diapering' it up to make it into shorts so I'm ready for battle. Pictures below. I'm lucky because I wear jeans, so I'm ready to fight the rat bastards. No need to 'gird.' Anyway, Vonnie, I'm glad you're dropping those silly publishers and have a new freedom to be yourself in 2017! http://www.artofmanliness.com/2014/10/02/how-to-gird-up-your-loins-an-illustrated-guide/
I wasn't going to spend much time on line today. But kicking back with some chicken soup spiced with cayenne in hopes of kicking this cold, I decided to check in here again. Love your girding comment, Alison, and thanks, Rolynn for the research. We are ready.
I was certain I commented this morning, but it's gone! Maybe I only imagined it. :-) Anyway, 2016 was a pretty good year for me, albeit a complete void of writing. I think I've been using it as a learning year...learning basically that unless you keep writing, you're not going to be too successful as a novelist! (Yeah...go figure.) I'm looking forward to Jannine's post tomorrow, too! Vonnie, all I can say....their loss. Good for you for remaining true to yourself. (BTW, of course I've never even heard of "STUCK UP SUIT." Must go Google it now... :-))
I meant a good year for me on a personal level. (I'm leaving national news, politics, etc. out for the moment.)
Brenda, thanks for putting the gird directions on FB. Think of a world getting ready to gird up!
Leah, I don't know what STUCK UP SUIT is, either. Are we out of it or what. I agree that Vonnie is going to be happier in 2017!
Rolynn, your posts (as well as pictures) always make me smile. I wrote over on Paranormal Romantics yesterday that 2016 was a mixed bag for me. I let the election consume me too much. I let back pain keep me from doing everything I wanted to do. I let procrastination keep me from finishing the d#$n book.
I got to play with the grandkiddies more than the previous year. I did release one book. Better than nothing. Really bummed that after I finally put all my books up on ARe, they closed up shop, owing authors 4th Q sales. That almost ruined New Year's Eve, which we spent with friends--a definite plus.
Happy New Years, everyone!
Oh, shoot, Diane. You're the first person I know who has been affected by ARe. This business we're in is going to keep changing, and I'm not skookum enough to predict, let alone protect myself. Definitely ARe's demise is a circumstance beyond our control. Keep at the writing...I will, too. Shoulder to shoulder!
Right thumb surgery followed by the worst case of flu I've ever had. To put the blame where I really believe it was due - I believe my grief over the election lowered my immune system. I was became ill right afterwards and it wiped out the rest of Nov. and Dec. I'm just now getting better.
Oh Rolynn, bless your heart-2016 brought my daughter's engagement and at some stage I'll have to write about what it takes to plan a NYC wedding. it also brought a broken shoulder, about which I wrote, trying to type with one hand at belly button level. The list could go on. You've made me feel immensely better, thanks!
RE, I have a friend whose thumb issues have kept him from playing the game he loves...golf! That opposable digit is one important part of the body! And I'm with you on elections grief...I have never felt so stunned, confused and worried...and I still am, today. Remember Roosevelt and his arena speech...this is the time to gain strength and persevere. Sounds like you're on the mend, and I'm happy about that!
Andi, I am so glad I gave you a lift today. That shoulder break means you have a stronger joint than the rest of us (via therapy)...and you'll help us with the shoulder to shoulder stuff. I can't wait to hear about the wedding...in NY, yet. It will be the talk of the town...and will tower over you-know-who :-)
Rolynn, what a good question to ask! Delays this year are mostly my own as I work to get out of my own way. Yes, I was absorbed by the election, but now I have that ease of extra time as I cut out all news reports. Limiting that junk helps.
Oh my, you did have a lot of setbacks. For me, 2016 had its ups and downs. A grown daughter moving back in with me sort of threw my life a curve ball, but we're making it. :) As for writing, I did not do near as much as I would have liked. Way too many other things on my plate, and I always push my writing to the back. I vow to change that in 2017. Hopefully, Jannine's post will help. :)
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