Changes… Sometimes they take you by surprise. But more often than not, they’re a result of the chances you choose to take because they’re necessary. With that said, it’s confessional time.
Though I enjoy writing short reads and will continue to write a select few, my life has undergone some pretty drastic transitions over the past few months and I’m struggling to channel the same voice I once did.
What kind of transitions, you ask?
Well, on Boxing Day, they admitted my mother to the hospital, where she would stay for the next two weeks. She has had some health concerns for years and finally retired before moving two provinces over to come to live with me. We both agreed she needed someone around full-time. As it turns out, our decision to move her saved her life. Because had I not been there come morning the overnight turn for the worse she took would have undoubtedly killed her as she was unable to stay awake without my constant prodding. Despite her ongoing issues a diagnosis had evaded her doctors, but it wasn’t the case this time and about a week into her stay they diagnosed her with leukemia and another rare condition known as cold agglutinin. It was the latter, a form of hemolytic anemia where the body kills its own healthy red blood cells off prematurely, that led to her sudden illness.
We were saddened but not shocked by this discovery.
The positive news is that is her cancer is a slow-moving variety and she could very well live out the rest of her natural life with it, but with co-morbid conditions that impact her independence. Which means that my life has changed quite a bit as I’m no longer only a care giver to my two young sons but to my mother as well.
But life goes on and though we have our tough times we’re overall coping quite well.
However, something else changed as a result… something within me. It was already in the works, but it wasn’t until her diagnosis that it fully switched on. I won’t call it a depression (though that might be expected), but it was a sizeable shift towards a more serious mood combined with altered focus.
Maybe it’s the fact that every day isn’t a promise.
Or maybe it’s the fact that I’m approaching forty.
It could even be that I’ve been playing it too safe for my taste from the start.
But at the beginning of December, I found myself wanting to push my boundaries more as a writer and I started an as of yet unannounced novel that felt different, and I loved it. If you’ve read my most recent novella, Miss Fortune, I think you’ll find there’s something different about it when compared to the others. Though I did my best to restrain this change, it’s something I struggled to suppress. In fact, that book took me three times longer to write than the others because I was constantly at war with myself. Is it the book I wanted it to be? Not completely, no. I’m undecided whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing lol. I’ll let you be the judge, but I consider it somewhat transitional though still not even close to what I have planned for future books. The Hitman’s Siren is my answer to this change. It’s the book that has been screaming at me to come out for…decades?
Writing is my catharsis. As you may already know I have ADHD and I’m drawn to shorts because they’re are great quick dopamine boost both as a reader and a writer. But I am also prone to overthinking and honestly relish in complex thinking processes. This trait has been magnified in me recently and perhaps it’s just a sign of growth as an author (who knows really) but for the time being it can’t be undone. As a result, the kind of characters and stories that are itching to come out of me need more space, more exploration, and more…everything. But in particular more pages.
If you’re reading this you’ve most likely arrived here from my newsletter and I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for taking the time to listen. Your ongoing support and the fact that you took the time out of your busy life to read this is an honor I don’t take lightly.
I’m not normally the type to talk about my personal life in a public way but sometimes it’s necessary. But there’s a small chance that you’re here because you’re going through a big change too and curiosity struck. So, I guess in that case my advice would be that if your conscience is telling you that there might be a different or more positive path for you please be kind and listen to your gut.
I know I may lose some readers in this shift and I can’t even promise yet if it is a permanent one or not. But I do know that I refuse to stop and that if it was avoidable I wouldn’t be writing any of this. But these kinds of changes can lead to a total metamorphosis, and it’d be a lie if I said I wasn’t long overdue for one of those. So, if you do choose to stick with me through thick and the thin (spines of course, haha) and for whatever else this new adventure will bring I do believe my best has yet to come.
P.S. If you’d like to check out my full-length novel debut this July, the preorder is available on Amazon here.