Looking Back at 2018

The year is almost over, and my birthday is coming, which means it’s time for me to get introspective or retrospective or something.

Here’s what I accomplished this year:

  • Put Brynnde out as an audiobook
  • Finished and published Faebourne (in ebook & paperback formats)
  • Put Brynnde out as a paperback
  • Presented at the public library
  • Had 20 August finish in the Top 20 in the Film Empire Fempire Screenwriting Contest 

Here is what I didn’t manage to do:

  • Find an agent or publisher for Hamlette
  • Get any of my screenwriting optioned or produced (not that I was actively looking)
  • Finish Changers 2 (which at this rate may never be completed)
  • Get accepted to any conferences or conventions

I’m sad about Hamlette, though I’ve since started a rewrite of it based on the overwhelming feedback I received. I don’t know what to do or think about Changers. Or my screenwriting for that matter. Maybe I’ll adapt all my screenplays to prose and publish them.

Aside from my writing life, I had a fairly good year that included trips to Paris and New York. I saw Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which was a treat. (It’s better on stage than reading it, and Scorpius steals the show.)

Later, in another post, I’ll look ahead to 2019 and what might be on the horizon. For now it’s enough to say that, while 2018 didn’t really set my world ablaze, it was steady and not terrible. Sales were decent, and I’m very excited about my paperbacks, which are beautiful!

How about you? How was your 2018?

Away Again

Taking advantage of these last few weeks of summer before the kids go back to school. So I’ll be away from my computer again. I will be able to post on Twitter, my Facebook page, my Instagram, and I think Tumblr (which I’ve had for years but only just started making any use of). Probably won’t be posting any fic on Tumblr (which is what I’ve been doing, kind of), but might post some pictures. So if you hang out in any of those social media spaces, look me up. NYC, coming at you!

Bon Voyage!

Yes, that’s me wishing myself a good trip. I’m not taking my laptop, which I admit gives me a bit of anxiety. I can’t remember the last time I traveled without it . . . Probably never, at least not since first getting a laptop.

Anyway, this means I won’t be updating here for a week. However, thanks to the miracle of smartphones, I will be posting on Twitter, Facebook, and probably a bit of Instagram as well. So follow me on one or all of those sites to see, if not me, a bit of Paris. À toute à l’heure!

Greetings from France!

I’m currently attending a writing retreat/workshop at La Poterie in Château-du-Loir. I’ve only been here one full day, but already I’m learning so much. Also feeling nourished by the fresh air and beautiful environment. I don’t know that I’ll be updating much because the goal is to focus on writing, but I promise lots of pictures when I return home next week!

Author Events in Planning

My trip to France for the writing workshop and retreat is slowly coming together. I have my plane tickets, my train tickets, and my hotel reservation for the one night I’ll be in Paris. A friend has likewise advised me on how to get from the airport to the train station, so I will need to explore buying a bus ticket. (When I checked, the calendar did not yet extend to the date I needed.)

Now I should really turn my attention to making sure I have everything arranged for the Bay Area Book Festival in June, since that actually happens before the trip to France. Of course, that’s local as opposed to international, so I’d like to be able to say there is less hoopla involved. Yet at the same time, I have to bring lots of stuff with me and make sure I’m set up to take credit cards, etc. I actually feel doing an author table for a day is a lot more work than international travel preparations!

2015 Summary

We’re staring down the barrel of the end of the year, and while there’s still plenty of time for things to happen, I’m feeling a tad retrospective. So here’s a summary of my year (so far).

After more than a year of sending out queries, I found a publisher for The Fall and Rise of Peter Stoller. That was exciting! The e-book is out in January with print to follow in late spring.

The romantic comedy I co-wrote was optioned . . . and then the option lapsed, so now it’s on the market again.

The short film Adverse Possession, based on my 15-minute play “Warm Bodies,” premiered at the San Diego Fall Film Festival.

I published another Sherlock Holmes story.

I recorded my first ever podcast interview (I was the guest). It should be available early next year, I believe. (Look for She Wrote a Book, launching December 7. I believe I’m episode 7 as well. Links to come.)

I also had a flash fiction piece selected for a podcast which will air in February (that one is called No Extra Words).

I traveled to London to see Hamlet at the Barbican. Also got to see Buckingham Palace. Turns out they have amazing pastries.

