At the beginning of the year I posted my Giant List of Goals for 2014. My results this year were mixed, but if I break down and take a look at all I pulled off this year, I can see how it’s been an action packed year with a lot accomplished — even if it wasn’t all what I set out to accomplish.
I had two main writing goals this year. Finished my werewolf novel and edit and submit a poetry chapbook.
My poetry chapbook, The Letterbox, was submitted on time and then rejected in mid-year. So, while the rejection sucks, I can at least say that I accomplished my goal.
Progress was made on the werewolf novel, which changed titles mid-year and is now called The Cold Nothing Taste of Winter. I have 37,786 words of a draft one version along with edits and notes. Though my goal was to finish the draft entirely, that didn’t quite happen. I made it about two-thirds of the way before a variety of factors caused me to burn out on writing for several months, at which point I quit work on the novel entirely and haven’t been able to come back to it just yet.
I tried several ways to dig myself out of my slump, but what eventually worked was shifting focus away from the werewolf novel and starting work on another project entirely. The new project is a novel in poems involving the interweaving and retelling of multiple fairy tales, which resulted in 14,800 new words being written.
Another aspect of the writing life was that I attended FogCon, which provided enlightening perspectives about writing and reading books, and I actively participated in several open mics or readings, which was also creatively inspiring.
Joy! My running goals were my most successful achievements of the year. I’ve powered up to being able to run three miles this year and completed two 5K runs — She is Beautiful in the Spring and a Zombie fun run in October. Both were fantastic events and so much fun.
My running has been supported by a once a week strength training regime and sporadic yoga exercises. I am currently working on building myself up to the next level with the aim of achieving 10K status.
One of the really great things about this year is that I’ve reached a level of strength in my running that I don’t have to start over at ground zero if I have to miss up to a week of runs due to travel or whatever. I can get back into it and build back up again fairly quickly. And that feels awesome.
Lots of travel this year. More travel than I’ve ever done in a single year, all of it involving work of some sort, including:
- a short trip to San Diego
- a two week trip involving Detroit, a stop over in West Michigan, and Montreal
- a second week long trip to Detroit
- a two week trip to Germany to visit an industrial plant and a giant trade show
- a week long trip to London and Birmingham
This doesn’t include short little weekend trips to local spots to visit family and such. It was such a busy year for travel that I’m feeling exhausted just thinking about it.
Including this one, I have written 104 blog posts this year with slow months and high posting months (November clearly being the highest due to NaBloPoMo). Since I didn’t keep track of my posts last year, I can’t tell if that is up or not.
However, I did try to write more cohesive posts with a mixture of writing posts, creative nonfiction, and flash fiction.
My five most popular blog posts of the year:
- Bluebeard – Flash Fiction
- Poetry Review: Practicing Disaster by Jessie Carty
- Five Things to Do Instead of Being Jealous of Your Favorite Author
- Friday Flash: Beyond Borderlands
- The Gun-Toting Macho-Babe: A Review of Riddick
Life, Family, and Everything
By far, the biggest life adventure of the year was the birth of my nephew, who has delighted my days and sucked up my time right alongside his sister.
I’ve been trying to be more connected to distant family members with mixed results. I haven’t kept up with birthdays and phone calls nearly as much as I would like.
On the whole, I’d say it’s been a good year. Overwhelming sometimes, with unexpected circumstances and problems sprouting up all over the place — but it was good.