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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Like the Queen - A Christmas Message from Ms. Stuart



Dear friends...

And so 2014 draws to a close. My fridge is groaning with enough food to survive the worst Zombie Apocalypse (by the way what IS a zombie apocalypse?). The Christmas tree lights up my life every evening and it is time for a little introspection to reflect on the year that was.

As I publicly declared my New Year Resolutions back in January, here is the score card:

PERSONAL
  • Continue the weight loss journey (family wedding in November and I don’t want to be the short tubby one on the end of the row in the photographs!): Total fail... I WAS the tubby one on the end of the row in the wedding photographs.
  • Keep up the exercise. 4 days minimum. I have been rather injury prone this year which has slowed me down but I did enter Run Melbourne (with my work colleagues) and managed a respectable time in the "old chook" category.
  • Make more time for my needlework. Yes! I finished two quilts and nearly finished a huge cross stitch project. Biggest hindrance to this resolution are my too friendly cats who view my lap as there personal domain in the evening. 
  • Make space in the schedule for quality time with my husband (who after working hard all his life is taking a "gap year") and family. There is more to life than writing! Hubby worked interstate for 4 months this year so this was a hard ask.

PROFESSIONAL
  • Drawing on my corporate background, I have written a "business plan" for 2014 so my goal is to stick to it! All your theory is good but the tree of life is still green... 
  • Better balance of the need to write with the "busyness" side of being a writer which can mean way too much time on social media.  Rolling on the floor laughing...

Oh well - looks like a bit of work to do in setting next year's goals but none the less it has been a fun year:
  • I published 2 books (my first indie CLAIMING THE REBEL'S HEART) and my first Escape Publishing title (LORD SOMERTON'S HEIR). Both books have earned some wonderful reviews so I can't complain!
  • I signed a 3 book contract with Escape for my Guardians Series coming out in 2015.
  • I finished the first of my cosy mystery series set in Singapore in 1910 - not that it is going anywhere at the moment. It needs a good spit and polish before I send it out into the big wide world.
And on a personal note, I experienced:
  • The joy of sharing my son's wedding in November and welcoming a new family member (daughter in law).
  • The pleasure in my youngest son's engagement.
  • Celebrating my own 30 years of marriage.
  • Crossing the lifetime dream of visiting the ancient classical sites of Greece and Turkey.
  • And only one tiny little sniffle of a cold...
So lots of blessings to count and a life to be thankful for, particularly the many readers and friends who have travelled with me during the year!

A safe and happy Christmas, Hannukah, Holiday season to you all (whatever your beliefs may be!)

Much love
Alison
PS... In case you're wondering the cat in the Christmas tree is Mr. Oliver Kat.

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