There And Back Again – Anne Barwell

At it’s almost the end of another year, I like to look back on the year that was, and forward to the new one.

I always get to the end of the year and wonder at where it went, as I swear they’re going faster these days. I’ve found that one way to put things in perspective is to think back on what I’ve achieved in the year that has just gone, and to make a note of what I’m aiming for in the new one. I’m a big fan of lists, and I guess this is another version of that, but on the plus side it reminds me that I have achieved more than I thought even if I felt as though I spent the year swimming up a steep stream.

I’m going to focus on positive stuff, as we’ve lost far too many people this year, and for me, that includes members of my family too 🙁 And, with news we received this week, the new year is promising more of the same.

2016 was the year for 2nd editions for me. With shifting my WWII Echoes Rising series from Dreamspinner Press to their DSP Publications imprint, that meant the first two books in the series—Shadowboxing and Winter Duet—got re-edited, polished up a bit and republished. Shadowboxing was my second published book with the first edition having come out in 2012, so it was nice to revisit it again.

Re-editing both books was also very useful in re-checking continuity as I wrote the third and final book in the series—Comes a Horseman—this year too. As I tend to average one to two books a year, given that I work full time and have other commitments, I’ve never been writing a book before while the previous ones in the series have been in edits. I kept having to double check where I was in the timeline!

On the flip side of working on historical novels in 2016, I co-wrote Sunset at Pencarrow with Lou Sylvre for Dreamspinner Press’s World of Love series. The novella is contemporary and set in Wellington. I loved working with Lou, and we had a lot of fun conversations while Nate and Rusty looked on, most probably rolled their eyes, and then did what they wanted anyway like all good characters do.

Trying to fit edits, promo, and deadlines into a limited time frame is always a challenge, but I got there in the finish. I figure that’s an achievement in itself considering the other stuff I do that isn’t writing, such as orchestra concerts, SF Club and everything else. And working at the library of course.

I also managed to get through a few books in my review pile, and joined Top2Bottom reviews this month as a guest reviewer. I figure the move is a win-win as it means when I do review those books will reach a larger audience, and it also gives Top2Bottom more reviews for their site. So many good books out there I want to read and not enough time. Occasionally I get the silly idea that I’ll catch up and then reality hits. If someone finds a TARDIS—preferably with a Doctor onboard—send it my way, will you?

2017 is going to be just as busy, if not more so, and I’m already looking at deadlines and thinking ‘yikes’. But along with that feeling, is one of excitement and looking forward to what’s to come.

Sunset at Pencarrow is being released from Dreamspinner in June/July and Comes a Horseman from DSP Publications in August. I see my life being full of edits and lots more promotional blog posts.

I’ve also started work on The Right Note, which is a contemporary romance for Dreamspinner’s Dreamspun Desires series. Lou and I are also aiming to finish our co-written novel, The Harp and the Sea, which is an historical with a dash of magic set in 1745 on Skye.

After that I’m heading back to Astria to write the sequel to A Knight to Remember. I didn’t intend to take so long to finish this series, but unfortunately RL and other books got in the way. I’m looking forward to tying up loose ends and giving Aric and Denys the HEA they’re been waiting for.

Add to that the usual other stuff already in my diary like orchestra concerts, SF club and movie nights, and Armeggedon (the pulp culture expo not the four horseman), and 2017 is looking to be an even busier year than the one preceding it. Finding new anime such as Yuri!! On Ice and Psycho-Pass isn’t helping, but down time is important too, right?

I’ll just sneak in gardening and housework in my spare time! Plus knitting for the new grandchild on the way.

And for something different and exciting I’m going to the NZ Romance Writers conference in August with Gillian St Kevern, as it’s in Wellington this year. That, I suspect, will be the topic of a blog post all on its own.

Wishing you and yours all the best for 2017. *raises glass of sparkling grape juice* I hope it’s a good one for all of us.

3 thoughts on “There And Back Again – Anne Barwell”

    1. Thanks, Lou, and yes busy all around. Kind of torn between looking forward to the busy writing schedule and eep at present 🙂

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