Thanksgiving 2015

Thanksgiving is a time when I think about all the things I am grateful for in my life. I realize I am very lucky because I have a whole lot to be thankful for.

NEW RELEASE!Most recently, my debut novel, THE WITCH OF ZAL, came out this month! I have finally achieved the dream of being a real author with a real book. Many people don’t ever get to achieve their dreams, and I am so grateful to all the people who shared this long journey with me and supported me in so many ways.

I am also thankful for my family. My parents are still alive and healthy and very involved in their grandchildren’s lives. I have a friend who lost both her parents this year (only 12 days apart), and that has made me appreciate having them even more. I’m even thankful for my “little” brother—we are very different, but I know he’ll have my back if I ever need him. A far cry from the bratty kid I fought with all the time!

Of course my husband and daughter are high on my “thankful for” list. My wonderful husband supports me in so many ways, and we’re really two peas in a pod. And my daughter, my “Kinder-girl” as she is known on Facebook, keeps me hopping and makes me laugh and amazes me each day as she grows into her own person.

Friends are also precious, and I have too many to name here that have been there for me in times of need. Whether just listening to me vent, or going out of their way to help me out, my friends have helped me through a lot.

I have so much else to be thankful for. I have a warm house and enough food and clothes. We have enough money to be secure and we live in a relatively safe environment. Looking at the frightening things happening today, the masses of people who have nothing, who have left everything they knew, makes me hold very dear the things I do have—things so easy to take for granted.

So take a moment today to reflect on what you have to be thankful for. Life can get hectic and we forget what we have in the rush to try and get further ahead, further up the ladder, further than the people next door. For just one day, stop the rat race and cherish what you have—what you have accomplished. Life is short, so take a moment to enjoy it.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Final Edits While Failing NaNo

I said a couple of weeks ago that I was “sort of” doing NaNo. That I would be trying to finish the final 23 chapters of my book (around 23,000 words). Here’s how it’s going.

I got a good deal of writing in two weekends ago. I now have 17 chapters left to write. It felt good to break the 20-chapter barrier, I’ll tell you!

But I don’t know if I will make it by the end of November. Why?

Because in that same blog post, I had said that if I got my edits back from my publisher, it would derail my WIP’s progress.

And I got my final edits back from my publisher last week! YAY!!

While the edits were relatively minor, I still am not finished. I printed out the manuscript Monday morning and am now giving it a final read-through with my trusty red pen. I am reading it aloud, so where I can do this is limited (my daughter’s dance class was not an option). I have completed reading 30 pages of 190.

This is going to take a while.

And that is why I’m not sure I will finish my WIP by the end of November.

However, I am so excited about these final edits, because that moves us closer to the book being “real.” Once the edits are complete, it can be placed on the publishing schedule. We can start working on the cover. We can finalize the title. We can start getting blurbs. We can talk about marketing strategies.

It’s getting real, folks. The crazy ride that is a debut novel is starting.

Strap in and enjoy the ride!

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