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I’m not sure where December went, or 2017 for that matter. But I find myself already in the throes of January. How in the ever-living crap did that happen? Sigh. Anyway, let me catch you up, internets.

The Christmas Fix came out last month and was quite the Christmas hit! Here’s a few things that readers are saying about Cat and Noah and their enemies-to-lovers holiday rom-com…

“I laughed, cried, really ugly cried and smiled all the way through this loving Christmas tale.” – Thatmom

“The banter between the main characters is funny, sexy, angsty, and hot all in one.” – Xandy85

“So freaking cute! Ahhhhhh…..I love Enemies to lovers and this book hit me in all the feels!!!!!” – Andrea Danielle

And none of those reviews were from my mother! I know! Right? Mr. Lucy and I were thrilled with the reception that The Christmas Fix got. And, being a giant sucker for all things Christmas, I’m already plotting my 2018 Christmas novel.

Anyway, if you haven’t picked up The Christmas Fix, get those grabby hands on it. It’s in Kindle Unlimited!

What else have I been up to? For Christmas, Mr. Lucy and I visited six houses and something like 32 people! It was magnificent! We were still worn out by New Year’s Eve, so we went to an early dinner with friends and then were in comfy pants on the couch to watch the ball drop.

How about you? What did you do for the holidays? Did you make any resolutions? My main New Year’s resolution is to find more time in my day. I want to remember more things, not just wake up to a blur of writing all the words and zoning out in front of the TV to unwind every night. I want to finish 2018 with more amazing memories than 2017.

I’ll be checking in again soon with a new reader profile! I can’t wait!

xoxo,

Lucy

I don’t know if I’m a complete weirdo, or if everyone envisions their perfect day of just the right amounts of family quality time, productivity, health consciousness, and relaxing. When I took complete control of all the hours in my day (24 to be precise), I failed miserably in all arenas. I thought not being at work for nine hours a day would magically turn me into the productivity fairy, sprinkling creative writing dust around my home office while laundry and dishes and dinner took care of themselves.

Yeah, that was total crap. Apparently, if I don’t have a plan and deadlines and a list and alarms on my phone, I get zilch done. I don’t even know what I do with my time! I have a feeling vast amounts of hours were being sucked up by social media and articles on how to be productive and opening my fridge 37 times to see if anyone had put anything new in there in the last 15 minutes.

Finally, when I realized that having the time didn’t mean I would use it effectively, I had to get tough with myself like a parent of a teenager with self-destructive tendencies (aren’t they all self-destructive?).

My perfect day now looks something like this.

9 a.m. Get ass out of bed.

9:10 a.m. Cheerfully scamper down to the home gym and workout for 45-mins to an hour. Feel human.

10 a.m. Enjoy a protein shake full of delicious fruits and veggies would be ingested as well as 10 to 15 minutes of meditation practiced

11 a.m. Answer emails, hang out with the readers on social media, catch up on whatever non-writing stuff needs addressed.

Noon. EAT! Best part of the day. Also, remember to take my a.m. vitamins.

12:30 Start writing in one-hour increments and hit 1,000 words an hour. My word count goal is 3,000 every day so on my PERFECT days I can be done in three hours of writing.

Afternoon between hour-long sprints. Prep dinner, throw in a load of laundry, respond to texts, put away clothes, yell at the cat, go outside and smell flowers.

5 p.m. Triumphantly save my work in progress in three places, slam down the lid of my laptop, and cockily announce to Mr. Lucy that I’m done for the day.

5:05 p.m. Walk back in my office, open the laptop and tackle anything that came up since my morning perusal of the world. Return phone calls. Drink a martini. Shop online for things I’d resent if I had to leave the house for. Hone my craft by reading blogs and books and articles. Take care of normal human being things like yelling at my insurance company, calling my parents, activating credit cards. Really at this point in my perfect day, the world is my oyster.

7:00 p.m. Either make dinner or go out to dinner. Remember to take the rest of those vitamins that give me nice fingernails and regular heart beats.

9 p.m. Hit the couch (or bed) with a book and Mr. Lucy (just Mr. Lucy) and entertain ourselves (do “research”).

Midnight: Wind down before official bedtime. More meditation and the satisfaction of a day not wasted.

Perfect day, right? OK, so here’s how my day actually goes (which should be noted is a VAST improvement over 2016). What can I say? I’m a work in progress.

9 a.m. Ignore alarm.

9:30 a.m. Check texts, email, and social media through the one eye that deigns to open in the morning.

10 a.m. Drag ass out of bed. Trip over cat on the way to the bathroom. Then make the fatal mistake of sitting down at my computer before working out. Get distracted.

11 a.m. Drag ass downstairs to work out.

Noon Feel marginally better. At least I accomplished something. Even if I did have to skip meditation. Maybe I should give it five minutes… Nope! Now I’m starving. Stuff face or say “Yes, please” when Mr. Lucy suggests going out to lunch. (That’s also a fatal mistake because we tend to procrastinate really well together so a lunch out can last up to four hours depending on how many tasks and errands we can come up with to keep us from our actual work.

