Horrors & Joys

[Note: you may wish to start a little background music here. I believe it’s traditional at moments like these to opt for this, or if we’re going a little more contemporary, we could opt for this…]

We made it to New Year’s Eve.

You hear that, world?

This has been one of the strangest years I’ve ever known.

It was the year I lost my mother, completely out of the blue and which knocked me so far sideways it was like I’d hitched a ride on a wrecking ball. It was the year of The House Sale That Went Bad, leading to 4 months living out of a suitcase. (If you saw me at Eastercon or at World Horror, that little blue case I was towing around behind me represented my entire wardrobe between January & the beginning of May. The plus from this is that I can pack incredibly light now. Seriously.) It was the year I supported someone through rehab. It was the year my husband blew up his track car, right after a full rebuild that had taken the best part of a year. It was the year I joined the BFS committee… the week that the BFS imploded.

It was also the year that, thanks to the amazing Jon Oliver and everyone at Solaris, I sold my first book. It was the year that I got my first ever story commission–thanks this time to Jared & Anne at Pornokitsch, for their fledgling Pandemonium imprint which I hope goes from strength to strength. It was the year we raised a staggering sum with Genre for Japan; the year of the most successful Fantasycon…

More than anything, though, it was the year I found my tribe.

What I will take away from this year, boxed and tied up in ribbons, is the thought of the people it has involved. I have met more amazing people this year than any other; many of whom I am now honoured to call friends. The list is longer than makes it practical to post here, but I hope that they know who they are.

This has been a year of utter, utter horror… and of complete and total joy.

And so, we’ll wind up the year with a story, which I’ve posted in the new tab up top, marked “For Your Reading Pleasure“–look at it as a New Year’s gift from me to you. Whoever you are, and wherever you are.

And we’ll wind the year up with a song.

For Other Half. For Small Boy. For Tesna. For Vinny.

For Jon, for Jenni, for Michael, for Simon, for Dave, for Ben.

For Will. For Tom, for Lizzie. For Anne, for Jared. For Chris. For Marie. For Michael. For Adele, for Amanda, for Ro. For Scott. For Adam. For Andy. For Paul, for Nadine….. and for so many more of you that by the time I’ve finished, the song would be done: you’ve made this year one of the most memorable I can imagine.

This is for you.


Let’s see what the next year brings, shall we? I’ll see you on the other side.



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