Writing Updates

‘The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.’

Boy, howdy, do they!

Life sure has a way of keeping a body humble and making it clear we are just along for the ride.

I started off this year with so many writing goals and plans (SO MANY!). I also decided this would  be the year I’d be super organized. I had monthly planners filled out for the whole year of what books I’d write, when they’d release, the days I’d work on them, etc. Weekly planners to keep me on track. A calendar on my desk with deadlines and what needed to happen to make them.

I should have known when the kittens knocked a vase of flowers over and saturated the calendar, things were about to skid off the rails.

We embarked on a kitchen remodel rather unexpectedly. We were thinking it would be late summer or early autumn when we started the process, giving me the spring and summer to get ahead of my writing schedule.


Instead, we found out April 21 the handyman could start demolishing our kitchen May 1. So from the time he left our house that morning until now, I haven’t had any time to write. What that means is that three, possibly four of the books I’d planned to write this year just aren’t going to get written.

It makes me sad.

It makes me disappointed.

It makes me feel like I’m letting down my readers.

But it just is what it is at this point.

I can beat myself up over the fact my finely laid plans look like a whirlwind ripped them to shreds. Or, I can forge ahead and write what I can before the year ends.

So, here are my updated plans at this point (if no other distractions, projects, or setbacks happen!):

  • Summer Creek -I’m just now getting started on the next Summer Creek book. If all goes well, it will release toward the end of September.
  • Rodeo Romance – I don’t have any idea on release dates at this point, but I plan to write another Rodeo Romance book featuring Truitt Lucas. The title is Tricking Christmas. Most likely, it will release in November.
  • Christmas  – I have something fun planned as a Christmas series surprise, but I won’t say too much about it until I actually get the books written.
  • Pendleton Promises – I so, so badly want to get Molly’s story written. If a miracle happens and I can work it into the schedule, I would love to release it on Veteran’s Day, but we’ll see how quickly the other books come together. I will write the story, I’m just not sure at this point when.

I want to thank you, my readers, for your support, kindness, and encouragement. For hanging in there and being patient when life throws me curveballs that keep me from writing. I’m so grateful for you, for your readership, and your friendship.

Thank you, thank you!

What about you? Have you ever had big plans that fell completely apart?

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14 Responses

  1. While I love your books and can’t wait to read them, especially the rodeo romance, I pray that you will take time to enjoy life. One of the other authors I enjoy reading, Liz Isaacson, has a mantra for one of her characters that I adopted. “Slow down, calm down, kneel down”. May these books you are writing bring you joy as your books have done for me and so many others. God bless you abundantly!!!♥️♥️

    1. That is such an awesome mantra, Elaine! Thank you for sharing that, and for your faithful readership. I am so, so grateful for you and so appreciate the blessings. Hugs and love and many thanks! <3

  2. Yes, we (including husband here) have had big plans that completely fell apart. We were going to visit all of our favorite National Parks one last time because we love road trips and we aren’t exactly young anymore. First Covid derailed us and during those years my husband developed dementia. Now, are traveling days are forever and completely over. I need to remind myself to think of all the times we visited the parks and enjoyed their beauty and stop regretting I will never see them again.

    P.S. Your readers LOVE YOU and we will patiently wait and be understanding. Just enjoy that beautiful new kitchen and don’t worry about us, we are forever faithful.

    1. Oh, thank you, Barbara! You are so kind and so very much appreciated.
      And I’m so sorry you can’t travel now like you’d hoped, but I hope the fun memories of past travels bring you joy.
      Thinking of you, sweet friend.

  3. Shanna, please grant yourself grace! You now have a beautiful new kitchen to inspire creativity and great food. I am looking forward to as many new stories from you this year as you are able, but remember those are blessings not burdens! Happy Autumn!

  4. looking forward to the new books. i am rereading Pendleton series now. the kitchen looks terrific

  5. I’m excited about new books from you. But I’m also excited you were able to get your kitchen remodeled. It’s beautiful!! You do have a life beyond being a writer. You have a husband and life together that is #1.

    1. Thank you so much, Kristie! I’ve had a little thought that plays over in my head the past month or so, and it is “people not things.” As much as we love the new kitchen, it’s the people who gather around our table that mean the most to us.
      I so appreciate you!

  6. You’ve heard the old saying “Life is what happens while you were doing something else.” Shanna, It sounds like you are putting way too much pressure on yourself and your writing plans. As they say here in the South “Y’all gotta chill a bit.” Being a writer but NOT an author like yourself, I don’t quite understand that urge, that mental demand to get that story out of your mind and onto paper. Don’t worry about us. We all know you have more stories in you…wanting to get out. Just take care of yourself and give yourself some grace. Am I making sense here? We all love you and want the best for you. So, do the first one first, the second one next and so on…

    1. You are so kind, Jeffrey! I so appreciate your support and encouragement. And yes, trying to do ONE thing at a time, and give myself some grace as I get back into the groove of writing. It is a mental demand to get that story written and then the next, and the next!
      I so appreciate you! Thank you for your friendship and love.

  7. Shanna,
    Oh goodness, yes! My plans often go awry. I think what no one tells you when you’re young is the one of the secrets to adulthood is holding your plans loosely and learning to pivot when life doesn’t go as you thought it would. As other readers have said, be kind to yourself and know that we will be here waiting for the next story, no matter the timeline. Your words are worth waiting for. And I love to re-read stories, so there’s always that option. *grin* Thank you for being so mindful of your readers. Just another reason to love you.

    1. I think the “hold your plans loosely and learn to pivot” should be something they teach young adults. It is an amazing life skill to have!
      You are so sweet, Melanie, and I’m so grateful for your readership and kindness. Thank you so, so much for your words that made my day and touched my heart!
      Have a beautiful August!

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