It's me. Well, it's you, technically, all grown up. Or as grown up as we wanna claim on a regular basis, which, considering our favorite food is still mac and cheese and chicken nuggets, maybe we'll never officially grow up.
Sometimes we eat ice cream for dinner. That's pretty cool.
Come sit by me. I've got some things to tell you.
First, even twenty years later, you still occasionally make this face. Not so much for funny face pictures anymore, but because sometime things don't go according to plan. We're still cute, though. Promise.
Do you remember that time we were in Barnes & Noble? I think it was that summer before H went to college. We got up early each morning to take mom to work so we could have the car, and we adventured all over. We went to the Sciencenter, to the mall, and made a lot of trips to the bookstore.
Do you remember what you thought that day? You might have even said it out loud.
You said one day, I'm gonna walk into Barnes & Noble and find my name on the shelf.
Brace yourself, kid, because it's actually happening.
You wrote a novel - you've written eight of them, actually - and signed a publishing contract, and tomorrow, that book that you wrote is released into the world. It's the ebook version, the print one doesn't come out until May 15.
But your book is going out into the world. It's going to be on bookstore shelves.
You had a goal, which, at one point, didn't seem attainable, but you worked for it anyway. That's because you don't know how to quit, kid. Trust me when I say you still don't, and I don't think you're ever going to learn. Probably not a bad thing.
I'm not gonna lie, you've got some rough years ahead, and I don't just mean the normal middle and high school year shenanigans. You'll get mono, somehow catch whooping cough, have a mystery pain, and get your wisdom teeth removed. You even eventually have open heart surgery. Which yeah, it's terrifying,
But you do a lot of other really cool stuff before and after. You get to travel. Mom and Dad even let you wander all the way to Wales for, like, four months.
And you play so much soccer.
But the most important thing, kid, is that you didn't give up. There were a lot of people who scoffed at that lofty goal of yours, a lot of people who thought you couldn't do it. And despite all of that, despite sometimes wondering why you kept writing, why you kept trying, you didn't give up.
And that, you mop-headed small child, is something we never grow out of.
It's a long, strange trip from there to here, but it's worth every. Single. Step. And it's definitely worth it for the people you'll meet along the way. Some will encourage you. Some will tell you you can't do it. And some will just let you slog through everything without comment. You'll figure it out.
You'll always figure it out.
And when in doubt, just ask mom for advice. She's got a lot of wisdom she can impart.
But you gotta remember, kid, that in the quiet moments in the middle of the night when no one else was around, it was you who kept going, kept trying, and kept writing. For all those moments when it would have been easy to give up, you didn't.
This was your dream to follow, your goal to get. And you did.
So tomorrow - the release day for LADY OF SHERWOOD - is for you, kid. You never gave up on that dream, and here we are, twenty years later, finally seeing it tangibly come true. Here's to you for saying I want that, and I'm gonna do it one day.
Your one day is here.
Smile. Soak it all in. Have some cake. And maybe, on Tuesday, figure out which new thing you want to reach for next.
Here's to you, kid.
You Future Self
Welcome to 2017! I hope everybody had a safe, happy, and fun New Year's Eve celebration! I spent mine watching Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince while putting together a 750 piece puzzle with my mom. (You can see a picture of it here, on my Instagram.)
I seem to have brought back the super-bug that went through the house, so while I can only breathe through one nostril, I still have a slice of cheesecake from New Year's, and I have as much rooibos tea as I can possibly drink.
But what I really wanted to talk about are some goals I have for 2017
1) Be More Organized
I have a very pretty planner (which has flowers on the cover, which is kind of unusual for me) and I need to start using it more. Like, on a weekly basis. And I need to not forget that I have it.
2) Journal More
I always seem to have a lot rattling around in my head. Some of it is, of course, book and writing related, but a lot of it isn't. A lot of it is just for and about me. And while I like to share things not related to writing here, journaling is a little too personal.
It would also, probably, be cathartic.
3) Be As Brave as The Dunkin Donuts Incident
Long story short, the Dunkin Donuts Incident involved me being exceptionally braver than I usually am and giving my name and phone number to a very cute guy. It didn't pan out - which is okay - but the point is that I did something I would have only thought about doing, but would have never actually done before. So I want to be as brave as I was that morning more often. Even if I might fail.
4) Live Life Wide Open
It's a big, wide world out there and I'm going to see, experience, and live in it as much as I possibly can. There's a reason my life motto is carpe this diem and I intend to keep on doing just that.
It's not a long list, but I think it's a good one. And it should definitely be an adventure.
Hope & Kindness,
The ever-fabulous - and fellow Sommie - Sharon M. Johnston is celebrating the release of her New Adult novel SHATTERED this week! SHATTERED is the second book in Sharon's Open Heart series.
Mishca needs to save her sisters, but only Ryder can save her.
The truth about Mishca’s past shattered her heart. She deals with the pain by focusing on a new mission: saving her newfound family from their creator. With her sisters scheduled for termination, Mishca and her friends set out on a journey up the North Queensland Coast to save them before someone else dies.
Ryder understands the need driving Mischa. It’s in her DNA. But he’s not giving up on the chance they can still be together. She’s the only one to have seen him levitate. The only one to watch the sparks dance across his skin. The only one he trusts enough to know what is in his heart. And now, he might be the only one who can stop Mishca from losing her humanity.
Driven apart by secrets, will they come together in time?
My hands grip the steering wheel so tight my knuckles resemble mini snow capped mountains. I could drive under the truck 200 metres ahead in the opposite lane and end it all. It would be so easily. Accelerate; yank the wheel, and then nothingness. The scenario plays through my mind so vividly I actual wince.
Thanks for stopping by. Browse. Smile. Giggle. And maybe say hi.