Last post of the year...better make it good.
2011 was a struggle for me. Lots happened. Most of it was amazing. Some of it was annoying.
Now I'm looking forward, moving on.
But before I do, I want to share a couple of 2011 greatest hits.
READY PLAYER ONE by Ernest Cline. It's not going to win awards for being intensely deep, but this was my favorite read of 2011. Fast paced and fun, READY PLAYER ONE was the book I needed to sail out of the reading doldrums I'd been stuck in.
STICK by Andrew Smith. I'm beginning to think he's going to have a book on my list every year. STICK is more than a great book. It's experimental and sweet and the kind of book that you'll want to read again.
EVERYBODY SEES THE ANTS by A.S. King. As a kid who faced bullies during his middle and high school years, this book spoke to me. I've had trouble connecting to some of King's other protagonists, but Lucky Linderman was awesome. And the writing, as usual, was brilliant.
INVINCIBLE SUMMER by Hannah Moskowitz. What can I say? I'm a Hannah fan. She has a way of writing families that makes you ache. And her sophomore effort was better even than her debut, BREAK.
Now that that's out of the way. What am I looking forward to in 2012 other than the end of the world?
PASSENGER by Andrew Smith. Another Marbury book? Yes, please.
GONE, GONE, GONE by Hannah Moskowitz. A gay romance set to the backdrop of the DC sniper shootings? If anyone can do it, Hannah can.
PIECES OF US by Margie Gelbwasser. I've already read her amazing book but I'm dying for others to read it. The story of 4 fractured teens will break your heart.
SOMETHING LIKE NORMAL by Trish Doller. I've been hearing about Trish's book forever and I can't wait to get my hands on it.
KATANA by Cole Gibson. Ninjas? Samurai? Shopping? I've read some of this and can't wait to read the rest.
What books are you waiting for in 2012?
The last bit of business is that the blog and website are going to undergo a major change in 2012. Over the month of January I'll be redesigning my site and changing the focus of my blog. The truth is that I feel I've run out of things to say that are worthy. The thing about blogging is that anyone can do it and few people actually have anything worth saying. I feel I've become one of those people. When I began blogging, it was to chronicle my journey on the path to publication.
Now that I'm published and part of the machine, I don't know that I have anything left to say...or rather the things that I do have to say shouldn't be said. Publishing is a business like any other, and just like I wouldn't blog about the goings on in my day job at an IT professional, it wouldn't be cool to blog about the goings on between my publishers and I.
But that doesn't mean I'm done blogging. Just that I'm going to change my focus. In 2012, I'm going to begin a project. An ambitious project where I'll write a book on-line and publish it like a serial under a Creative Commons license with a 2 chapters per month goal.
My blog and website will have two areas. One for people who just want to enjoy the story. I'll talk more about the story in January, but it will feel more like a television show than a book, because of the medium in which I'm going to tell it. The reader area will have the chapters, info about characters, a place for people to discuss what's happening...stuff like that. The other area will be a writer's area. A place where I'll post the first drafts of each chapters along with notes. How I go to the final draft. My outlines and all the little bits of how I write. The process of every writer is different, so reading self-important posts by other writers about what you should and shouldn't do in a novel are kind of pointless. But maybe by sharing my process, someone out there will find something useful to them.
I was aiming to launch this January 1, but obligations to my publisher and my day job have kept me too busy to keep that schedule. So February 1 is my new launch date.
And that's it. That all I've got for the year. I hope everyone has a safe and happy New Year, and I'll see you back here in January.