I went to the DFW Writers Conference and got to meet—and really converse with—Kevin J. Anderson. He lived in Livermore! ::fangirling!::

Lots and lots of rejection. I’m feeling pretty beat down by that at the moment, but there are still a few agents and publishers interested in Changers, so I’m trying to focus on that rather than the rejections.

And I have vacation starting tomorrow, and my birthday to look forward to, and another little trip to Carmel just prior to Christmas. So there’s still plenty of time and room for good things to happen. At the same time, I fear getting my hopes up too high.

What you, dear readers, can look forward to is the Giftmas Blog Tour coming up on this and other sites. Keep your eyes peeled because there will be giveaways! Including an ARC of Peter and a copy of The K-Pro. Stay tuned!

30-Day Writing Challenge: Day 5

5. A place you would live but have never visited

It sounds a bit ridiculous. Would you live somewhere you’ve never at least visited first?

Truth is, I’ve done it. Twice.

I moved to Boston sight unseen for grad school. My thought was I’d only be there a couple years at most, so what did it matter? I ended up living there for 12 years. (Well, six years in Boston and six in the suburbs.)

And then I moved to California also without ever having set foot in the state. That was 3+ years ago. But I do really love it here anyway.

So is there anywhere else I would move without having visited first? A foreign country. I’ve always, always wanted to live abroad. I’ve been to a lot of places I’d love to live, though, so I have to think about someplace I haven’t been but might live. Australia, New Zealand . . . Maybe Japan. Hawaii? Not foreign but I’m sure it would be lovely (if expensive) to live there.

I’d move to the French or English countryside, or to Ireland or Scotland given the chance. I’ve been to France and England, of course, but mostly in the cities, so I figure the countryside counts as somewhere I haven’t visited.

Returned!

I’m back from London, and it was a lovely trip. We had remarkably good weather, but then that always happens to me—I’ve been told London loves me so much, the sun shines when I’m there and then the city cries when I leave. Don’t know if that’s true, but I like to think it is.

Also, saw lots of magpies. I don’t know why, but I really like them. I want to write a play called “The Mad Magpie.” I don’t know what it would be about, but I think it’s a great title.

Enjoyed a trip to Buckingham Palace, and also Hamlet. Am slowly posting reviews of backlogged shows, movies, books on spooklights, so go take a look.

But now it’s also time to get back to work. So many projects going on . . . And can you believe it’s almost October?! So I’m ducking out again now to get stuff done. But visit my Facebook page for pics from the trip!

London Bound

Don’t panic if you hear even less from me than usual in the next week. I’m off to London in a couple days, and there’s much to do before I go, never mind the whole writing thing besides. (I want to try and get a good amount done before I leave.) Be sure to keep up with me on Facebook, though I don’t know how much I’ll actually be posting, but things are likely to go there before they go here.

Spectacular Settings

Victoria Street, London, April 2012
Victoria Street, London, April 2012

The above is one of my favorite photos. It’s pretty mundane, I suppose, but it’s the wallpaper on my iPhone. I love London, and I was just walking down this street one day with the idea of going on the Eye, and couldn’t stop myself snapping this shot.

Today I’m participating in the WEP Challenge of “Spectacular Settings”. I think London is a spectacular setting. It’s where The Fall and Rise of Peter Stoller is largely set (though, being in the 60s, there is no London Eye).

I love this photo because you get the London cabs and the red buses. You get the red phone box, too. It reminds me that what is exotic to a traveler is everyday for a slew of people. When I’m in London, for some people I’m the most interesting thing that happens in their day. (And that’s not me being self-important; I’ve actually been told that several times.) That’s weird to think about, considering I find all of London so very interesting. And of course, to myself I’m mundane.

This all relates to Peter in that he can’t live a regular life, much as he might want to. He’s a spy. What’s normal for him doesn’t translate to the every day. So when he falls in love with a cab driver, trying to straddle those worlds . . . It’s kind of a mess.

Anyway, this picture inspires me because it forces me to see things differently. It gives me perspective. It makes me think from a different direction, which is an exercise I enjoy. “Stranger in a strange land?” Well, it’s not so strange to the people who live there! Stranger in . . . a land. Though the more often I go, the less of a stranger I become.