My personal blog is on hiatus, but on June first, I posted about the realization that I had lost sight of the joy of writing.
I made some promises that day, to myself and to readers:
- To set aside the things that kept me from doing my best work; and
- To complete the remaining novellas for this year’s group projects, while savoring the experience.
No, really, come on. Guess.
Okaaaay, I’ll tell you: It worked!
Not perfectly of course, since I’m far from perfect.
How did I accomplish this overhaul?
I made lots of changes.
Not all of them were big, but they all mattered.
I backed off a bit from staring at my laptop’s screen while scrolling through Facebook and never thinking of anything interesting to say.
I uninstalled Instagram from my phone.
I took Twitter off my phone too (and put it back on and took it off again…on, off, on…and right now it’s off).
Actually, this dumbing-down of my smartphone has been one of the most useful tactics for increasing focus on the task at hand.
Not surprising, is it?
I also continued the daily (and sometimes twice-daily) meditation practice I began in January. It has helped every facet of my life. (I made some other tweaks, too. I am as much a work in progress as my manuscripts!)
Once I made space in my mind and life for the joy of writing, I finished and published ONCE UPON A TIME. I also wrote A COWBOY FOR CHRISTMAS, which is in the SWEET CHRISTMAS KISSES 4 boxed set and currently available for pre-order.
Can you tell that these two novellas are about twin sisters?
HOME FOR CHRISTMAS, the first McClains book in a couple of years (Yeehaw!) is my contribution to this year’s Authors of Main Street boxed set. (My first time to participate in this annual holiday tradition. I’m jazzed!)
Revisiting the imaginary town of Legend, Tennessee to write this story was a special treat. Maureen McClain and Damien Phillips, who met by the punch bowl in BUILDING A DREAM, are finally getting their love story. And–surprise–there’s a baby! I’ll be doing a HOME FOR CHRISTMAS cover reveal in my next newsletter.
After sending HOME FOR CHRISTMAS to my editor, I moved on to a long-anticipated project. It’s a bigger book, which is scary but also super exciting.
This summer, I have again loved writing. It’s especially awesome to make a big check mark on the Projects-Goals-Deadlines Whiteboard when I’m happy with the story that check mark represents.
I’ve spent quality time with Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas.
When I send a manuscript to my editor, I watch ROMANCING THE STONE. I don’t usually see it so often in such a short space of time, but I certainly haven’t tired of it. Every time Joan Wilder faces her fears and steps out to do what she thinks is impossible, I cheer her on. And in turn she cheers me on, by helping me celebrate these milestones.
This summer’s novellas were created with love–for the characters, their triumphs, and the story-building process.
As my tagline says,
Try a romance novel on…for sighs!
It’s a privilege to provide happy sighs for my readers. Very cool when the author gets those happy sighs, too!