Tag Archives: 2013

In Review

It’s that time of year – the time for top ten lists, and “year in review” posts, and the dreaded New Year’s resolutions…

On the resolution front, I keep promising myself to be kind to myself and to not “over-resolve.”  I make this promise every year, and every year I still put way too many expectations on myself.  This year, though, I’m hoping everyone holds me to my plan to be kind to myself – so much so that I’ve posted over on Indie Jane about the dangers of “over-resolving.”

I also tend to feel really unaccomplished at the end of the year.  There’s something about realizing an entire twelve months has flown by that makes you panic and think “I’m not doing enough!”  So I think it is important to take a breather and recognize the good things that have been accomplished this year.  Here’s some of mine.

2013 Books Image

1.  I published two novels and a short story collection this year.  That’s pretty awesome.

2.  I wrote aforementioned short story collection.  It was a really hard, long, and personal process for me to write those four stories.

3.  I was able to get all three of my novels converted to audiobook.

4.  I took a trip by myself!  My first time spending the night away from my kids. And we all survived.

5.  I took a trip with kids by myself!  Traveling with two kids isn’t always easy, but we had a fabulous time driving to CO to visit my parents for a week.

6.  I was able to beta read for several author friends.

7.  I’ve completely changed my work out habits – from never working out to working out several times a week and doing things I never thought I’d be able to accomplish.  As a result my body has really changed and gotten a lot stronger.

I’m not going to lie, 2013 was a really hard year for me personally.  It feels good to be able to list these off and see tangible proof that things were accomplished and improved.

What are some of your accomplishments this year?

 

 

 

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My Top YA Reads of 2013

Nothing says late December like “of the Year” lists.  I thought I’d join in with my top 5 YA reads this year.  These weren’t necessarily published this year (some were, some weren’t), but they were read by me this year.

Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow

5.  Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George.  This is an adaptation of East of the Sun and West of the Moon and is a sweet retelling.

Mind Games

4.  Mind Games by Kiersten White.   This is an “edgy” psychological thriller.  Honestly, I’d read so much about how edgy/psychological it was that I was expecting it to be quite a bit darker than it is.  Maybe I’ve just got too dark of an imagination already 😉  It is definitely a solidly written and compelling story.

Of Beast and Beauty

3.  Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay.  A dystopian/futuristic/fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast that’s imaginative and well written.  This has made it onto my list of favorite Beauty and the Beast retellings.

Scarlet

2.  Scarlet by Marissa Meyer.  I really liked Cinder by Meyer, but I enjoyed Scarlet even more.  Meyer has a way of creating a well-constructed world that only uses snippets of the fairy tale she’s retelling (in this case Little Red Riding) that still manages to satisfy the fair tale craving.

The False Prince

1.  The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen is far and away the best book I read this year (it’s sequel is almost as good and should probably share the top spot).  The narration in this book is fantastic.  Nielsen writes a believable teen boy in first person and manages to keep the reader on the edge of their seat through the entire book. I devoured this novel.  Thanks to Nancy Kelley for recommending it!

An Update on Atone: A Fairytale

If you read and liked Awake: A Fairtyale you might be wondering where in the heck the sequel is.  This is a very good question! And I have a mostly good answer!

Atone: A Fairytale WILL be out this year! In fact, I am hopeful it will be out by the end of June.  This technically makes the release date in the first half of 2013 (barely…).

Boyle, Eleanor Vere. Beauty and the Beast: An Old Tale New-Told. London: Sampson Low, Marston, Low, and Searle, 1875.
Boyle, Eleanor Vere. Beauty and the Beast: An Old Tale New-Told. London: Sampson Low, Marston, Low, and Searle, 1875.

There’s still a lot of work to be done on Atone.  As much as I want to get Becca and Nicholas’s story out to you soon, I want to make sure it’s as perfect as possible before I release it.  Even though the writing process for Atone has been complicated and stressful it is paying off in a great story!

I will be able to reveal the cover and description next month. Can anyone say excited? ‘Cause I am!

New Years and All That

I so hate making yearly goal list because I always overshoot and try to do to much. I can’t not set myself up for failure it seems. However, it’s a good motivator to write my goals down and gain some accountability by making them public…so here I go.

Writing and Publishing Goals:

1. Publish Attempting Elizabeth

2. Finish and publish Atone: A Fairytale

3.  Finish and publish Glimpses of Enchantment (short story collection)

4. Participate in NaNoWriMo – either with the “Dragons” story or the “Little Many Furs” story.

Travel Goals:

1. My brother’s wedding in March.

2. Jane Austen Society of North America’s Annual General Meeting (JASNA AGM) in October.  It’s the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice.

3. I really, really want to do a girl’s weekend.  We shall see.

Reading Goals:

1. I AM NOT DOING ANY SPECIFIC CHALLENGES. THE END.

2. Read 60 books.

General:

1. I want to challenge myself to do one small improvement around the house per week – either organizational or decorative.

That’s about it.  I might modify the “one per week thing” if it feels overwhelming. What are you goals for the new year?