Looking Backwards and Forwards

As the year races toward its inevitable end, I want to express my appreciation for all of you who have taken the time to stop in and read my ramblings over the past twelve months. I’m hoping you’ll come back in 2013, though I can’t promise my musings won’t be any less sporadic.

I took a glance back at one of my early posts this year: The one where I set goals for 2012. Yeah, um, here’s a perfect example of why I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. I listed seven “steps” back at the beginning of the year (calling them steps instead of goals because they were  smaller chunks to build into larger ones). I hit precisely two of them. Well, maybe two and a half on a good day.

Am I thoroughly disappointed in myself?


What? You take this goal thing lightly, do you, Schwengel? Make ’em and break ’em and who gives a rat’s patootie?

Absolutely not. Goals change. Reality raises its ugly head, reaches out a fistful of claws, and gives you a good smack up alongside the head. You grow. You change. If you don’t, you stagnate.

Well, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

But even though I didn’t hit most some of my goals, or faltered on the steps, or just plain didn’t do what I thought I would do, doesn’t mean I had a disappointing year. Actually, in terms of this writing gig I’ve thrown myself at with vehemence and perseverance, I guess I didn’t do so badly. So what? I didn’t hit a self-imposed word-per-day goal. No, I didn’t secure an agent for BD&L. I don’t practice Tai Chi on a daily basis (which doesn’t have much to do with writing, but was one of my steps). Here’s what I did accomplish:

  • I finished polishing BD&L to a glowing, finished product I am quite proud of. Writing a novel is no easy task, folks. Finishing is the first step, and it’s HUGE. Like, Bigfoot’s grand-daddy HUGE. Then there’s the editing, the killing of the darlings, the editing, the proofing, the editing. When all is said and done . . . it’s not. There’s more editing. All of which would not have been possible without the unselfish input of several, honest, worth their weight in dark chocolate, Betas.

    Not this. This is a betta fish. Two ‘t’s. Not to be confused with Beta Readers.

    Particularly the Sage of the South for his unfaltering shredding, nit-picking, harping, guidance, and total obsession with my clear inability to grasp even the simplest rule of proper coma usage.

  • I also finished several versions of a query, and a synopsis, and started shopping for an agent for BD&L.
  • I was invited to write a novella for an anthology. Completed said novella. Had the excitement of seeing it in print with my name on the cover. *Ahem.* Did you miss that announcement? Then you need to go here or here, and read about Witch Hunt: of the Blood.
  • In a huge turn of events, I made the decision about a month or so ago, to self-publish BD&L. Why? Many factors. Some of which I discussed here and here.  Also, because I really do like the story, no matter how many times I read it. Not only do I like it, I believe in it. I want to share it. It will be coming out in January. Watch for it. Read it. Review it.  **Side Note: if you’d like to do a pre-release review, or would like to sponsor me on a blog hop, please let me know. There are some of you I will be contacting privately even if I don’t hear from you. Be forewarned.**
  • I have a huge jump on the first draft of BD&L 2. I also have snippets of BD&L 3 written. Don’t ask. Scenes pop into my head, I’m forced to write them. I’ve admonished my characters numerous times for their effrontery to no avail. They are a stubborn, sometimes impatient lot.
  • And, not on the writing front, but an accomplishment none the less: I lost 18 lbs since the beginning of the year. Not the 40 I was after, but that will come — especially if I get off my arse and actually add some exercise to the routine. Slow and steady wins the race. (Fine, we all know that’s not true. First one to cross the finish line wins the race.) But I had to undo 40+ (not telling plus how many) years of really outlandishly bad eating habits first. An undying love for potato chips with cream cheese & onion dip, carbs in abundance, anything chocolate and gooey, lack of portion control . . . Tis no easy journey, my friends

So, where does that leave me for 2013? Have you not been paying attention? Upcoming release of BD&L, continue the tale, write some other things that have been pestering me, continue to hang out at There and Draft Again with a fantabulous bunch of writers . . .

Oh? Did you mean by way of goals? Resolutions? Steps?

Yeah, none. I have plans. I hope to see them to fruition. Along the way, I will continue to grow, change, adapt, and set my sails into the wind.

Happy New Year!



  1. Hitting two goals is better than none! I have a bad tendency of not setting any goals, so I have no way to measure my achievements. But this year I think I’ll take a page out of your book and set some tangible goals. Among them will include (much like you) publishing a book or two, losing some weight, exercising … and possibly cutting dairy from my diet, since I’m probably lactose intolerant but refuse to acknowledge it because cheese is so tasty. To us! To goals! To 2013!

    • I have a habit of shooting for the stars, hence the attempt at breaking those grandoise goals into something more manageable. Eek! No cheese!!! I feel for you. Love cheese. Well, yes, I do live in the Dairy State where people have been known to wear cheese hats, but that’s besides the point. *raises coffee mug* To us! To attainable goals! Bring on 2013, I dare ya!

  2. I think you’ve achieved a lot in a year. I’m really impressed. I’m looking forward to seeing what 2013 will bring you. 🙂 Happy New Year!

  3. A finished novel is no small accomplishment. Everything else is mere icing on the cake, and really, who needs cake — especially right after the holidays. So, now that you know how it’s done, may we assume you’ll finish the sequel in 2013?

  4. Another writer who must write scenes when the Muse delivers them—Yes! Here’s to a year of moving forward and making progress in whatever shape that takes.

    • You, too? So relieved to know I’m not alone. I’ve got a stack of scenes a mile high that may or may not ever get used. Unfortunately, if I don’t write them, I get pestered to the brink of insanity. 😉

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