A Weekend Off and the Creator’s Dilemma

Venting post ahead, you’ve been warned. :)

Despite having a mountain of Things to Do™, I took this weekend off. I haven’t had a completely lazy weekend since… hmm. I don’t remember, but it’s been months.

Mr M was off yesterday, so we had a three-day weekend. We did a little bit of house stuff, but mostly we slept in and played Borderlands 3. We bought the game back in September, but we never got a chance to play because we were too busy. It’s fun! If you liked the previous games in the series, you’ll like this one, too.

But while I took the weekend off, my brain didn’t. All weekend I felt low-level guilt for taking a break and having fun rather than doing something productive. I think this is a creator’s dilemma. There is pressure, both internal and external, to do more, faster.

For a while, that pressure can be harnessed to produce content. But live it too long, and it’s a one-way ticket to burnout city. I’m not there, but there is a certain dread every time I open up Scrivener. I know I’m behind and that gets in the way of writing, which puts me further behind. It’s a vicious cycle.

And I know I’m supposed to be writing a proposal for a new series, which should’ve been done months ago and isn’t. Argh.

So while I’m technically not under deadline anymore, my brain thinks I am, and I can’t relax. But the only way out is through* (for me, something else may be better for you!), so I’m going to turn on some music and make some words for our Rogue Queen. Wish me luck!

And lest you think it’s all doom and gloom in house Mihalik, I have two pieces of good news to end with. :) One, we got an offer on our old house the day we listed it. Yay! And two, my editor just sent me an all-caps squee about the changes I made to Chaos Reigning. She likes it! Huzzah!

*Or become a hermit. But since I like our new house, I’m going to go with through. :)

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I hope your holidays are filled with joy, delight, and hope.

I spent the day with family, eating too much and enjoying the beautiful weather. We are lucky because Mr M and I grew up in the same small town, and our parents still live close to each other, so we get to see both sets at Christmas. I also got to spend time with my nephews who are super adorable and I don’t get to see often enough. We built this cool Mario gingerbread house:

I hope your holiday was Mario gingerbread house good! :) Best wishes for 2020!

New House, New Office

After weeks of work and prep, we finally moved yesterday! It took all day and was exhausting, but we are now in our new house. Woohoo!

We put the bed together first, because we needed a place to sleep, but after that we worked on getting the office into a useable state. When we started, it was just a pile of boxes so deep we couldn’t get to the desks, but we ended up with this:

(Notice how all of the remaining boxes are conveniently out of frame. 😉)

We still need some art on the walls, but that will come after we’ve found the rest of the house, which is just a pile of boxes right now. Priorities, I has them. :)

Updates and Other News

Hello, friends, it’s been a while! Can someone please explain how it’s already November? I seem to have blinked and missed all of October. Aurora Blazing has been out for over a month and it both seems like no time at all and an eternity since the release.

A couple weekends ago I handed north to Dallas for the Buns & Roses Romance Tea for Literacy and had a lovely time meeting all of the readers at my table and everyone who came to the signing afterwards. Thank you all so much!

This amazing quilt was one of the things they raffled off for charity. I felt so bad signing it because my signature looks like a five-year-old drew it. I blame Mr. Mihalik, because I had a nice easy to write last name before we were married. Now it’s all a heap of loops that turns into a mountain range. Err… at least it’s unique? 😅

Alisha Rai gave the Buns & Roses keynote, and it was one of the best speeches I’ve seen. If you get a chance to see her speak—GO! Overall, the event raised over $26,000 for the Richardson Adult Literacy Center, which is incredible. Thank you to everyone who made it possible!

In new house news, the floors are in, and we’re in the middle of cleaning and packing our old house. It’s been an ordeal and there is still an overwhelming amount of work left to do, but I can see the end. Maybe, in the far distance. :)

The new floors looks great, though. Here is a picture of my future office. I can’t wait to be moved!

In work news, I’m behind on everything. I haven’t written anything in ages and I’m not even sure I remember how to write. I still need to pitch a new series, do edits for CR, and write Rogue Queen 3. I’m hoping to start posting the serial version of that last one by the end of the year, but it’s going to be closer to Christmas than Thanksgiving. Like a lot closer. In fact, expect Santa to deliver it. 😂

I have seen the cover for Chaos Reigning and it’s fabulous! I can’t wait until I can share it! I’m also getting close to nailing down the cover for RQ3, so that should be good to go once I figure out what the actual story is going to be. :)

I hope you all are doing well and enjoying the fall weather. And if you’re doing NaNoWriMo, good luck! I’m cheering for you!

First Night in Our New House and Other News

Last night we stayed in our new house, even though we’re not even close to moved yet. We busted out our camping air mattress and folding camp chairs and had a sleepover. The old owners left us a TV, and we got the internet connected, so after we finished working, we kicked back and watched some game streaming while drinking wine. It was awesome. :)

The new backyard is so nice! This is our view from the kitchen:

A view of cedar trees and no houses because we back to a green space.

For reference, right now I’m sitting on the couch at our old house and I can see four houses out the back window, so the view above is a big improvement. :)

We got all of the locks changed, which always takes far longer than we expect. Next, we have to decide on flooring, which we’ve narrowed down to a couple of shades of hardwood. Picking an entire floor from a small sample is always difficult, because it’s hard to imagine what the whole area is going to look like once it’s done. Fingers crossed we choose wisely!

In bookish news, last Friday, Bree and Donna (the two halves of Kit Rocha), invited me to join them on their Twitch stream to talk about books and space princesses and romance. If you missed the live stream, you can still watch the video in the archive. I had such a nice time and I am absolutely delighted they had me on! Plus, we’re officially BFFs now, and I have video proof, so there’s that. ;) Follow their channel for more bookish chats, including last month’s chat with Alyssa Cole.

And finally, we’re just a couple days away from the release of Aurora Blazing! If you missed it, I posted the third chapter on Friday, so head over to the book page to get a preview. And now is your last chance to get your preorders and library requests in! Thank you so much to everyone who has already ordered or requested, you all are amazing and I appreciate it so, so much! ❤️