At the Crossroads of 2021 and 2022

by Alexis Morgan

I always find that celebrating the arrival of a New Year can stir up an interesting mix of emotions. It’s a time for both looking back over the previous twelve months and forward toward the next twelve.

I think about what I did right last year and what can I do better next year?

While I’m not much for making New Year’s Resolutions, I did make one last year. I resolved that I was going to make a much more concerted effort to stay in touch with friends, both old and new. As a result, I’ve exchanged numerous e-mails, text messages, Facetime phone calls, and social media conversations with friends all over the country. For the friends closer at hand, we met for coffee or lunch, sometimes talking for hours while we got caught up on each other’s lives.

Looking back, I can’t even remember what inspired me to do this. Regardless, I’m happy to say I did a much better job of staying in touch with the people who matter the most to me. It’s the one resolution that I’ll be carrying over into the new year.

Somehow I doubt deciding to read even more books in 2022 than I did in 2021 qualifies as a legitimate New Year’s resolution. I think it’s more of an excuse to spend lots more time doing what I love to do anyway. I read a lot of different kinds of genre fiction—mostly mysteries, romances, and fantasies. I especially enjoy books that cross genres where the mystery or romances play out in worlds filled with paranormal elements.

I love to see all the creative ways that authors build the right world for the story they want to tell. In fact, that’s actually one of my favorite parts of writing my own books. For example, I spent a lot of time creating the town of Snowberry Creek where Abby and her friends live in my Abby McCree Mysteries. The more real I can make the town helps bring the characters to life and draw the readers into their world. 

And talking about reading, I am a member of a neighborhood book club, and we often choose books that might be out of our normal comfort zone. Besides inspiring some interesting conversations with my club, reading from different genres helps to stretch my own writing muscles as I see how other writers approach telling a story. Our last selection was a women’s fiction novel, and our current one is a biography/memoir. It will be interesting to see what we choose next.

So that’s my plan for the new year—I’m going to stay in touch with friends and family, and I’m going to continue to explore the wonderful world of books, both as a reader and a writer.

Happy reading and here’s hoping 2022 is everything you hope it will be!


When a dead body turns up on a race route, Abby McCree hits the ground running to catch a killer…

Overcommitted Abby has once again been drafted to use her organizing superpowers—this time for a 5k charity run that’s part of the Founder’s Day Celebration in Snowberry Creek, Washington. At least she has help, albeit from an unlikely source: Gil Pratt, a member of her handsome tenant Tripp Blackston’s veterans group and co-owner of a motorcycle repair shop with his brother. Abby and Gil may seem like an odd couple, but they work great together.

The event seems to be running smoothly—until city council member James DiSalvo is found murdered in a ravine along the race route. Unfortunately, Gil’s brother Gary had a very public argument with DiSalvo minutes before the race, making him the prime suspect. Now the two race organizers must again team up to prove Gary’s innocence—before the real killer makes a run for it. But one wrong step and Abby may be the next one to come in dead last…