What is there to say about 2017…
It made me better.
It yanked my insides out and rearranged them, stretched them, reexamined them, dragged them through the mud for good measure –
And it made me better.
Honestly, I will never look back upon this year fondly. It was difficult in a way I had not encountered before, in a way that I hope not to encounter again.
But in the midst of it all, there were the words.
The words saved me.
This year, I discovered that pain can be pulled from the body and molded into letters and syllables and sentences and in so doing become a more manageable thing. Not every feeling and emotion is articulable, but I tried my best to make them so. I pushed and pulled at words and meanings until I could mold them into what I needed them to be. Until they said what I needed them to say.
Even the things we don’t ever want to experience are a rite of passage. It all serves a purpose. Lately, for me, that purpose has been becoming a better writer. I have a deeper, broader well from which to pull both because I have loved and because I have lost.
The Weight of the Fire was born from the ashes. As I said in my blog post about the process of writing it, it would not be what it is without this year having been what it was. And what it is, is something I am very proud of and excited about.
So, 2017 was the year I wrote my second book.
2017 was also the year I signed my publishing deal for All That We See or Seem and its work-in-progress of a sequel A Dream Within a Dream. I am immensely proud of the former, and so excited for what the latter will become.
I attended a writing seminar hosted by Maggie Stiefvater and Courtney Stevens in San Francisco.
I cultivated a small but encouraging and supportive following on my writing Instagram account.
I had three pieces published on Thought Catalog.
I took steps forward in pursuing my dreams, and I could not be more optimistic about what 2018 will bring. It will be the year that people will be able to buy a book with my name on it, with my words within it. It will be the year I finish writing the sequel to that book and start getting that one ready for publication, as well. It will be the year I revise The Weight of the Fire. And… I’m thinking it will be the year I write another book or two, as well.
Because in the words of the great Neil Gaiman… “Writing may or may not be your salvation; it might or might not be your destiny. But that does not matter. What matters right now are the words, one after another. Find the next word. Write it down.”
This year, writing was my salvation. And so, on to the next word.