07-21-18 Patricia Sargeant

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

And a Merry Christmas to all! (Including me)

by M.L. Buchman
This has been an amazing year! 
Last Christmas had to be about the worst on record.
(that's why it's in blue)
I had been laid off after 2 years of hellacious overtime in September 2012 because my corporate job needed someone to execute as a sacrificial lamb to an unhappy client--the fact that I hadn't worked on one of their projects was apparently beside the point, they were told I'd been the key man. As a Senior Project Manager, the recession was still a year from over for my job classification. I've had a dozen job offers these last few months after not looking for a job in a year...by last Christmas I'd had 0 offers for 3 months of 60-hour weeks of job hunt. We had a mortgage that was killing us, on a house that was in another state because the recession had bankrupted the company I'd worked with for 4 years before the one that laid me off. I was about as low as you could get. It was not a good Christmas Day at all.

Then a little treat happened. Last Christmas I released a book called Daniel's Christmas in my Night Stalkers military romantic suspense series. The strangest thing happened to dear little Daniel: he was embraced by fans. You hugged him, cuddled him, and most importantly, purchased him and took him home for Christmas (and that was ever before he got the spiffy new cover).

With this tiny bit of evidence and the reported sales of the first 2 Night Stalkers books from my traditional publisher,  
The Night is Mine (Booklist Top 10 Romance of 2012)
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I Own the Dawn (NPR Top 5 Romance of 2012)
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in January of 2013 we took a leap. (I say "we" because my wife is the most supportive woman on the planet in addition to being my heart.) In ten days: I quit a career stretching over 25 years, we dumped the house for a major loss, we dumped the in-city apartment and moved to the Oregon Coast slashing our expenses, and hunkered down to do full-time writing. We figured Goethe was a smart guy, "What the Hell, Leap!" (Kinda what he said.) So we did.

Then came July 4th and I decided to try it again. So, we launched Frank's Independence Day in the same series. Frank roared aloft as only a Night Stalker book can and we began to think this year just might work.

Then a new Christmas season was upon us. This time we managed two Christmas books, what with me being a full-time writer and all. Peter's Christmas continues the high flights of the Night Stalkers and Maria's Christmas Table is the third of my Seattle-set contemporary romances (a series that will be wrapping up with a 2-book release on April Fools Day [can you tell I like holidays?]).

The first two in the "Angelo's Hearth" series were:
Where Dreams Are Born
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Where Dreams Reside
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There were also two more Night Stalkers books released by my publisher in 2013:
Wait Until Dark
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Take Over at Midnight (Barnes & Noble Best 5 Romance of 2013)
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Really capping off the year in a fantastic way, Publishers Weekly Radio selected me for an interview about writing my "Night Stalkers" series and my experiences as a male writing romance. (Thank goodness I didn't understand how rare an opportunity that was until after the interview so I was only panicked rather than terrified while I was speaking.)

To say that this is a year to be filled with thanks is an understatement. We never dreamed we'd be doing so well at this moment. This is a whole different Christmas than the one gone by.

I can think of three things I wish to say on this holiday day:
Imagine the impossible, then do it!
May your holidays be even 
half as filled with gratitude as mine!
Merry Holidays and a Happy New Year! 
Thanks for a great year!


Judith Ashley said...

Inspiring to read your story. Your leap of faith turned in to a flight on golden wings! Very happy to see you doing so well!

I'm going to revamp my 2014 Writing Goals to include a bit of the impossible!!!

Margaret Tanner said...

Congratulations, that is an inspiring story, and one that every author or aspiring author should read.

Best wishes


Paty Jager said...

Congrats on a great year, Matt!

M. L. Buchman said...

Thanks all. And I can tell you, imagining and pursuing the impossible has been one of my most successful endeavors, both in and out of writing.

Maggie Lynch said...

Well deserved, Matt. You have worked your butt off writing and I'm so pleased to hear it is paying off. Huge hugs to you and your family. May many more wonderful books come from your brain to your fingertips and to your readers.

M. L. Buchman said...

Thanks Maggie. It's been a wonderful year. Hard, but wonderful.

Diana McCollum said...

Wonderful that things turned around for you, Matt! Happy Holidays!