Dear Morgan, Don’t Give Up!

Several long-term goals were within my grasp. I had a plan. My confidence was high, twenty-sixteen was the year I’d been dreaming of.


On an overcast night in early February when we took our dogs out to potty before bed. Our big dog, Meg, was already outside on her lead when Molly and I arrived. Meg was so excited to see us that she did three joyous laps around us in a couple of seconds. Before I could step out of the loops made from her lead, a strange sound in the neighbor’s yard distracted Meg and she ran to investigate.

I woke up laying on the concrete patio looking up at the stars and worried about Molly.

Everything Changed

I’d gotten a concussion when I landed on my head on the concrete. Nausea and headaches became normal. When we went to the doctor, my mom told her I’d been speaking a lot of gibberish since it happened. I’d known I’d been struggling with my words but I’d had no clue that I wasn’t making any sense.

I lost six weeks of writing time because I couldn’t focus on anything. Stupidly, I assumed I could just work extra hard for a month or two and my amazing year would continue as planned with only this hiccup to make things interesting.

Before falling I’d planned to finish rewriting Valentine’s Catastrophe before Camp NaNoWriMo started on April first. Then I’d write the rough draft of UnScrooged, a full-length Christmas romance novel, during camp. And after that complete rewrites of my first book, The Fire-Pit, followed by another rough draft of a brand new story.

It quickly became clear this schedule was never going to happen. I couldn’t work for more than a couple of hours a day and barely made any progress. Halfway through camp, I officially changed my goals so I wouldn’t beat myself up for being so far behind schedule.

False Hope

The last week of Camp NaNoWriMo I reached an intense and emotional scene. No matter what I did it wouldn’t come together. Desperate to finish the story, I took a pen and paper outside in the hope that inspiration would strike. Molly came with me. We enjoyed the sunny spring day and while she did fun dog things, I wrote.

By the time Molly wanted to go inside I’d written more than I had in over a week. Excitement and relief surged through me. I was back to my old self!

I woke up early the next day eager to get to work. Two cups of coffee later, I’d only written a couple of sentences and didn’t like either one. By lunch I was blinking back the tears gathering in my eyes.

I hate crying. I hate being weak. Continue reading “Dear Morgan, Don’t Give Up!”

Racked With Doubt

A few months ago, I met Nadia King (memopipwrites) on Instagram. She and I became friends. I love the creative things she posts and how encouraging and funny she is.

I visited MemoPip’s blog back in January. Her most recent post (at that time) What Now? resonated with things I’ve caught myself worrying about. I asked her if I could reblog her post and she said yes. Thank you, Nadia.

Way To Go!

Congratulations, friend, on publishing your first short story in the U.S. That’s an awesome accomplishment. I’m proud of you.


In typical writer-fashion, after Nadia shared her good news with her readers she worried about what was next and if she would successfully publish anything else.

. . . I can’t help asking myself, what next? . . .

I’ve entered a few Australian short story competitions and cross everything, with beginners luck, maybe I’ll be shortlisted for one, or dare I hope for more? My stories have been submitted to literary magazines and I try to sit tight and not chew on my nails too often.

But the most overwhelming question in my mind – what if Disappointment was the only thing I’ve written or will ever write, that will make it? This is the thought that disturbs my nightly sleep.

I believe such worries plague all creatives. Are we good enough? Is what we do of any worth? Will this next piece be bought and sold? What if, (and I say this with all of my heart in my mouth) what if none of this is any good?

Continue reading “Racked With Doubt”

My 2016 Word

Dear Morgan,

I can’t believe 2016 is not only here, but is a little over a week old. One thing I really don’t like about getting older is the time warp phenomenon. Morgan, I know you know what I mean. I have a lot to do this year so let me get right to the point.

Most years I pick a word that summarizes where and how I want to focus my attention for the next twelve months. I didn’t bother for the last two years. One of my favorite authors published a post after Christmas about her word for 2016. Inspired by her story, I decided to choose a word.


Yep, that’s my word and it’s perfect for me.

Back in 2012, I started researching and planning for my first novel, The Fire-Pit. I wasn’t thinking small either. This would be the first book in a series with at least four books. Continue reading “My 2016 Word”

Somewhere Safe

I locked the deadbolt and flicked the regular lock into place, dropped my bag on the chair and sagged against the door. Safe from the insanity outside. For now. How much longer could I cope? There were still six months left on my lease. With a sigh, I pushed off the door and crossed the large single room of my studio apartment to the walk-in closet in the back corner.

“Hello Eric, how was your day?” I shrugged out of my dress clothes and slipped into shorts and a t-shirt. “Are you awake?” I knelt on the closet floor and peered past a crumpled hoodie on the bottom shelf. Continue reading “Somewhere Safe”