I don’t think I’m the only one who is glad to see 2016 come to an end. WOW, what a year it’s been. Not to say there wasn’t some good things about the past 366 days, but if I had to sum it up in one word— OVERWHELMING —comes to mind.
2016 held some personally trying times. It goes without saying that raising a child is far from easy, and once you start adding other issues and obligations to the mix, some days you’re spread so think, you can’t help but feel you’re doing everything but getting nothing accomplished.
Needless to say, throughout the year, I found myself exactly that—OVERWHELMED. While it didn’t effect some aspects of everyday living, it definitely hurt something very important to me—my writing.
While some of my author friends have probably written several books over the course of 2016, I must admit, just writing my Bellaonline articles once a week have been a struggle. I even quit “listening” to my “Asylum Harbor” characters halfway through their second story. And, honestly, there were days where I would do everything else instead of putting pen to paper. So, over the course of the last twelve months, I’ve watched my writing goals come and go, a new series that I wanted to start still waits to get out of the draft stages and plans for an ebook are still waiting to be completed. Plus, you know it’s bad when you can’t be bothered with Facebook or Twitter.
Then, a few months back, I was fortunate enough to read an article in the RWA magazine that touched on authors and depression. (Me? Depressed? I thought everyone cried because they had to go to work in the mornings.) I always considered myself “a rock”. You have problems? I’ll lend an ear. You need a volunteer? Count me in. Need some help? I’m the sure thing. That's where things began to spiral. And then I found out “sometimes life gets a little hard”—that’s what my physician explained when she noticed the signs of anxiety. And while I'm not ashamed to admit I have it, I'm thankful it’s been a very mild form. My heart goes out to those who suffer any varying degree of it because it’s debilitating.
So, yes, I’ve made some lifestyle changes. I’ve learned to say “no”, to be a little selfish with "me time", and I've added some new physical activities to my daily routine, including a 3K walk race with my daughter. (If you think it’s hard raising an eight-year-old, try carrying one on your back for half a mile because they’re too tired.) And, even though I still have my moments, I’m back to being in a good place.
Over the past month, I began updating my website. (This will be my first blog on my updated site!!) I’m listening to what my characters are telling me again and I have A PLAN for 2017. My new Bellaonline article will be out on January 1st and before the end of 2017, not only will I have “Adrift” (the follow-up to “Asylum Harbor”) completed but the third installment of the series as well. (There are also the “hitting the gym more”, “trying new recipes” and “finally having a clean house” resolutions but I’ll talk about those later.) With all of this work, I better scram. . Those stories aren’t going to write themselves. HAPPY 2017 EVERYONE! ~ Isla,