A year in the life (and then some…)

It’s been one year today since I started this blog, so I thought I’d share the story of how it came to be and my writing life up to this point. My rebirth as a writer really began three years ago, when my sister gave me a copy of “No Plot? No Problem!” and I participated in National Novel Writing Month. Before that, I’d put creative writing on the back burner for a good dozen years.

Although I’ve kept a journal for most of my life, my forays into fiction pretty much ceased after grad school, when my priorities became focusing on my professional career as an editor and – not insignificantly – finding the love of my life. People tend not to mention their personal lives when summarizing their careers, but dating is hard work! And while it can provide lots of great material for fiction, it also takes up a considerable amount of time and energy that might otherwise go toward creative pursuits. The same goes for new relationships. So it wasn’t until I settled into a stable cohabitation with the man who became my husband that I felt able to make time to channel my creative energy into writing again. And though my NaNoWriMo novel is currently in the proverbial drawer, I’d been bitten by the fiction bug and there was no turning back.

For my next project, I tackled revising a novel I’d first drafted way back in high school – “The Freedom Dreamers.” I joined the Atlanta Writers Club to help motivate myself to finish the rewrite, and when I learned that they have twice-yearly writing contests, I decided to try my hand at a short story. My first entry, “Nothing to Fear but Fear Itself (and Spiders),” placed third in the Fall 2013 Wild Card category. In the spring, my poem “Summer” placed second in Poetry. And I’m very pleased to announce that my most recent entry, “Sad Little Indie Film,” came in first in the Fall 2014 Short Story category.

This blog anniversary means a lot to me, since it really marks a year of committing to myself and my writing. In that time, I’ve posted twice a month on average, published “Nothing to Fear” on Amazon, started a Facebook page and a Twitter feed, and sent out dozens of query letters for “The Freedom Dreamers” while continuing to pursue professional success as an editor/content manager. It’s a lot of work, and sometimes I feel like I have a split personality. But ultimately it’s been a very exciting year, and I hope the best is yet to come!