Author of historical romance. Views on writing, life, and books
Sunday, December 13, 2009
That time of the year
Time for Christmas cards. Groan. I used to like doing Christmas cards, scribbling all over the empty part about what I've been doing for the last year. Well, that slowly slipped away and the notes grew shorter as my deadlines grew closer. I am now going to do the year's end newsletter bit. Type it out on the computer and print out enough copies to fill the cards that go out to people I don't see much, if at all. One big writing down of all that happened during the year with a few sentences of a handwritten message at the bottom. Funny thing is - I write for a living - but have a hard time thinking of what to write in that newsletter. Maybe it is because I can't make anything up. You know - no Hannah went to DC for a conference but was kidnapped from her hotel room while playing Luxor and whisked away by a studly immortal who needed her wit and connections to save the world from an evil entity from another dimension who craved the sexual energy of humans, forcing odd couplings everywhere it goes and ... That would be so much better than 'Hi, I wrote, I drove, I love my grandkids but won't drown you in pics of them, everyone's fine, alive and still kicking(but not as high as before)' and so forth. Could be fun, though.
So what have I done this year? I have written 2 books and a novella story. Each of which has copy-edited pages I need to go through and then page proofs I need to go through. Then up to half a dozen page proofs of the reissues coming out that year to go through. Then three conferences, 2 writers groups meetings a month for 8 months and 1 a month for four. And then there's all the other 'stuff' - website, blogs, getting promo items, several booksignings, research, etc., etc. Then there's the family - the hubby, sons, grandchildren, daughter-in-law, cats. It make make a page or two.
Maybe it's just that I have been doing it for so many years that it has become a chore instead of fun. Oh, I love getting cards, no question about that, but sitting down at the table and writing some? Not so much any more. Still, I'll do it and, in the end, be glad of it, because in some cases it's the only real contact I have with some people. So - inbetween cleaning the house and putting up decorations, I will write my cards.
Now - decorating the house for Christmas is a whole other bag of nuts. I have way, way, too many Christmas decorations. Love putting them all up. Not so much fun putting them all away. And maybe someone can explain to me why I keep buying things that can be turned on or wound up to play little pieces of Christmas carols, even knowing that my grand-daughter will turn on each and every one when she comes round and I will begin to heartily wish I had never seen a music box, musical snowglobe, or singing reindeer, or santa, or snowman etc.
And then there's shopping. Am I the only one who begins to think that every time one steps into a store at this time of year a little bit more of the old Christmas spirit is immediately sucked right out of you? The sameness of the items in each store, the tinny Carols playing, the crabby people, that over-riding sensation of tension emanating from so many of the people seeping into you until your skin itches. One does wonder why - if they hate to be there so much - they aren't home on the computer doing their shopping there and saving all of the rest of us from their bad mood. And as a side note - if one more harried shopper nearly sideswipes me because they are so busy looking for a parking place near the mall door they don't see my bright blue car, I will not be answerable for my actions. Nor for what I do to the next one who nearly runs me over because they aren't paying attention. I know I'm short but I'm pretty sure I'm visable above most bumpers. So watch it - you know who you are.
My next big chore is deciding what my new year's resolution will be. Or if I will even have one. I try to keep my resolutions small and doable so that I don't feel like a complete failure when I don't keep them. That requires planning and thought.
I do hope everyone is having a good time getting ready for the big day. I have discovered that - despite how big a hassle it seemed at the time - it was a little bit more fun when the kids were still young and at home. So all of you who have kids still young and at home - enjoy this time with them. Trust me - it's gone so quickly and then you wish it was back(and not just because that would make you younger, too)
My first books were published in 1988(AMBER FLAME by Leisure and A TASTE OF FIRE by Zebra) and I have been writing ever since. I have always lived in small towns in New England with only a short stint at living in a small town in England where my first son was born. I have 2 sons (1 married),1 daughter-in-law and 3 grandchildren. Plus 5 cats. Have been married for 38+ years.