Thanks for all the comments and encouraging words. And now that we are into double digits, allow me to wish everyone a hearty new year. In the spirit of Mr. John Knightley, here's wishing that your holidays allowed you some peaceful time by your very own fire, with bad weather outside and family within. (Or, if you are as lucky as my friend Catherine, some time sitting in the 80-degree Florida sun.)
I'm planning to post additional bits of the book here. I'm only afraid that by the time it comes out you will have read everything good in it, so I have to make you promise now to buy it anyway. Jane said something once (jokingly, of course) about all of her friends and family feeling obligated to buy one of her new books, and how she was very glad that they did feel obligated, even if they disliked it or never read it. I have to agree. The money is really all that matters to me, and I have friends enough to earn--oh, I don't know, a couple hundred dollars, at least.
I have a cover, which is absolutely gorgeous, and now I am only afraid (because I am always afraid of this, so bear with me) that the writing will not live up to the cover's promise. I think I'm not allowed to post it yet, because I don't know if it's been officially approved, and it may be a while before I can.
Several people have asked, here or in person, about an update on the Lyme disease. It's incredibly disheartening. I've had good days--not healthy, but better--followed by days or weeks of fatigue and insomnia and Lyme-induced haze, and nausea from all the medicine. Life is so far from normal. The latest tests show that my immune system is not rallying to fight the illness, so we are trying a new antibiotic, and--fingers crossed--there have been no bad reactions yet.
I wasn't ready for a new year, simply because hope is very short, almost nonexistent at the moment. I did not want a new year with these conditions, not knowing how long this will last or if all of 2007 will be under this very dark cloud. But I got an iPod for Christmas, and as I was recklessly downloading music I came across a collection of Ella Fitzgerald songs and decided that I could allow myself to buy it. And there she was singing Night and Day and Funny Valentine and Blue Skies and Over the Rainbow, and there was this tiny timbre of hope in my heart, a gift from God in the voice of Ella Fitzgerald.
Please continue to pray. Hope to be back here soon.