4 Days Before Christmas…

It’s just been one of those Decembers.

I was supposed to have a book out already. And it was out. For about 3 minutes. I took it down and have been revising it. Again. I was unhappy with it. It was awful. No matter what I did, I couldn’t figure out how to fix it, how to make it better, so rather than leave it up, I unpublished it and have been revising and rewriting it. It’ll be out before Christmas…

This is a part of writing that’s frustrating. Some stories flow with seemingly zero effort. Other stories are a struggle from the word Go. It’s not that the idea wasn’t there. It was that I couldn’t figure out the right execution. I couldn’t figure out how much or how little to add or leave out. And it’s not that it needed additional thinking time because I’ve been thinking about it for almost 2 years.

Was I overthinking it? Probably. I do that with every story, with every book. And honestly, I am so ready to get it out of my head and off my desk. Sometimes, I think I’m not meant to write holiday stories, that I’m not meant to write Christmas stories… That thought makes me sad. I want to write them. I want to have fun with them. I want to write the holiday stories I can’t seem to find anywhere. This one, though… This one isn’t it.

I’ve been struggling with focus. I’ve been struggling with depression, some sadness…

I’ve also been struggling with anticipation of books that are coming up, things I can’t wait to get back to writing, things I can’t wait to start writing, and things I can’t wait to also get off my desk and out of my head. So many books have been jamming up traffic in my brain for years and I want them out, I want to tell those stories for Lissa Matthews, for Ella Claire, and for a secret pen name I have only told a handful of people about. The anticipation of getting to some of these stories and series is kind of killing my ability to focus on what’s immediately in front of me.

So, that’s kind of where I am right now. I’ve spent the last 6 days since my last post publishing, unpublishing, revising, and rewriting the following book…

Hopefully, if you’re one of the few who purchased this title in the 3 minutes it was available before I unpublished it, you returned it… And if you didn’t, hopefully you’ve got the option on your Kindle turned on that will get you the updated version when I re-publish it.

Here’s wishing you a nice weekend before Christmas…

Lissa

10 Days Before Christmas…

Technically, this happened about 12 days before Christmas, but the sake of this post, ya know… I made some Chocolate Dipped Gingerbread Biscotti. (The recipe came from Southern Living and can be found Here!) I didn’t plate it all pretty for you, but that doesn’t take anything away from how delicious they were!

I haven’t gotten into the holiday baking spirit in a long time. Actually, I haven’t been in the holiday spirit in a long time. I used to love it all, but something shifted and changed and it’s been a struggle for me to find joy in the season, happiness at the holidays, etc…

A few of my neighbors and I get together a couple of times a year for a luncheon and earlier this week, we had our little Christmas luncheon and a few days beforehand, I wasn’t sure what I was going to take. These ladies are all older than me by 20+ years, mostly on special diets (low sugar, no sugar, some sugar, plant based, low sodium), and deeply religious. We don’t have a lot in common in a general sense, but we all like to eat and we all like coffee, so the idea to make biscotti came to mind (they all mostly set aside their diets for the one day).

A number of years ago when Authors After Dark was a thing and I was still plugged into a small portion of romance writing community, I baked biscotti and homemade marshmallows for Stella Price and joined in a Christmas card recipe exchange, and if I remember correctly, I even made biscotti and some homemade marshmallows and took them to one of the Authors After Dark conventions. Those who had what I made really enjoyed them… I haven’t made either of those things since that one year. How sad for someone who loves to bake, loves to make, loves to give that piece of her heart.

When I finished writing a couple of days ago, I made my way into the kitchen and gathered all the ingredients together and made a mess while singing along to Christmas music. It was fun. It was the most fun I’ve had baking in a long, long time and the finished product went over so well. The ladies loved them. I loved baking them. I didn’t even mind the clean up (thank goodness for dishwashers). Ever since, I’ve been thinking about baking and how much I really do love it and how sad I’ve been that I stopped.

I don’t really have people to bake for on a regular basis, but I’m going to get back into it because it brings me a measure of joy that I need in my life.

I’m not plugged into the romance writing community anymore and haven’t been for years, but when I was, those were good days of writing, community, and baking, recipe sharing, and friendship.

What have you baked this holiday season? And if you don’t bake, what is your favorite holiday treat?

Lissa

 

 

Ho-Ho-Ho

So, I’m sitting at my desk… A Balsam & Cedar candle burning, a little 100 year old ceramic Christmas tree lit, and a Hallmark Christmas movie (Two Turtle Doves) on in the background.

And I thought maybe now would be a good time to show y’all the cover for one of the stories I have been chipping away at the last few months.

I don’t know when it’ll be out and I don’t want to speculate. It could be November or December this year, or it could be January. I know I’m supposed to set dates and have goals and to be quite honest, I burned myself out thinking about all of that instead of doing the thing that would really get me anywhere at all and that thing was and is…writing.

The writing doesn’t burn me out.

It’s all the other stuff that comes with the writing as a business that does.

But… That’s not what this post is about. No, this post is about giving us all permission to look at a cute cover, imagine what the story is and who the dapper guy is, and indulge in a little holiday cheer. At least, it’s permission for me to indulge in a little holiday cheer since last year I was moving in December and we didn’t really do any holiday…anything.

I don’t know if I’ll do more than watch a few of my favorite Hallmark Christmas movies and drink some hot cocoa or make a gingerbread latte, but sometimes those few comforts are enough.

The latest news to come from Wall Street is that Billionaire Brett Randolph has bought a small town. Not just any small town, though. Nope. He bought his hometown of Gumdrop Valley.

Now, I know many of you have never heard of Gumdrop Valley before and I hadn’t either, but the story goes that in the Spring, the wildflowers that bloom look just like gumdrops and at Christmas when all the houses are decorated and lit, the town looks like one of those quaint holiday villages people set up on every available surface in their homes. So, when the town was facing bankruptcy and businesses were beginning to close, Mr. Randolph stepped in and purchased all the land in the county along with everything in it.

Gumdrop Valley was saved and with the influx of money and the hiring of advertising and marketing firms by Mr. Randolph to help turn things around, his investment looks like it will pay off by the holiday season.

This isn’t the blurb, this is just a little something I wrote at the beginning of the story…

Anyway, I’m going back to my movie and I’m going to find some breakfast.

I’ll talk to y’all soon.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday!

Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy Holiday season.

More blogs, more plans, more ideas, more books to come in 2020! I hope to see you there!

Lissa

Happy Thanksgiving

If you celebrate Thanksgiving here in America, I wish you a happy and lovely time with good food, good friends, good family, and plenty of good times laughing.

If you’re not in America, I wish you a very happy weekend full of life and love and grand adventures…

Please stay safe wherever you are and know that you are appreciated every day of the year.

~lissa

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