Monday, January 4, 2016
Life Got Real—Reflecting on 2015 and Looking Ahead at 2016
It wouldn’t seem right not to have a post celebrating the new year. 2015 was a crazy year. The best way I can describe it is that life got real. It was a pretty good year, but it totally overwhelmed me. You see, in 2015, I ceased being just a writer—I became a businesswomen, forced to juggle more things than I had the time to accomplish. During the last year, my Etsy jewelry business really took off and became more than I ever imagined it would be. I can’t tell you how thankful I am for that, since it is now a huge part of my income, but it is a LOT of work. From just before Halloween all the way through Christmas, I was spending 3-6 hours a day filling holiday orders. At first I was ecstatic. After about a month, I really started to dread every order notification. The work was overwhelming. All I wanted was to go back to being “just a writer.” Being an author and being an Etsy seller are two full-time jobs. Somehow, I have to manage both. This is why I haven’t made as much progress in getting Samara’s Peril ready for publication as I’d hoped. I’ve had to keep pushing back my hope-to-publish dates. I’ve spent little, if any, time on Goodreads and my forum. I’ve barely blogged. I burnt myself out.
But I am still incredibly grateful for the way God has provided the opportunities and success in my goal to be completely self-employed. I wouldn’t trade it. Now what I have to do is figure out a better way of managing it. That’s what 2016 will be about. I have to figure out exactly how to schedule time for both writing/publishing and Etsy. (Not to mention just living life!) I’ve already taken some small steps to do that. And for those of you desperately waiting for Samara’s Peril, it is coming! Now that the holidays are over and I have a chance to breathe, I’m getting back into editing this week. I am over half done. I’m hoping to get it to my beta readers this month yet. (Though I’m learning that I really can’t ever make definite plans like that. God might have different plans.) I am very tentatively hoping for a March/April release if all goes very smoothly, but sometime in May/June might be more realistic.
I have no idea what 2016 will bring, especially after last year. All I know is that organization will be the key to not getting so overwhelmed, and I’m not going to make too many set plans because things constantly change.