Happy New Year amigos! And thank you for journeying with me through 2020.
The scariest moment is always just before you start.– Stephen King
Fruit bats sailed across the dusky sky and the shrill buzz of cicadas echoed through the cooling air. Two dogs rested on the sofa after a gambol around the park befriending picnickers and searching for scraps. The table was laid with a delicious spicy meal of fish, tahini potatoes, and an eggplant, braodbean and soba noodle salad. Roast rhubarb and the first peaches plucked from my tree in the afternoon lay in wait on the kitchen bench for desert.
2020 was prickly. It was a strange year, with the main beneficiaries being household pets who got to have their humans around more. Humanity had developed a COVID weariness, a yearning for a return to ‘normality’, and a tentative hopefulness as the year drew to a close.
Reflecting on 2020, I am most grateful for friends and family, a little disappointed that I did not get more writing done, and genuinely curious about what 2021 will bring.
I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.– Anne Frank
I sent my completed first manuscript out into the world of querying early in 2020. One publisher contacted me and provided valuable feedback that resulted in some rework. I shelved the idea of sending it further afield as COVID-19 took hold, and the industry entered a state of uncertainty, though I did submit to a few unpublished manuscript awards. No success so far, but I will re-enter the world of querying in 2021.
There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.– Beatrix Potter
The first draft of my second manuscript is half way through. This year I hope to reinvigorate my work on it after a few months of distraction. Most of my recent writing, other than this blog has been short stories and journaling about day to day life. I have written less than I hoped through the year, but I did read more. Curiously my to-be-read pile didn’t diminish however. A selection of reading highlights, in no particular order, included an eclectic mix:
- Into the Woods by Anna Krien
- The End of the Ocean by Maja Lunde
- Wolfe Island by Lucy Treloar
- Gathering Dark by Candice Fox
- Metal Fish, Falling Snow by Cath Moore
- The Mother Fault by Kate Mildenhall
New years eve was a companionable night with friends, but I didn’t quite make it to midnight. I drove into the new year. Fireworks erupted from a paddock as I cruised past, lighting up the night sky in psychedelics that startled me and caused the laconic hound to sit up and search for the source of the explosions.
Never one for new years resolutions, I did not make any, but I have promised myself to be open to possibilities, embrace opportunities, and of course to write more.
May 2021 live up to the promises you have made it, and write you a beautiful story.
Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.– Louis L’Amour
main image: Mainstreet and full moon