Gratitude, Sabbaticals, and Why Reviews Matter

A book review that moved the author — and her NYC hard launch

Diane Hatz


(Image by Vizerskaya, Getty Images Signature for Canva Pro)

“Rock Gods is a sharp, witty, horrifying, and reflective must read. Be careful if you have a weak stomach, though: It’s probably the goriest non-horror novel I’ve ever read.” — Leks Drakos, The Lit Refinery

I feel so blessed to have had the courage to go “on sabbatical,” as I say, and write and publish my fiction full-time for nearly two years. I’m giving myself until the end of 2023 to continue as a full-time writer. And even though I might eventually pick up some consultancy work or pitch a project I’ve been ideating, I’ll still be writing and indie publishing my work.

My debut novel Rock Gods & Messy Monsters had its Southwest Soft Launch in Santa Fe in September of 2022. I’m excited to announce that the New York City Hard Launch will be in October in, yes, the Big Apple. (Because everything’s harder in New York City….)

Details on the exact date and event to come shortly — I’m still finalizing a venue. (I forgot how much more difficult everything in NYC is…) I’ll keep you posted in case any of you in the tri-state area would like to attend the launch. It would be great to see/meet you!

(DAPA Images for Canva Pro)

The biggest highlight of my sabbatical has been the feedback I’ve gotten from several people who’ve read the book and were inspired to take some kind of action in their life. I also feel grateful when I read a review from someone I don’t know who gets the work.

Rock Gods is multi-layered, irreverent, absurdist, and definitely not everyone’s cup of tea. So when I read Leks Drakos’s recent review of the book, I nearly teared up. He got the fact that it’s a humorous satire on top, but underneath and between the lines of the story is commentary on corporations, society, and the search for our authentic self.

The two books that will follow in the trilogy carry on with the main character Alex’s search for meaning and self.

I’ve copied Leks’s review below, and you can also read it directly on The Lit Refinery’s site .



Diane Hatz

Author. Organizer. Inner activist. Looking for answers one pen stroke, meditation, and road trip at a time. Rock Gods & Messy Monsters out now.