Happy New Year 2023! (Where are the fucking flying cars I was promised as a kid?)

by | Jan 1, 2023

Hey boys and girls!!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Happy Hanukkah, Blessed Kwanza or whatever else you might celebrate! If you don’t celebrate anything, I hope you’re having a good day. And, if you can’t just accept the good wishes in the spirit they are being given, then fuck off and have a shitty day. Lol

Like nearly every author that has a website/blog/etc., you will have noticed that I’m pretty awful at updates. It happens. I’m a busy guy. I got shit to do. However, since we’re here on the first day of 2023, and since I haven’t shared much of anything in a while, I might as well give you the year-end recap. You might get why I didn’t get many blog posts out. Mostly, it’s because I’m just a lazy shit, but some of this year at least sounds like reasonably excuses for it.

I started 2022 by signing a contract to write a book about ghost stories, signing another to publish my “zombie” thing that I’ve been messing with in some form or another for about a decade, and signing the paperwork that made my divorce official. That was all the first week. Lol

So how did all that work out?

Well, I just got the manuscript off to the publisher for the ghost story book. It was an interesting process writing it, much more like writing my travel book (my first published thing). There was a lot of research, a lot of taking information and putting my spin on it, a bit of personal flair, and a little fictionalizing. I enjoyed it, and I may write another, but I missed writing fiction.

I much prefer to just make shit up and do the least amount of research necessary. Lol. Kidding. I kind of like the research stuff quite a lot, but I do prefer the freedom of my own creations. And, of course, there were so many ideas wanting my attention while I was writing this thing.

It took me almost a year to write this one. That’s a fair bit longer than a piece of fiction might take, including rewrites, and it was taxing. Had I not had a deadline attached, I’m sure I’d still be writing it (as well as several other things).  Deadlines are a necessary evil for me.

The publishing of Angel of Death, the zombie thing, went… okay. I was happy to get it out there in the world and, honestly, I wasn’t doing much with it. I had messed with that thing as much as humanly possible. If I had looked at it again, with no sense of what to do with it, I may have gouged my own eyeballs out.

The publisher was interesting in this book, in part, because of its series potential (I had already starte the next book. They wanted to put this first one out as two books of about 40-50,000 words, rather than as one novel. I still don’t love that decision but I did a little rewriting to make that work. I have the bones of the next two chapters in this story but…

There were some hiccups with the publishing but nothing too surprising from a small publisher. More problematic was what seemed to be a lack of promotion. The publisher, still finding its horror arm chops, decided to focus heavily on “creature feature” stuff (the Sharknados of the world, and whatnot) and that’s just not my bag. The momentary infusion of excitement, which had me diving back into John Angel’s world, faded pretty quickly. Angel of Death and Fallen Angel came out in 2022 – and I’m proud to have them published – but I’m understanding that, for now, they’re not “the thing” that puts my writing career fully on the track that I want it to be on.

The quick start to 2022 did encourage me to get to work on updating the website. John, at Graphikitchen, did an amazing job. He was awesome to work with and he has been wonderful managing the site and helping me to stumble my way through doing author-type things on it. He’s made it cool, interactive, effective, easy to use (all foibles and follies are mine and mine alone), and now I have the bulk of my published work (and a few other things) collected and available. Be sure to go check it out and buy stuff. www.mikekozlowski.com

I mentioned the divorce. I don’t care to get into that but I will say that the ex and I remain amicable, even friendly, and I continue to believe it was the best thing for both of us. I, along with the rest of the family, also dealt with my dad’s quickly fading health and somewhat surprising death in November of last year. I don’t care to go into that to deeply, either. It sucked.

On the other hand, I took a fairly spur of the moment trip to Ireland and went on a hunting excursion to Saskatchewan. I also bounced around the Michigan and ventured to a few other states for mini-vacations and concerts and such. It was a busy year.

I wasn’t as productive as I hoped to be in 2022, but ‘one book written and two books published’ isn’t bad. I finished a novel in 2021 (Ghosted) and sent out a few queries, but have mostly let it sit while I was focusing on the ghost story book. I’m looking forward to seeing if any wants to read that one; pitching agents, bothering publishers, etc.

I have a ton of ideas that have crept up over the last year, bugging me to pay attention to them and see if I can flesh them out into something more than brain nuggets. I’ll be spending part of this first day of 2023 wading through some of them and pulling together something new to start on. I’d like to focus on some shorter stuff and I’ve bookmarked some open calls to submit to but it’s as likely that one of these nuggets will try to grow into something larger. All I can do is go with the flow. Ya know? Lol

Last year my goal was two books and an album. It’s a yearly goal that I stole from Josh Malerman. I’m sticking with it. I fell short last year though I technically hit the book portion. And I did some work on the album but I need to get my home studio sorted (on this year’s to do list).

I already have my tickets and hotel reservations for Stokercon (the Horror Writer’s Association convention), in Pittsburgh this June. I’m hoping to have a draft ready to pitch there and will bring Ghosted along, as well, if it’s still looking for a home. I’d like to hit one or two other conventions but we’ll see.

2022 was a weird year. A good year, mostly, but with its issues. I don’t really do resolutions, but each year is one that I try to make better than the last. One in which I try to DO more and SEE more and BECOME more. I’m pretty happy with my life, overall, and would have no right to complain about it if I dropped dead tomorrow. But I also really love life and want to do a whole lot more of living it. It’s the most amazing journey. And I’m glad to have you all along for the ride.

Here’s to a great 2023 for all us. Thank you, as always, for the support. I love you all.

Peace out, my bitches!

 

About Mike

Michael A. Kozlowski is a native of Detroit, MI, where he still resides. He mostly creates stories of horror and suspense and has a tendency to shy away from happy endings.

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