Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. What a wonderful, inclusive festival: taking time out to give thanks... and eat big piles of food.
It is also my first proper Thanksgiving in the States and 12 real, actual Americans are coming round to our house where they will be getting a slightly British twist on the whole thing: turkey, roast potatoes (Americans don't do roast potatoes, which is just plain wrong), Bisto gravy, mince pies and brandy butter (why not?), stuffing, and all the usual trimmings. They'll be bringing such legendary dishes as green bean casserole (possibly with marshmallows?), yams and various pumpkin-related fare. Don't expect me to be able to move for the next few days.
I've been thinking of things I've been thankful for over the last year. Obviously, I got married and came out here, which was all very exciting.
Writing-wise I realised that this time last year I had never had anything published outside of work-related magazines and university newspapers. In fact, this time last year I was feeling decidedly despondent that my novel was deemed 'not commercial' (but well-written, which I took hope from).
I only had my first piece of fiction published in The Pygmy Giant about six months ago. Since then I have been scribbling away at flash fiction, short stories and poetry and have had some successes, with more in the pipeline.
I am thankful for the sharing environment and constructive criticism of my lovely online writing groups at WriteWords, as well as for their incredibly high standards that have pushed me and pushed me.
I am thankful for everyone in my life who has encouraged me to write, or at least not laughed at me too much.
I am thankful to everyone who has published any work of mine. They certainly didn't have to!
I am also thankful for tea and cake.
Happy Thanksgiving to you all! What are you thankful for?