It has been Forever.
Tonight was the beginning.
Tonight was the first time I opened my author email in over 12 months. I wrote a few emails.
This is the first post I've written in nearly twice as long.
Instead of dipping my toe in the water, I am going to try diving in and hope I remember how to swim soon.
My writing has been sluggish - I'm still in recovery mode after last year. This week I am approaching the one year anniversary of my aunt's death, the 11 month anniversary of my mom's death. There is a huge span of time in there that is just a jumble of chaotic nonsense and not much else.
BUT, the urge to write has been strong this month - probably my Mom and Aunt's way of kicking me in the ass and telling me to get on with things.
In the last few weeks, I've been getting myself back into the Ancients groove. By re-reading my own series - so I can reconnect with my inner-Kat-sparkle. I love that crazy witch and her Broomriding crew.
While the words for #6 - Hidden - haven't been making it to paper with any regularity this past year, the stories have continued to evolve and develop. I have lots more Ancients to share with all of you, and Kat & Crew will return in full, glitter-filled splendor.
Hidden is about half completed, so I have a ways to go. I apologize that my time away has been long and that you've had to wait, and will have to wait still a while longer. I just simply haven't had the focus I needed to give the attention needed to Marcus and Elysse's story.
I do not have a date yet. I will post updates on the progress to the Facebook page.
For those of you who do not follow the Facebook page, a copy of my 2017 FB post explaining the events of the last year is posted below.
Thank you for your patience. I am seriously going to attempt to re-engage with all of you who love the Ancients. It is time.
Thanking God for The Sparkle
I’ve needed to post this update for a while, but finding the time and the energy to do so has been beyond me. Gathering my thoughts and putting them into words was something I was avoiding. This definitely isn't polished or beautiful but it is time...
After spending a lot of time on Spring Break working on Hidden, I was optimistic that I was back on track to completing Book #6 in a reasonable time. On the Sunday we returned from that trip, our family was called to the hospital and informed of my aunt’s cancer diagnosis. The prognosis wasn’t good. I wasn’t ready to lose her. Her world became much of my focus for the four months that followed. Two weeks before Nanners’ death, my mom became too ill to continue her care. We were blessed to be able to bring Nanners to our home and spend the last two weeks with her here, loving her until the end. On July 13th, Nanners lost her battle with cancer.
This woman was my Nanners – my mother’s sister, the woman who I’d always had a special bond with. She was my second Mom, the one who always understood me, particularly in those moments when my mom didn’t. Nanners was the first to chew my ass if she felt I needed it, and my biggest defender if anyone else mistakenly believed they had the right to do the same. Through my childhood, all the tough years, and all the incredibly blessed years that followed, Nan was there.
The only thing that made losing Nanners survivable was knowing the Lord had a place for Nan. Nanners didn't grow up knowing the reality of God's love, but about a year before her diagnosis, she’d become a passionate believer. Her burgeoning relationship with God was the strongest testimony I had ever witnessed regarding the transformative impact of God's love on our lives when we passionately pursue him. In a short time, Nan's love for God and faith in Him had become that which could move mountains.
Following Nan’s death, my Mom’s health progressively deteriorated. She was diagnosed with a compression fracture in her spine, and we initially attributed much of the failure to recover due to her depression over her sister’s death. On August 4th, Mom became so weak that we had to admit her to the hospital. That night, we found out that she also had cancer.
Mom’s preliminary diagnosis was hopeful. Unlike my Nanners, it appeared this cancer was highly treatable. But the week that followed was a roller coaster ride of awful. By mid-week, we found out that the cancer had spread to Mom’s spine and skull. On Friday, August 11th, she made the decision to cease all medical treatment. Mommers died peacefully on August 13th. Exactly one month after her sister.
Mommers touched so many lives with her generous spirit and big heart. She’d always been a woman of faith and was completely at peace. My Dad died when I was only a few years old – he was the love of her life. The day before she died, Mom gripped my hands tight and smiled, telling me she was excited because it had been 40 years since she’d seen last seen Dad.
Knowing she has been reunited with my Dad brings a whole lot of sunshine to these bad days. I cannot imagine how I am going to do life without Mommers, but knowing her newfound happiness in Heaven will help guide me to my own here.
I’ve always loved having a personal connection with the people here who read the Ancients books. I’ve connected with so many of you through the years and so many of you who have joined me on this adventure with the Ancients have become more than mere fans of the series. I love that you love Kat & crew, and the connection we share because of it. So I am oversharing these details of our family tragedy.
I am not bemoaning my fate, or complaining that life has just sucked. Through the horrid mess of 2017, my faith has grown stronger and my love for God has deepened. These things will continue to weave their way into my writing. In each book, there has generally been some thread of real life circumstance, some lesson I’ve learned, or truth I’ve encountered. Hidden will be no different. The tragedies surrounding these characters have forged strength of character, bonds, love, and faith.
Hidden was always a story about a female who found strength through tragedy, and became more than she ever thought possible, more than anyone could have envisioned, in spite of the circumstance that could have destroyed her in the beginning.
This book will be my tribute to Mommers and Nanners – two of the strongest women I’ve ever known.
I do not have much energy to write, but there is a lot of pent-up Kat-sparkle demanding to be released. I need the Realm and I know returning to it will go a long way towards pushing off the cloudy, blah days. It may be a couple of months before I dive deep into Hidden. In the weeks that come, I’ll endeavor to keep in contact and keep you up to speed.
Life is tragic, and ugly, and horrid…
And it is beautiful and amazing, full of wonder and miracles.
But I am blessed beyond measure.
And I’m thanking God for sparkle. Every. Single. Day.