The Best Laid Plans
Thoughts and Plans for 2013
By Anne Elisabeth Stengl
By Anne Elisabeth Stengl
I've learned, to my cost, that making resolutions for the New Year is one of the more useless exercises in my life. For instance, in 2009, I really wanted to make my New Year's resolution, "Sell my first novel to a publishing house." But I looked at that and thought to myself, "That's silly. Who can control such a thing? You can't make editors look at a manuscript, and you can't make them like it. You need to resolve something you have some control over."
So I resolved to dust off the fairy tale retelling I'd been poking away at for the last several years and finish it in 2009. Seemed a good plan.
Only, a few months later, I got a call from my agent that my first novel, Heartless, had sold, and my new publishing house wanted two more sequels in close succession, and could I do them each in about six months?
I haven't looked at that fairy tale retelling of mine since. And I kicked myself for not making the "official" resolution selling my novel because, I mean, wouldn't that look awesome as a resolution achieved?
So the next year, 2010, I decided to aim my sights a little bit lower, not resolve anything writing-related at all. The writing world is too out-of-my-hands anyway, so what's the point? Thus, as a one-time classical pianist, I resolved that I would learn three Chopin preludes and/or nocturnes in 2010.
Instead, I met the love of my life, got caught up in a whirlwind romance and engagement, planned a wedding, and got married, while spending two months right in the middle of all this writing an entire manuscript. I didn't even look at Chopin preludes, much less learn any!
You see my history here. These two are the most dramatic examples, but there have been others. For 2012, I made myself an intense reading list. As a former English Lit. major, I felt confident I could handle it! So I put together ten classics in a list and resolved to read them all. However, I realized partway through that the most cheerful book on this list was Victor Hugo's ENORMOUS Les Miserables. Um . . . .
After about two months of readerly depression, I abandoned the list and haven't looked back.
Thus, my plans and resolutions for 2013 are about as flexible as any you ever saw! I plan to read a great deal, but most of the books on my TBR pile are purely for my own fun and enjoyment. The last several years I have written at least one full novel and another half-novel, and I hope to maintain that trend this year . . . but I’m not resolved to it officially.
Heaven forbid I make it any resolutions! I know I'll get sidetracked if I do.
Author Anne Elisabeth Stengl
Anne Elisabeth Stengl makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a passel of cats, and one long-suffering dog. When she's not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and studies piano, painting, and pastry baking. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University. She is the author of HEARTLESS, VEILED ROSE, MOONBLOOD, and STARFLOWER, with DRAGONWITCH due to release in 2013. HEARTLESS and VEILED ROSE have each been honored with a Christy Award.
When a cursed dragon-witch kidnaps the lovely Lady Gleamdren, Eanrin sets boldly forth on a rescue mission...and a race against his rival for Gleamdren's favor. Intent upon his quest, the last thing the immortal Faerie needs is to become mixed up with the troubles of an insignificant mortal.
But when he stumbles upon a maiden trapped in an enchanted sleep, he cannot leave her alone in the dangerous Wood Between. One waking kiss later, Eanrin suddenly finds his story entangled with that of young Starflower. A strange link exists between this mortal girl and the dragon-witch. Will Starflower prove the key to Lady Gleamdren's rescue? Or will the dark power from which she flees destroy both her and her rescuer?