Gifts have been bought, wrapped and sent. We’ve donated three flocks of chickens and three flocks of ducks to Heifer International in the names of friends and family. The prime rib is on order, and will arrive in time to dry age in the fridge for three days before spending all of Christmas afternoon in a low oven. In lieu of a tree, our annual “festive cone of light” shines in the window. It’s a 3-ft. grapevine cone covered with multi-colored globe lights. The 30-ft. blue fir in the front yard sports LED lights which slowly change from blue to green and back again. A single ball of red lights hangs among them like a giant, ripe fruit. It is a tree straight out of Whoville.
Tiny snowflakes are falling outside. The fire is crackling on the grate. A cup of strong Irish tea sits at my elbow. An afternoon of writing awaits.
I’ve reviewed and returned the copy edits for for Brownies and Broomsticks. I played with recipes until I was happy with the two slated to appear in the back of the book. Work is progressing on the new Cricket McRae/Bailey Cates website, which will feature one-stop shopping for information on all my books, schedule, etc., and I’ve begun preparing for the release on May 1, 2012.
I’m plugging away on the second Magical Bakery Mystery, in the flow and hitting my page quotas. It’s due to the publisher in March.
My sixth Home Crafting Mystery is with the publisher. All along I’ve been calling it Digging Up Darla (and that’s how it’s listed in the front of Wined and Died), but the marketing department likes A Deadly Row to Hoe better. So that’s officially the new title, and I learned it will hit the shelves in November of 2012. My fabulous cover artist at Midnight Ink is working on a brand new style of cover for this one. The other covers will likely change to the new style as the books go back to print. I can hardly wait to see what she comes up with!
Tonight I’ll be meeting with the Old Town Writing Group to eat sushi and talk about writing goals for the next year. Since writing is such a huge part of my life, I’ve had to think about personal goals, too.
I’ve worked in the stress-filled corporate world, surrounded by an aura of anxiety and fake deadlines and emergency. I very deliberately left it behind, not without risk. My world now is about story and language, peopled with characters I love spending time with.
My primary goal for 2012 is to never lose sight of how lucky I am, and to remember that dreams are worth pursuing.
A bit vague? Yes – but the impetus for all the other goals that follow. Mostly they have to do with managing my writing time better, preparing for the surprises that always crop up and wreak havoc upon carefully planned schedules, getting out of my own way, playing more and worrying less.
Care to share any of your goals for the upcoming year?