Jenn McKinlay's News #50
June 29, 2022
Happy Summer, Readers!
What a wild ride this year has been! More of that in a bit.
Book News: SUPER SALE - my first two novellas are on sale for .99 each through July 4th!!! They are in ebook only form until March 2023 when they will be published with the upcoming It Happened One Christmas Eve (out in December) in paperback. Very Exciting! I am so enjoying developing the fictional world of the Museum of Literature and I hope you're enjoying reading about it as well.
In other news, My assistant Christie Conlee and I have been prepping our very first cupcake cookbook with the recipes from the first eight Cupcake Bakery Mysteries which we're hoping to release in September. Our cover artist is working her magic on Fairy Tale Cupcakes: Recipes from the Cupcake Bakery Mysteries and if all goes well, we'll produce a volume 2 after the 16th cupcake bakery mystery comes out in 2024!!! This is a real self-pubbing endeavor. Christie baked all of the cupcakes (she's a home baker) and took photos that are yuuuuuummmmy to look at. Seriously, yum.
Contests and Events: Because of this crazy world full of hackers and nonsense, Christie and I have discovered that the best way to do contests/giveaways is on a private FB page -- the McKinlay's Mavens (click to join). You have to be approved to belong and if you misbehave, you get booted. My FB is just overrrun with trolls and Instagram isn't much better, although I do random giveaways there because it hasn't been completely hijacked...yet. This is not an invitation, hackers! Oy.
As for events, my calendar is clear for now but I imagine I will have something pop up in the fall when The Plot and the Pendulum comes out in October. Did you see the title used as a clue on Jeopardy? Not gonna lie, I about died!!! As you can see from this FB post: LOL.
What's On My Mind? It's been a year, y'all. Last year I tried to write a newsletter every month. Mostly, I succeeded but this year...no. My last real news update was October of 2021!!! What is happening to me?
Life. A big old dollop of life is happening.
To recap: In January of 2022, Hooligan 2 moved out, embracing college life. We officially became emptynesters. Wah! Then Hubs and I got slammed with Covid, which he oh-so-dramatically rolled into Covid pneumonia - terrifying!
February was the month of sixteen hour days, trying to catch up to the work that piled up while I slept through January.
March brought me my own case of pneumonia. Brutal!
April was a respite that I spent traveling to present an award at Mystery Writer's of America in NYC and on a girl trip with my mom and sis-in-law to Georgia (peaches, give me all the peaches!).
May brought a severely sprained wrist for me - yardwork is hazardous, I'm just saying!
June delivered a litter of kittens that we are fostering now in the processing of humanning so they can be adopted. Heartbreak for me but the best outcome for these little dudes/dudette.
L to R: Shackleton, Winona, Danny, and Tig.
In short, 2022 has been a lot.
Do not waste one second of sympathy for me, however, so many people have struggles so much greater than mine. I'm fine. Despite the bumps in the road this year, I'm trying to keep my gratitude front and center.
When I used to whine as a child, "Why me?" my very wise mama would say, "Why not you? Do you think you're so special that nothing bad will ever happen to you? Of course, it will. Right now is how you learn how to deal with those times."
She was right. You take your lumps and use them to make yourself stronger even when you don't want to, when it's taking longer than you thought to recover, or you don't feel strong enough, and, yes, most importantly, when you are certain it is impossible. All of that. As for me, I'm also trying to find the positives to the lows in ridiculous ways like...
Getting Covid kept me from sinking into a depression about Hooligan 2 moving out.
Hub scaring the dookey out of me with his case of pneumonia made his inability to throw wrappers in the garbage so much less annoying.
Spraining my right wrist made me realize that my left hand was mostly decorative (Ha!) and I needed to start using it more. Hello, physical therapy.
And helping a very young mama cat with her kittens took my mind off the second anniversary of my brother's passing. In fact, I suspect my beloved bro sent me these kittens for this very reason. Jed could always make me laugh and these furry nuggets, that I really did not want to take charge of, have made me laugh every single day.
It's not easy to look up when you're in a downward spiral. Finding a light in the darkness when all you have is wet matches can be soul crushing. But I believe there is balance in all things, whether we like it or not, and joy will come and relieve the sorrow and then the cycle will repeat. Sometimes, you just have to be patient but that's a whole other newsletter. LOL.
Wishing you a happy, breezy, book filled summer!
Thanks for being the best readers EVER!