Well, a lot happened in the last year -- my mother died, my eighteen-year-old cat died the next day, my youngest daughter graduated from college, and my oldest daughter started a full time music teaching job, we adopted two new kittens, and I made the very tough decision to leave my wonderful job at Colchester High School to follow my dream and write full time.
My biggest physical feat for sure was to climb Camel's Hump, the third highest peak in Vermont, this summer. My mother wanted her ashes spread there, and so we did. I didn't think I could make it to the top, but I felt inspired, and did very well on the way up. Coming back down was another story, but I made it and realized I'm not in as bad shape as I thought I was. However, I'm not in a hurry to try it again.
In December, I had a short story published in an anthology called Take a Chance, edited by Jamie Deacon. It was exciting to work with an editor in England. He had previously reviewed my work and asked me to submit. I recently submitted my newest novel, Owl, to a publisher. Now we'll see where my new full time writing career takes me.
In the meantime, we're enjoying another lovely summer at camp with lots of kayaking and barbecues with family and friends, and of course lots of time just hanging out watching the sunsets. It's starting to hit me now that I won't be going back to school in a few weeks, and I have to say that even though I will miss the kids and all the wonderful adults I've worked with so long, what I'm mostly feeling is a deep sense of relaxation and joy in knowing I can watch the seasons change into fall and winter without the dread of driving on icy roads in the dark mornings, and a sense that it's finally time to be myself all the time.
Here I am climbing Camels Hump. Photo by Crystal Lanper