Monday, December 20, 2010

2010 in the Rearview/ 2011 Giving Me a Lap Dance…

***
Wow. This was a landmark year for me and the most enjoyable I've had since found stumbling around this mortal coil.

I met the woman of my dreams. Then we learned that a dream is just a dream and a real loving relationship takes work, which turned out to be kinda fun, and well worth the effort on both our parts. We've taught each other things, we've learned to listen, we share so much and give like you wouldn't believe. I was happy before. She makes me happier. I hope I can always do the same for her.

I've come to love limited edition books. They make my blood sing, my fingers tingle, and my hair stand on end. It's amazing the talent and skill that goes into making them, an outer beauty to match the inner glory of the stories. Perfect. I'll do everything I can to support authors and publishers I believe in. Like Steve Clark’s Tasmaniac Publications, Tom and Billie Moran’s Sideshow Press, Shane Ryan Staley’s Delirium Books, Brett Alexander Savory’s Chizine Publications, RJ and Julia Sevin’s Creeping Hemlock Press, as well as Centipede Press, Bloodletting, and Bad Moon Books, as well as magazines like Shock Totem, Dark Discoveries, and a dozen others. And authors they publish: Greg Gifune, Brian Hodge, Tom Piccirilli, Douglas Clegg, Peter Straub, Shaun Jeffrey, Clive Barker, Sam W. Anderson, Erik Williams, John Mantooth, Tim Lebbon, Cate Gardner, Gary Braunbeck, Mark Allan Gunnells, Sheldon Higdon, Ronald Malfi, Brian Knight, and a host more.

I learned that sometimes I need to step away from the Internet, to strip my life down to what matters most—the barest essentials: my relationship, my family, my closest friends, and my work. Energy ebbs and flows. I have to stay in step with it to keep dancing so smoothly. Pretty fly for a white guy, eh?

I learned a lot from writing this year from those who have critted my stories (Shaun Ryan, Kevin Wallis, Kara, Ken Wood, Ben Eads, Wanda Clevenger, Shaun Jeffrey, and Mark Allan Gunnells) and I give them all a big butt smack filled with appreciation to carry them into 2011. Not only are they great critters, they're great people with great butts.

I've met amazing editors who have helped me develop faith in myself that goes beyond the normal, and sometimes tiresome, back-patting you see among writers. So a big thanks to Steve Clark, Tom Moran, Shane Ryan Staley, Ken Wood, Claire Nixon, Michael Louis Dixon, Jassen Bailey, James Beach, and Jason Sizemore. Not to mention their great teams with people like Maggie Jamison, Mercedes Yardley, Nick Contor, John Boden, Jason V. Brock, etc., etc.

I had a blast while helping select stories for Horror Library Volume 4. It's such an excellent collection.

I found some great shows that made me laugh. Spaced; Spartacus: Blood and Sand; Peep Show; and some others that elude me because I'm a dork.

I've read a hundred great books (my top five would be: Greg Gifune’s The Bleeding Season; Tom Piccirilli’s Shadow Season; Sam W. Anderson’s collection Postcards from Purgatory; Douglas Clegg’s Neverland; and Jack Cady’s Street (which I copied the entire novel by hand to learn more. LOl. I am insane.)

I got to see some of my friends sell stories, collections and novels. Outstanding! I expect they'll all sell much more in 2011. I’m excited for them!

I gave my first blurb! (Kevin Wallis’s fantastic collection Beneath the Surface of Things)

I had my first interview! (AJ Brown interviewed me. What fun! And an equally fun second interview performed by Mark Allan Gunnells!)

I had my first professional sale! (Shock Totem issue 4, baby! Where my story “Beneath the Weeping Willow” sits in wait to get its hands on your throat, and maybe your heart.)

Hosted our first Scary Sad Stories Talent Show (We will repeat every Halloween!)

I found a career after a lifetime of living as a hooker and part-time vagabond!

I had my first limited-edition hard cover release! (As I Embrace My Jagged Edges—which was released in digital, is also being released in a limited hardcover run for collector's and features a bonus story! Drop kickin’ a pregnant watermelon.)

I’ve learned that there is more pleasure in having work through publishers I love and having my work among my heroes than the measly satisfaction given by money. A whole lot. But the money is nice because then I can buy people stuff (like breath mints.) :D

I wrote several long pieces (45-90,000 words). Four of them to be exact. Everyone of them was fun—we danced, we laughed, we cried, we collapsed, exhausted! And I am proud of them all. And you'll see some of them released in 2011!

I hope others have had such a wonderful year. It’s overwhelming at times. Surreal. But I'm grateful and looking forward to hitting my stride this next year! Dig it! And the great thing is 2010 is not even over yet and more wonderful news might arrive!

16 comments:

Natalie L. Sin said...

Huzzah!

Cate Gardner said...

Sounds like an awesome 2010. And a Happy Christmas to you and Kara.

beczugor said...

Great to hear all your news. Best wishes to you and Kara, and have a wonderful and successful 2011!

Lee Thompson said...

Thank you Nat, Cate, and Bec! I hope you ladies have a wonderful Christmas and fun New Years! May 2011 bring us all tons of success, smiles, and laughter!

K.Hinny said...

Lee, you've worked hard, and deserve this! Keep up the fabulous work! (I have no doubt in you)

Happy Holidays to you as well Cate!!

Lee Thompson said...

Thanks, honey. Your faith and encouragement mean a lot to me! :D

K. Allen Wood said...

Oi! You're too kind, Lee. Glad to see you come through 2010 with a smile. =)

Shaun said...

Thank you. My butt has never felt so loved. And congratulations on all you've achieved this year. I hope next year is even better for you :)

Ben Eads said...

Very cool, Lee! I'm damn proud of you man. Almost as proud of you as I am my butt... which you so kindly referenced. ;)

Thanks for being such a great friend, man. And for helping me with my work as well. You, sir, rock!

Lee Thompson said...

Thanks, Ken, Shaun, and Ben! You guys rock crazy hard. Hoping you all continue to find success next year and that the holidays treat you well!

Rich said...

Man, you kicked the crap out of 2010. Hard work and some serious writing has really paid off.

Well earned sir!

Happy New Year

Rich

Lee Thompson said...

Thank you, Rich! I am very pleased with all that happened last year, man! 2011 is going to be one helluva ride too, I think. :D Happy New Year to you and yours as well!

Stewart Sternberg said...

You're a work horse. Thanks for inspiring me. I am currently fighting my way through writing two novels, but I need to get back to writing short stories, too.

Lee Thompson said...

Thanks for the read and comment, Stewart! Excellent on the two novels! I find it hard to write novels and shorts at the same time. I usually only do shorts in between longer work, or when I need a break. I'm sure you'll do great, man! Have a wonderful 2011!

Neal Hock said...

That was an awesome year! Hope 2011 is just as good, if not better, to you.

-Neal

Lee Thompson said...

Thanks for the read and comment, and also the well-wishes, Neal! Yep, 2011 is already kicking full-force! I'm excited about some thing going on behind the scenes and will hopefully have some big news I can share soon! I hope your 2011 is great as well!