It’s been a while since I last updated the blog.

Normally, here’s where the obligatory apology goes, but you know what? I’m not going to apologize for being silent. Over the past several weeks, this little space I’ve carved out for myself on the Internet has been the furthest thing from my mind. Between being sick (twice in a matter of weeks; once during Gen Con even, which made for a fun con this year), having a sick husband and sick kids (we’re pretty sure our youngest had that nasty enterovirus thing), and being on call for jury duty for the ENTIRE month of September, I’ve had a lot on my plate.

(Speaking of jury duty, I’m one of the lucky ones who’s been summoned three times so far, in three different cities no less. I’ve only had to appear once, and I actually sat on a trial and deliberated and everything. That was when I was younger and didn’t have any children. Being a stay-at-home-parent with a spouse whose job has erratic hours and doesn’t allow him to just leave at the drop of a hat makes being on call for jury duty a whole new level of heart attack-inducing stress. I didn’t have to appear at all, but having to wait to call the jury line almost every single night to find out if I needed to make arrangements for my kids almost drove me insane. Being sick for half the month and having sick kids as well didn’t help my anxiety either, and I felt terrible that I couldn’t plan a bigger birthday party for my youngest. Still, it turned out fine, he had fun, everyone was happy, and I got through the month. End of rant.)

So, yeah, if you’ve been reading this blog — and THANK YOU if you have — and have been wondering what I’ve been doing, that’s about it. I have been writing and am almost done revising the short science fiction novel I started last Mother’s Day. It should go out to beta readers in another week or two, especially if I can crack down and finish revisions during my kids’ Fall Break.

As for NaNoWriMo, I think I’m going to revise my plan for the month, partly because of September’s awfulness and partly because I’ll be traveling two weekends in a row in November and am not sure how much writing I’ll get done during that time. So, for now, the sequel to The Golden Orb is being put on hold until I can write the “prequel” — the short stories detailing Gabby’s first jobs in the Fae Realms. Using NaNoWriMo to finish those shorts will be a better use of my time than trying to hash out a 60,000+ word first draft. That can wait until I have more free time and the ability to do a little editing as I go, creating a solid first draft that should allow me to publish the finished book in less time than it took me to publish The Golden Orb. I hope.

That’s all I have for now. Hopefully, in a few weeks, a short story will magically appear here instead of another update. Trust me, the wheels have been turning, and I’m really excited to jump back into Top Hat’s crazy little schemes.

Thanks, as always, for reading.

A. Cook


Amanda Cook is a writer and stay at home mom who lives in a southern Indiana woods with her spouse, kids, and one clingy dog. In the Before Times (and sometimes even now), she could/can be found helping out with her kids' school, catching up on her toppling TBR pile, playing games with her friends, hanging out at virtual conventions, crying over period dramas, or sewing yet another cosplay. Her second novel, "When We Were Forgotten," was the winner of the 2018 Bronze Medal for Best Sci-fi/Fantasy/Horror E-Book from the Independent Publisher Book (IPPY) Awards. She writes short speculative fiction and poetry that can be found at various markets and here on her blog.

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