I know I’m not alone when I say 2020 was…well…let’s go with challenging. More than once I was convinced the blasted year would never end, but I’m so grateful to say that my family and I survived relatively unscathed. No one suffered with Covid, and because Ben and I were already working from home, things didn’t really change all that much for us – apart from, of course, never leaving the house. Right now, Ben’s daughter Vriska and her friend Ana are staying with us while they wait for college to resume. We’re not sure at this stage whether there will be in-person classes again as soon as February or if they will be with us for the immediate future, but we have enough space and things are certainly more lively with the kids here. As I write this, for example, Vriska has commandeered my kitchen and is doing a deep-frying experiment that may or may not leave lasting scars on us all. Though she just brought out a samosa that was delicious, so clearly all is not lost.
The big loser in 2020 in my world was, without question, my muse. Actually, she wasn’t a loser – she was fairly active, as a matter of fact, but she was damned insistent that nothing having to do with mystery or mayhem would get written for that entire year. Instead, I started about a half dozen romances and actually finished one lengthy tome that may or may not see the light of day eventually.
Thankfully, however, Jamie Flint started whispering in my brain again sometime in late October, and I’ve been hard at work ever since. I spent the past month re-reading the first three books in the series to refresh myself on all the intricacies of the Flint K-9 story, and have gotten newly excited about the saga as a whole, something for which I am grateful!
Soooo… For those of you who have been thinking The Redemption Game would be the last book in the series, I’m thrilled to say that is not the case. In fact, I have three more books outlined, and plans for others beyond that. The next novel in the series, Head Above Water, is tentatively scheduled for a spring release, with the fifth book – Visions of Clara – ideally out before the end of 2021. The sixth book in the series is as yet untitled, but I have really big plans for that one, so that alone should be enough impetus to keep me writing once I hit the inevitable rough patches about midway through each project.
To celebrate this newfound focus and enthusiasm, I’ve decided to make 2021 a Flint K-9 year. There’s a strong possibility that 2022 will see a return of some old friends (Diggs and Solomon, anyone?), but for now I really want to celebrate the gang out on Windfall Island. That means a return to a monthly newsletter and subsequent monthly giveaways, along with a renewed commitment to an Advance Reading Team for upcoming releases, and some fun behind-the-scenes short stories and snippets on the blog and social media. I’ve been checking in more frequently over at my Facebook author page (www.facebook.com/jenbloodauthor), but can most often be found over at Instagram, which may or may not be a dangerous new obsession. Find me there at www.instagram.com/jenbloodauthor.
If you’re not on the mailing list yet, be sure to join up here for the monthly newsletter. It’s been a mighty, mighty long time since my last mailing, but I think I’ve ironed out the kinks that kept me hogtied in 2020 (and a good part of 2019, for that matter), so subscribers will definitely be hearing from me more frequently in the year to come.
Thanks so much for sticking with me during this lengthy hiatus. There have definitely been some rough spots over the last couple of years, but I’m eager to reconnect with you and the Flint K-9 crew. Here’s to a brand new year!