Like all writers (and humans!), I have moments of jealousy. Sometimes when I see someone post a glowing review of their book from Publisher’s Weekly, I think: I wish I could get reviewed by PW. I want my first thought to be: That’s terrific. I’m so happy for you. I don’t want to be jealous or ungrateful or negative. Those kind of thoughts can end up in a spiral, so I’m currently trying to retrain my brain, especially for how I think and feel about a certain family member. Read more →
As a thank you to readers who’ve supported me and made it possible for me to write full time—and in celebration of my birthday—I’m offering all five Detective Jackson books on Kindle and Nook for $.99 for the month of July. If you own another type of reader and want to take advantage of this offer, contact me. Read more →
Watching your digital book sales climb is exhilarating. Seeing them fall is heartbreaking and confusing. “What changed?” you ask yourself, feeling panicked. Did I slack off too much on blogging? Or forget to post in the forums? Did I take this success for granted for 24 hours? Frantically, you try to recreate the right combination of effort and luck that made it happen. Read more →
Have you set aside a novel in progress because it was just too hard to write at that point in time? I just did. The futuristic thriller is on hold and I’m back to working on the fifth book in my Detective Jackson series. I feel so relieved. I still plan to write THE ARRANGER (set in 2023), but I’m not in the right space to do it now.
It’s hard for me to admit something is too challenging, but that’s the truth of this situation. Because I’m still a full-time freelance editor, Read more →
Lately, strategies for happiness have been in the news, and I’ve adopted them to my benefit. Two prominent ideas have a common theme. The first is to stop complaining. Completely. No exceptions. You train yourself to do this by wearing a band on your wrist. Every time you complain, you have to move it to the other wrist. The goal is to go 21 days without complaining—or moving the band. I’ve never made it 21 days (because some whining is cathartic!), and I stopped wearing the band (it’s summer!). But I keep doing the mental checks. It’s very productive in controlling negative thought cycles.
A second secret to happiness, which has been promoted recently in articles by psychologists and counselors, is to be grateful everyday. They say the strategy is most effective when you write down, everyday, the things you are grateful for (more listmaking!). The theory is that feeling grateful is a clear path to happiness. And it works by keeping your thought processes in a positive mode.
Then if you throw in the concept from the popular self-help book, The Secret, the formula for happiness is this: Stop complaining, express gratitude every day, and ask the universe for what you want.
The universe has not yet given me everything I want, but I have everything I need and I’m happy in my effort to go out and get the rest for myself.
PS Here is my gratitude list for the day: great family (husband especially), good health, flexible lifestyle, readers who love my work. What are you grateful for? What keeps you happy (and sane)?