When I hopped on here to write a HEY NEW YEAR catch-up blog, I was, um, flabbergasted to find my last blog was in MARCH.


That’s almost a year ago. It feels like I’ve lived five lifetimes since then.

We bought a house.


One of my books made it into the first round of Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards!


I got a new job working for an animal shelter and started fostering kittens.

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I’m volunteering at the zoo in the gorilla habitat.

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I attended my very first writing convention.IMG_9676

(and got an autographed book from Lorraine Heath!!)

I finally saw Disney World at Christmas!!


For a while, I wasn’t writing because my mind wasn’t in a happy place (who ever heard of a writer unable to channel her depression into writing?), but I’ve slowly gotten back into it. I’m about halfway done with five different books (I’m so ADD).

Last summer, I went to Fandom Fest with my sisters. Three days of geekdom–sci fi and fantasy collectibles, books, STUFF, not to mention celebrity appearances and question panels. I shook hands with ALAN FUCKING TUDYK. My sister Rachel hugged JOHN FUCKING BARROWMAN. It was an awesome time. We even had a hotel room at the fancy Galt House.

But something even more surreal happened at the con. I had my first psychic reading. She was adorable, a fifties-style sex pot type woman from Nashville. I liked her immediately. She laid the Tarot, and we began.

Some things I took away:

  • Someone in my life was headed for a breakdown. She thought it was a sister type, but then ultimately we came to the conclusion it was probably me.
  • My husband loves me more than anything in the world. He would do anything for me, especially when it came to my dreams. (Not anything I didn’t already know. My husband pretty much is the GREATEST GUY TO WALK THE EARTH. Well, maybe second greatest. My daddy is very much my Superman.)
  • My then-descent into depression would not get better for quite some time. Basically, the fall was going to suck worse than ever, and she suggested I might need to seek professional help. (I tried. I called three different therapists in town, and none of them returned my messages. Apparently mental well-being just doesn’t matter in Louisville, Kentucky.)

And here it is. The first day of the new year. January, the month my psychic said would be the time of my life when everything would turn around. Good things are coming, she said. When the ball dropped at midnight last night, and my husband kissed me, I sleepily asked him, “This year has to be better, right?” And all I could think about was what my psychic told me.

I didn’t mean life-wise. Shit, we bought a house, survived our first year of marriage, my books got a little recognition, and I LOVE WORKING WITH THE GORILLAS. That is all some pretty amazing stuff. But in a mental capacity, I am clinging to the idea that 2014 absolutely has to be a better year for me.

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Resolutions are stupid. We make them every year, but then we break them. I’m the queen of procrastination, so I honestly can’t recall a single new year’s resolution I’ve EVER followed through. My take-away from this is that the phrase “new year’s resolution” is cursed. It’s meant to be a thing we do, gung-ho about it for the first two weeks, then letting it slide thereafter. And who honestly needs that?

So instead, I have goals. Honest-to-goddess, going-to-accomplish goals.

  • Find a therapist: One who returns my initial phone call and genuinely wants to help me battle this stupid, life-numbing thing called depression.
  • Write 2k every day on a novel: It really is as simple as that. Maybe it means sacrificing a couple hours of sleep. Maybe it means opening my laptop when I’d really rather turn on Netflix. Maybe it means writing on my breaks at work or on my phone in a waiting room. Whatever it means, I do it. I am a lot of things in this life: Wife, Sister, Daughter, Pet Mother, Hard Worker, Animal Activist. But above all, I AM A WRITER. It is the backbone of my existence. It is the way I breathe, eat, sleep, live. My writing habits have been horrendous. I am changing that.
  • Blog at least once a week: I mean, shit, I blogged almost every day for the first two years of having this blog. And I did it while earning my online degree, working a full time job, AND sneaking in some novel writing. It’s not impossible when I’m not being a procrastinating prat.
  • Participate and complete Nanowrimo this year: I tried in 2013 and accomplished about 15k, which was the most I’d written since the spring. So in a way, it was a win for my own purposes. This year, I finish.
  • Do things I love as often as possible: take a walk in the woods. Volunteer at the zoo. Go to a play or ballet. Take French lessons. Get back into martial arts. I WILL DO SOMETHING FOR ME.
  • Practice magick at least once a week: If anything has utterly and completely fallen by the wayside, it’s my spirituality. Being a witch has always been such a focal part of my being. I could tell you the exact date of every upcoming full moon this time last year. Now? I look up and say, “Huh. Full moon. That snuck up on me.”
  • Learn to say NO: I have a problem with this. I’m always the girl sacrificing her own plans and loves for that of others. This song? It’s about me. In 2014, I will say more “yes” to myself and more “no” to others.
  • Be healthier: Now, I’m not saying give up cookies and frozen yogurt and yummy Starbucks. I’m not that crazy. But I like healthy food, too, and I can make healthy choices and still enjoy my meal. But my depression has played a big part in my current extra weight. I’ll return to the gym, even if only for ten minutes on the elliptical a couple times a week. I’ll choose salad over fried stuff. I’ll care about what I put into my body, because my body is what sustains my life.

And the last and most important goal–

  • Stop being so afraid to fail: In the past eight years, I’ve started nearly thirty novels that I have yet to finish. I make goals and lose sight of them. I back away when things start getting tough. SOMETIMES YOU GOTTA LOSE TILL YOU WIN.

For everyone I know, and those I don’t, here’s wishing you a magickal, wonderful new year. May 2014 be the year that dreams come true.