I am excited to welcome 2018 and not at all sad to leave 2017 behind me. Do you wish you could see into the future? I certainly would not want that ability. I looked back at the post I wrote a year ago, and I was so enthusiastic and excited about what I would accomplish in 2017. I had no idea I would spend most of the year sick, weak and in pain, and I had no clue my brother, uncle, and cousin would pass away in 2017. I would not have wanted to know any of these things on January 1st, 2017.
New Year’s Day is a time for planning, dreaming, and looking forward. Life happens, and plans get derailed by sickness, death, and catastrophes, but still, the ability to plan and dream is a luxury, and I know I am extremely fortunate to live someplace where I can indulge in that luxury. I think about people who live in extreme poverty or war-torn countries. What are their dreams when they know their situation is unlikely to improve in the coming year? What is New Year’s Day like for them? For me, 2018 is shiny and bright and full of possibilities. I am very lucky.
My health is improving with every passing day. I am regaining my strength, and my muscles are slowly returning to life. Before long, I will be able to exercise again, and then I will have more energy and a sharper mind (I hope!). I often have been told to appreciate my health, but I don’t think I gave it a second thought until now. I won’t take my health for granted again.
I checked my resolutions from the post I wrote last year to see what I did and did not accomplish. I wanted to publish my third novel, and I did. The Fisherman’s Daughter is now available at online booksellers. I hoped to finish and edit my wildlife book, and I accomplished half of that resolution. I finished the book, but I haven’t edited it yet. I hope to tackle the big job of editing it this winter. I resolved to work on the camp cookbook, but I didn’t do much on it. I also resolved to have the rough draft of my fourth novel written, but nope, I haven’t done that either.
So, what have I done? Editing The Fisherman’s Daughter took much longer than I anticipated, and while I hate to blame anything on my health, it took its toll. I only had enough energy for my job, my blog posts, my newsletter, and editing. I did write approximately 20,000 words of my next novel, and I know the story I want to tell. I am excited about the novel I call Karluk Bones, and I think it will be a good story. I am working on it again now, so I’m sure I will finish it in a few months, and I hope to have it published sometime in 2018.
I have written enough Mystery Newsletters about true crime in Alaska to compile them into a book, and I hope to self-publish my true-crime book this year and offer it free to my newsletter subscribers. If I finish my true crime book, my wildlife book, and another novel, I could publish three books in 2018. I may be dreaming, but I think it is good to dream.
As a nice surprise this year, my publisher started a website called Author Masterminds: https://authormasterminds.com where I and some of his other authors can sell our books. I have my personal information on my author page, so if they want to, readers can contact and correspond with me. The site is also an easy place for authors to discount their books and run promotions. I think the site has a great deal of potential, and I am anxious to explore and spend more time on it in the next few months. It is not easy to be a successful author in today’s marketplace, but so far, I still think it is possible. I still have that dream!
My publisher also created a webinar for me about how I became a published author, and soon it will be ready for you to see. I used Mike’s gorgeous wildlife photos and my friend Ryan Augustine’s amazing photos and videos to create the webinar, so I am very happy with the way it turned out. If you want to take a quick trip to the wilderness of Alaska, I think you’ll enjoy the show.
I wish you a happy 2018. May you have good health, happiness, and love, and may you never stop dreaming.