While it seemed the Apocalypse was right around the corner each and every week, we ended up surviving 2012 slightly parched, waterlogged, singed, and sick and tired of the term Fiscal Cliff. By the way, I'm sure Mr. F. Cliff is glad that's all over so people will stop calling him by mistake. Like Mr. Cliff, I have a feeling you're all glad a fresh year is ahead of us to tarnish to your hearts content.
For me, I leave 2012 with mixed emotions. While there were some definite rough patches along the way - I believe I crawled into a fetal ball when they told me both my AC and heater needed replacement - there were many more highlights when it came to writing. I think of it this way - I waded back into the writing pool in 2011 and got chest deep into its warming waters in 2012.
In 2013 I believe I'm going to dive right in and swim as far as I can go without the pressure ripping me apart, or something akin to that.
There was plenty to be happy about in 2012, but my proudest moment came at the end of March when an agent at the Northern Colorado Writers Conference asked to see my entire manuscript after hearing the first page at a slush pile session. Of course, that wouldn't have happened if the second proudest moment hadn't occurred only a few weeks before...completing my first fiction manuscript. Over the next four months my life was occupied by edits, revisions, completion of the first fifty pages of the next book in the series, and delivery of said manuscript package to the agent. While she passed on its acceptance, the entire experience gave me the energy and confidence to continue writing.
Which is why I produced my first ePublication back in September - Cat on a Leash. Oh come on, like you haven't seen me mention it before! Taken from a simple observation of a simple woman walking her simple cat before she put it in a simple baby stroller, the romantic comedy has rocketed to above the near bottom of the Smashwords title queue with sales I could count on one and a quarter hands. Not complaining, mind you. If anything, the publication of Cat on a Leash is a springboard for upcoming stories taking place in the same literary universe.
With those accomplishments behind me, plus a few courses I taught for Northern Colorado Writers in the Spring of 2012 and a recent public reading I did of some of my holiday essays, I'm ready to push through to 2013, which is already turning out to be a bigger year for me. On the instruction side I'll be teaching my first ever session at a writers conference, which is continuing to help inflate my ego. I'm also getting ready to return to my other passion, besides my wife and family...Improv. In a few weeks I'll be working with a bunch of folks, some of them writers, to introduce them to the world of improvisational comedy. My hope is it will help them with their writing as well as allow them to fend off the feelings of sadness when those rejection letters come in.
On the creative side, I'm going to pimp my manuscript as much as I possibly can to any agent willing to take it as a submission. In addition, I intend to polish up the manuscript I completed in the 2011 NaNoWriMo competition for submission or, if I'm feeling impatient, direct online publication. There are a number of short stories, some of them years old, that I'm looking to finish up and submit either through Smashwords or literary magazines. Plus, my critique group is planning something special toward the summer of 2013. More on that as it progresses so I can provide maximum marketing capability.
But that's not all! On top of my bi-weekly submissions to Richie on Writing I will be contributing sage writing advice to The Writing Bug blog in the next week or so. I'm continuing to work with writer Dean Miller on Her Father's Wooden Leg, which has turned into something neither of us expected when we started this venture. And if that isn't enough for one person, I continue to write my monthly nutrition column for Rocky Mountain Parent magazine and am about to relaunch my humor site, Cranial Burps, in the very near future.
What does this mean for you, the casual visitor to Richie on Writing? It means you need to show up frequently to see how things are panning out. So stop by numerous times. If not, you may miss out on the latest news and $1000 bill giveaways. Or, at least more of the latest news.