I deeply apologize for not making the blogging rounds this week. After working with a gifted new critique partner (thanks JeffO,) I’m deep in revisions and want to get them done so I can send my manuscript out to my last two beta readers before I start querying again, hopefully in February.
Aside from that, I’ve been having a few minor medical issues that have been consuming my attention. It struck me that when you get news that has the potential of affecting your entire life, you focus on those things that are most important to you. I was shocked at what became my highest priorities.
Of course, not shocking at all is my child as number one. With college looming on the horizon, and the financial and living arrangements not yet worked out, I am obsessing over how I will get those finalized. I’ve taken all the necessary steps, but we are still four months out from making a final decision, even as more acceptances arrive. My son may be mere months away from adulthood and total freedom, but he still needs me and will for a long time. This is not surprising. I’m a mother. It’s my job.
What is surprising is how important publishing my novel has become—all encompassing, in fact. I’ve never had a dream that was specifically for me, to the exclusion of everyone else. Again, I’m a mother, and a wife, and as such, I tend to focus on everyone else before myself. That’s just part of the job. But with my son so close to flying the nest, I’ve had to find things to keep me busy since the economy, and therefore my business, is so slow. Like many others, I turned to writing. Now that my book is ready to go, or nearly so, my drive to find and land an agent is consuming. I believe strongly in my novel, that it has merit and can succeed commercially. I simply won’t rest until I’ve exhausted every avenue available. It’s a dream I cannot give up on.
My last dream is two-fold. I’ve wanted to attend a writer’s conference for a while now, but with my business so slow, my funds are limited and, as many of you know, these conferences can be very expensive. I wanted to attend ThrillerFest in July in
, but I don’t have a few extra grand in my pocket. But BoucherCon, a crime writer’s conference, is remarkably more affordable and I’ve just about saved enough pennies for registration and maybe even the airfare. So I’m pretty much golden on this dream. But there is one other that is attached to this like a remora to a shark. New York City
I want to meet my very best friend, writer Lisa Regan, in person, and will finally get to at BoucherCon. Lisa has saved me in so many ways. She knows me better than anyone else on earth, save my husband, but then again, she knows things even he does not. I love this woman like a sister and cannot call my life complete without having met her. I can’t talk much more about her without crying my eyes out, so I’ll stop here.
I know I’ll be fine, so no worries, please. But having my first real glimpse of mortality, at least in a way I cannot control, has focused me, pinpointing on those few things I want to do above all others. There’s nothing like the Sword of Damocles hanging over your head to get you focused on what’s real and what’s not.
So I ask you, if you had a sword over your head, what would you want to accomplish?