And… I’m back!

Friends, have you ever felt so overwhelmed that you decided to take a little break, only to wake up one day and realize you put something you love on the back burner for three whole years?

Hello. My name is Kat, and I never intended to stop writing for so long.

But sometimes life gets in the way of good intentions.

Back in 2016, I gave birth to my second daughter. I also had a severe hemorrhage and had to be rushed to the operating room to stop me from bleeding to death. The hospital staff were amazing and helped me quickly, but I lost so much blood that I was badly anemic for a long time after. It was months before I had the strength to leave my house. Months before I could follow a simple conversation. I had good days that would convince me I was all better, and then bad days when I felt drugged and could barely cuddle my kids, much less get out of bed.

For the first year, my focus shifted to my physical recovery. I had to slowly rebuild my strength. Then came reintegrating in my work. And, of course, through all this time I was spending as much time as possible with my little ones, the youngest of whom kept waking up every few hours FOR THREE WHOLE YEARS.

Fam, I was exhausted, sucked dry of every ounce of creativity. I gave everything to all these other crucial parts of my life, and I had nothing left for fiction.

But I missed it. I missed creating my own stories. And I miss you guys. Really, really missed the conversations about books and life that I’ve enjoyed with so many readers and writers over the years.

So I asked my boss if I could take a sabbatical, and she very kindly agreed.

Right now, I’m in the middle of my sabbatical, and my creativity is EXPLODING. This is both good and bad.

Good: I’m writing every day. Every. Single. Day. My head is full of stories. All kinds of stories. I even wrote about the Tower of Babel for my friend’s latest art exhibition. He turned my writing into panels using watercolor pencils.

Kat with Babel panels
Me at the opening night for the Babel exhibition
Artwork by Julio Pastor

Bad: I’m finding it hard to focus on what to prioritize. I’m working on four different books in four different genres (contemporary romance, middle grade, historical fiction, and short stories — not really a genre, but whatever).

Also bad: There are days anxiety gets the better of me. It tells me I can’t write a good book. It tells me that the last scene I wrote is terrible and I should delete it and start over. Those four books in four genres? I’ve written the beginning of those stories in about ten different ways. So even though my sabbatical is half over and I’ve been working my bumkins off, I still won’t have a book out for a while.

But I am back. And I’m writing again. And I’m ready to start connecting with you all again.

Because you guys are the best. Seriously, some of you sent me emails checking in to see how I was doing over the past few years, and I can’t tell you what an encouragement that is. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

41 thoughts on “And… I’m back!

  1. Hi Kat, I am glad that you are back. I recently checked your website and facebook to see if there was an update. It would have been better of course if I left a message, but I was not sure if it was appropriate. I am looking forward to more of your books. Be nice to yourself!

    Regards,
    Mirjam

    1. Jane, thank you so much! I really appreciate all the support you’ve given me (and other authors) over the years. Watching you blaze new trails is hugely inspirational to me. Thank you!

  2. So glad you’re all better now. Hope you’ll find your focus, and here’s me saying you always write good books. Welcome back, Kat. Cheers!

    P.S. I thought I was seeing things. Right in the middle of Taming the Legend reread when I saw the notif from WP, and just went, “…Eh?” for a moment there. (╯▽╰ )

    1. Oh, wow, Kanoko, how amazing that you’re rereading Taming the Legend right now! Our brainwaves must be crossing over! And thank you for your kind words about my books. You’ve really lifted me up! I hope all is well with you.

  3. Yeah, thank you for being an example of walking through fire and becoming a phoenix. I so appreciate you emailing such a heartfelt journey. I am glad you are back, please keep fighting the fight. I look forward to reading all of your stories, whenever they arrive. I am a teacher and middle grades is what I do. I also read myself, no tv and very few movies. Blessings for peace.

    1. Wow, thank you for those lovely words, Alison. I’ve been reading a lot of middle grades recently, and they are so incredibly good. It makes me remember how important good books were when I was that age. In fact, I would even say they were life-saving. It can be a tough age. And the teachers who recommended and assigned wonderful books still stick out in my memories. Thank you for being a teacher — I know it’s a really difficult and often underappreciated job, but it’s the most important one in the world, I think.

  4. So happy to hear you are well. Would love a story from you, but I’d rather you take care of you. That has to come first. Hugs.

    1. Jami, I’ve missed you so much!! I’m sorry to hear the last three years have been a struggle. Let’s catch up soon.

      P.S. The first thing I did when I started writing again is download your Scrivener templates. They’re so helpful, especially since on Day 1 I sat down and thought, “Right… how do I write a book???” Thank you for sharing all your writing wisdom. It really helps!

  5. Welcome back! Sorry you went through the health problems, but glad you have healed. Congratulations on your children! You look great, by the way! I look forward to reading your new books, when you are able to get them written.

  6. Best wishes to you on the writing. When you hear those doubts in your head, remember, you’ve done it successfully before so there’s no reason to think you can’t do it again. Also, I know what it feels like when you are generally healthy and then get hit with an out-of-the-blue serious health issue, so congrats for finding your way back.

      1. Thanks! It took two years, but now I’m back to about 90% of normal. The doctors were never able to figure out what was wrong with me (it was a weird lung/breathing issue), so it’s a good thing I recovered on my own since there was no treatment available.

  7. Welcome back, Kat. Lovely to see you’re well and posting again. Enjoy the writing and don’t worry. You’ve got this. Talent doesn’t go away.

    1. Oh, Karina, that means so much coming from an author whose work I admire and adore! Thank you!
      P.S. I’m re-reading your Rock Solid series right now. I love it! xoxo

  8. I cannot say how happy I am to see this! We have missed you. Whatever you choose to write, you have readers who will always follow you. Stay strong!

  9. I am so glad you have returned and are doing better. I’ve often thought about you and wondered how you were. Looking forward to discovering the path your voices and talent take you.

  10. I’m so glad you’re back! I have loved everything I read of yours and eagerly await your next story. 🙂

  11. Welcome back! Now don’t overdo it. Take it one day at a time & one book, story, whatever at a time. Focus on good health & the rest will follow. So good to see you! {{{hugs}}}

  12. Bravo. Proud of you. You’re as strong as your mom.
    Btw you look gorgeous on this pic.

    Miss you all.

    Johanna and rob

  13. So glad you’re feeling better. Even though I LOVE your books, please listen to your body. We want you back, but we also want you to stay healthy and vibrant!

  14. So glad your back I have missed talking to you. I am glad your feeling better. Look forward to talking and reading your books again.

  15. Hi Kat!
    It’s good to hear things are going better for you! I have not read anything of yours yet, but I’m signed up now. Any time the gang at Rosalind James’s FB group recommends an author so wholeheartedly, I take it seriously!

    I’ve read that romance novels sell better by a landslide than any other genre, so maybe you’ll want to consider finishing that book first.

    Wishing you peace and smooth sailing!

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