Obligatory End of the Year Reflection Post
I can't help it. Every year between Christmas and New Year's Eve, I think about all the stuff that's happened in the year before. Cheesy? Probably. Then again, I've never let a little cheese stop me.
2006 has mostly been pretty damn good. For the first time since high school, I didn't have a steady day job. Although occasionally freak-inducing in terms of finances, it all worked out. Every time I thought I'd have to go back to the day job scene, something completely cool and unexpected happened, allowing me to stay home and work on getting my head and my writing together. Maybe I'm just foolin' myself, maybe it's just a big fat coinkydink, but I really think it was "meant to be." And I'm so grateful it ain't even funny.
I started writing "for really, reals" late February/early March, but only told a few people (as in 3, including my husband) what I was doing. Coyote Radio held Fool's Fest on April Fool's day to mark the opening of our recording studio at The Raven Cafe. A few weeks later, I started the Lazy Artist's Lounge. Sandra was the very first person to comment - how cool is that? Starting a blog was a big step for me. I'm super shy and this was ohmygod hard, but blogging was a great way to make the solitary process of writing a little less lonely and a lot more fun.
In the middle of May, I went to the Lee Child/Cornelia Read book signing in Phoenix. I actually spoke to Cornelia (very cool, and Field of Darkness kicks ass) and then I met the Great Ginsu Tongue, Mindy (M.G. Tarquini) in person. Small freakin' blog-o-world, ain't it? Gotta give props to Sandra, as she totally convinced me to go to the signing, talk with Cornelia, and write an article about the whole dealio. Left to my own devices, I probably would have talked myself out of going to the event at all. Instead, I ended up with a great book by Cornelia, and a very bitchy, picky-ass crit partner (yes, I'm talkin' about you, Mindy), who has helped my writing improve at least 1000%.
The last weekend in May found me running a sound system and recording poets at the Arcosanti Slab City Slam. A big stretch for the uptighty shy lady to go out and have to talk to people, but a great experience. In July, I stepped completely out of my comfort zone and went to ThrillerFest in Phoenix. I got to hang out with Mindy and a lot of other cool folks that I "knew" from blogging (Brett Battles, Stephen Blackmoore and a few others - I hunted down David Terrenoire and had him sign my copy of Beneath a Panamanian Moon. I also met the faboo fellow Arizonan writer, Elizabeth Krecker. When I wasn't feeling like the awkward shy kid on the first day at a new school, I had a pretty good time & learned a lot watching the pros do their thing.
So much has happened, I can't believe it. I completed, submitted, and had my first short story, Big Pussy Gets Whacked, published at Spinetingler. I got three-quarter of the way through a novel before abandoning it, started another novel I'm really excited about, tried (and failed utterly) to complete the NaNoWriMo challenge, won a dirty limerick contest, was introduced to a completely new concept of what a Bunion is, had some major writing flip-outs (oh god, oh god, whatever made me think I could write anything more complicated than a grocery list?!), won an old fav cd (thanks to Anne!), placed in the Cozy Noir contest (and won books!), had some fights with friends and family (and made up & moved on), reconnected with old friends, discovered I really love hockey, met amazing creative folks in Prescott & out in blog-land, dyed my hair blurple, gotten completely outraged at rude-o bloggers, and managed to snag an ARC of Bill Cameron's debut, lost dog. Throw in the fact that I'm married to the coolest guy on the planet and have the 2 best dogs ever, and I have to say I'm feeling pretty damn blessed. Like I said, 2006 has mostly been a good 'un for me.
A big thanks to everyone - even the nasty nellies - 'cause you've all helped me grow a little, learn a little, and laugh a lot. That totally rocks. Two times. Here's wishing you all a stupendously wonderful 2007.