Thank you 2023! A gratitude post

Julie Hedlund’s 12 Days of Christmas is a magical renewal process that lets you give last year a hug and wave goodbye to ready your soul for the year ahead. Day 7 is about 


and I’d love to take a moment to send some thanks out in the world. *

You need A LOT of support when you’re writing! Thank you to my tribe: 

My local writers support group for always being there, making writing less solitary, and listening to assorted rants…Marlaina, Mitu, Donna, Rebecca, Suzanne, Andria, Ariel, Chana, Kathleen, Naomi, Linda, Marilyn, and others who pop in—Thank you!

My critique group partners who encourage me to keep going and help me polish manuscripts. Daniella, Ryann, Alice, Stephanie, Karen, Jamie, Sarah, Aimee, Linda, Amy.  YOU GUYS ARE THE BEST!

Special thanks for the authors who critiqued my work this year: Carol Joy Munro, Malcolm Newsome, and Justin Colon for critiquing my work.

12 x 12 participants, host Julie Hedlund, leaders, and all the webinar guests!

Manju Howard, Alayne Kay Christian, and Gabrielle Schoeffield – Thank you for hosting the final year of KidLit Creatives which encouraged all of us to shout our accomplishments each month. 

Thank you to the hosts, judges, and donors of all these contests that make you write and revise!

Madness Poetry host Ed DeCaria for putting me in the bracket. So glad I put my big girl pants on and took a shot!    

Susanna Hill – Thank you for your contests which spark new material every year. (When the mood strikes, maybe I can polish my honorable mention holiday poem into a picture book?)  Thank you to Cindy Schrauben for offering the zoom chat! 

Thank you to 50 Precious Words Writing Contest host Vivian Kirkfield which inspires new ideas. (Still hoping my Honorable mention poem gets picked up by a magazine!)   

Kidlit Zombie Week hosts “Six Ladies and a MANuscript Group” (Kaitlyn Sanchez, Jolene Gutierrez, Sarah Heaton, Sarah Meade, Mike Irvine, Kristin Wauson)  

Kaitlyn Sanchez and Ciara Oneal and Lydia Lukidis – thank you for hosting the Spring Fling and Fall Frenzy contests.   

7 Spooky Sentences hosted by Lynne Marie and Heather Macht, which offers a quick plot framework and the Seasons of Kidlit posts. 

The fun, themed nonfiction challenge SunWritefun hosted by Karen Greenwald and thank you to Keila Dawson for her prize and great zoom conversation. 

So grateful for all these Opportunities & Resources & Fun!

Thank you to Storystorm host Tara Lazar and all the authors who write posts and donate prizes.  

PB PARTY hosted by Mindy Weiss and all the guest judges Matt Tesoriero, Gabriele Davis, Sylvia Chen, Jenna Waldman, Aixa Perez-Prado, and Marietta Apollonio for the Honorable Mention overall that gave my hope a boost!

Revision Week hosts Lauren Kerstein, Joana Pastro, Michal Bibay, Katie Frawley, Lynne Marie, and Shannon Stocker who even helped me to a breakthrough on a tough manuscript.

Kathy Temean of Writing and Illustrating blog for offering so much information and opportunities.  

Children’s Book Insider publishers Laura Backes & Jon Bard – Thank you for the monthly newsletters and above the slushpile submission opportunities.   

The “Nonfiction Ninjas” Susie Kralovansky, Peggy Thomas, Linda Skeers, Stephanie Bearce, Lisa Amstutz, Nancy Churnin, Christine Liu-Perkins for hosting Nonfiction Fest and the NF Ninja PB Contest.

Savvy Writers – a great resource I just found this year - and their pitch contest which provided a request (fingers still crossed!)  

Ebony Lynn Mudd & her amazing PB Retreat classes.

Thanks to David Steffen and Diabolical Plots for running TheGrinder which is an amazing resource for magazines and anthologies!  

Natalie Aguirre- Thank you for the agent spotlights on Literary Rambles. It is an amazing resource for agent research.

Thank you to Highlights Foundation for welcoming me into my own cabin, filling my belly with delicious food, and letting me write and write and write...twice.

Thank you to agents and editors for reading my work and a huge thank you to Highlights High Five, Little Thoughts Press, Ember, and Paperbound for publishing my work this year.

And thank you to whoever my January brain may have forgotten.

*I said a “moment” but wow I had a lot of gratitude to express and no one was playing the “your speech is too long fanfare…”