Tuesday, March 17, 2015

There's a Bunch of New in "New Year"

Whew! Well, didn’t we take quite the winter break?! But fear not; the WorldWiseWriters have been anything but hibernating. The six of us have rung in the New Year with new books, new day jobs, new babies, and new publishing deals. 

I’m the one with the new baby, AKA Hannah Sullivan, so if this blog comes out sounding particularly disjointed or a tad delirious, I will happily lay the blame at the feet of my infant daughter. Here’s a picture of her. She’s warning me to stay on task. I’m trying, Olivia, honestly. The Girl Scout cookies between me and the keyboard are not a distraction; they are brain food. I need my wits about me as I sneak in some middle-of-the-night reading to peruse Rowanna Green’s latest novel, a sequel to her Fox Among Wolves. How lucky am I to get early dibs on fantastic stories written by my favorite authors? 

I spend the other spare seconds of my day henpecking at my newest endeavor, which is actually a true-life story. Seeing as how my first novel, Thunder, has been waiting so patiently for its, um, sibling (is that taking it too far?) to be born, why am I not writing of news that Lightning has arrived? Frankly, I have this other story, and the universe has been giving me subtle hints that it’s time I share it.

Let me tell you how subtle the universe is. It’s taken me eight years to take this step. Yeah, I know. I think I get the Queen Procrastination crown. But listen.

I'd been toying with the idea of publishing a memoir comprised of journals, emails, and letters, ever since our third child, Clinton, died eight years ago. I just didn't know how to start the process. Once I wrote Thunder and realized how easy the process could be, I couldn't find the emails I'd printed to use. By this point, the originals were too old to be sitting pretty in my computer. I did have the journal I’d kept for him, but just doing a reprint publishing of that wasn’t what I wanted, so I tucked the idea into the back of my mind.

Recently, Ms. Green mentioned someone who was doing a project about explaining death to children, and the idea was there again. I’d figured scribbling in my kids’ journals was about all the writing my bleary brain could handle while living with a ravenous and unpredictably awake munchkin. And it clicked: yes, I could work on a journal. The time had come to author-up and figure out the polishing and publishing of Clinton’s story.

I looked everywhere for my emails again, double-checking the computer ... and there they were! Tucked away in a file I don’t remember moving them into. I had my material. Then I saw a Facebook notice from cover artist Rebecca Sterling, and I was reminded of some family history she’d shared, a history that could enable her to feel Clinton’s story. I had my cover. The universe had spoken.
I’m a blissful, sleepless writer and mommy, and I have a new book coming soon! I can’t wait to be able to offer it to you!

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