September is the month of the birthday at my house. My birthday was on the 7th (obviously) and both of my kids were born later in the month. As a result, September is often one of those lost months for me–like May and December–but I can never figure out quite why.
It’s not as if I don’t have plenty to do. In fact, this month I have more than plenty to do. Her Secret Family is due (now) on September 30, and I also have revisions and a synopsis to do on two projects for another publisher. It’s imperative that I keep working and stay focused. And I’m doing pretty well, really. Honestly, I am. (Note from 2016: Obviously, I finished the book eventually.)
It’s just that in September, like it or not, I always embark on a kind of retrospective of the year, taking inventory of the things that have happened, trying to figure out where I went wrong and what I can do differently in the coming 12 months. A year ago today, I was in Canada, if I remember right. Nova Scotia, maybe. It was a dream vacation in some ways, but a very difficult one in others. My youngest daughter was ill, and I was away from her, and I wasn’t happy about it–and that impacted everything I did.
After September, the year spiraled downward. We spent the next 6 months heading toward rock bottom, and the 6 months after that climbing slowly out of the pit. Frankly, the past year was made up of 12 months I’d rather just scrub from my memory, but they’re also months that have changed forever who I am, and part of my natural introspection this year includes trying to figure out who I am now.
There are some events that just change you. They create natural dividing lines in your life, and forever afterward everything is measured as Before or After the event. This year was one of those. The books I liked to read Before Event (B.E.) don’t interest me now. More importantly, the books I wanted to write B.E. don’t interest me now. The music I listened to irritates me. The shows I watched bore me. I’ve spent the past six months just existing, hanging on, getting by, breathing in and out every day and waiting for night to fall. But it’s September now, and it’s time to move. Time to think back and begin the evaluation I can’t seem to avoid, even when I want to.
Who am I now? I don’t know. What will I write when my current contracts are fulfilled? I don’t have a clue.
All I can say is, stick around. I have a feeling things are just starting to get interesting!