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Another year over
And a new one just begun

“War is Over – Happy Christmas” by John Lennon is one of my all time favorite holiday songs because of those lines above. No matter what the holidays mean to you, it is true that Christmastime signals the end of the year and a time to reflect as we gear up for ringing in the new year.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

Image via Wikimedia Commons

I’ve been reflecting a lot on 2013, especially as a self-published author. It’s been the year that I’ve really developed both as a writer and as businesswoman (really, selling books is a business). When 2012 came to an end, and 2013 began, I was having severe doubts about my abilities to write and sell my work. On New Year’s Day, I was thinking that perhaps I shouldn’t write at all because my work isn’t good enough and I didn’t do such a good job selling my book. But yet, I still wanted to write and tell stories because it honestly is my nature, so I kept going.

As I did, I learned many new perspectives on storytelling and self-publishing. I voiced these new perspectives here on this blog, and I want to take the time to say that I really loved the great discussions I had with so many awesome writers out there. They are:

Francis J. Franklin
Deborah Nam-Krane
Eric J. Baker
Laeken Zea Kemp
Melissa Maygrove
Judith Victoria Douglas
David Stringer
Misha Burnett

To them, I say: all you guys are great, and I look forward to many more chats with you as we journey ahead in the world of writing and publishing. If by chance I forgot to name someone, rest assured that I certainly did enjoy your input and hope for many more.

I also want to take the time to mention my ten favorite blog posts this year. I am proud of these posts because they were thought-provoking and got good discussions going. They also helped build my platform:

Are Happy Endings a Must?
Should We Always Relate to the Protagonists?
The Challenges of Writing Ethnic Characters
Balancing Visions – Yours and Your Readers
Lessons One Year Later – Marketing and Promotions
Lessons One Year Later – Was It All Worth It?
Hey You! Get Off My Platform!
Why I Don’t Write Strong Female Characters
Self-Publishing – You, Yourself and No One Else
Self-Publishing May Be Like the California Gold Rush

I am looking forward to many more good discussions with anyone looking to give their two cents on the topics of writing, storytelling, and the publishing business.

I am also looking forward to completing the follow-up to my book. I’ve been so busy this year with working full-time, moving to a new part of NYC, and other priorities. I will definitely hit the ground running so I could get the sequel out hopefully by late June. I had hoped for April, but given the time it takes to edit and make sure there are no typos (like it was with the first edition of “The Dark Proposal” – yikes!), I’d say late June would be the best target time. I’ll keep everyone posted with whatever milestones come along as I tell what happens to Claire and Daniel.

In the meantime, I’ll keep blogging twice a week if I can. I’ll also continue giving author interviews and stopping by other authors’ blogs. I really need to step the latter part up. Even though it’s not easy to browse online at work, I still need to make more of commitment to support other writers by coming to their sites. So, that’s a New Year’s Resolution that I hope I can keep!

Once again, thank you to all for this amazing year, and I hope it will be equally amazing in 2014!

Happy New Year!