2009 has been a really tough year, and I think many of us are glad to see the end of it. However, I will always hold a warm spot in my heart for 2009 nonetheless, because it's the year I Finally Got Published.

When I wrote the first draft of Knife back in 1993 I had no idea if it would ever amount to anything. I only knew that I loved the characters, and that the kernel of the story was sound and strong even if I wasn't quite sure how to get to it yet. Over the years of submissions and rejections and revisions that followed, I never lost the conviction that there was something in that manuscript, and that I shouldn't give up on it. And ultimately, my faith in Knife and Paul's story was justified -- not only did it see print this year, but it's become a UK bestseller. I could never have foreseen that, and I am tremendously grateful to my publishers and my readers for making it happen.

Another reason I feel kindly about 2009 is that at the end of the year, I finally completed a working draft of another book I feel passionately about, Touching Indigo. It took me nearly three years of research and writing, during which I foolishly unmade my own creative process and had to cobble it back together again. But in the end I was proud of what I'd done, and so was my agent, and we both look forward to seeing what 2010 brings for the manuscript.

***

As for 2010, my current resolutions are as follows:

1. Follow a regular, disciplined schedule for no less than 30 days (I already have this plotted out on a chart, a PDF of which now serves as my desktop so I can't ignore it)

2. Get a complete draft of my current WIP done by April.


The second is dependent on the achievement of the first, I believe -- I'm going to have to hold myself very firmly to a routine if I'm going to get the time I need to write, and still spend the necessary time on family and other commitments.

I'll let you know how it goes.

***

Finally, in the spirit of writing and resolutions, I'd like to share with you this great video from YA author Jackson Pearce, in which myself and a slew of other authors were happy to participate. The advice is simple, but sound, and I hope it encourages those of my friends who are trying to write and publish their work in the coming year.



Happy New Year, everyone!

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