Happy Holidays to you! I hope that you have some time lined up to rest, to enjoy life, and to spend time with your loved ones. As I sit here with my morning coffee and a delicious eggnog biscotti baked by my mom, I reflect upon the year and realize how much I need a break. I promise to take my own advice and step back to enjoy the things that matter the most over the holidays.
A lot has happened in my author path over the last year. I took a deep dive into a massive makeover and overhaul of my books, my website, my newsletter…all of it. I now have the rebranded Track Trilogy along with a full ‘author toolbox’ behind it. I love how it all turned out. It reflects my voice, the essence of the books, and the core of what I write. I built a wonderful relationship with a cover design team along the way, and reflected the new look throughout my whole author presence.
With that said, I have realized that my custom designed ‘vintage’ print books also have a place in the world! I attended my first in person event since before lockdown, and was a little shocked but thoroughly excited to find a true audience for these creative projects that I poured my heart and soul into. Heavy Metal Horror has a place, and I’ve started to find it!
The most important thing that came out of this massive makeover, and my first in person event in years, was that found my voice. Actually, that’s not quite right. I had my voice. I just didn’t realize it. It was shining through loud and clear for years as I worked hard on writing and producing my books. All of the time spent on working and reworking covers, my newsletter, my website, and my social media streams came to a place where it all came together. People started giving me feedback, saying how Killers and Demons had such a clear look and feel – they definitely know something comes from it when they see it.
I guess then the biggest thing that came from this year was my awareness and belief in my voice. Thank you to all of you for reading my books, my blog, my posts, and supporting me along the way. Without you, none of this would be possible.
As a direct result of all of this, I had the courage to enter Final Track for an award. It came in as a finalist (Top 5) in the 2022 Kindle Book Awards for Horror/Suspense! It was also a semi-finalist for best cover, and it was included in the Readers Choice. This was a huge boost for my belief in my books. I have now entered books in multiple award contests, and will continue to do so. I didn’t have the confidence to do this before.
After the event, I was pumped up and keen to find other events where my books would be a good fit. I found a holiday market in November that fit the bill. I remember looking at my table after it was set up and realizing that I had more than enough books to fill a booth! This year has also brought author swag with a killer new sign, book bags, and pins!
The biggest highlight of my author year has to be my 80s metal party book launch that welcomed Back Track (the third book in my core series) to the world. It was a true collaboration between artists: an author (me) and a band (Lynx). They killed it! My local supporters had an amazing time, and copies of Back Track found their way into eager hands.
And…it doesn’t end there. I was asked to include a story in a special Halloween anthology from which all proceeds went to the Calgary food bank. It was a huge accomplishment for me to be invited to submit a story. Then, in November, I launched my first self-published novella, Dead End Track. Attached to the track series, this beauty stands perfectly on its own feet, and the entire process of writing and producing it provided massive validation to my entire book production process and how much it has evolved!
Some other great stuff happened as well. I took on a volunteer role as the local regional representative for the Crime Writers of Canada. I was able to facilitate a couple of local events where authors did some live readings and sold some books! It felt really good to see how comfortable I have become doing my own readings, and to support and encourage other authors.
As the year neared the end, I found myself deep into writing mode. Book four the the Track Trilogy is deep in the editing phase, and book five has been written (first draft)! 2023, and I have two more novellas in the works. 2023 will see the the track series continue and become more than a trilogy! On that note, 2022 also saw the birth and a complete revamp of the film script for the first book (Final Track). Who knows what will happen in the new year!
Thank you for tuning in today, and for reading my posts. This has been therapeutic for me, looking back on the year from the perspective of my author life. I do hope that you will do the same – take a look at everything you have done this year and be proud of yourself.
Now, it’s time to tune out and enjoy the holidays! Happy Holidays!