Back in January, when I was looking forward to how I expected this year to go and made goals and plans, I could never have expected all the changes that would happen, either personally or professionally. My husband officially became disabled (he was before, but it’s not “official” until the government agrees…). My oldest daughter and her family were living with us and had planned to move out, but like us, their year didn’t go quite as expected and they’ll be sticking around a little longer. My middle daughter moved out of state in order to move up in her company. Very proud of her, but miss her tons. My youngest took on a position of overnight manager, which means my grandson often has what we call, “double sleepovers,” so she can get some sleep during the daytime. So that empty nest I thought was going to happen about, oh, lets see…four years ago now? Yeah. Hasn’t happened.
My beloved 14-year-old terrier mix Missy had a stroke that left her completely paralyzed on one side and we had to make the hardest decision ever. It’s been months now and I still find myself tearing up sometimes.
We welcomed into our home a sweet angel miniature schnauzer puppy named Gabby (short for Gabriella, but she earns her nickname…I’ve never heard a dog that “talks” so much). She is such a joy and provides many laughs and joyous smiles on otherwise hard days.
Because my husband became disabled, monthly bills are now my responsibility. I have been “making a living” writing for years, but that’s not really saying much. We did okay when both of us were working. Now, it’s a little more difficult. So I started a second business providing editing which has been bringing in our monthly income, since writing is such a feast or famine type of life. Advances and royalties are wonderful, but you can’t count on when, where and how much.
Because of all the stress, my immune system is shot and I am ill more days than I am well. I missed a deadline—REALLY missed a deadline—for the first time in forever. I simply could not finish the book, no matter how hard I worked or how much time I put into it. I’m happy to say it is now safely in the hands of my editor, but there were many late nights when I wondered if that would ever be so.
With the aid of my wonderful agent, I’ve been trying for the past few years to go a couple of different directions with my writing…but after three years of beating my head against a wall, I feel I have a definite NO and NO. If my agent couldn’t sell these projects, no one could. God has made it quite clear those paths are not my paths and that He has something entirely different planned for me.
It’s time for me to PIVOT.
For one, I’m thrilled to announce I’m writing a couple of sweet romances for the newly-formed publishing company Sweet Promise Press. The first is a romantic comedy called Mommy Loves the Doggy Doctor. The matchmaker is a little girl in a wheelchair, who wants her mommy to be happy and thinks a certain vet might be just what the doctor ordered. The second is part of the Celebrity Corgis series. My book is entitled, Serenaded by the Singer, and I’m super excited to have my friends The Texas Tenors to help me research this one.
I am back acting on stage in regional theater, something I figured I’d left far behind me. It’s been a good ten years. But when the opportunity to audition for one of my absolute bucket list shows, Jekyll and Hyde, came up, I couldn’t resist.
I’m also (slowly) moving into Indie publishing. I’m excited to bring you all some new and different contemporary Christian romances this year, starting with the boxed set A Christmas to Remember, which contains my novella The Cowgirl’s Christmas Gift. I feel really blessed to be in this set with other Inspy Romance authors and I hope you’ll grab it before it’s gone at the end of December.
So I suppose next month’s post will be looking ahead to the New Year, but I think it’s also good to look back and thank God for all He has done for us this year—even if it didn’t turn out to be anything like we expected.
What about you? Did your 2018 go as planned?