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This year has been complicated. In fact, right now, I’m waking up to the dawn of a new year in one time zone while it is still the previous year in the time zone where I actually live. I’m in between 2018 and 2019 and it’s an interesting time to look back and also to look forward, I think.

Matthew has been talking to me about what drives me. His perspective is valuable to me, not just because of who he is to me as a partner but also because he can observe objectively and provide shrewd insight.

We both agree that I am driven to continually accomplish and achieve, so much so that I run myself ragged. With every story, every deadline, I think if I can just finish this or hit that deadline, I’ll be happy. But then I immediately dive toward the next goal, writing the next story and hitting the next deadline. Where was the happy?

I agree with Matthew that I need to celebrate more. Savor. Be happy about what I’ve accomplished.

What did I do in 2018?

  • Moved from Phoenix to Seattle
  • released Total Bravery
  • turned in Fierce Justice
  • turned in Forever Strong
  • released Siren’s Calling
  • signed a 4 book deal with Sourcebooks
  • recorded 20 Minute Delay with Gail Carriger
  • featured author at Coastal Magic Convention
  • survived pneumonia, again
  • panelist at RWA national conference
  • survived medical challenges
  • instructor and staff on the Writing Excuses workshop and retreat cruise
  • panelist at Emerald City Writers Conference
  • featured author at Fresh Fiction Readers ‘n Rita’s

There’s more, though those are the highlights. Every book has an entire cycle of draft/edit/revision involved. Every convention or conference has preparation.

I also did all of this in parallel to my day job. I did this while Matthew was away on orders. I managed to keep Corbin and myself fed and in reasonably good health. I even improved both our physical fitness levels. I faced depression and anxiety, learned to recognize what they were doing to me, and am taking steps to navigate through.

That’s awesome. Looking back on 2018, it was a lot of accomplishments in the face of a number of challenges behind the scenes and I did some great things.

Looking forward?

I have hopes and dreams. I have ambition.

I want my writing career list to be more focused on actual writing.

I am exploring new genres.

I am trying to remember to celebrate with each accomplishment and enjoy each burst of happiness as I go.

Whew! It’s been a while. I had some serious deadlines taking priority and unfortunately, other things got put on hold. But I’ve turned in my latest manuscript and plan to clear my head by working on the next #EMEPiper podcast and a few Piper Note videos.

Check in over the coming weeks too, because there’s a couple of fun things to share coming down the pipeline. 😉

The year 2014 flew right by me in a whirl of book releases (as PJ Schnyder), new series proposals, and exciting book deals (as Piper J. Drake).

Even though I’ve only existed as Piper J. Drake since September of 2014, I’ve been very busy.

  • 3 book deal with Carina Press for a new romantic suspense series
  • 3 book deal with Grand Central Publishing’s Forever imprint for a new romantic suspense series
  • turned in book 1 of the new romantic suspense series with Carina Press to my editor

tweegramWhew. And 2015?

I’m not one for New Year’s Resolutions.

And let’s face it. No matter how quickly a year seems to fly by, a year is a long time and things can change. So a year long resolution might not be applicable 6 months in. Setting my goals on a quarterly basis gives me time to reassess and set new goals completely applicable to what I want to accomplish. How I set them, what they are…that’s probably the topic of a podcast.

Goals aside, I have made commitments.

Those, I need to meet and they give a pretty decent snap shot of what I’ll be up to this year.

So what’s in store for 2015?

  • turn in book 1 of the new romantic suspense series with Grand Central Publishing Forever imprint to my editor*
  • turn in book 2 of the new romantic suspense series with Grand Central Publishing Forever imprint to my editor
  • turn in book 2 of the new romantic suspense series with Carina Press to my editor*
  • Edits, promotion, and celebration for the RELEASE of book 1 of the series with Carina Press in November
  • create more Piper Travels and Piper Notes on my YouTube channel
  • consistently produce episodes for my new podcast – Every Minute, Everywhere: Time Management for Authors with Piper J. Drake
  • fulfill commitments as my alter-identity, PJ Schnyder

*Note: my editors for Carina Press and Grand Central Publishing are two different, very talented people. I am incredibly excited to work with each of them.

What are you up to in 2015?

PlanningI’m writing this weekend. Madly writing with a daunting word count goal for each day. I’ve got tasks in my Any.Do app for my goals and my deadlines highlighted in brilliant red on my Google Calendar with automated reminders set to email me as they get closer.

Looking forward to 2015, I’ve got the most contractual deadlines of my career so far. It’s exciting! It means I have books coming out!

As wonderful as it is, it’s also intimidating. And I was starting to approach my planning for 2015 with trepidation. Not a positive way to look at projects.

Then, Katee Robert pinged me with something so very shiny. And practical. And perfect.

She was getting a day planner. Very practical. And oh, but what a day planner (click here to check it out). The ideas presented with this day planner of colorful stickers and washi tape and pieces of scrapbooking paper…it was an explosion of colors, designs, and fun. My creative side bubbled up in glee at all the possibilities.

Suddenly, planning for 2015 was fun and exciting. You bet I purchased a planner too, complete with colorful stickers. I’ll dig out my scrap booking stash and put it to good use rather than letting it languish tucked away in my storage unit. So many happy things …completely non-digital.

Out of character for me, possibly. But I think a change of pace for my usual techno-gadget self is a good thing. 😀