Happy 2017! I hope everyone is having a good year so far. The past month has been hectic in my life. The Christmas and New Year had three weeks of company at my house. It was so good to see my whole family and get to spend some quality time with all of them. But my writing got put on hold. Then when everyone left, I had a week of trials in my day job. Exhausted, this weekend I realized I’ve written virtually nothing in over a month. Where were my hero and heroine when I last left them? It’s time to get back to work, and let them continue their story. I’ve missed them. My New Year’s resolution is to find more time for writing and I’m determined to do just that. Three more Peakview novels are in the works for 2017, and I hope to finish them all before years end. Wish me luck.
Last night I plopped down on my couch to watch some TV. The Olympics were on for the 12th straight night, along with lots of reruns on most of the other stations who acknowledge that their viewers were watching the Olympics. Don’t get me wrong, I love sports and especially Track and Field, but I was tired of watching it all evening, every evening. So I started flipping through higher numbered channels, some I didn’t even know existed. That’s when I came to the BYU channel. Who know universities had channels? Now I’m not from Utah nor am I Mormon, so I assumed it would have little to interest me. I looked at my watch-6:56. I flipped to the channel because it had a movie starting at 7:00. I’d give it a try and guessed that by 7:10, I’d be back watching the Olympics.
Well, the movie was entitled, The Letter Writer. It was about an elderly man in a nursing home who flipped through an old worn out phone book every day and picked names at random and wrote letters to those people. Kinda creepy, huh? Except in this case it wasn’t. This dying man wrote letters of affirmation and hope. Letters to total strangers telling them to follow their dreams, that life would get better, and that he believed in them. Each one a little different, but with the same positive message. The only return address was a pen name he made up for the purpose of the letters only. Then he’d stamp them and shuffle down to the front desk to place them in the mail. In the movie, a high school girl who everything was going wrong for ( and I mean everything!) got one of his letters and since her life was such a train wreck she set out to try and discover who sent the letter. I wont tell you what happens because if you like truly heartwarming movies and ever run across this one, you should watch it.
Anyway, as a writer this movie really spoke to me. This man wrote for two reasons: writing was his passion, and he wanted to use that passion make a difference in people’s lives. He received no money or recognition for what he did.
Its easy to get caught up in the fame and fortune part of writing. I know I need to at least make enough money doing it to continue spending my time and energy on writing. But in the end, isn’t following your passion and making a difference what life is all about? I know it is for me. I hope it is for you, too, whatever your passion is.
In case you were wondering, I watched the entire movie and still got to turn back and see “the world’s fastest man” win yet another race before my evening ended.
Here I am (or at least a reasonable bitmoji facsimile of me) looking forward to a bright 2016. I have to admit I was ready to leave 2015 behind. It was a hard year in many ways. My business slowly declined and failed to pick up the entire year forcing me to make the hard decision to close my office downtown, where I had been for 16 years, and move my office into my home last week. I didn’t know how it would all work out–still don’t–but I am looking forward to a great new beginning and a more productive and profitable year.
Not that 2015 was all bad. In fact, some very awesome things happened this past year. I self-published my first two romance novels, Colorado Sunset and Breakfast for Two, and while I haven’t sold enough books yet to quit my day job, I have sold more than expected and gotten some wonderful reviews 🙂 Colorado Sunset even hit number one on Amazon’s best seller list for contemporary western romances for a couple of days in October! The first draft of my third book in my Peakview Series, Colorado Cabin in the Pines, is complete and in the process of editing, so I’m moving ahead. I also just sold another story to Chicken Soup for the Soul, my 5th. I am truly honored to be a part of such wonderful, inspiring books.
I’m looking forward to some great events this year: my youngest daughter’s wedding on October first, a mission trip to San Francisco in June and attending the RWA convention in San Diego in July. In between, the plan is to complete and publish three more books this year. I honestly smile whenever I think about the year ahead. I am moving forward confidently, and it’s going to be a great year. I hope you all move confidently into the new year and look forward to great things to come, regardless of where you are right now.
So when I started writing I was reminded how important the little things are, like punctuation. Not something I really wanted to concentrate on when I was in the middle of a great story line, but essential to the meaning of what we write. My favorite example of this has always been– Let’s eat, Grandma. versus Let’s eat Grandma. Being a Grandma myself, the second one was very concerning. Punctuation can save lives! But now today, thanks to this picture I saw on FaceBook, apparently we need to be just as careful with our fonts. I hope this makes you smile as it did me. Fellow writers, something to think about 🙂