Merry Christmas, dear readers and fellow authors! I’m so glad you’re a part of my life. You make this job fun and rewarding, and I look forward to writing new stories for you.
I hope you’re having a *fantastic* day, and I wish you all the best in 2014. Health, happiness, prosperity – may you have it all.
If you got a new ereader today, or gave a new ereader to someone, may I remind you that I have lots of ebooks available for your reading pleasure?
Start with my freebie short story, MADDIE’S MARINE (Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iTunes) and then continue on to my Hostile Operations Team Series featuring HOT PURSUIT (Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iTunes), HOT MESS (Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iTunes) and HOT PACKAGE, currently a part of the HOT, SEXY & BAD COLLECTION (Kindle | Nook | iTunes). Or if you prefer billionaires and exotic locations, head for my Harlequins (Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iTunes)!
As we head into the busy and stressful Christmas season, I just wanted to take a few moments to say something I think is important. Love yourself. This time of year, more than any other, causes stress on people. We are inundated with commercials for fabulous Christmas gifts, with pictures of how the perfect holiday is supposed to be, with smiling families who buy Mercedes Benzes or huge diamonds for each other, with a beautiful family gathered around a beautifully decorated table — and it’s easy to let these images depress you when you realize your life isn’t like that.
But I want you to take a moment right now and remember that YOU are special. You can do things no one else can do. You have gifts and talents and you are important to someone. You matter in this world and you need to look in the mirror and remind yourself of that. Don’t let the ideal of the perfect holiday get you down. It’s probably not perfect for anyone, quite honestly.
The season passes in a whirlwind of decorating, shopping, parties, cooking, and smiling when you might not feel like it. You may not get the cards out this year. You may not have the designer tree. But so what? Just enjoy your blessings, whatever they may be, and don’t stress about the other stuff.
Love yourself. I promise you there is something amazing about you. If you don’t know what that is, take a hard look and figure it out. And then remind yourself of it as often as necessary. It’s important. Because you’re important. 🙂
We’re going to get through this holiday season, and then we’re going to move on to January and February and anticipate spring’s arrival. Forget the perfect holiday, the perfect body, the perfect life. Just enjoy today and love yourself for who you are. That’s my plan!
Happy 4th to all my American readers! Our celebrations here in Alabama are quite soggy. It’s been raining all day, we’ve had flash flood warnings, and there’ve been many road closures. Needless to say, any outdoor barbecue plans have been scuttled. Mr. Harris and I went to a BBQ joint for some chicken, so we did get our cookout — sorta.
I’ve had some inquiries about HOT PURSUIT — will it be available for UK buyers? Of course it will! I’m enabling worldwide distribution when I upload it to the retailers. There will also be paperbacks, which will follow the ebooks by a couple of weeks or so. The plan is to have this story available for you to purchase on July 17th — but we’re dealing with various online retailers here, and some may be slower than others to make the book go live. I will keep you informed! It’s my wish that HOT PURSUIT will be on all formats and ready to purchase on the day I’ve said it will be. *fingers crossed*
The absolute BEST way to stay up to date on all my books, including when HOT PURSUIT is live, is to join my newsletter. You can do that by clicking here. I never share your email with anyone and I only send out newsletters when I have a new release. No other reason! I won’t email you chatty missives or send you recipes. It’s all about the books! The bonus, however, is that I also give away a $50 gift card to one newsletter subscriber on the first of every month. All you have to do is be a subscriber. Nothing else!
Just a note on this New Year’s Eve, the last day of 2012, to say thanks for everything you’ve done for me. You buy my books and you make it possible for me to have this awesome job where I get to write about sexy alpha males and the women who are tough enough and strong enough to be their equals. I love what I do, and I love that you enjoy reading my stories!
Since I got that magical call in 2008, I’ve written a lot of books and learned a lot of things. I’ve sold nearly 2 million books worldwide, which is incredible to me, and I get mail from so many wonderful people who’ve enjoyed something I’ve written. Truthfully, writing is such an odd word for what happens when an author sits down to tell a story. Yes, we write the words onto the page — but it’s so much more than that. We live that story in our heads. I see it play like a movie reel, and I have no idea why.
I used to think it was weird to do that, before I started writing the stories down. I used to think there was a part of me that had never grown up and never would. When I was a kid, I told myself stories in my head to go to sleep — and I kept doing it as an adult. I didn’t know I was supposed to write down what I saw. That took a few years to figure out.
But once I did — wow, everything made sense! And now you make it possible for me to keep doing this dreaming I do. 🙂
2012 was an awesome year, but here’s hoping 2013 is even more so. I wish you all peace and happiness and prosperity!
As the new year begins, I’ll be doing some new things. First, I’m planning to bring you a military romance series! The first book should be available quite soon, and if you want to be kept up to date on that, you can sign up for my newsletter here. (To read the prologue and first chapter of HOT PURSUIT, the first book in the series, go here.)
