Happy 2017!

Happy New Year to you! I hope you had a wonderful holiday break and are entering the new year with lots of good energy. We’ve had some sunshine here, which is just about the best option in a snowy January.

Wyvern's Warrior, #3 in the Dragons of Incendium series of paranormal romances by Deborah CookeDo you make resolutions for the new year? I was interviewed about this a few weeks ago, and have to admit that I do. I always have writing plans—for example, this year, I’ll publish Wyvern’s Warrior and the next Incendium short story, I’ll finish up and publish The Crusader’s Vow, and I’ll write Addicted to Love and publish it, too. I’ll also finish editing the Rose Legacy and publish those stories in new editions this year. I’m excited to be working on so many new series this year and exploring new worlds.

The schedule gets a bit squishy after the middle of the year, not because I don’t have ideas of what to do next, but because I like to leave a little space for surprises and synchronicity. Last year, the Haunting of Castle Keyvnor was one of those projects that slipped onto my schedule in the spring. I like to remain open to opportunities like that. Oh, I’ll need to publish Something Wicked This Way Comes in its own edition in April, too.

The Crusader's Vow by Claire Delacroix, book #4 in the Champions of Saint Euphemia series of medieval romances.I’m always striving to be better organized. In December, I actually sorted out my knitting yarn stash and (sit down for this) am passing some of it along to other knitters and their needles. Since I’ve started to sew again, I’ve realized what a chaotic mess my sewing supplies are in. I sorted out the material last fall, but will have to get into the notions this winter, too. I have an idea that I’ll finish more projects than I start, and maybe finish up a lot of the ones in progress, but am not too hard core about that. Part of what happens with wool and fabric for me is just creative play. I don’t want to put too many rules on that adventure and risk spoiling the fun. I’m going to look for workshops this winter and maybe learn some new fibre tricks. 🙂

Addicted to Love, a contemporary romance by Deborah CookeMy big challenge for 2017 is to better manage my time. I have this perennial fantasy of becoming more efficient, and oddly enough, there’s always room for improvement. My big time sink is social media—it’s so easy to hop onto Facebook to make one post and get lost for an hour or two. I need to stay on top of that, and that will likely mean that you see less of me there. I want to get more exercise, so have been pretty strict about taking my daily walk with the New Girl. We walk about 4 km together each day, regardless of the weather, and she walks fast. I’d like to start swimming again—I stopped when we moved out of the city because there wasn’t a pool I liked nearby. I’ve found one I really like (saline, not chlorine!!) but it’s about a 30-minute drive away. For some reason, lap swimming is always scheduled at meal times, so I need to figure out how to make that work. I might end up going to yoga instead. This year, I did do a better job of getting out to the garden on a regular basis in the summertime—the weeds still won, but it wasn’t a landslide victory last year. This year, they’d better look out!

How about you? Did you make resolutions for 2017? What were they?

Happy New Year!

The Crusader's Bride, a medieval romance by Claire DelacroixWelcome to 2016!

The first order of business this morning is to thank all of you for starting off my year so well. Gaston and Ysmaine’s book is sitting in a lovely position this morning, thanks to all of you who picked up a copy during this week’s sale.

At Amazon.com, The Crusader’s Bride is #1 in Medieval Romance, #8 in Suspense and #227 overall in the Kindle store:Screen Shot 2016-01-01 at 6.28.01 AMAt Amazon.ca, The Crusader’s Bride is #1 in Medieval Romance. #8 or #9 in Historical Fiction and #51 overall in the Kindle store:Screen Shot 2016-01-01 at 6.29.19 AMAt Barnes and Noble, The Crusader’s Bride is #18 in the Nook store.Screen Shot 2016-01-01 at 6.31.23 AMAt Kobo, The Crusader’s Bride is #3 in Historical Romance, #13 in Historical Fiction and #7 in Romantic Suspense.Screen Shot 2016-01-01 at 6.33.46 AMAt iBooks, The Crusader’s Bride is #2 overall paid in the iBooks store.Screen Shot 2016-01-01 at 6.35.35 AMThank you, all! This is a wonderful way to start the year and I hope you enjoy Gaston and Ysmaine’s story. If you haven’t picked up a copy yet, the sale goes through January 4, then it’s back to the regular price.

And now, the rest of my post for the new year! At the end of each year, I tend to sum things up, take stock of what worked and what didn’t, then make plans for going forward. After the summary, I do some culling and sorting. I ditch what isn’t working and make lists of what I want to change about how I’m doing things. In this publishing environment, that means assessing what’s working (and not) on a personal level, as well as what’s changing in the marketplace. (We do live in interesting times.)

One goal coming out of that for 2016 is that I want to take better physical care of myself. Over the past couple of years, I’ve spent too much time at my desk. The New Girl and I have been taking a long walk each day this fall, and I now have Chelle managing my newsletter for me. Angie continues to manage some of the other promotion – especially for audio. I also some other schemes to mix up my daily schedule a bit. Less computer time also means less internet time, because I want to focus on writing.

I also want to knit down some of my yarn stash and finish those lingering projects – that means more knitting time, which is great thinking and plotting time. All of these come together to increase my focus on writing new stories. The next cover reveal comes up in February and it’ll be in my newsletter first. It’s for Simply Irresistible, which is the launch title in my upcoming contemporary romance series called Flatiron Five. I’ve wanted to write another contemporary romance series since finishing The Coxwells, and this group of five friends have really snared my imagination. I’m also collaborating with another author, connecting her linked series to my linked series, and will tell you more about that in February, too.

I’ll announce the other new series launch in May, first at Romancing the Capital, in my newsletter, and then here on the blog. Things are going to change on the website this year, too, with some series having their own subsidiary sites. It’s just a question of how best to manage so many titles in so many sub-genres.

The good news is that my sharper focus will more stories and more books. I’ve redone my calendar for my bulletin board and it’s crowded! I have some fun projects lined up for 2016 as a result of doing this review last year, and have added a few more surprises in the last month or so. I feel that I’m back in my writing groove again, and am having a fabulous time planning out new series. The Champions of Saint Euphemia was my first new series in a long while, but there will be several more new series launching this year. Woo HOO! It’s going to be a great year for writing for me, and I’m looking forward to it.

What resolutions or plans do you have for 2016?

Happy 2014!

Happy New Year, everyone, and all the best to you and yours in 2014. I hope it’s a wonderful year for all of you.

Tomorrow, I’ll tell you what new books you can expect from me in the year ahead. 🙂

Merry Christmas!

Well, I’ve been obsessed with a new knitting project and was sure I’d be able to show it to you today, but it’s more knitting than I’d thought. (This is good – it’s a fun project and I know I’ll be sad when it’s finished.) I’ll have to show it to you in the new year. It’s so pretty that I’m not sure I want to give this one away!

So, it’s time to shut down the computer and head into the kitchen to bake Christmas cookies. (There might be some eggnog or mulled wine involved in that operation, too.) Merry Christmas to all of you – may you have a wonderful holiday week, and travel safely there and back again. I’ll start posting here again in the new year.

All the best to you and yours!