Farewell 2014, Hello 2015!

2014 was a banner year and I almost hate to see it over, but can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store.

The year started with some unexpected, but greatly appreciated help that opened a door to a whole new world. Rachel Aukes was the key of knowledge and experience that not only unlocked the door, but gave me a push. I will be forever grateful for her shared experiences and introductions to people and places.

Through Rachel I met Dana Beatty, king of publicity in the Iowa sci-fi and fantasy convention world and his lovely wife, Jill. With her recommendation he added me to the list of writers he graciously spends his free time promoting.

At last year’s Ankeny Author Fair I met another key, one who’s work I’d admired from afar, The Slaughterer of People on the Page, Tamara Jones. I’d attended an appearance by Tammy years ago—sponsored by what has evolved into the Saturday Writers—now, I’m lucky and honored to call her friend.

Because I took that step—or stumble, after Rachel pushed me—I was welcomed into a new community. Not only the sci-fi fantasy community, but a community of writers here in the great state of Iowa and a couple from across the boarder in Nebraska. They are fabulous caring and sharing people. People I admire for their talents and aspire to continue passing knowledge and help forward. They know who they are, but Dennis Green, Jed Q. Peterson, Aaron Bunce, Lettie Prell, Terri M. LeBlanc, Maria Watson and Adam J. Witlatch are a few of the wonderful writers and bloggers I met and you should check them out.

2014 also brought changes on the home front. We—by that I mean the Breadwinner, with a tiny bit of help from me—finished the outdoor fireplace and pizza oven project. The backyard, aka Paradise, is one step closer to being the perfect getaway.

I was also lucky enough to tag along with the Breadwinner to New York. What an experience, so many people, so much noise, so many things to see. Total sensory overload. The biggest thing that will stick with me forever is the 9/11 museum. I know it’s my job to put things into words, but I can’t do it justice. It’s something everyone must experience for themselves. The pain, the sorrow, the fear and the anger. Being there has left a heaviness in my soul that can only be eased by my belief in our great nation and the people who live here.

On a lighter note, we did see On The Town and had dinner with a member of the orchestra. A delightful evening was had by all. Both the Breadwinner and I love the arts, but his background in theater made the night extra special.

Our travels wrapped up with a visit to family and friends in northern Iowa. It was nice to catch up over the holidays with everyone back home. And 2014 wrapped with our traditional seafood feast on New Year’s Eve as we watched the countdown to 2015.

All in all, 2014 was a pretty great year and I’m excited about 2015.

I’ve already made plans to attend the Ankeny Authors Fair and Icon 40. I also have a few plans for my Meadowites and changes on the website, including more chat about cosmetics, possibly some step by step tutorials and Q&A sessions. Book 4, in the Fey Creations series, is in the works. No, it doesn’t have a title, but I’m sure something will come to me. With any luck I’ll also have  some of the background stories of various characters finished. So, yes, 2015 will be a busy year.

I wish all of you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2015.