By Liz, enjoying some summer vibes from my new patio!
Hi readers! So, today I was actually going to write about boats. Yachts, to be more specific. I’m still celebrating the release of Claws for Alarm, my newest Cat Cafe Mystery, and there’s a really big boat in it with a few celebrities thrown in for good measure.
There’s nothing like a good yacht and some celebrity hijinks to really mess up the harbor on an island. I had a whole thing planned about the time I spent in Newport Harbor trying to find the perfect boat after which to model my boat, studying which boats could have which cool amenities, and figuring out which best suited my needs for my particular celebrities.
But on Tuesday, I had the privilege of doing a Zoom event at One More Page Books with Sherry and Shari Randall/Meri Allen to celebrate all three of our releases (make sure you pick up A Time to Swill and The Rocky Road to Ruin if you haven’t already!) and it was so much fun I had to stop and get a little sentimental. And maybe I’ll write about boats another time.
Like many of us, I haven’t been out much this past year and a half, and the last book event I went to in person was like, two whole years ago. It’s crazy. And in times of high stress, lots of work – books and otherwise – and all kinds of other things going on, it’s easy to get lost in the weeds of all the “have-tos.” Like, I have to write that scene/edit that chapter/make that deadline/do my day job, etc. etc.
But Tuesday night, sitting down for an hour with two of my dearest friends and the lovely Eileen from One More Page and talking about books and writing and all the fun stuff that goes along with it, as well as seeing so many other lovely friends in the audience and on the chat, I took a step back that I hadn’t taken in a long time and remembered how lucky I am to be doing this.
It’s not about “having to make my deadline,” it’s about “getting to do the thing I love.” It’s not about finding the time after a long day, it’s about happily carving out more time from other, less enjoyable tasks to do the thing I’ve dreamt of since I was a little kid. It’s about getting to write books that bring people enjoyment and happiness for a little while. It’s about getting that box of books in the mail and opening it with as much glee as one would a new pair of shoes (okay, maybe a bit more than the shoes, unless they’re Jimmy Choos or something).
I think it’s been easy to forget all the good that comes with this work, with so much going on. It’s never intentional, but you just get into a rut. I used to get out of that rut by seeing my writer friends and readers more often and remembering all the joy.
Today, I’m making a promise to remember that joy more often. I’m changing my inner dialogue to remind myself that writing or editing or page proofing isn’t another task on my to-do list, it’s a privilege and one I’m so, so lucky to have.
Readers, is there something on which you’re working on changing perspectives? Tell me in the comments below for a chance to win a copy of Claws for Alarm!