It’s here, it’s here, it’s finally here!
Altogether now, “Happy book birthday to me!”
Book birthdays are a big deal to an author. After months and sometimes years of writing, and then months and months of waiting, publication day is the day the finished product finally hits bookstores and libraries, and from there, the hands of readers. And if we’ve done our job well, those readers will be happy with what we’ve created.
Truly, Madly, Sheeply is dear to my heart. It’s the fourth and likely final in my Pumpkin Falls mystery series, and it features some of my favorite things: sheep and knitting and October in New England. Plus, it was an absolute joy to write from start to finish. Why, you ask? Well, for one thing, I switched up my process. (Process is what writers call the way in which they choose to write.) Time was, I could devote every day to writing stories–and I did. For a while now, however, I’ve had a full-time “day job” (that’s what writers call any paid work besides writing) at Longyear Museum in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. I absolutely love it, and will share more on that in a future post. Meanwhile, however, those work responsibilities meant I needed to change my usual process when it came to writing stories. And so I did. Truly, Madly, Sheeply was written over the course of a year, on Saturday mornings. Yes, only on Saturday mornings! That’s all the time I had to devote to it. Well, plus a week-long push at the end when I was knitting all the chapters together and polishing it up. You know what? I had FUN. Somehow, corralling my writing into once-a-week sessions and not worrying about the consequences (because there was no point in worrying–it was simply what I had to do) uncorked a sense of joy that I didn’t even know I was missing. I didn’t worry about meeting a deadline–I knew that would happen. I didn’t worry about making everything perfect–I knew it eventually would be. I just wrote for the sheer joy of it for those few hours, every week.
So it turns out you can teach an old dog new tricks! I just assumed that once a writer had an established process–writing every day–they stuck with it–or were stuck with it–forever. Nope. It’s nice to know that I’m the captain of my writing ship, and can change course as needed.
Back to Truly, Madly, Sheeply and this picture. The sharp-eyed among you will notice what’s behind me. That’s my knitting cabinet. Just looking at it makes me happy! It’s full of wool and sheep and dreams of beautiful hand-knitted things to wear and to give to friends and family. Whether I’m knitting or writing, I’m always thinking of the person or reader who will enjoy the end product.
I hope you all enjoy Truly, Madly Sheeply!