I am writing these words a little early, because I just looked at what I still have to do and what is left of December and thought oh crap.
This year. This YEAR.
A long time ago I read Cosmos and Psyche and it talked about the first two decades of the 21st century and how the planetary conjunctions would mirror other periods of great unrest, but as with all things, it’s one thing to read about it and another thing to live through it, and I say this from a position of privilege. I’m still in shock about the election, still hoping for something better, but also starting to prepare myself for four dark, dark years to come, and all that they will require.
More personally, the last year and a half kicked all my ego out of me, professionally and personally. The latter has entailed, well, personal stuff, but as far as the writing goes: nearly everything I’ve put into submission since mid-2015 has been bumped up, held onto, given thoughtful rewrite requests … and then, at the eleventh hour, kindly and apologetically rejected. It sounds nicer than it feels, especially after 18 months of it. It’s been a keen reminder of the pitfalls of caring about anything but the work itself, and I am taking that reminder to heart.
I have, despite it all, hope. Hope and plans. Right now I’ll be sending $200 to Planned Parenthood in January, and perhaps more, which isn’t bad for a little collection that’s on no one’s radar. I also think 2017 will have to be the year that I put the novel into the world, for good or ill, and there’s a lot that has to happen first. And I have other projects—a novella with a potential sequel, a second collection—that will need time and attention.
I have bought a planner.
So onward. And for my own reference, a list of stories from this year, some done, some just drafted:
Females of the Species
Mona Fiori (aka From Court Visionaries of the Imperial Age)
The Mysterious Mr. Masterson
Properties of Obligate Pearls
To Us May Grace Be Given
Wolves (aka Red in Tooth and Claw)