2012 in Review
However, this year sucked creatively. I really think moving just sucked the mojo out of me. For one thing, I barely even had time to breathe particularly from October 2011 through May 2012. This has left me with the aggravating feeling that I've been working on the sequel to Dark Metropolis forever, and it will never ever be done. When I think about actual active time I had to work on it, though, it isn't really longer than other books. I can really, truly, only count from June to now, plus maybe a couple months beforehand, so it's been about 9 months, and they were months of huge transition.
This year I am starting it off in my new house and I'm approaching the year mark since I moved in, so I have declared that I will shake off all the old feelings that "this book is taking forever", "I hate it", "it's a disaster and I wish it would just be done". LOOK, self. You have almost 45k done, you are comfortably past the halfway mark, and what you have really isn't that bad. I daresay it might even be great. And this is your first sequel contracted while the first book isn't even out yet, so it is a marvelous opportunity to tell an amazing multi-book story in a really cool, dark world! So stop it. Enjoy it, own it, stop thinking about other books you'd rather be writing because if you were writing them under contract you'd wish you were writing this one. That's how it works and you bloody well know it. Learn to devote yourself to the moment. Write like this is the last book anyone will ever buy from you.
I am also declaring that I will stop feeling depressed about the writing biz. Yes, it is kind of a disillusioning realm for most of us, but successful people don't mope around. And fun people don't mope around either. I feel I have devoted enough time to feeling glum about the dream vs. the reality. When I was in my early 20s, I worked at Sears and made 6.25 an hour, and in my heart I was a frickin' reincarnated glam rocker. So I'm getting back to that. Back to looking at the stars instead of the gutter.
I guess what I'm saying is that if last year was all about the material and the practical: close on the house, fill out these papers, call the plumber, buy an oven, send in the mail-in rebates, find that really important thing that we packed in a poorly labeled box, blah blah...this year all of that is done, and it's time to focus on the greater world of the heart and mind.
My goals for this year:
--Make a trip to NYC to meet my editor so she seems like a real concrete person.
--Make $600 a month minimum selling old stuff on Ebay/Amazon.
--Finish the Dark Metropolis sequel.
--Finish Alfred & Olivia 2.
--Finish a middle grade.
--Give a gift of time or money to someone else every month or so to remind yourself that there is always more.
Reading stats this year:
64 books. Pathetic!!!! Maybe a couple more because my general disorganization this year led to me not always recording what I read.
Graphic novels/manga: 13
Adult novels: 3
Mmm...I miscounted somewhere. Oh well. Close enough.
Usually I give you my top 10 YA/MG of the year, but...well, usually I read at least 40 books in that category alone and this year I read EIGHTEEN, so, I will just give you my top 10 books in all categories:
Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore
The Changeling by Zilpha Keatly Snyder
Wayfarer by R. J. Anderson
The Food of a Younger Land by Mark Kurlansky (collected writings on America's foodways from the Depression-era WPA writer's project)
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
The Silver Metal Lover by Tanith Lee
Amy Unbounded and Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (both set in the same world so I'm counting them together)
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
Nightingale Wood by Stella Gibbons
Eden's Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and her Father by John Matteson