It's time again to post my New Year's resolutions. I make various goals throughout the year (including a new resolution to eat better, which I started the first week in December), but I always like the idea of taking stock and starting fresh goals after the holidays.
First, let's check in with my 2017 resolutions and see what was or wasn't accomplished.
1. Finish my manuscript by the end of winter. = accomplished. I finished a first full draft and had my consultation with my mentor. I'm now slowly working through the revisions.
2. After receiving my manuscript notes from a UCLA Extension faculty member, use the notes to revise and polish my novel. Send my novel to potential agents. = Sort of. I'm still revising, not at the agent stage yet.
3. Finally figure out a sensible and effective writing schedule, which includes becoming more involved in my online writing group- submitting more, rather than just critiquing. = Fail. The online writing group was distracting, so I dropped it. My writing is spotty, in bursts and not consistent.
4. Submitting short stories and poems to contests/ journals. I'm not going to give myself a quota like last year, but I need to put myself out there. = Sort of. I entered the NYC Midnight Short Story competition and passed the first two rounds. It was a lot of fun and I came away with two solid short stories.
5. Read a Minimum of 70 books. = Accomplished! I'm writing this review with a few weeks left in the year, but it looks like I'll end up with 78-79 books read. I also read many literary journals, not included in this count.
6. Cut out soda- This was a resolution that I stuck to for many years, but have slipped back into old habits this past year. Not that I drink a lot of soda, but still getting rid of empty, unhealthy calories.= Fail. I don't even remember this as a resolution for last year. Although, I have been soda free since December 1st.
7. When not traveling, use apartment gym a minimum of three days a week. I hate exercising, but need to get back into the routine. I had an amazing exercise routine for nearly two years and I felt, looked fabulous. I need that back. = Major fail. I used the gym, but not consistently. I also joined a gym in Big bear, but I've already canceled the membership. Part of the problem is I got sciatica in May and I've not felt well every since. Yoga helped a little, but I'm still having lingering issues.
8. Maintain a food diary and eat a minimum of five servings of fruits and veggies a day. This is for awareness, which will hopefully turn into healthy habits, something that's worked like a charm in the past. = Fail. Although I've been doing this for a few weeks and it does work!
9. Learn to enjoy living in Downtown Portland- get out of the apartment weekly to take advantage of what the city has to offer. Be present and active in our current living situation. = Sort of. I never learned to enjoy living in Portland, but we did make the most of it. We got out and saw things, attended local activities. My attitude did change towards living in Portland, but I was happy to move back to CA! I'm grateful for the experience of living in the Pacific North West and new friends made.
10. Travel to a new state or country ( or major city) = Yes! I went to Oklahoma City for the first time. We also visited Skagway, Alaska. We took many short trips around Oregon and Washington, seeing new things. My favorite was going to Astoria and seeing where one of my all-time favorite movies, The Goonies, was filmed.
11. Grow Travel Agency, by focusing on training, social media and the Easy as Pie Travel blog. I'm proud of what I've built so far and I've booked vacations for several clients, however, I want to be bigger. = Fail. We opted to close the travel agency, because it was more work than it was worth putting in to build. It distracted from my writing. No regrets with this one. Again, nothing to regret from the experience.
12. Grow the Always Packed for Adventure blog. Truly, this blog and it's readership has exceeded my expectations, but that makes me think that I can do even better.= Accomplished. My blog continues to grow in readership every month. It's exciting!
And now, time for those 2018 resolutions! I'm planning on starting most of these on January 8th, after my stepson finishes his visit with us for the holidays. I just want to have fun during his visit and not worry about schedules and goals.
1. Create a writing schedule with a focus on the revisions for my novel.
2. Finish revising my novel and begin sending it out to agents.
3. Maintain blogging schedule of every other day. This has been my normal schedule for years, but life got in the way this year and I didn't always stick to it. I felt guilty when I didn't.
4. Read 75 or more books.
5. Maintain a food log and eliminate soda.
6. Work on scanning old-family pictures. Try to get 1/4 of pictures scanned. This has been a resolution from years past that I never managed to accomplish. It's a big project.
7. Work on family genealogy project.
8. Super secret podcast idea- put into action! I'm very excited about this one.
9. Visit a new country, state or major city.
10. Attend a writer's conference. I have my eye on the Las Vegas conference in the spring.
Happy 2018 and thank you for reading my blog! May your year be filled with happiness, good health, and new adventures!