This past year was one of great business. This time last year I was finishing up my work on Touch and going over the cover for Boiled Cat. In February much of Boiled Cat had been wrapped up and it was off to the press for the first proof. Learning to be my own publisher was hard and stressful. Many people call self-publishing a vanity project. I call it a passion project. I call it this after hearing Slash (guitarist formerly of Guns and Roses and a personal hero of mine) call his work on a horror movie he recently produced. Sometimes things just need to be made and be damn the money. I would love Boiled Cat to succeed and be well known as a book of fabulous storytelling, but if it doesn't - I don't really care. I wrote it for me. I can now hold it in my hands. I love the story and I can read it again and again as a real book and not a loose paged manuscript. I can also call the project done. A real achievement and well worth the money spent.
2013 also brought me back to WordsWorth youth writing residency for my fifth year. It is a place I can not imagine a summer without. I also taught for my third summer at DramAntics and ran our second summer of RIO Word Adventure Camp. Things are moving along teaching wise.
I unfortunately didn't get the book tour gig I was hoping for. But life isn't all about successes and if there aren't some failures then the achievements wouldn't seem so wonderful. I did however pick up a new book contract and worked hard over the summer (and between camps) on a new book called Stupid, due out in March of 2014.
In September my little writing group RIO began their fourth year with fourteen kids. It started with three it seems only yesterday. Now we pack a classroom and are a noisy bunch with a lot of extra programming beyond the writing meetings.
November brought my writer in residence for Open Book Toronto. There I blogged everyday and was able to introduce to the world a bunch of new writers and artists who are just at the beginning of their journey into the arts.
I am very lucky and happy to know so many talented people both young and seasoned. It's been great to interview them, discuss the ways of the arts, and to share knowledge and ideas. My life is truly awesome.
I'm looking forward to this new year. I'm not sure what it has in store for me. I'm ready for anything. I know I'll be focusing on some of my older stuff. Getting things wrapped up that have been put off for some time. I hate unfinished business. It nags me. But even with that, I'm sure there are new adventures awaiting me just around the bend and I'll take them head on - as always.
So here's to the adventure that is life. I hope your next year is eventful too.