I don’t know what happened. I don’t know where a year has gone or how in the world I went exactly 365 days without checking this space or writing for it. But here I am, better late than never.

Here’s what I’ve been up to:

  • reading SO many books. I’ve already read 22 books this year! (Last year I met my goal of 40 books and was excited. If all goes as planned, I’m going to crush that goal.)
  • renovating and moving into a new home in Rogers (this is a big one and deserves a mini series of its own)
  • wifely and motherly duties (my baby will be two in just a couple of months. Holy goodness how did that happen?!)
  • teaching (Always rewarding, never easy.)
  • but, not much writing.

Well, it’s time for that to change.

Here’s what happened. Stephanie Vanderslice recently published a novel titled The Geek’s Guide to the Writing Life, and when she and her husband, John Vanderslice, were headed up to my part of the state to promote their new books (John’s new book is titled The Last Days of Oscar Wilde), I knew that I had to go. I have read most of her books on writing and publishing, especially the ones on the teaching of Creative Writing, and was fortunate enough to study as one of her students at the University of Central Arkansas while I was in my undergraduate program. She and I have stayed in touch, thanks in most part to Facebook, and going to her book talk and book signing was exactly what I needed.

Both writers read from their new novels, were light-hearted and engaging, and genuinely seemed happy to be sharing their words. One and a half hours later, I was feeling inspired and a little bit disappointed in myself. I’ve let my writing practice go. It was the metaphorical swift kick in the butt that I needed to get back to the words. What was supposed to be a 3 month renovation project turned into a 7 month, still-not-complete-but-at-least-we-get-to-live-there renovation project. In that time, aside from occasional and sporadic journaling, I haven’t been writing like I normally do. Even when I was pregnant and sick all the time I wrote consistently. This school year has been much harder than usual, then tack on the renovation, trying to stay fit, trying to be a good mom and wife, and it was easy to let something slip. I’m just sad that what I let slip was writing.

So, let’s pretend that this is the start of a new year or the beginning of a new stage. We can at least say it’s almost the beginning of a new month. I’m making plans. I’m writing words.

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