|Where Am I?
||[Jan. 5th, 2016|03:32 pm]
|||||At The Beginning||]|
|||||"It's A Brazzle-Dazzle Day" from Pete's Dragon||]|
Oh, right. I was actually a little nervous logging back into Live Journal for the first time in forever - well, about ten months, with my last entry posted in mid-February - as if I was going to be met by a screaming mob at my threshold. Here I am, poking around, running my fingers along the walls, turning on the lights room by room, as if I'm going through a house I spent part of my childhood in but haven't been back to in years.
My being away wasn't due to not having anything to write about. As it happened, 2015 was a busy year.
I finished my For Fun Fantasy Novel, which eventually was named No Word In Death's Favor (a riff off of Homer), and despite being written for fun and as a multi-layered experiment, I did (probably inevitably) send it off to a publisher some weeks ago. A publisher that still likes large novels in hard copy, which is good since No Word In Death's Favor rounds out somewhere around 150,000 words. The second novel got underway in mid-September, after getting the go-ahead to write it in July; I still call it the Secret Project because I can't talk about it quite yet, but it qualified as another dream project. That one was finished and delivered to the commissioning publisher about three weeks ago. Lest Camelot Fall, though it did well in itself many months, disappeared last spring when its publisher, Musa, called it quits. I'm still debating about self-publishing it, and probably will, though there are a few small rewrites I want to do first. 2015 was devoid of short stories and poetry for the first time in some years; I didn't publish any new pieces of either, but I did have an older poem reprinted in the just-released volume 1 of The Best of Heroic Fantasy Quarterly.
I finished off the last major general item on my bucket list by finally getting to Europe, a trip I've wanted to make since I was a teenager, but one where every plan I'd made to go in past years fell through. This time, at last, was different, and the result was a 17-day whirlwind through the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, and England, with a couple of all-too brief layovers in Iceland. Immediately before and after that trip was a total of a week spent in Northern Virginia visiting and catching up with friends that I hadn't seen in several years, an altogether too long of a time to be bereft of their company. I don't know when I'll ever make it back to Europe, but I would like to make it back to NoVA at least once every summer.
I continue buying books, which would be a shock to absolutely no one. It's a novelty having a living space that fits all of my books, which just mischievously encourages me to buy more. If only securing the shelves was that easy.
I saw Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Three times. Once in 3D. And I'm willing to go again if anyone wants to come with me.
Two people I'd been close to for a long time died towards the end of the year. The first was my college mentor, Dr. Denis Lape; strangely (though not so strange if you know my family's history), the day he died I'd spent awhile thinking that I hadn't talked to him in several months and really should get back in touch. Then right before Christmas, my aunt, my mom's sister, Diane Carpenter, passed away. We hadn't lived at all close since I was a little kid, but we'd always been close. Both of those deaths were shocks, and reminded me of the constant need to make certain that people you love should always know how you feel about them.
No new animals came into my fold in 2015, but there are still plenty in control of my house. Eight cats, two dogs. Add in a few thousand books and space gets a little tight, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
As much as I miss my niece and nephews being wee bairns, I do appreciate the fact that they're old enough that I can start getting them cool presents. My niece Alex, for example, was the recipient of a 5-foot tall Bear Titan recurve bow. She's proven herself adept at smaller bows, but ones that were all borrowed, so I thought it was time she have her own, and one somewhat more formidable.
Now, as for 2016...well, we'll see. The Secret Project will be out by summer, and this summer will also see me traveling to Saint Augustine, Florida in June and to Columbus, Ohio in July. Along with, I hope, Northern Virginia. I'm still deciding what book to write next - there are a couple of possibilities - and whether or not to finally take the plunge and self-publish my long-waiting Shenandoah and Arizona historical novels.
Beyond those things, I haven't the foggiest notion of what I'll be up to. But maybe I'll remember to blog about them.