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The End of Another Year



Well, 2023 is coming to an end and I would be lying if I said it wasn't eventful. There is a whole bunch to unpack, but I won't go over everything and make this an extrememly long thing. I'm going to break it down into two categories: Author Life and Personal Life.



Author Life


Recap

The year 2023 was a pretty good year for my career. It wasn't necessarily a massive increase in sales or anything of the sort, but I do feel like I grew a lot as an author. I became an award winner when Blood of The Hunted won the Bronze Award for Fantasy for the Reader Views Literary Awards, and I got 20+ reviews (many of them extremely positive) on Goodreads for it too! I released my very own anthology of short stories, as well as new additions to my short story saga, Imryll's Legacy Series. I received lovely editorial reviews for a variety of my books and yes, while it wasn't as much as I hoped, I did sell a fair amount.



It wasn't all sunshine and rainbows though. I had a period of time this year where writing felt like a waste of time. Random days throughout the year I felt like giving up. Thankfully, with the support of friends and family, I've decided to not only continue on my journey to becoming a bestselling author, but I also decided to be braver going forward.




I started a blog on my website, took financial risks on marketing and advertising, and allowed myself to dive into different projects at the same time to really make myself feel productive. It hasn't been easy every day, but I can honestly say I am quite proud of myself for sticking with it. The only way not achieving your goals will be a sure thing is if you quit. So long as you keep on trying, there's always a chance that you'll get to where you want to be. It took me some time, but that was something I needed to learn this year and I'm glad I did.



What's Next?

I have A LOT planned for next year. I hope to be doing a bunch of writing, working on completing my remaining stories so that I can move on to some new and exciting projects I've been itching to get into. I plan to have Imryll's Legacy Series wrapped up in January, and the goal is to finish at least the first draft of Equilibria, the final book in the Age of Shadow Saga, by the end of the year. I do have a small challenge to myself to have Equilibria ready for December, which would be awesome, but we'll just have to see how things go. On the marketing side, I hope to get more into my social medias and trying to create more content there. I'll also be more active on Facebook than before and utilizing the ads feature a fair bit. Also, and I promise I'm going to try my best at this, but I plan on more blog posts and newsletters. I've been slacking in that area and I think it's about time I put more effort into that area. Giveaways for signed copies will definitely be a thing too, so keep an eye out! Finally, early in the year, I'll have a special project available that I think you'll all really love. I'll be teasing it in newsletters and on my socials so be sure to add me and sign up!



Personal Life


Recap

Well, the biggest thing that happened for me on a personal note was turning 30. I'm still coming to grips with the fact that my twenties are over and my forties will be here before I know it. I have done a good job, I think, at trying to just live in the moment though and not worry so much about how much time I have left to do things I want to do, like spend time with good friends, wonderful family, and of course, my two little puppers that I adore. Turning 30 was a tad scary, and at times it still is, but overall I have a plan to make my thirties the best decade of my life!


There's been a lot of good stuff going on for me. I've continued to bond with my nephew, I've done really well with my therapy, and I can happily say I am in the best mental state I have been in years. Maybe over a decade. While all that is true, there were some upsetting things that happened this year that shook me a little. I won't go too into detail because I feel like the stories are meant to be told by others, but basically there was a lot of loss this year, especially at the end of it. Being an empath, I kind of take on what everyone else feels and sometimes it damages my mood, but I've done my best to be well enough not only for myself, but also for those going through these tough times. Whenever I think of myself or someone else going through it, good ol' Gandalf the Grey comes to mind.

"I wish it need not have happened in my time," said Frodo. "So do I," said Gandalf, "and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."

As usual, Lord of the Rings tends to just make everything better. You have no idea how many times quotes, clips, or the soundtrack got me out of a dark place this year. I'm forever thankful for Tolkien and his work. It enhanced my happy days and saved my sad days. 2023 was a year of good and bad, but I think I'm coming out of it stronger than ever and that's all that matters.


What's Next?

Well that's a good question to ask yourself at the end of the year isn't it? New year's resolutions are made around this time of year and yet I don't really have any different ones than I had last year. I want to be braver, more confident, and really put myself out there. I want to continue to grow as a person and improve my physical and mental health along the way. I want to read more! I finally read "Lord of the Rings" this year and I dove right into the World of Warcraft novel "Sylvanas" right after. The plan is to finish "Murtagh" by Christopher Paolini and dive back into "Malice" by John Gwynne.

It would be nice if I could make some new friends and I really do feel ready for a romantic relationship, although that second one isn't too important to me right now. I admit I get lonely from time to time, but I've enjoyed focusing so much on improving myself and my career. I think, overall, what's next is hopefully more of the good stuff and less of the bad stuff. I'll just have to live the days as they come and try my best to make magic happen.


Final Words


I think that's all there is to say. 2023 was overall a good year. Some ups, some downs, but that's what life is supposed to be right? A heart beat on a monitor goes up and down, showing you're alive. If there weren't ups and downs, you'd flatline. Ups and downs mean life, and I don't know about you, but I enjoy living. So, this year coming, I'm going to try to accept everything as it comes, all the ups and all the downs, and just be grateful that I get to experience them. I hope this year was a good one for you too, but if it wasn't, know that I'm cheering for your 2024 to be amazing! Good luck to everyone and I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!





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Love you all <3














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