When people hear I’m a writer, they always ask how many books I’ve written. A few months ago, I had to stop and count because I’d lost track. Seriously, I really didn’t know. I’ve tried to get better about keeping up with the number of books I’ve written, but the truth is, all that matters is the next book. It’s not about what I’ve done in the past or plan to do in the future. It’s only about now, and the current book.
Okay, for the curious—I just finished A Family Affair: The Return, book #31! Yes, that’s a nice number. It speaks of determination and perseverance, two qualities necessary to start and finish a book.
So, why is it that I don’t have the book number seared in my brain? Because my energy and excitement is focused on the new piece I’m working on. That’s what I see, what I feel, what I sense, and it’s wondrous and magical. The current project lets me immerse myself into something that brings peace and focus. Writing is a great “relaxer” and enables me to look at life, situations, and emotions in an abstract manner through the characters I create.
I’ve dealt with more than one “issue” this way. For example, when my mother was hospitalized and we weren’t certain of the outcome, I wrote about the frailty of aging through Pop Benito, a senior citizens reader favorite in the Truth in Lies series, aka the A Family Affair books. Fortunately, Mom had a great outcome, and Pop did too! Another time, Mom landed in the emergency room with a broken humerus, a few hours before my then-sixteen-year-old daughter was hospitalized with pneumonia. Both were at different hospitals. That’s why I wrote Not Your Everyday Housewife. Those were stressful times, and you can read about it here. The book saved me and gave me new perspective on the turmoil and stress of everyday life. And then there’s The Butterfly Garden, the tale of two sisters and the fall-out from a husband’s betrayal. I could look at each book and recall the personal tale behind the story…
I write about so many situations involving family dynamics and personal relationships, but I don’t have to experience all of them to consider the cause and effect, the fall-out, and the path to a second chance. I only have to think and imagine, and I’m there!
So, what relaxes you? Do you knit, paint, garden, woodwork, bake? And when you’re doing it, is it not the absolute best place in the world to be?!