By Alexa Day
Tough to believe it’s been a year since I kicked off the blog with my first post celebrating our right to bare arms and manly firmness. Where does the time go?
Some of it’s gone into renovations here on the blog. We’ve changed the name and adopted a new identity as Strumpets – which has been loads of fun already. We’ve participated in Brenda Novak’s auction and given away a prize package including a Kindle and a copy of each of our books. We’ve gone to innumerable signings and conferences and festivals, and we’ve all made long strides in our respective publishing journeys.
Time has moved forward, and it’s taking us all with it.
As for me, the one-year mark offers me a chance to get recommitted to my writing. Last month was a thirty-day trial by fire for me. My day job collapsed (a couple of times), my little feline family faced some health crises, and life as a single romance writer threw some major curve balls at me. By the time the month ended, I was exhausted. I couldn’t summon the energy to knit words together into coherent sentences. The idea of writing anything sexy – hell, anything pleasant – felt foreign. Unwieldy. Out of reach.
I didn’t think of quitting altogether. For me, writing is like blinking. If I’m awake, I have to do it, even though it doesn’t feel like I’m getting much of a return. I did, however, think of leaving romance behind. My writing had dried up, leaving behind the sort of desiccated husks that, well, very few people find erotic.
Then I went to The Porches with fellow Strumpets DeniseGolinowski, Sofie Couch, Elvy Howard, and Leah St. James. I’m going to spend more time on my blog describing the place, but for now, let’s just call it Heaven on Earth for writers. (Click Sofie’s link — her pictures are already up.) One weekend there was like hitting the reset button. A brief respite from real life was all I needed to rehydrate the scorched earth that had been June’s body of work. I came away from The Porches with nearly 10,000 fresh words, including an essay on June From Hell, and a shiny new story idea to take up in the near future.
I’m grateful for the escape from reality, but getting away doesn’t matter as much if you’re not running with the right people. My crew of Strumpets, there in the country and here in cyberspace, offers me a safe spot to renew my creative promises and reconnect to my creative energy. And so here, on the Fourth of July, at the one-year mark, I want to express my gratitude. I’m so happy to be with this group of awesome writers, and I’m thrilled to see where this process of growth and evolution takes us next.
As long as we’re not moving beyond the need for bare arms and manly firmness. That kind of progress leaves a bad taste in one’s mouth. (That’s what she said.)
So what’s this year done for you? Let me know what’s up in the comments.
**Alexa Day usually shows up on the first Wednesday of the month, but her blog anniversary fell on a Thursday this month. That’s her story and she’s sticking to it. You can keep up with her on her blog, on Facebook or on Twitter. She thinks you should try Facebook, where her friendlessness reminds her of high school in the worst possible way. Her book, Illicit Impulse, is a Night Owl Reviews Top Pick. You’ll find it on sale at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other e-book retailers.