I know. It’s all very cliché doing a blog post on the first day of the new year, or on the last day of the old one. Hey, at least I’m posting on day 2 of the new year (sort of). I like to jazz it up a bit.
Last year was The Year of Saying Yes to Stupid Shit which landed me a promotion and a lot of hard work.
I met a lot of new people along the way and learned a lot about myself. There wasn’t a lot of fiction writing going on, although I managed to keep a journal of sorts going fairly regularly as a way to empty my brain at the end of the day. A couple of my poems were entered into a competition in September. Since I haven’t yet received the email telling me just how awesome I am, I don’t think they’ve been placed, but it;s still a step forward from last year.
Unfortunately, because the rest of my life moved so fucking fast, something had to be put on the back burner while I slowed everything down and that something for 2015 was my blog. I became more and more scarce until eventually Maddy offered to take over the linky alone. She’s done a bloody excellent job with #whatimwriting and her own writing and blog has gone from strength to strength. As we draw to a close on the year, I’m also astounded and proud of the achievements and progress everyone has made throughout the year. To watch people go from being a bit nervous about their writing to submitting and getting publishing contracts has been one of the enormous pleasures of running the linky in the first place and this year has concluded with so many of the group finding themselves and their voices ready to attack the new year with vigour.
NaNoWriMo gave me a bit of a run for my money this year. I had no intention of participating when I got my job, knowing that it was emotionally and mentally draining me. I did write a short novella (first draft) over the summer and was fairly happy dabbling with some other ideas. Having nothing serious on the go was a new and interesting feeling for me and I quite enjoyed the low-pressure feeling of not having any expectations about what I was writing.
However, a week or so before nanowrimo, a friend from work and I went for coffee and we ended up talking about writing. Turns out he’s keen on it (and should have finished his first draft by now!). I introduced him to the concept of NaNoWriMo and was then softly cajoled (in the nicest possible way – it didn’t take much) into participating. I went into it with no plot again, just two characters and a very vague idea of what was going to happen.
I’m not going to lie to you, it was a very rough month. I very nearly gave up partway through. I managed to pull it out of the bag (no idea how). What came out was a beautiful study in a mess. There are purposeful continuity errors, jumps in the timeline, confused people and a teenager who doesn’t really ever act like a teen (sounds a bit like Julianne…) The entire piece is conscious that it is a piece of fiction and nothing too deep and is definitely not a literary masterpiece. It’s probably the most strange and one of the hardest pieces (beyond the fantasy). I’ve not touched it since the end of the November and I’m bit worried it might be sent to the same pile as TBWAW and Dragons and Gods.
What lies in store for me and writing in 2016?
I actually have no idea. I’m feeling the need to get the blog together again. Not sure how likely this is to happen though, what with new laptop antics and World of Warcraft lurking in the background. March and April are going to be exceptionally busy for me, so I probably wont get a chance to participate in camp nano. I would like to dedicate some time to cleaning up one or two of the other stories I’ve written, although this escapade still seems like something that proper writers do, not someone like me who just dabbles. August might bring about a re-write of something and I deeply suspect I won’t be able to escape November.As for the year as a whole, I want to continue doing things that scare me (although with less joyful abandon) and taking risks on myself. Turns out that I do know what I’m doing. Sort of. If you squint in low light and tilt your head…
Happy new year! xx