Into the New Year

As 2019 comes to a close, the memes are flowing. People are trying to make moving into the new year a big deal, hoping their lives will change for the better.

News flash: it won’t happen if you don’t make it happen. Sorry, but that’s the sad fact of it. If you don’t set out to make this next year better than the last, it won’t be. It takes work. Sometimes bloody hard work.

I’m not talking resolutions. We all know ways around those. I’m talking goals. Set in stone and attainable through a set plan.

I usually choose a single word to epitomize what I want to accomplish for the year. Example, for 2018, I chose ‘Success’. And I broke through some serious boundaries in my own life. I even attained a few new high marks.

In 2019, I chose the word ‘Persevere’. And I did. I worked my way through every tough obstacle that came my way.

I persevered.

For 2020, my word will be ‘Momentum’. More precisely ‘Build on Momentum.” What I achieved in 2018, and bullied forward in 2019, I want to keep getting better in 2020. Everywhere in my life.

What’s your word?

A Gift

I have a little Christmas gift I’ll be sending out in a few days. It’s a short story titled, The Snow Dragon. In it, a young girl, a dragon shapeshifter, discovers she’s not the person she always knew. She meets up with Tony (Antonio Silvani, The Last Griffin) and they begin a trek westward to discover new beginnings.

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A Young Start

I was just a child when I started writing. I constantly made up stories about everything, too. Got in trouble for it in school more than … once.

In high school, my friends and I would write round robin stories while in Study Hall. We tried to leave our section in the worst predicament we could imagine, just to see how the next person got out of the jam.

I kept writing through the military and my early college years. Yet, somehow surprised when my professor suggested I pursue a degree in English/Creative Writing because I was so close to completing it anyway.

My first book, Under Twin Suns, took 12 years to write because I used it as a training tool. I’d fix it the best I could, then send it to someone I respected for some feedback. Then I’d fix it again and send it out again. Finally, I started sending it to publishers and agents. Apparently 40 something is the magic number; several famous writers have hit that before getting their first acceptance letter. My number was 43.

12 years and 42 rejections.

It’s hard work, and there are no shortcuts. If you want to be published bad enough, work hard and be patient.