Is it Friday yet?

Yes, it is. Thank God. Well mostly. At least . . . Ugh. Okay, not really.

It is Friday, the very first Friday of the new year, which means it should be an auspicious start, right?

Well, it’s funny that. I’m getting mixed reviews on how people are faring the New Year and we’re only four days in. On one hand, I’ve got FB friends who have proliferated their Facebook pages with pictures of weird looking cats and sage wisdoms for the start of 2013, things like “Whatever you dreamed yesterday, you can dream tomorrow,” and “Start off the new year on the right track with these 10 organizational tips.” You get the drift. Pages of overflowing optimisim and niceness. On the other hand, I’ve realized I’m also friends with a large group of cynical pragmatists.  They’ve got things like, “The glass is half full. Who are you kidding?” or “2013: Why did the Mayans have to be wrong?” Yep. I’m telling you, these people make my day every day.

So why is today downer Friday? What’s in the air that makes some people so, you know, down?

The one thing you can say about the first week of a new year is that it makes people think. Hell, you can’t swing a dead cat around here without someone asking you what your new year’s resolutions are (ed. – please don’t swing cats, dead or otherwise). The ending of a year and the beginning of a new one is a time of reflection, of introspection, and some of us just don’t like what we see. Some people think about all the stuff they didn’t accomplish in 2012 or all the crap that came their way that they’re still dealing with. Others freak out completely and start wondering “What does it all mean and what’s it got to do with me?” I don’t know if it’s something particular to our age – most of my friends are in their 30s and 40s – or if it’s just part of the human condition to feel that little bit uneasy when a new year starts.

I like to think of it as performance anxiety. It’s not just a man’s problem. I think we all suffer from it even if it’s just a little tiny itsy weeny bit.

My personal case in point. As I finish Protector and start working with my new editor, I have this distinct feeling of discomfort that I didn’t do enough for Watcher. I stood by my guns that I wasn’t going to do any promotion on Watcher at all until I completed Protector. Why you may ask? Well, I had two very good reasons in my mind:

1) I would lose momentum as people waited around for Protector
2) What if I couldn’t write a second book?

Both are very real fears in my head. I guess I should say were now. Protector is just about finished, thank God, praise be to Allah, Mazel Tov, etc. . . But that aside, I’m lamenting the fact that I didn’t do something about Watcher reviews before now, that I didn’t plug into the PR machine. Now that I’m ramping up to Protector launch, I’m having to start on this now while I really should be enjoying my “honeymoon period” with my editor. I would be lying if I didn’t say it kinda sucks. Now I see why publicists get the big bucks cause frankly being a one man shop is like a time sucking vortex of the Dr. Who variety. No one has time to do everything (ed. – I can turn anything into a Dr. Who reference, trust me).

So back to the New Year, right?

I can see why people are stressed out. A new year means a new expectation plus all the old crap you were dealing with any way. Not that I want to end this blog post on a negative vibe – last thing I need is bad juju here. No, what I wanted to say is that it’s okay to be a stress monkey, it’s almost expected. If you’re not a little stressed out about another year going by then I’m not sure you’re doing it right.

And on that note:

Happy New Year and remember to breathe. It’s going to be a hell of a ride.