Let’s face it: Between the holidays and the Cybils and the fact that my current nonfiction project involves slowly reading a great big book, 2006 is just about over for me, productivitively. (Don’t bother looking that one up.) And between rewrites of older stuff and new projects that have gone into circulation, it’s been a satisfying year.

Which is kind of surprising, when I think of the projects I worked on this year that didn’t go anywhere, or at least not as far as I’d hoped. Remember E.F.? Toast? Tennessee? There was at least one more picture book manuscript that I don’t think I ever even gave a pseudonym to. Some of these took up a lot of my time, involved interviews and considerable research, and — for a while, at least — were what I expected to be working on for a long time to come.

As much as I’d like to have spent that time on projects that might sell, I don’t regret them. (And, of course, I didn’t know at the time that they wouldn’t sell, or that I wouldn’t be able to get them to a point where we could find out whether they would or not.) I learned a lot from each one, if not from the writing itself than from the research I did for them. I’m smarter as a result.

More importantly, I think I’ll enter 2007 with a better sense of the sort of project that’s right for me and right for the market. And if I don’t? Well, just watch this space next November.