But the end of 2009 was exceedingly busy, so I only have the chance to tell you about it now.
Not busy in a GLAMOROUS way, let me hasten to assure you. Being glamorous is not really my style. I have just had piles of stuff to do! Also there was the Christmas Day Disaster.
So I awoke on Christmas Day alone in the Cherry Bomb, as my housemates Jennet Wilde the DJ and the Durham Lass the Dead Bodies and Old Stuff Specialist were at their homes over Christmas.
Later I was picked up and brought to my family homestead for dinner by my uncle, who is an opera-fan piano-playing diplomat, and my aunt, who lives in Australia among oranges and silversmiths. We had a most delightful Christmas Day, and then it was time to return to the Cherry Bomb. I cannot stay at the family homestead, as they have turned my room into a gym.
This is not the act of wanton, daughter-hating cruelty it might appear at first: the gym still has my bed and books in it. But waking in the dead of night, I find it very disquieting to have gym equipment strewn about the room. They are dark menacing shapes.
SARAH (waking confused): Oh God what is that looming over my bed? Is it a wildebeest?
SARAH (calming): No, it is an exercycle.
SARAH (collapsing back on the bed): I would prefer a wildebeest.
So home I went, shivering in my crimson party frock, to a dark chilly house. Immediately I turned on both lights and kettle.
Then I was plunged into dark and bitter cold.
SARAH (calls the Durham Lass): The curse has fallen upon me.
DURHAM LASS: Explain with real people speech.
SARAH: Where do we keep our fuse box?
DURHAM LASS: Up... high... somewhere. In the hall.
SARAH: OKAY. I'm going to climb up on a chair.
DURHAM LASS: Stay on the phone, you have to stay on the phone! What if you fall off the chair and bump your noggin and we find you four days later? DEAD.
SARAH: OKAY. I'm going to stay on the phone. Oh, oh, going over sideways - feeling for box. Oh no, going over sideways.
DURHAM LASS: Why do you keep falling down?
SARAH: This isn't easy to do in the dark and high heels.
DURHAM LASS: Why are you still wearing your heels?
SARAH: ... I have a perfectly good reason for that.
DURHAM LASS: What is it?
SARAH (with dignity): I cannot tell you that at this time.
Fumbling and flailing in the night, I eventually got the lights back on. Then I tottered over to the kettle.
It had stopped working.
I gestured with my kettle, a kettle of despair and not tea. Then I trailed sadly to my bed, where I created a fort of blankets. I succumbed to illness and stayed in the blanket fort for many days.
Until it was time to get on a flight to Boston! The grumpy Frenchman on the plane seat beside me seemed annoyed by how sickly I was
When I arrived, I overcame illness by force of will! And then there was a party with rhinestone eyepatches, bald cats in tuxedoes, and assorted weaponry. I wore my crimson party dress and a pink wig. I am so tasteful. Tasteful like a disco ball.
The next day 2010 started off with a bang. I was in the cellar helping sweep up.
HOLLY: Sarah, come up here.
SARAH: No, I wish to help! There is glitter everywhere Holly - it is like a vampire exploded down here.
HOLLY: Sarah COME HERE.
SARAH: I am here.
HOLLY: Congratulations. You are a Cybils finalist!
Every year a community of bloggers puts out a list of finalists for Cybils awards, awards given out for lit'rary merit! I am extremely complimented to be a finalist, and to be a finalist in such great company!
Now as you may all know (because I never stop talking about it!) 2009 is the year my first book came out.
Having a book out, it is the weirdest thing! For of course I have spent years and years and yeeeeears (nineteen years, to be precise) writing books, hoping one day people would read them and tell me what they thought about them and hopefully they would like them and and and...
It makes one a Crazy Person, as I have often mentioned, and perhaps too often given practical demonstrations of. For you are now obsessively anxious about whether people will read this book, and what they will think.
And then things like starred reviews, and the Carnegie nomination, and now being a Cybils finalist happen, and it is glorious. Because you did what you always wanted to do, and other people saw what you were doing, and said that you did it well.
Fame, you glittering bauble, now you are mine!
... Oh, not really? Oh, well.
2009 was both glorious and incredibly nerve-wracking for me. Lots of unpleasant stuff happened which I am truly glad to have over with. Lots of truly amazing things happened, and all my favourites had to do with my book: the book came out, I got to meet lots of you blog readers, Scott Westerfeld and I travelled about America facing fiery and icy danger, my first anthology The Eternal Kiss came out, I dyed my hair pink and... wait, that was a terrible thing. With a story attached to it that one day I will tell you.
In 2010 the paperback of Demon's Lexicon will come out in the US (meaning with luck: more people reading it!) and Demon's Covenant will come out. (Also, at least one other anthology.) Second books, so nerve-wracking! Will people like it as well as the first? Will I wear my pink wig to events? So many QUESTIONS!
And I have lots of things to work on: Demon's Talisman to finish, short stories to write, a new book to write, a couple of secret things to write! I have my December book to give away, which I will do very shortly. And I have many more adventures to have.
Every day of 2010 so far, I have had good news! I wish you all the same.