2 p.m. Start writing. Battle for the first hour. Feel dejected. Wonder why I don’t know what I’m doing yet. Whine to Mr. Lucy about everything. Then remember that I left load of laundry in the washer three days ago.

3 p.m. The washer is running again. And it’s time to write. It goes much better because my self-loathing tells me I can’t possibly be a writer with the way I use my time. “Oh, yeah?” says my rebellious streak (the only thing stronger than that obnoxious self-loathing). “Watch this!” I write like it’s a job that I’m really good at. Take a few breaks to wink suggestively at Mr. Lucy.

7 p.m. Wrap it up. Immediately wonder if I wrote anything decent or if it’s all a steaming pile of crap. Who cares? That’s what the second draft is for! Celebration ends when I realize I forgot to schedule my oil change, put the clothes in the dryer, figure out why I can’t log into my credit card, and water the plants AGAIN. OMG, dinner.

9 p.m. Pretend I’m super cool and urbane for eating so late. Hope I don’t get heart burn when I go to bed.

10 p.m. Collapse on couch. Remember that I forgot all my vitamins. Eat a frozen Snickers and take half of the vitamins. Plan to do better tomorrow.

I love New Years in the same way that I love makeover movies. It’s a NEW BEGINNING, GUYS! We can be anyone we want to be this year, do anything we want to do, smell any way we want to smell in 2017, because we’re metaphorically shaking off the shackles of 2016 and taking stock of our lives.

I took the last two weeks off of writing—and anything else that resembles working or providing a positive contribution to society—and started to think about how far off the rails I went in 2016. My little train car not only went off the rails, it rolled end over end, spontaneously combusting into a fiery pyre on top of a bunch of poorly placed gas cans. But I digress… and exaggerate.

Don’t get me wrong, 2016 was a beautiful year with many good things in it. It also left most of us feeling mentally violated at least four times a day. Combine a world gone mad with three ridiculously optimistic deadlines and I was a disorganized, crazy person by the end of it.

Which brings me to my New Year Makeover, or what I like to call “I Swear I’ll Do Better This Year.”

Morning routine

I’ve spent the last year luxuriating in the fact that I no longer have an office job to get up and put on pants and leave the house for. It’s great. It’s fabulous. I haven’t been this well-rested EVER in my life. What’s the problem? I putz around like a sloth under the guise of “checking my email” and “catching up on Facebook.” That putzing usually carries me right up until 3 p.m. when I haven’t written a word or taken a shower or accomplished anything else that is a socially acceptable form of adulthood.

 

I had planned to learn to meditate. I had wanted to get up every morning and work out. And the mornings that I did do those two things, I felt GOOD. Centered. Awake. Productive. But it’s so easy to talk myself into grabbing a cup of coffee and sitting down with my laptop for “just a few minutes” first. That ends now.

I will establish a morning routine that gets me out of bed at a not embarrassing hour AND starts my day in line with my priorities (the health and kick-ass writing priorities, not the coffee and putzing ones).

Be more present

Or present at all. Seriously any amount of presence is going to be a huge improvement over my current state of “Huh?” I’m going to put my damn phone down. I’m going to stare deeply into Mr. Lucy’s eyes when he talks to me. I’m going to give distractions the finger. I’m going to see, hear, smell, taste, and touch my way through 2017 instead of bumping around in a digital fog.

I’m going to pay attention to the person in front of me rather than the dozen on social media or text.

I’m going to murder anxiety

I waste a quantifiably huge amount of time regretting any number of things I’ve done/haven’t done and worrying about the million things that haven’t happened YET, but might at any moment.

Me: OMG! What if everyone just stops buying my books? What happens if my books start sucking and people stop telling their friends to read them? What if my income just evaporates and I HAVE TO MOVE INTO A CARDBOARD BOX IN MY FRIEND LORI’S DRIVEWAY? SHE LIVES ON A HILL!

I’ve failed a lot, or as Mr. Lucy prefers to call it “falling down.” And falling down still scares me, but what’s important is that every time I’ve fallen down, I’ve gotten back up. There’s no reason to think that in 2017 I’ll just take the next tumble and decide to curl into the fetal position forever. That would be the ultimate stupidness.

Every time that shitty little doubt-filled voice starts running its dirty (and not in the good way) mouth I’m going to do whatever’s necessary to stop it.

Not-So-Lofty Plans for 2017

  • Lose the back fat that’s escaping my sports bras
  • Buy less disgusting kitchen towels
  • Eat more sushi
  • Pet more dogs
  • Run a 27-minute 5k
  • Stop slouching like a vulture
  • Stop leaving loads of laundry in the washer for three days

That’s my I Swear I’ll Do Better plan for 2017. What are your plans for this year?