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Yes, I am still here!

I have not blogged here in more than a year and boy has a lot happened in those 18 months or so... Well, the first several months were spent promoting Magic City Murder Deja Vu. A lot to learn for my first novel, but I enjoyed meeting so many people and I I am truly grateful for the response.

Since March, like so many across the world, I have been locked in my home as the COVID-19 pandemic spread around the world. Isolated in your home seems like the perfect scenario for a writer to write and it was.... for a minute. I started my new book with enthusiasm. I have reprised the characters of Fay Findlay and the Special Crimes Unit of the Birmingham Police Department working on another case that has many historical ties to Birmingham but in a very different way than my first book. By June, I had the first half of the book written and most of the research completed and then the creative process came to a grinding halt. Writer's block? Pandemic Depression? Inability to concentrate in isolation? Perhaps it was a little bit of all those things!

Back in February 2020, I don't think any of us could have imagined that our world would be turned upside down and that as the year comes to a close that we would still be combating the virus pandemic along with a plethora of other things -- Racial unrest, upcoming Presidential election, hurricanes and forest fires, just to name a few.

But, around the first of August my resolve hardened and I got my MOJO back! I cannot point to any one thing that triggered it other than almost six months of seeing the incredible resolve of so many that faced many more hardships much more severe than mine. Friends that have fought through the virus and survived and those who have died leaving their families and those of us that love them to try and celebrate their lives in absentia. I witnessed my friends and loved ones in the healthcare industry don their gear and report to work everyday to alleviate as much pain and suffering as they could, even at great risk to their own health and that of their families. I witnessed my friends in the service industries have their livliehoods come to an immediate screeching halt and marveled as they rolled up their sleeves and figured out a "new normal" to survive in business and keep the doors open and their employees paid. I witnessed my friends that make a living entertaining us with music have their world wrecked as music venues and concerts suddenly ceased. I watched as they struggled and found ways to entertain us with music from their living rooms over the inter webs. We are all still struggling and there is no end in sight, but I have seen that if we put forth the effort to embrace our fellow human beings and support one another, we can all survive and when we are on the other side we will thrive, even if our normal is a new version.

As of today, I have 27 Chapters of the new novel completed. I am guessing that is about 75% complete. Of course, then there are months of rewrites, edits and other pre-publication preparation. I have targeted August 2021 for the release date and unless something unforeseen happens, I should make that date. My plan going forward is to blog here at least once a month to keep you informed of my progress. The book is, of course, a work in progress but just this week I changed the working title from Book 2 to... BOMBINGHAM - The Day Of Reckoning.

If you have read this far, I thank you! Until next month... CHEERS!

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