Where I’ve Been and What I’m Doing

If you’re still around and checking out Type AJ Negative from time to time, I would like to thank you. I know the last eight weeks or so I have not updated the blog nearly as often as I would like to. There are reasons and I will set them down for you now, along with a few goals for the remainder of the year:

On April 18th, I, along with my fellow co-workers in our department, found out we were all losing our jobs. It was a kick in the gut that none of us saw coming. There were no hints, no changes that would indicate something was going on. Our jobs were being subbed out to a large corporation. It was a business decision. You can imagine my thoughts: I have children and a wife who depend on me having a job. I have bills, a house payment, just like every other hard working person out there.

There was a silver lining to this though. The company coming in to fill our roles wanted to keep us in place. I don’t blame them–we’re a great group of workers who do our jobs to the best of our abilities (and then some).

After the initial shock and anger we had to begin to adjust to the idea of working for a different company while still working in the same offices for the same people.

A lot of prayers were prayed and I was often reminded that if I needed to move on a job would be provided. I never got the sense that I needed to find another job. Instead, I felt that I needed to stick with the new employer and use this as a learning experience.

As a believer in God, my prayers were answered in a way I wasn’t expecting. Simply put, God said, ‘Hey, do you trust me? If you trust me, then trust you will be okay.’

So, I trust.

Changes were made and things were looked at. How could we do our jobs better, more efficiently? That’s really the only question that needs to be answered. Policies were implemented and things were set into motion that took quite a bit of adjusting to (and in some cases, still need adjusting to). For the last six weeks of employment at my previous job and the first two plus weeks of employment at my current job, I found myself physically, mentally and emotionally drained at the end of each day.

Upon arriving home at the end of the day I would sit down and just deflate, much like a balloon with a slow leak. I had little energy to do anything, let alone write, promote or discuss writing.

All of this coincided with my feelings that the business of writing just plain sucks. It’s the truth. Writing is fun. Writing is exhilarating. Writing has always been enjoyable for me. I love creating characters and putting them into situations and then watching how they handle it. But I had lost all that goodness I always felt, all that joy.

Why? Why did I lose it?

The business end of the… err… business is why.

I’m not going to get into the whole thing right now. I think I’ve explained it all before to some extent or other.

I’m developing a plan, not just with writing, but with everything involved with it, including the marketing end of things. I’m putting together a collection that I’m not going to shop around. And it will be good. I originally wanted it to come out on July eighth. I’m not so certain that is going to happen now, given that I scrapped almost the entire thing about a week or so ago and started over. However, I’ve already selected almost half of the stories. I also have four others that are in consideration and being read by the lovely Cate.

I’ve already semi-formed the order of things that will go into the story, with the exception of the stories themselves. Then there is the novel teaser that will go at the end of the collection and a couple of other things I am considering, but that I’m not going to give away quite yet.

As I said in a previous blog, I’m probably not doing much submitting to publications in the near future. I’m looking at things a little differently right now and that doesn’t include spending my time formatting and subbing stories out to publications I may never hear from.

Here’s the thing with writing and faith. As I said earlier, I have to trust that God is going to lead me the right way. I have to trust that my writing will go where I want it to go. And I do.

It’s about trusting, not only having faith in God, but in myself, in the abilities He gave me.

So, now I asks you: Do you trust me? Do you trust that I can deliver entertaining stories to you? If so, then trust me now.

When Southern Bones comes out, I think you’ll like it. If not, then I did what I needed and wanted to do and I’m okay with that.

One more thing before I go. I hope to update the blog twice a week starting with the post you are reading now. No guarantees on that, but I definitely want to get back to at least once a week.

Stick with me a little while longer. Hopefully, it will be a rewarding experience for us both…

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