Hello 2019! Good riddance 2018.
No, really. 2018 was not a great year for me. Don’t get me wrong. I had many memorable moments that brought me joy, but I had a bit of a rough year at the same time with having a second hand surgery, my father passing, and my 1st born moving to New York all on the front half of the year. All those events in one way or another impacted my ability to write, either physically (since my right hand was tied up in a splint) or psychologically (because of the sadness of losing two loved ones close together, even if one of those loved ones would be coming home for a visit by the end of the year). I completed far less in the course of the year with regards to writing than I would have hoped. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not getting down on myself for it. I’m disappointed, but I’m not ashamed.
Like I said, I had a bunch of memorable moments. I was able to send one of my kids off to England for a week-long adventure, and then watched him have a great Freshman season playing soccer for Alma College. I had two other kids, still middle schoolers, who were Student of the Month. In some respects, my father’s illness and subsequent passing brought me closer to my brothers. I got to see a side of each of them that brings me profound respect for them both. My son, who moved to New York without any prospect of a job or even a place to live when he got there, has made me proud with the way he’s used his brain and his resources to find success. In less than a year, he found several jobs on-set in the film industry AND made it into the electrician's union. He wasn’t mugged or murdered! (I know. I have a messed up bias of New York. I should visit and get that bias fixed, right?) At any rate, I have a LOT to be thankful for. And I am very thankful.
But here we are in 2019. New year. New goals. One of my goals is to either read OR write every day. So far, so good. I received several books for Christmas this year and I dove right into them. I was also invited to join a second book club and started reading the book they’ve selected for January. When you consider that I presented an Editing workshop to my local WriMos on the first Saturday of the year, some people might say my productivity is off the charts. (You can find my handouts from that event here.)
But I need to get that writing stuff back on my daily calendar too. I was all set to go home last night and get some editing done. I procrastinated. I started going through a month’s worth of email that I had set on the back burner. (There just isn’t enough time in a day for everything!) One of the emails was from me. Back at the end of November, I had sent myself some notes about creating a word tracker like NaNoWriMo has, where I can enter a desired word count, then track my daily word count. In no time at all (or rather, a couple hours), I had whipped open Excel and created a worksheet that not only tracked my daily word count against my annual goal, I also added tracking for hours spent writing and editing. (You can get your very own copy of my 2019 Goal Tracker here.) Now I just need to start writing and editing and put some numbers in it.
And here I am, procrastinating with a blog post.
Happy New Year everyone!