2016 was one of my most productive years ever -- my second best in term of number of words written, totaling some 478,000 and change. Add to that number at least another 30,000 in the form of a novel started in November, three short stories, and a screenplay all waiting to be completed in 2017. I finished 75 individual fiction projects -- 1 novel in July, 14 novellas, and the rest a mix of short stories and 1 flash weighing in at 100 words ("Catching Snowflakes" is presently on a very short list at a major publication project, waiting to learn if it's going to the dance). Last year, I sold 50 short stories and 4 of those novellas. In early October, on a warm, bright afternoon spent writing on my sun porch, I penned The End on my 1,200th work of fiction. All of my big numbers, dating back to my teen years, have been Space:1999 stories -- 1, 50, 100, 500, and 1,000. 1,200 was no different, thanks to my novella, "The Tomorrows", a powerfully personal, emotional experience that I was fortunate enough to share with the members of my writers' group over several weeks of meetings.
I went on 8 adventures in 2016 to destinations far and wide. Starting last February, I spent a wonderful weekend in Massachusetts, taking in the gala book launch of Murder Ink (which contains my short mystery, "Exhuming Secrets on a Hot August Day") in Boston, where the publisher treated us like royalty during a luncheon, reading, and signing. A month later, I was off to the first of 2 5-day trips to When Words Count, a luxury retreat center for writers in Vermont, where I split time between the Hemingway Room and Mark Twain Suite, and banged out a total of 6 first drafts (and much of that aforementioned screenplay). In May, I jetted off to Hollywood to attend the Roswell Awards, where my short story "Mandered" won Honorable Mention. In June, I enjoyed the wonderful retreat/workshop Writing From Nature. In September, I was off to not 1 but 2 writing adventures -- to the annual Writelines conference and workshop held on Star Island in the Isles of Shoals, and a return to the Waterfall House with members of my stellar writers' group. That same month, on September 18, I also got married to my longtime partner Bruce on the front lawn of our beautiful old house on the hill, Xanadu. The ceremony was attended by 37 friends and family members, who somehow all squeezed into our downstairs for the reception.
|(arrival to the Twain Suite in mid-October)|
Healthy (and down some 13 pounds), I found my way back to my desk and loved every second of being in my home once more, my own bed, and, especially, my home office, where I got into my old groove and completed several more stories before 2016 ran out. So many, in fact, that for the first time since I was in my middle-20s, my list of as-yet-unwritten story ideas dropped below 100. January 1, 2017 kicked off with 99!
And I have 1 last number to report about. As I type this post, this small, beloved blog is just 53 reads shy of earning it's 100,000th. Thank you to all the readers from across the globe who've taken time to follow my writing adventures -- here's to a million more!