Suckers for Tortured Monster Souls
Giveaways ... Young Adult Fantasy Novel or otherwise!

And so this is Christmas...

 XmasEvery year (for more years than I will admit to) I dread hearing that Lennon song that goes,

"And so this is Christmas,
And what have you done?
Another year over, 
And a new one just begun."

Why? Well, for one thing, I'm not a big Lennon / Beatles fan. (Go ahead, chuck a few messy things at me. I'll wait.)

(Wiping tomatoes off my face...) The main reason that song irks me is because of my own shortcomings. I mean who wants to be reminded that another year has gone by and you still haven't accomplished a particular goal or goals? For me, every time heard that song, I would think of the novel I've worked on for so long. Sure, I needed to develop the confidence to finish. Sure, having two kids and a job means time is at a premium. Still, it was a thorn in my side every year. 

Not so, this year! Bring it on, John! I might have just made it in under the wire for 2011, but I did do something this year. Treehugger, the novel, is out! As in, finished...up for sale...not nagging at me like a invisible tack. What an odd feeling. Of course, finishing this thing leads to a whole new list of things to accomplish. But I'm not going to think about those things now. 2011 is ending, 11 happens to be my favorite number, so I'm good. 

Anyway, I figure that when you accomplish something, it's good to look back at what you learned from the experience. So what have I learned? Self-confidence is critical in life and I have gone too long without it. Having finally found it, at least when it comes to Treehugger, I have to ask myself, "how?" How did I finally acquire it? Friends were helpful, that's for sure.  Any of those people who are reading this know who you are. I think that, maybe, having the ability to take things into my own hands through Amazon's indie author offerings helped as well. I didn't have to keep stopping and waiting for someone else to approve my story, my writing, my ending, my cover, my marketing plans. If I second- and third-guessed something, it was my gut telling me to do it. When you suddenly have all those responsibilities in your hands, you have to either drop it and run away or run with it to get to your destination before it all gets too heavy. And I think faith has something to do with finishing this book, too. I really wanted this. Prayed on it, begged to have it. As a result, this was the one story that I could not drop. No matter how much time went by after I had given up, no matter how "don" I was, the characters and story would always come back to nag at me. 

And so this is my Christmas. Treehugger is a gift from me to myself. Perhaps a gift from above to me.  To celebrate, I will be announcing a book giveaway (print or ebook) here on my blog in the next couple of days. So keep an eye out! And start thinking about what you have done this year, big or small, monumental or teensy, because that will have something to do with the giveaway!

In the mean time, I'm going to go listen to some Lennon and Beatles tunes to try and gain an appreciation......psyche! (Sorry Mike, Jen, Dina)