I know—it's been more than a year since I promised to update the blog more often. The Octave Thanet Project and my book projects were ignored in 2023.
2023 is over, and I ended it with some decisions. Mainly that it is time for me to turn my attention back to my own projects. While I am proud of the work I did for the magazines in the last few years, I realized in around October that Signs & Wonders was a year overdue. My original plan was to have it ready in 2022. The chaos that started with the move to Sherwood stretched into 2023.
There were also a lot of personal things going on with my extended family in addition to the work situation with Dani, and I had to put the brakes on everything outside of those issues.
But, I also felt something major was missing; I trained to do the kind of work that I do on my own projects. My whole former life was spent preparing to do my own thing.
It was time to get back to it.
I contacted my editor in the fall and originally set a deadline to have the manuscript for Signs & Wonders to her by the end of the year. As I kept working on the magazines and getting more stuff pushed onto my desk, I realized that what I was doing was not sustainable. It probably seemed like my leaving the magazines was an impulsive decision that came out of nowhere, but I agonized over what to do. I enjoyed working with the folks at both magazines, and felt I was contributing good things. But my whole heart wasn't in the work itself, and the mental and emotional space it took up kept me from working on my own projects.
While the locums situation was great in many ways, we missed each other. We discovered after a year+ of a job created long-distance marriage that we like each other. A lot. And we need to be in the same orbit most of the time.
We decided Labor Day weekend while I was in San Diego visiting with Dani that it was time to change things. Chester (and all of us, really) was struggling with the constant changes that came with Dani only home part time. Given the thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours that she spent traveling last year, it's no surprise that moving and having one household again was the answer.
Because of that move across the country, my manuscript deadline got pushed again. I realized as we planned the move that if I was continued working on the magazines, March wasn't going to work either.
So, I left. And now, after being in Arizona for a month, I am working on the book and making good progress.
So, here's what 2024's plans are:
I have no regrets; the time away from those projects just reinforced what I love about them and make me more focused now that I have those other areas of my life a bit more aligned.
Here's hoping all of you are making the most of 2024, too.