Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Wake me up when November ends- oh, wait, it's here! Hello, December!

I love November, but it is an overwhelming month, and every year it seems I add something new to the mix.  Warning, this post was intended to be snarky, but contains more personal details than I usually share - mostly stuff that's behind me now, and which many people probably know bits and pieces of.

At my day job, November means progress reports, which are a huge undertaking that were more complicated this year because we're rolling out a new computer system and no one quite knew what they were doing (myself included).  As for writing, of course, November means National Novel Writing Month.  It's funny to realize how much of my life I can chart by Novembers.

Like the song that never ends, I first started NaNoWriMo without knowing how it goes.

2006, Mancer 1: I was in college full time on student exchange at Texas State University - San Marcos.  I had plenty of time.

2007, Token of Darkness: I was back at UMass Boston, where I graduated the next spring.  I was president of the Classics Club and planning for our spring play, and I was living in Framingham, in my first apartment.

2008, All Just Glass: I was enrolled in graduate school at Northeastern, but only doing occasional substitute teaching- I didn't get my first long-term job until nearly December.

2009, Promises to Keep.  I've graduated from Northeastern and I'm biting my nails because I don't have a teaching job yet.  Meanwhile, I've put my first bid on a house on November 7.  I'm a little scared of this NaNo, because I seem to have broken Nyeusigrube.

2010, Bloodwitch.  I'm married, living in my new house, and have my first serious teaching job - at the high school where I used to be a student! After this month, I've also figured out what I want to publish after Promises - I'm going back to Midnight.

2011, Disappearing Island.  Hey look, there is life after Promises!

2012, Lockdown. I love zombies! Strangely enough, I'm mostly teaching biology at Concord-Carlisle now, but that's cool because I love science.  I'm also running an after-school special education drama club, where at the end of the year we will perform and make a video of an adapted version of The Tempest.  Most personally, I'm starting to do serious research on how gay women go about having a baby.

2013, Sororcula I.  My first adventure in sci-fi.  I'm actively trying to have a baby, and since it's now two years later, I'll share some personal details: I've just been informed I need surgery, and will probably need IVF due to health and fertility issues.  I'm devastated.  Channel it into the book, and into work at my NEW JOB, where I started at the beginning of September.  I spent the first couple months thinking I'm a total failure and I made a terrible mistake leaving Concord, but by the end of November I'm finally starting to feel good about where I am and loving my new classroom.

In addition to physics and biology, I play with religion a lot in Sororcula because this is also the year I converted to Judaism.  I fell in love with the religion over the last few years.

2014, A Woman Clothed With the Sun.  2014 is the only year I don't win NaNo, but I can't count it as a failure because my daughter is born on the 22nd.  Oh yes, and I'm single.  I'm not going into details but if you're one of those people who updates Wikipedia, you can count this as a source.

2015, Sororcula II.  The excitement for the month really starts on October 31, Halloween, when I wake up with no heat and a funny smell in my gas-heated home.  Long story short, I pack the baby and the cats up and we go to stay with my parents while the gas-leaking furnace gets replaced, and then I decide I might as well bite the bullet and sell the house - so in addition to progress reports, NaNoWriMo and a one-year-old, I start preparing my house to put it on the market.

Oh, and did I mention that my new agent and I decided in September that, instead of pursuing publication for Disappearing Island and Lockdown (post-Promises YA novels) we're going to try for my adult fantasy-romance trilogy, Mancer?

I am officially divorced on November 1, turn in revised Mancer pages to to my agent on November 3, get my progress reports done November 8, get my house MOSTLY ready to market, celebrate my daughter's 1 year birthday on the 22nd (with a party followed by "who wants to help me move furniture?"), start reading Prince Caspian, Ender's Game and Fahrenheit 451 with my classes, host Thanksgiving on the 26th and declare myself a NaNoWriMo winner at about 8pm on November 30 - which, with the schedule I keep these days, is by the skin of my teeth.  Then again, I've never won NaNo before the evening of 11/30.

There's a little more news, too, but I can't share for another week or so.

Either way, November, 2015 was a roaring success.

Welcome, everyone, to December!

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