2015 Wrap Up: Still alive! Still no updates! And Happy Holidays + Star Wars Day!


I was reminded to update the blog to let you all know what’s going on. Sometimes I forget (mostly because I check in on Facebook and Twitter now and then, but forget about the website because it’s not as interactive.) Right now I’m working, trying to avoid all Star Wars spoilers (I have a ticket for Friday morning, yay!)

Anyway. 2015 was an odd year for me. Although I’ve been writing pretty much every day, it was the first year I haven’t had a release as Meljean Brook since I began publishing. I realized the other day (while giving the therapist at my chiropractor’s office a stack of my books) that it’s been ten years exactly since I finished writing DEMON ANGEL. Yay. Anniversaries are fun. I didn’t expect to have a barren year only ten years after finishing my first novel.

But there’s a lot of crap that happened personally (I’m healthy, my daughter and husband are healthy, but unfortunately not everyone we love got through 2015 unscathed, and that has kind of a snowballing effect on writing time) and professionally things kind of sucked (the BLACKSMITH would *not* pull together, and I had to reboot) this year, so, hey — I got through it, and that’s good. I’ve learned lots of things, like How To Prepare a Pump for Someone with a Feeding Tube! Someday I’ll appreciate that and a killer will strangle someone with a feeding tube and my heroine will have to figure out who that killer is.

So, that’s all a very long and whiney way to say: I don’t have any news for you guys on the release front yet.

But I suppose I can do an end of the year wrap up, huh? Those are fun.


I don’t care how good Star Wars might be. Nothing is going to knock this off the pedestal.

FAVORITE BOOK: The barbarian book I’m working on.

haha, that was mean! No, really. I think for romance it is probably: EVERYTHING I LEFT UNSAID by M. O’Keefe (this is part one of a two-part story, but the second book is just as good, though I loved the first book the more of the two). Just really lovely. For horror, BIRD BOX by Josh Malarian.

I read others that I really loved, but they were my friends’ books, and that’s always weird. And I like Molly O’Keefe and maybe she would be my friend! But I only met her once so that doesn’t count.

FAVORITE OTHER THING: Hello Fresh meal delivery service.

So, here’s the thing about me.

  1. I’m not a good cook.
  2. I’m not organized.
  3. I spend WAY too much at the grocery store for those reasons.

Both of those things add up to: Meljean usually makes dinner by running to the store just before she has to make it, where she picks up ingredients for either a) tacos, b) spaghetti, c) gyros, because I can grab all the veggies out of the New Seasons’ salad bar instead of, you know, chopping that shit up by hand, and they have great lamb gyro sausage patties that I can break up in the pan, d) Rice a Roni and boneless, skinless chicken breasts that I toss into the oven and forget about until the point where they will break your teeth when you bite into them, and e) … tacos again.

I also end up spending a ton of extra money because of the aforementioned rush to the store. It doesn’t make sense, because the stuff I’m making is relatively cheap, right? But what happens is that I grab stuff when I’m at the store EVERY DAY, too much stuff, forget to make it, a lot of food goes to waste, and blah blah.

So one day when I was lamenting my terrible cooking skills (I tried to make fish tacos for a change and pretty much made myself throw up when I saw the way the cod looked as I was cooking it), Anne Victory mentioned Hello Fresh. They send pre-portioned ingredients for their meals, which come in a nice variety. I have to chop all of the vegetables and cook the meals, but they only take about 30-45 minutes, and they are pretty easy to prepare and the recipes are easy to follow.

I found out that I really like parsnips. I’d never had them before, but it’s like a carrot mated with a potato and came out with some really great weird vegetable. Who knew?

I also like cooking a lot more, I’ve discovered, when the end result doesn’t taste like ass.

Anyway, I started with the three-times-a-week, two-person version and then upgraded to the four-person subscription, because that allows me to stick leftovers into my husband’s lunch (and sometimes there’s enough for dinner the next day, which means, yay! Less cooking.)

But the best part is that, because I’m not running to the store every day, I’m saving money on groceries overall. One day I might get my act together and get better about making lists and only getting what I need for the week, but until then, this has been really great for me.

(If you want to try it, I think I have a referral code around here somewhere, and you get $40 off a box. I can post that in the comments. OH WAIT! here it is.)

And that’s all!