Friday 30 December 2022

My year in review

The year is about to end and it’s time for a summary of what I’ve managed to do. I didn’t make any lists at the beginning of the year that I could handily compare my achievements toor the lack thereofbut I managed to keep myself mostly moving forward anyway.

I celebrated my ten-year writing anniversary this year. It’s been an interesting journey, and I’m happy to say things are looking goodor they were before the economic slump suddenly hit. I hope people keep reading books though, because I’ve planned to be here for a long time.

I published four books this year. I started with Magic for the Highland Wolf in January. Third Spell’s the Charm came out in March, and Tracy Hayes, P.I. for the Win came out in May. My new series starter The Perfect Scam was published at the end of July. And then it stopped.

My goal was to publish five, maybe even six books this year. Technically, that was achievable, but life intervened. Some kind of writer’s block stalled the next Two-Natured London book. By the time I gave up and switched to House of Magic 4, I’d already wasted two months with it. And then my editor’s schedules jammed up and I had to postpone all my publishing to next year.

I’d like to say I spent the extra writing time well, but House of Magic 4 took me two months longer than scheduled to finish. All in all, my autumn was very unproductive, writing-wise. To compensate, I published a bundle edition of my thrillers Personal and The Assassin that I’ve meant to do for a while.

I didn’t write any blog posts either. I published three posts here (this one is fourth) which is a far cry from returning to a regular blogging schedule that I hoped to achieve. I won’t make any promises for the next year either.

My book review blog faired better. I read 85 books this year, about half of them from NetGalley, and reviewed most of them on my blog, 62 posts. Still, it’s fewer than the previous year when I read a record hundred books. I went through a reading slump the same time my writing stalledprobably relatedand couldn’t manage the same this year.

During my slump, I did learn a new skill: video editing. I’ve long wanted to learn to make book videos, but there’s never been time for it. And it was a time-consuming skill to learn. Took me two weeks to create two short videos. I haven’t had time to return to it since, but I hope to make more videos next year.

At the end of the year, I joined a new social media, Mastodon. Twitter, my favourite media by far, has been in trouble, and I wanted a backup place in case it stops operating completely. Mastodon is much calmer space. If you’re there and would like to find me, I’m there.

Despite my reading slump, I read many great books this year. Several stood out even among them. The Bone Orchard by Sara A. Mueller, Saint Death’s Daughter by C.S.E. Cooney, Daughter of Redwinter by Ed McDonald and my absolute favourite cosy read, Legends & Lattes by Travis Baldree. It’s a fantasy heavy top four, but I did read other genres too.

My favourite movie by far this year was Everything Everywhere All At Once, although Top Gun Maverick managed to hit the nostalgia spot in me it was meant to hit. And I discovered Chinese fantasy dramas. I’m late to the game, but very enthusiastic new convert. What got me hooked was Love Between Fairy and Devil on Netflix, and I’m currently watching The Untamed.

I’ve made great plans for the next year, but thanks to my procrastination, my publishing schedule for the spring is already lagging behind. Magic by the Book will come out in February 12. After that, everything is open. But I hope you’ll stay with me to find what next year will bring with it.

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