Looking Back, Looking Forward

As we approach the end of December, it’s natural to look back at the closing year and reflect on all we’ve accomplished. 2012 has certainly been a busy year full of notable moments for Ann and I on our writing journey, including:

  • In March, we sold DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT for publication in May 2013. When Ann and I set out in 2009 to start a new series with an eye to professional publication, we really had no idea what we were getting into. So to culminate that effort with successfully selling our book and launching our series was a huge moment for us.
  • We outlined, wrote and revised the second book in our series, A FLAME IN THE WIND OF DEATH. That book has been turned into our editor and we are hopeful of a publication date early in 2014.
  • We wrote a proposal for standalone biothriller, BLOWBACK. We’re currently on submission with that proposal.
  • We got to see cover art for DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT for the first time. It’s funny how the instant your book gets a cover, it suddenly gets real.
  • I attended Bloody Words 2012 in Toronto, where I not only got to reconnect with old writing friends and make new ones, but I got to finally meet my agent Nicole Resciniti in person. Nic was every bit as wonderful as I suspected she’d be from our email and phone conversations, and it was great to connect with her on a personal level. Granted, when you compare meeting Nic to how long it took to finally meet Ann in person (3 years and 5 novels later!), 18 months doesn’t seem so bad.
  • We continued to blog regularly, expanding on our author brand of forensic anthropology and forensic sciences as they apply to current criminal investigations and historical whodunits.
  • Skeleton Keys was named one of the top forensic blogs on the web for the second time.
  • On a personal note, 2012 had its ups and downs: For me, the year marked the end of a nearly twenty-year career in HIV research, six months of unemployment and then a move into Dengue fever research. For Ann, everyday life became an unforeseen challenge after breaking her ankle and the associated surgery and recovery.

Looking ahead, there are many possibilities on our horizon:

  • We’re starting a new Leigh Abbott/Matt Lowell novella to bridge the gap between DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT and A FLAME IN THE WIND OF DEATH. Mystery series can be very nicely set up for the occasional shorter installment, and ours is no exception. We’re looking forward to moving our characters into some new situations.
  • Planning and writing the third book in the series.
  • Having the opportunity to expand on our proposal for BLOWBACK, turning it into a full-fledged novel and maybe a second series.
  • Brainstorming for new non-series projects.
  • I’ll be attending at least two mystery conferences. At this point I’m looking at Bouchercon in September, and New England Crime Bake in November.
  • And, of course, our release for DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT in May, which will be very exciting. We’ll have more information on that for you all in the coming months.

2012 has been a very good year overall, and we’re very much looking forward to what 2013 holds for us.

Ann and I are going to be taking a few well-deserved weeks off from blogging as we enjoy the holidays. The very best of the season to you and yours, and we’ll see you on our return on January 8, 2013.

Photo credit: hpaich