It’s that time of the year for looking back and forward to see what progress I’ve made in my new kidlit career.

Looking back:

2022 wasn’t the year I thought it would be. I ended up getting so much more than I expected!

A very unexpected phone call in February resulted in our family welcoming a wonderful 8-year-old daughter home! It becomes official in January. Hong Kong requires a period of visitation (usually about 2 months) followed by a legal guardianship for 6 months prior to formalizing an adoption. Adoption is extraordinarily complex. By definition, an adoptee has undergone tremendous loss/losses. Watching her learn and grow and adapt over the last 9 months has been a privilege. 

Writing has taken a backseat.

Looking Back:

My debut Alone Together on Dan Street was published in March 2022!

I signed new picture book contracts in 2022 with Apples & Honey (Behrman House), Quill Tree Books (Harpers), and Levine Querido.

My Soviet Union MG is still on submission.

In addition to my Soviet Union MG, I also have a couple of picture books on submission that I’m really excited about.

I finished writing a new Historical MG. I’m a bit disappointed that the draft I initially submitted was rather unfocused, but there was fortunately enough there to work with.

Looking Forward:

To seeing two more of my picture books out in the world (ZHEN YU AND THE SNAKE, Kar-Ben, Sep 2023 and COUNTING ON NAAMAH, Intergalactic Afikoman, Fall 2023)!

To participating in my first literary festival as an author.

To sending my most recent draft of my MG back to my agent just after the new year. I added a new relationship, new chapters, and new scenes and still ended up 22,000-words slimmer. I plan to write a blog post on extreme editing and word counts soon.

To editing a PB draft to resend to my agent.

To working on a co-authored music story.

To trying to make some time for myself to participate in some workshops.

To starting a new MG. I have two ideas that I want to work on a need to decide which one to start.

To having a productive Storystorm beginning on January 1.

To developing a social media strategy and a direction for this blog. Everyone talks about newsletters, but I’m reluctant to start something that I likely can’t follow through with.

Happy 2023!