I mean, to the best of my knowledge, this is what is happening.
Because, honestly, this year.
I no longer have any kind of schedule because everything is so far out of whack. The problem with stacking so many preorders SO close together is, if one slides, it starts an avalanche, and that's kind of where we are now.
(Which is why there is so little scheduled for next year. It's not that I don't plan to write, but I'll be mostly writing without deadlines. Because right now, at this moment in time, the very concept of DEADLINES ratchets up my anxiety and stress like nobody's business.)
Obviously--I mean, I hope it's obvious?--I'm doing my best to complete the final three projects of the year: Body at Buccaneer Bay, The Movie-Town Murders, and Hide and Seek. But I'm not going to offer release dates anymore, beyond saying, I'm going as fast as I can. Having made everyone wait, I'm trying to make sure the books are the best I can make them. I don't want to slop them out just because I'm dreading missing another deadline. I mean, if I was going to do that, I could've put these books out months ago and saved everyone a lot of exasperation.
The good news is, I just got back from two weeks of vacation, and I feel better than I have in, literally, years. Two years, to be exact. So I'm WAY calmer and a lot more optimistic. I'm even, dare I say it, productive. Or at least, I've had a very productive week.
The bad news is, I can't magically fix the mess I'm in as far as missed deadlines and not enough time to do All The Things. I'm tackling the projects before me one at a time. I really, really do not want anything to slip into 2022. But there's a lot to do and we're entering the manic distractions of the holiday season. I'm trying to be optimistic but realistic, which is why I'm making no promises. Or at least, no promise beyond the promise to do my best.
One thing at a time. That's my mantra.
I will say, this is a weird position to find myself in. I mean, I've missed deadlines before, I've been through burn out, I've struggled with anxiety and depression, but I've never been through anything like the past two years. And I know I'm not alone, I know my situation is not unique, I know that the angrier and more frustrated with myself I get, the deeper the hole I dig. I know these things. I accept these things.
The only way out is one word, one sentence, one paragraph, one page at a time. So that's what I'm doing. That's where we are.
Thank you for listening.