Yesterday, I was thinking about independence. Today, I'm counting that as one of my blessings.
I did have contracts with a reputable small publisher six years ago, but after they delayed the release of my first book, I asked to be released from the remaining contracts. They agreed and, at the end of the contract period for the only book they published, I asked to end that. Today, I have twenty titles out and am proud to say I'm indie (although I own my own publishing company for business purposes). I count that as a HUGE blessing, because I retain all my rights and control all the minutiae that comes with publishing. I decide on my own covers, edits, etc. I am not bound to anyone else but myself and my readers.
I am ultra-grateful for my readers, the greatest blessing of being a writer.
I'm grateful for many things in all those, like finding the wonderful cover artist working on the Spirit Blade cover at this time and the usual--family, friends, health, etc.
Outside of writing, it was the weird incident of the storm changing course and avoiding us that prompted this post. Large hail and damaging winds would have pounded our house, but by some freak occurrence, the storm changed course and instead of continuing northeast over us, it decided to change to straight east, avoiding us completely. I'm grateful it did and feel like my guardian angels were watching over us here.
I will also be grateful to get my pickup back from the shop. That machine saved my life when a young kid sideswiped me almost four weeks ago. I want to hug the big gray heap of metal that protected me from the distracted kid who wasn't obeying traffic laws. And I'm grateful that the damage was less than what's required for damaged title reporting.
I'm grateful also that I've had the opportunity to work with a couple of horses this summer besides my own, who has been recovering from one thing after another. I hope he's finally fully healed and healthy and ready to continue on his career path, the reason I bought him almost seven years ago. Those small projects have kept me going, and I can't give enough thanks to the person who suggested I take them on when I said I wanted another horse to work with in this challenging time when I haven't been able to work my own. It's the process of training that most motivates me and having to give that up, even for a short while, has been debilitating on my psyche. It's been one disappointment after another, but having goals with other horses to work towards has kept me going.
I try to see the positive in most things, but there are times when it seems like I hit bottom. For a while this spring, I did hit the bottom of my faith in my horse's future; but I've seen that there are other ways to keep myself useful and not thinking about the problems. It's still not easy and I fear having to give up horses for whatever reason, but until that day comes, I will keep doing what I love.
The future hasn't happened, so one can say what will or will not happen. You can only live in the present and take each moment as it comes. There's an old saying that I can't remember the source: "Yesterday's history. Tomorrow's a mystery. And today is a gift; that's why they call it 'the present'." Live in it.