Secondly, I’m starting a Street Team. If you want to be a part of the LRH League, send me an email at Lynn AT LynnRayeHarris DOT com to be added to the list! I’ll be sharing exclusive news and goodies with my team as we go forward. This is meant to be a fun way to connect and to share news about my books with other readers, so I’d love to have you join in!
Once more, thank you for everything you do and I wish you a happy, pleasant, awesome New Year!
I hope all my American readers had an awesome Thanksgiving! We certainly did. Good friends we have not see in eight years, since we were all stationed together in Germany, came to visit us. My parents were here too, and it was just one big reunion. We ate and talked and laughed like those years hadn’t passed. The only evidence they had was the 11 year old child who was a toddler back then. :/
After dinner, the ladies looked at the Black Friday ads. Not that we intended to brave a single store, but looking at the ads is just fun. Later that evening, we went to a Christmas light display in the local botanical garden. And it suddenly came home to me just how rushed this season typically is.
We have an extra week this time, due to the early Thanksgiving, but it’s still time for trees and tinsel and gifts and cards and lights and all the pressure that goes along with those things. Now, I am accustomed to pressure. It seems as if I’m always writing to some deadline or other, and that they get crammed up on top of each other so that I feel as if I’m never getting out from under them.
Add in Christmas, and the pressure skyrockets. I’m sure it’s not just me. I’m sure that, whatever your profession, you might feel a little bit of pressure this time of year to provide that perfect holiday experience. We’re all supposed to be Martha Stewart, right? Somewhere, right now, Martha might be making homemade Christmas cards and canning fresh berries while single-handedly decorating the most fabulous tree ever decorated. Go, Martha.
I think it’s okay not to be Martha. I think whatever we manage to do, so long as we are happy and our family is happy, is enough. Not only that, but our families can also help us during this time of year. Make addressing cards into a family project. Make decorating a family project. Make cookie baking, if you like to do that sort of thing, into a family project.
This season is about togetherness and family and giving and remembering our blessings, so I think it’s okay if our house isn’t perfectly decorated and we don’t have the exterior draped in lights that blink on and off to the beat of a song.
This brings me to another point. Theodore Roosevelt said that comparison is the thief of joy. Do not compare yourself to others because you will only feel bad in the end. There is always someone who has a prettier house, more money, better decorations, etc.
But here’s the thing to remember. Besides not comparing yourself because it’s upsetting, life is not static. The neighbor with the prettier house and nicer decorations might lose his job and have to move. The coworker who had all her cards out the door the day after Thanksgiving, and who finished her shopping back in August, might have personal problems you can’t begin to fathom.
There are no guarantees in life, so celebrate where you are and what you can do and don’t compare yourself. I know that’s not always easy. I know it’s human nature to compare and find ourselves lacking. But the life that seems perfect on the outside isn’t always, is it? Just ask Martha Stewart. All the crafting and cooking and decorating in the world didn’t help her stay out of jail when the time came.
So remember that your perfect neighbor or your perfect coworker might just be one insider trade away from a stint in the corrections facility. 😉
Go forth and be happy this season. Enjoy, celebrate, and let things slide if they must. Be happy, friends. That’s the most important thing.
Hope your holiday was grand! We had a great time with the in-laws and my parents. It was, without doubt, the least stressful Thanksgiving week I’ve spent in recent memory. I wasn’t worried about turkey and gravy and all the trimmings. Oh, I was fixing them, but I wasn’t worried. If it all turned out terrible (and it didn’t), we’d have piled into the car and gone to a restaurant.
I’ve learned over the past year that you sometimes just have to let go of all the expectations and pressure. That doesn’t mean I’m great at it, or that I always take my own advice, but this time, for once, I did. And everything turned out fabulously.
It’s really easy as a writer to get wound up over things you can’t control. Selling your book, getting an agent, discovering the secret to success. And once you’ve sold a book and have a career going, it’s easy to obsess about things like sales, list placement, and whether or not you think your next idea is any good. You can drive yourself crazy if you let those thoughts swirl around unchecked.
So let go. Focus on what you can control, which is nothing more than the writing. Focus on the writing and the story and let the rest take care of itself. I know the holidays can be crazy, and I know the demands on your time will be heavier than ever. But take time for yourself somewhere in there. Take time to just be still and quiet, to know that you’re doing everything you can and that you’ll get there so long as you don’t quit.
I had a great Thanksgiving, and I hope you did too. One other thing I got done this weekend — with the help of my husband and in-laws — was decorating the Christmas tree. There are some years where I’m running so late, due to deadlines and other commitments, that I don’t even get the tree up. And other years where I get it done at the last minute. But not this time. This time it’s done, and I’m feeling accomplished. I’m sure there will be things in the next few weeks that make me feel less accomplished, but for now I’m going to enjoy it.
Let go. Focus on what you can do and not on what you can’t. Breathe. January will be here before you know it. 😉
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