Um, this book took forever. LOL. Okay, it didn’t take an entire year, so, honestly, that’s pretty decent as far as novels go, but…
I always have this idea that I’m going to finish a book in a month, edit it the next month, publish it the third…wash, rinse, repeat…end up with a completed trilogy done in under a year.
Insane! I know!
But you would not believe how many authors do it on a tighter schedule than that. I honestly can’t count how many I know. Don’t test me–it’s too hard, comparing myself to their immense productivity.
And that’s the thing, you know? I’m so much like Missy, the star of these books. I have chronic illness–she has chronic illness. I have a zillion kids–she has a zillion kids. One of the main differences between Missy and me, however, is that she doesn’t take on huge, long-term projects other than raising her kids. She does odd jobs, whereas I do gig work sometimes, but only after writing for the day. She spends a lot more time in person with her friends than I do. She has a lot more community support. In many ways, she lives an idealized version of my own life, I can’t lie.
On the other hand, I get to write about Missy and Sin and all their kids, dogs, cats, friends, ghosts, goblins, and so on. Doing that is such a joy, I can’t help but feel like I get the better end of that deal. Missy still freelances–something I haven’t had to do for years. I used to freelance so much, I had no writing energy left to work on fiction. Miss Fitz doesn’t aspire to be a novelist, whereas I have been publishing novels for years. Missy and I both love reading so much. I’ve been bursting to tell stories like this my entire life, and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to do it now.
I’ve been working on this particular artform for the better part of two decades, and I think I’m getting the hang of it. Still, every book ends up being HARDER than I expected. Wash/rinse/repeat isn’t my way. As the great Chuck Tingle would say, that’s not my trot. It’s okay to admire other authors who can do it. I read their books. I get it! I sometimes finish a book and go, “Awww, you mean the next one in the series isn’t out yet?” And then I’m disappointed. I have to search for something else to read…woe is me, I have to peruse the billions of books out there, lol. And then when the next book comes out in the original series, I sometimes need to reread the first book to get caught up. No worries, though. Being a voracious reader is a trait I’m proud of. It’s inevitable that you eat up a certain line of supply and move onto another. Reading a book a week–heck, even reading a book a month–is the kind of pace no writer should ever have to keep up with.
I can’t do that. I’d never have been able to be proud of this book if I’d released it as-is at the end of the first draft. This one took a lot of extra work, and I’m proud of the results.
Mucho thanks to all who beta read for me, including Emma Jameson, Kat Bradbury, and Chrissy Garrison.
By the way, another difference between Miss Fitz and myself…she doesn’t like patchouli, and I really, really do.
Now that I’ve said all that, I can’t recall what I came here to say, but…the book is out! Get you some HOT PATCHOULI, and get it today!
I hope you heard that headline in the Arby’s announcer voice like it was intended.
Just a quick reminder, if you’re not on our email list, you are missing out on the monthly memes. The members of Secret Updates from Red Tash have been helping me choose the best memes monthly, then I have been working them into the newsletter. It’s fun. Join us. We could use your offbeat sense of humor.
Halloo! I’m taking a quick break from working through editorial feedback on Hot Patchouli, but wanted to let you know that if you need a blank lined journal or a bullet journal, we have three new ones available on Amazon:
All of our Planet Tash journals are available in blank lined format OR bullet journal format. Make sure you select the correct format for your own needs, okay?
Enjoy. Back to work for me!
I can’t figure out how to do the young people’s meme that shows you all the great, cool bands I discovered on Spotify this year, so here’s a link to my Top 100 playlist, which unsurprisingly reveals that I am, always have been, and likely always will be a classic rock kid from the 80s at heart:
LISTEN TO LESLEA’S TOP SONGS OF 2021 PLAYLIST ON SPOTIFY (Fellow Olds: fear not, it is free)
I have instructed Tim to not buy me any journals for Christmas. Not only have I recently acquired a Kitchen Witchery Journal, but I also have two upcycled children’s book journals (Nancy Drew & Heidi), one awesome notebook of cats doing self-care, and a great black cat notebook on my desk. Upstairs, I have a poetry journal and a diary. There are more journals lying around, but I’m not even going to focus on them, because the truth is, I also have copies of all the latest Planet Tash journals.
What’s that? Planet Tash journals? Yes, indeedy.
This project started with a Love journal based on the popular watercolor made by the youngest Tash. Everyone really seems to love its cheerful rainbow vibe, so we put it on the cover of a blank journal, and she gets the profits. (So far nearly $5!) It is earmarked for more art supplies, but I think she’s going to end up spending it on shoes. Who can blame her? Shoes!
Regardless, I’m going to start uploading a bullet journal version of the love journal. Everything else about it will remain the same (matte cover, 156 pages, 7×10 white pages)
I had some other doodles and designs on hand that I turned into journals, as well. Some of them were graphic art pieces and photos I’ve taken over the years, and others were just ideas that popped into my head. Everything is available as a blank lined books. Bullet journals will be coming as soon as I get them uploaded.
I’ll be frank: I’m really focused on finishing up Miss Fitz 2’s first draft right now, so if you want more info on Planet Tash journals, check them out here: