2022 in Review: Meh

Image by Rosy – The world is worth thousands of pictures from Pixabay

This year, man. It broke my heart. 

2022 started off so incredibly well with the Stoker and Ladies of Horror Fiction nominations and a short story acceptance, and then somewhere around late July it made like the Hindenburg exploded and fell on the Titanic just before it struck the iceberg. 

Obviously, I am forever thrilled to be a Stoker-nominated writer. That’s something 2022 cannot take away from me, even if I never did get my nominee certificate. 

And Tidepool was a successful debut novel by any metric. It sold well. It was nominated for major awards. It was well-reviewed. It got a Notable Novel listing in Ellen Datlow’s The Best Horror of the Year, Vol. 14. It was translated into a gorgeous Spanish edition. I never dreamed my weird little book would get all that.  

But people keep asking me my least-favorite question: When is your next book coming out? And the answer is “I’m trying, OK?” If I was under any illusion that having a successful debut novel and a Stoker nomination would make my work more attractive to publishers and agents, I got my answer pretty decisively: Ha ha, no. It’s been humbling. Maybe I needed to be humbled.

I have The Keeper of the Key on submission to a few different places. I’m hoping one of them will take it, but I’ve had no word yet. The waiting is the hardest part, as the song says.  

Also on submission: The Shadow Dancers of Brixton Hill, a novella I wrote in the spring and absolutely love. Unfortunately, the publishers I’ve submitted it to so far didn’t love it the way I do. I’m hoping to find one that will, but I’m still waiting. 

I’m really grateful for the success I’ve had, but I don’t want to be leaning on Tidepool forever. It seems like I always have more success with sales and other writing achievements in odd-numbered years, so I’m very much hoping that trend continues in 2023. But we’ll see.

And personally, 2022 was a shitstorm. I don’t want to get into too much about this because a lot of it is not my story to tell, but it’s been a long, hard, painful holiday season for several reasons. And these issues are unlikely to resolve any time soon. It’s been very hard to keep my focus and write new things while all this has been happening. 

So there it is. I won’t be sorry to see 2022 in the rearview mirror. May 2023 leave us all in a better place than we were when it first found us. 

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