Children’s author Julie Hedlund (founder of 12×12 online Writing Challenge) challenged participants of her 12 Days of Christmas for Writers series to post SUCCESSES on our blogs of this past year. This is in the hope that we can build goals for the coming year from these successes. So I decided to participate and here is my list from 2019.
- Even though I had many interruptions during the year with visitors and trips away overseas and other life commitments I still managed to post at least 20 picture book reviews on my blog.
- I was very lucky to meet up and spend time with one of the most endearing kidlit people you could ever wish to meet. To spend time with Vivian Kirkfield, see her in action in schools, libraries and conferences, and to be able to show her my special place in the world and for us to spend time talking and working on what we are both so passionate about (writing for children), was a dream come true for me.
- I entered at least three writing contests this year and although not winning a place in any of them the experience was very rewarding and helped keep my creative writing chops alive.
- I had competed in more twitter Pitches than I had done in previous years.
- Revised more manuscripts than in previous years, and also improving in the revision process and allowing myself to experiment and stretch myself, enjoying favourable feedback from my loving, kind and generous critique buddies, whom I cannot be without.
- Subbed more manuscripts this year and although no contracts I did get some wonderful feedback from some agents (including Essie White whom I met at the Aust East/NZ SCBWI Conference in February).
- At the Aust East/NZ SCBWI Conference in February I got to meet some interesting Kidlit members and had such a wonderful time with – Sarah Davis, Susanne Gervay (whom I had met before), Mira Reisberg, Maria Marshall another 12x12er and Melanie Dixon who Vivian and I met up with again in Christchurch where she lives, besides Kaye Baillie and Essie White.
- I also made new friends with 12x12ers residing here in New Zealand such as Kathy Derrick who reached out to me when she heard Vivian was in New Zealand and Kate Talbot who arrived in New Zealand this month to live permanently here in Auckland, which is really awesome for me.
- Researching for a picture book story based on New Zealand wildlife and fauna which is a first for me.
- Recently winning a critique from agent Charlotte Wenger resulting in favourable feedback.
What were your successes in 2019? You are welcome to share in the comments below.