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Thursday, January 2, 2014

Triumph, trials, and blessings ... looking forward to 2014

My email reminder that I had a blog post due on January 2nd was a surprise. The post was on my calendar; I should have known it was coming. But I didn't. So, I was trying to decide what to write about for January 2nd and "A Year in Review" seemed like it had to happen. Blog post at the beginning of a new year--who wouldn't write a post that reviewed their year?

The sticking point (and there's always a sticking point) is that I'm a private person and my year in review requires me to mention some personal things. I hemmed and hawed and even created other new posts in my mind, but a new year is all about facing things that scare you, so here it goes.

{deep breath}

2013 in Review

By all public measures, 2013 was a fantastic year. The triumphs part of the year is pretty obvious. Professionally, I went from having ZERO books published in 2012 to having two books published in 2013. And, A Promise for the Baby is out this month, Weekends in Carolina is scheduled for June and I'm writing book five (Book five! Can you believe it?). It seems like I went from being just another person pounding the keys to having books in Walmart overnight.

The trials part of the year is less public, and yet also painfully obvious. While I was publishing romances, my marriage fell apart. This also seems to have happened overnight (though like writing, I'm sure it took time and effort). I have been having to learn to talk and think about myself in a different way and I have not always been successful at it.

But the trial also comes with blessings. I am surrounded by really wonderful people. Before this year, I would have been able to say they were great, but I'm not sure I really felt how blessed I was in every atom of my body and down to the very core of my soul. I know that now. I hope it's a lesson I don't forget when all of this passes.

Looking forward to 2014

What does this mean for me in 2014? I'm sure there are still lots of changes to be had. I'm learning how to be by myself. The opportunities and challenges of my new life are tied up in one another; I hope to be worthy of them both. Professionally, while at times it has been hard to sit down and write about two people falling in love, writing and reading romance has been a constant reminder that I do believe in love and the joy of sharing your life with another person.

I don't make New Year's Resolutions, but I'm toying with the idea of one this year. I'd like to be better about concentrating on my blessings and less on my struggles. Congratulate myself more on my successes and castigate myself less on my failures. Be a kinder, gentler person both to myself and to others. That seems a worthy goal. I'm not sure how to measure it, but it is something I can reach for. If anyone has suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

So, what about you? Share your triumphs, trials, blessings, and hopes for 2014. We can count those blessing together.


  1. The year 2013 was a full one for us. Our 25-year-old granddaughter got married; our 19-year-old grandson joined the Marines; and sadly, my brother passed away. All of this happened in the month of June. However, it was a good year in so many ways. I exceeded my goal of 100 books to read/review at Goodreads and joined up to be a reviewer for the blog, bookworm2bookworm. We went on a family cruise with our son, DIL and two grandchildren. It was a blast! I’m hoping that 2014 will be a good one. I worry about our country and hope that we don’t experience any tragedies this year. I pray for peace everywhere.

    1. Connie--

      It sounds like you had a very eventful June! Congratulations on your grandson and granddaughter. I am sorry about your brother. Also congratulations on reading so many books! I hope they were mostly good ones.

  2. Jennifer,
    I wish you much happiness and success in 2014. You are such a lovely person and deserve the best. :)

    Hmm… My year in review… Bathroom remodeled. Yay! Attended RT in Kansas City & RWA in Atlanta. Had dinner with a reader and her friend in Atlanta & it was so fun. Lady Vivian Defies a Duke earned a starred review from PW! Sold 2 more books to Sourcebooks. My editor moved to a different job. Aw, man! Got a new editor I've known since I started with Sourcebooks & I've always loved working with her. Woo hoo! My son took driver's ed and got his permit. Yikes. We've had several academic challenges with him in school this year. My daughter has been dealing with mean girls in school, too. Definitely the hard part of parenting. We've all been healthy & after a health scare with my father-in-law, all is well. I think that's one of the biggest blessings.

    1. Samantha,

      "We've all been healthy & after a health scare with my father-in-law, all is well. I think that's one of the biggest blessings."

      Yes. Good health is a blessing and I don't think we appreciate it enough.

      Thank you for the best wishes.

  3. Oh Jennifer. I'm so sorry. My first year in publishing was really hard on my marriage for reasons that had nothing to do with me getting published, but it was an extra stress. I feel for you and wish you all the best! Hugs.

  4. I'm sorry for your struggles. Congratulations on two books published, how wonderful! I hope you've found support within the writing community.

  5. Jennifer...I too am sorry for your struggles. I love your resolve to focus on the positive; and there are many for you and your looking forward to the New Year!
    2013 was one of the most challenging but amazing years; after many, many years of fertility struggles, I became pregnant with twins. My pregnancy has been riddled with lots of complications but I'm focusing on the positive. 16 weeks of bedrest allowed me to reinvest myself in my writing and launch my ePublishing career...
    For 2014, I want nothing but the health and well-being of my baby girls and son. : )

    Happy New Year!!!

    1. Happy New Year, Christi!

      Best of luck with your pregnancy and the health of your babies. I look forward to following their progress on Lady Scribes!

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