Now I'm not a fan of Christmas. There's just too much craziness and disreguard of the fellow man by most in the rush to buy into the retailers demands that we buy everyone we care about a present. But - while I hate the demands of retailers and the attitudes of shoppers, there are some things I do like.
This year I found the perfect card for my best buddy Antonia Tiranth (Tir). It said "Hope you don't mind but I'm regifting you this year" on the outside and "My friendship" on the inside. There are just some relationships that there isn't a gift in any shop that there is something that tells the person how special they really are to you. Tir and I met 7 years ago online and didn't meet in real life until May of this year. We've been writing buddies all that time, in fact got our first contracts 2 days apart. Co-wrote a book together. And January 1st we'll have solo releases from the same publisher on the same day. I'll never find a material gift that adequately expresses my appreciation of our friendship. How do you find one that says - thanks for pushing me to write better, for listening to me when I'm in a bitchy mood, for getting mad at someone who is not treating me right, thanks for being there when I need you? Hmm? Can you think of one cause I sure can't.
Then there are friends that you've known a while but just became friends with. What do I get Lea Schizas for believing in me enough to offer me the Art Director position at MuseitUp Publishing? Or Alexis Morgan who sent me the most precious gift of a hand written note that says "I'm so proud of your success"? Or Bonnie Edwards who congratulates me on each new contract and kicks me in the butt to keep reaching for the stars?
Then there are the new friends you just met? All the authors at MuseitUp publishing who were there when I needed them? The folks at frostforums.com who allow me to hide in one of my favorite worlds? The ladies at DJ's blog that encourage me, laugh with me, and cry with me when I need that?
See - there are things I can't buy something that says how much I appreciate those friendships. Even if there was my meager budget wouldn't allow for it. But there is one thing I can give that gives every day of the year - my friendship. With it comes a person to laugh with, a shoulder to cry on and an ear that will listen to all their secrets and never breathe a word of them.
So that is the Christmas present I give to all my friends my friendship. To my readers I give the best books I can write. To my editors I give my cooperation on edits. And not a one of those things cost a penny but their worth is incalculable