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When I think back, I’m sure I’ll remember 2013 as the year my husband and I published Unravelled – what an adventure that has been and I’m planning to do it all again this year with Lies Told in Silence! 

Beyond that accomplishment, 2013 was a year of meeting many new people on Facebook, Twitter and A Writer of History and a year of reading more books than any other year I can recall. Some of these books emerged from the top authors of the 2012 historical fiction survey. Others came from being a reviewer for the Historical Novel Society. A number were book club selections and recommendations from family, friends and blogs I follow. Most were historical fiction although a few non-fiction and general fiction crept in.

What strikes me is that I learned something from each and every one of them. My copies, whether electronic or not, are full of notes and underlined passages – a particularly beautiful scene, a well drawn character, a lyrical passage, a subtle moment of tension, a unique way of describing someone, a seamless flashback, strong dialogue, effective voice. Then there are notes about too many adverbs, slow pacing, telling rather than showing, awkward phrasing, too much historical detail, inconsistent voice and so on.

A lightbulb goes on: I’m learning from what works and what doesn’t work. Here’s to further learning in 2014, enhanced friendships with the writing community, more connections with readers, attending my very first HNS conference, interesting insights from 2013’s historical fiction survey and another exciting book launch.

Here’s to all of you who have encouraged me, connected with me, shared a laugh, given advice and offered support! Wishing you the very best and a HAPPY NEW YEAR!!