On June 23 I vanished from socials with the message that I was taking six weeks off to write a novel. I planned to be back on August 4. Then all hell broke loose. Severe COVID, human and canine deaths, my husband was randomly attacked, a spider bite… that sums up July. It was a grueling month of nightmares. Somehow I managed to finish the novel by my deadline. It became my tether to sanity. Other than editing, it was over. I thought.

My hat vanished!

Then, thanks to a friend, I was invited to apply to participate in a special program… if I could have a screenplay written by September 1. New project! I did a cursory look at screenplay formatting, signed up for a free trial of Final Draft and dug in. That screenplay is now finished and sent in.

With that, I’m officially back. I have some catch up: the next issue of Space & Time (spaceandtime.net) is underway, I need to get the HWA Poetry blog scheduled, the Showcase needs to be wrapped up, reviews and blurbs I’ve promised… all before we leave for Brazil next week. It will happen.

The past few months changed me. After I came out of the week long COVID fever I was convinced I had been “rewired” and that feeling hasn’t left. I’ve written since grade school but I’ve never had focus. It’s been a compulsion, a need rather than a choice. No plans.

About five years ago some things changed that and I started focussing in with more purpose, but I’ve been doing a lot of groping. Tortured Willows further narrowed that purpose but it was sloppy. The last two months have stripped everything away and I feel all I have left is purpose.

I’m not even ready to share all that has happened yet—still processing. To sum it up, I tried to step back for a minute and fell off a cliff. At the bottom of the ravine I found what I was looking for. I’m back to work with a mission.

Plans after Brazil? I’ll be finishing the I Ching studies I started at the beginning of this year. I’ll be starting a second novel, most likely a follow up to Inujini titled Kintsugi. I’ll be keeping promises, but taking a pause on making new ones. It’s been an eventful year and I need to catch my breath. And look for my hat… it vanished while I was sick and I’ve never seen it again.

In the meantime, I’ll be posting trip details+ on my socials and catch up here when I can.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AngelaYSmith
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Angela.Yuriko.Smiths/
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By Angela Yuriko Smith

Angela Yuriko Smith is a third-generation Ryukyuan-American, award-winning poet, author, and publisher with 20+ years in newspapers. Publisher of Space & Time magazine (est. 1966), two-time Bram Stoker Awards® Winner, and HWA Mentor of the Year, she shares Authortunities, a free weekly calendar of author opportunities at authortunities.substack.com.

  1. Welcome back! Your hat is in the closet underneath a pair of slippers you never wear.
    Are you going to braid your hair or get it cut? Did you get my request for short poem to go in the Halloween Newsletter? You are still on staff! Good luck with your Purposes in the future!

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