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Sunday, December 1, 2019

DECEMBER 1, 2019 - A Look Back

Post by Doris McCraw
writing as Angela Raines


I find it hard to believe it's December 1, 2019, already. It seems like just yesterday that I was making plans for the upcoming year and here the year is almost over.

So what became of those plans? I don't know about you, but when I look back I'm surprised at how the year turned out. Did I succeed in those plans? Well, yes and no.

1. When it came to writing, my goal was to have a novel and a short story published. I am happy to say, I did succeed. Of course, I had started writing the novel in 2018 much like I am writing the 2020 novel now. The challenge for 2020 is the novel needs to be about twice as long as I normally write. I am enjoying the challenge but it is taking a lot longer to write with a lot more twists and turns.
     The short story was published, along with the other wonderful stories in the anthology "Hot Western Nights", I was so honored to be included and enjoyed reading all the other stories in the book.

2. I decided I would fulfill my desire to have my first novella, "Home for His Heart" out in an audio form.  It looked like that wouldn't happen with so many obstacles in my way. I have ended up working more hours this year, including being called back to work at the second job I'd left about a year and a half ago. I am glad to say, the extra hours are helping to pay for the studio. After my first day in the studio, half the story is now recorded. I will finish recording next week if all goes as planned. (It felt good to be in the studio again, just this time it's for a book instead of music.)


3. I truly wanted to be further along on the book about Colorado's Women doctors, however, that has not happened. I am currently working on rewriting a paper that is an overview of what the book can be. I plan to try to get it published in 2020.

4. I had a surprise request for an article earlier this year and was able to write about a four thousand word piece on Women, Custer, and the Westward expansion. Fortunately for me, I have been researching a lot of that information with my work as Helen (Hunt) Jackson and her writings on the Indians. For those who might be interested, it was published by 'Saddlebag Dispatches'.

5. I wanted to be able to sell my home and move to a smaller place, but that is one plan that will take a lot longer than anticipated.

6. The goal of selling more books is ongoing. I don't know that any author ever stops going for that. I do realize that for 2020 it will be important that my pen name be more familiar to readers.

So as we get ready for the Christmas Holiday and the coming of 2020, how did your 2019 stack up to your expectations? I confess I am happy with the way the year went. I've been able to fulfill my love of research and include much of what I've found in my writings. All in all, a good year despite some setbacks.

Wishing everyone a great Holiday Season and that your dreams and plans be fulfilled.


Doris Gardner-McCraw -
Author, Speaker, Historian-specializing in
Colorado and Women's History
Angela Raines - author: Where Love & History Meet
Angela Raines FaceBook: Click Here





17 comments:

  1. Congratulations on reaching as many of your goals as you did! Sounds like a productive year. Looking forward to hearing more about this book on Colorado's women doctors!

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    1. Thank you Cate. Sometimes we get so caught up in what we didn't do, we forget to honor what we did. (My mother was good at making me see that *Smile*).

      I have been researching and writing blog posts over the years, but the book has now become a priority. I really want their stories out there. Their lives were so diverse and yet each had a dream. Doris

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  2. Looks like you met many of your goal. Congratulations on your 2019. Best of luck for a productive 2010.

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    1. Thank you Ann. I was surprised myself when I started my look back. I hope your 2019 was a good one also and you have an even better 2020. Doris

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  3. Well done on achieving so much! I hope you manage to move soon. I did manage to move to a new town (actually a very ancient one, but new to me) after 2 years of false starts and blockages. Here's wishing you a very merry Christmas, and everything you'd wish for yourself in 2020.

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    1. Thank you. It was something my mother would always stress when I was feeling like a failure. "Look at where you are compared to where you were".

      Here's to a wonderful 2020 for you also. Doris

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  4. Interesting article. Seems like HHJ did a 180 in her attitude toward Indians. I enjoyed reading several of the entries. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. She did. It was hearing Chief Standing Bear speak that caused her to rethink her attitude. Prior she just went with what most of those around her thought. For those who want to know more about Standing Bear, the book "I Am A Man" is a good resource.

      Here's to a wonderful 2020 for all of us. Doris

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  5. Doris,
    So happy you reached many of your goals. Here's to a great 2020!!

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    1. And to you. I'd hoped to inspire others to take a look at what they had accomplished, especially writers. We don't always see how far we've come. Doris

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  6. Doris,
    This is a nice reminder that in looking back, it's just as easy to celebrate the positives as it is to wallow in the negatives, so always embrace the positives. Here's to a great 2020!!!

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    1. Thank you, I will. I hope you celebrate your positives and a wonderful 2020 to you also. Doris

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  7. I think the majority of artists--writers, poets, singers and painters are their own toughest critic. I have a friend who is an awesome painter but she hasn't picked up a brush in years. She's also an excellent writer and has written beautiful poetry that puts me in the shade. Yet she's not done anything in years. Saying that, I reassure myself not to be so hard on myself simply because I haven't given up, just stalled a lot of times. ere's to a wonderful and prolific 2020, ladies. And Doris, please keep sharing your wonderful research blogs.

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    1. How sad that your friend doesn't feel the call to be creative. I think sometimes we are critical of ourselves because we want to beat other people to the punch. Plus, when our work is not received well, it is like killing our children. Some creatives cannot handle that pain.

      We are glad you didn't stay stalled and here's to a wonderful 2020 to you also. I will also continue to share my research. It is a passion that won't let me go. (Smile) Doris

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  8. Sales seems to be so sluggish this past 2 years. I'm certain you've done everything you can to promote your work as have I. Wouldn't it be great if we didn't have to do that? Where is my private secretary and why isn't she/he getting the word out? LOL
    Research can be so much fun. I can get lost in there, but that is what consumes much of my time. Plotting out a story line and getting the first draft take time and patience and I feel are the hardest to accomplish.
    I hope you get to move into your smaller house sooner rather than later. I already live in a small house (toyed with the idea of a tiny house, but I'm not there yet.)
    I wish you all the best, Doris. I hope 2020 finds sales of books much increased for all of us. Happy holidays!

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    1. Sales are tighter now. Like you, I think once things in the world slow down/settle a bit more and people aren't so busy just trying to keep a roof over their heads, hopefully we will see a swing upward again.

      Like you, I love research and can get lost in the richness of the stories. Here's to the stories we all have left to tell. I know I write and believe the people who need to read my work will find it. Plus looking back gives me a sense of accomplishment.

      Happy Holidays to you also Sarah and I look forward to your upcoming stories. Yeah to a great 2020! Doris

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