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Friday, July 11, 2008

The Things You Learn from 40 Years and 10 Books

Yeah, no use beating around the bush... I turned 40 yesterday. That's right. 4-0. Halfway to 8-0, but since the women in my family live into their 90s, thank dog, I haven't expended half my shelf life yet ;o) So, you're stuck with me for a bit longer...

And with age (and 11 books written in 4 years), comes, well, mayhem. Not dementia, or early-onset anything...but chaos and choices and the wisdom to sit back and decide what's what, and what's not. Don't worry. This blog is part of what's what. The what's not is elsewhere, and I'm weeding my gardens and rearranging my closets and hugging my family and cats and loving the writing I'm about to do and honoring what I've already been blessed to create and not being afraid of the unknown ahead, and generally deciding which fork in the road is for me. Not to worry, I'm a less-travelled by kind of girl. So, no generic posts coming your way, even though I'm looking into make things better for all of us by not disappearing for weeks on end ;o)

Philosophical enough for you?

As you might have noticed, the list of prize winners wasn't in the last post. That's because I have to go back to both my email inbox for the addresses and the previous posts for the winners I've already announced, cross-reference to see who I have and who I'm missing, list those in the blog, and then pick then go back to the right entries in the blog and pick random winners from the comments, then list them. And while that should only take ten minutes or so, there simply hasn't been any ten minutes in my life the last few weeks that hasn't already been earmarked for something else (like partying, writing, brainstroming, momming, wifing, and prepping for travelling).

The result--I have an amazing book on the shelves (my first RT Top Pick since my first book), To Protect the Child, and I'm not getting to crow about it and give away the goodies I earmarked for the last book. Pout. Pant... Pant... And, like, I can't have a new party until I've tied up after the last one. More Pout, pant, pant...

Let's just say this--the calendar by my desk...it's still sitting on December '07. The new one's unwrapped on the floor. It's been that kind of year.

And then it hit me, amidst my musings, because I've had all kinds of time to just sit and think: I'm trying to finish things from the last party (plus mail my Brenda Novak Auction winners their goodies, and all that just got straightened out), have a new one, and there's another book out in September... And I'm not doing a very good job of keeping up with any of it, because the writing and new proposals and stuff have to get done. And the family has to be loved. And the cats. And the few friends that haven't decided I've died or something...

Okay, maybe I'm overdramatizing things. But what's a writer to do ;o)

Long story short--because I'm getting older by the second--have no fear, I'll get everyone their goodies, and I'll make sure there's something extra in every box. But it's going to take me a little more time. I'm off to Seattle for the Pacific Northwest Writer's Conerence next week, then to San Francisco not too long after that for the RWA National Conference. And my birthday present to me is giving myself that time, and believing it'll be okay.

I'll get that help, so we can still party on. But in the mean time, I'm going to blog more often than I have lately, about the world and what inspires us in it, and what flashes and catches our attention when we least expect it. About this new decade of my life. About what the writing and the living in it is, and what it isn't.

Join me. You'll see more of me. And once I find my helper for all things "party," I'll introduce her and she'll make sure we rock on out here in "Anna Land!"

Have a great weekend, my friends.