2015 was a good year in many ways for me. It brought much pleasure and achievement, much laughter and good times.
I continue to live in south east Queensland, one of the most beautiful parts of Australia. I live in a rural community, in a house perched on the side of a hill with views forever (that’s the view above on a misty morning). The joy and inspiration this setting brings cannot be underestimated. I love the sub-tropical climate, the ability to grow my own vegetables and source much of what we eat from local small producers. So much better than the mass production supermarkets, with their dubious ethics and lack of accountability.
Our major holiday plan for the year–a month in the deserts of outback Queensland and the Northern Territory travelling some of the remotest areas in an already remote country were put on hold. 2015 was also the year my mother died, and outback Queensland became a hasty trip to Canada to spend time with her. I’m so very glad I went. Outback Queensland will always be there. The people we love, unfortunately, are not.
2015 was a different year for me in writing, one in which I stretched myself again and accomplished something that was a long-held writing goal, but one I’d never really attempted: writing longer-length stories. My first novella Never-Tied Nora was accepted by Ylva Publishing and came out on 2 December. This therefore was also my first time working in-depth with an editor. With short stories, editors, for the most part, send through edits on a story, you accept or reject them, end of process. But with Never-Tied Nora the marvelous Jove Belle worked with me over several weeks, which was an amazing experience. I’m not entirely sure how the 5-10K words she told me to add turned into an additional 14K… Wait! Yes, I remember, it was because of a bug in MS Word that deleted spaces between words and so I was fooled into thinking I’d written less than I had. But ha ha, the story is the better for it.
Importantly, attempting longer works gave me back the joy of creating and putting words down. I hadn’t lost it completely, but I had lost a lot of motivation. That’s now back in barrel loads.
You can enter a Goodreads giveaway right now to win a paperback copy of Never-Tied Nora.
2015 also saw me complete the follow up to Never-Tied Nora. As soon as I publish this post, I’ll be doing my final-final-final checks on the manuscript of my first full-length novel, Not-So-Straight Sue and sending it off to Jove. That will be published by Ylva in June 2016 as the second in my Girl Meets Girl series.
I also edited my second anthology in 2015. First: Sensual Lesbian Stories of New Beginnings came out in September from the ever-awesome Ladylit Publishing. Once again, it was my privilege to work with a string of fantastic writers who trusted me with their stories. Anthology editing is such fun (and such hard work). Hey, there’s also a giveaway going on on Goodreads to win a paperback copy of First.
I didn’t abandon short stories either. Some of my short stories were included anthologies put out by Ladylit, most notably the mini anthologies with the same five writers: Harper Bliss, Lucy Felthouse, Laila Blake, Erzabet Bishop and myself. This year saw the release of Opposites Attract and Christmas Kisses (don’t think you need to read it at Christmas to enjoy it).
I also have a story in Summer Love: stories of lesbian holiday romance also put out by Ladylit. And finally, after a long delay in publication, one in Three of Hearts: erotic romance for women edited by the wonderful Kristina Wright
Of course, if you enjoy my short lesbian erotica and romance, I hope you will check out my collections. My best short works are collected into Blue Woman Stories Volume 1, Blue Woman Stories Volume 2, and 2015 saw the release of Blue Woman Stories Volume 3. All of them are put out by Ladylit, and there’s 5 romantic and sexy stories in each volume.
I also did a fair bit more editing in 2015, most notably a couple of novels for Harper Bliss. At the Water’s Edge and Once in a Lifetime both ended up reaching #1 on Amazon in lesbian fiction. Congratulations, Harper!
All in all, I’m pretty happy with how my writing went in 2015.
Looking ahead to 2016, there’ll be two more novels in print from me (the first being Not-So-Straight Sue in June), and two more to write. I’m still writing short stories, so hopefully, there will be more short works in anthologies over the year. I’m also considering self-publishing a collection of my short lesbian romance stories, with maybe 15 stories. Whether I get that off the ground depends entirely on how much time I have. Real life intrudes at times, and while filing taxes and dusting cobwebs aren’t as pleasant as writing, they do make life more pleasant, especially where the Australian Tax Office is concerned. I will also be editing for others in 2015, which is its own pleasure.
I hope you had a good 2015. Here’s to us all in 2016.