Life is busy for a teacher and an author. Or is that, author and a teacher? I suppose it depends on what point in the year I'm in!
Recently I was looking over my website, checking out the hyperlinks, shifting around content and adding the cover of my new novel Animal Quest 6, when I realized I hadn't blogged in a long, long time. How long? Almost two years! How is that possible? I wondered. Time, it seems, has melted around me like Frosty in a greenhouse.
So here I go. What do I have to say this time around? A lot, actually.
Let me start with what I've been working on lately. For the last, oh, ten years give or take, I've been struggling to finish a novel about witches. It's called Curse of the Witch, and it's probably the scariest fiction I've ever written for young adults. I'm very near the end of the book. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but it's still so far, far away.
Writers grapple with many challenges when writing a novel. Think of it like taking a cross-country road trip. Sure, we have this thing called GPS (or Google Maps) when we're driving. In literary terms, that's our outline and notes. But sometimes novels veer off course. A character might decide to meander down a dark path we didn't expect him/her to. Once there they discover things they didn't expect to find, and suddenly ... plot twists develop. New characters enter the story line. Or new questions arise, necessitating creative answers. Ultimately, venturing down these back alleys of our imagination can enrich a novel. But sometimes I feel bogged down and overwhelmed, and that's what's happening to me with this novel.
Still, I press on. This year I will finish this novel. It is a promise I've made with myself. And when it is completed and published we will celebrate together, you and I, Reader and Author, and take the journey together.
In the meantime, wish me luck I won't get lost in the dark again.