Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Final Reflections on 2013

The dust has settled on our move. Our stuff is unpacked. The empty boxes have all been thrown away. We still need to put up our artwork, and there are a few pieces of furniture we’ll need to purchase over time. Essentially, we’re still getting settled in, and I’m in the process of figuring out what our new normal is. Through the din, though, I can hear my creative side, stifled for so many months, clamoring to be let out.

Now seems as good a time as any to get back to my blog, and to reflect on what has so recently passed.

As we neared the end of 2013, before I found out that we were moving, I’d been feeling like it had been a year where not much had happened. I’d started to worry that perhaps I was running in place, that I hadn’t accomplished much. An actual reflection on the year proved this to be untrue: my mother’s estate closed after nearly two years; we paid off two cars; we weathered a small financial crisis; I got my first rejection from a publisher; and I wrote a lot, even if I didn’t finish most of what I started.

In short, it was a pretty busy year.

Even so, as December came to a close, I would catch myself secretly wishing for a shake-up of the status quo. I was yearning for something big to change. Then, out of the blue, a job opportunity arose for my husband and the next thing I knew, we were moving halfway across the country (again). I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised. Nearly all of our moves have happened this quickly. Yet I still feel a bit shell shocked by it all. While I might have been looking for a big change, I wasn’t exactly hoping that everything would change. “Be careful what you wish for” indeed.

Still, what’s done is done, and I don’t feel bad about it. I’m optimistic. I believe that this move will ultimately prove to be the right one for us. And while I might not be ready to jump head first into making a new life here – all of the starting over has, quite frankly, left me rather fatigued – I am ready to jump head first into something else: publishing.

I feel that 2014 is the year to finally get my novels out there, even if I have to do it myself. I’m tired of letting my fears (of rejection, of criticism, etc.) hold me back. So while I’ll continue writing, I’m going to start putting a website together, and seeking an editor, and a cover artist. I’m going to get this stuff figured out because it’s well past time that I do. If no one buys my books, I’m sure I’ll be disappointed. How could I not be? But I think that being disappointed in that way would be better than being disappointed in myself for never trying.

Wish me luck! I have no idea what I'm doing, so if you have any advice, feel free to give it to me. And while you're here, why don't you tell me how 2013 went for you?


Meg said...

Good luck Jan! I am beginning to work on editing for some friends of mine as I look into possibly turning it into a source of income. We should talk, possibly you could send me some sample pages and we can see what I can do with them. This could be for a minimal fee or exchange of services so you could still hire someone with more experience at a later date. Also, my friend is building a site chronicling her experiences during the whole writing/submitting process. You should check it out because it's just exactly for writer's like you.

Patricia said...

Be careful what you wish for indeed. I feel like not much happened in 2013 for me too, but I guess stuff did. However, the term "ossify" has been floating around in my head when I think of parts of my life. I'm looking to shake things up too, though not with a move.

I currently have a spreadsheet on my desk titled "becoming an author" I have great plans for the spreadsheet. And perhaps the spreadsheet will help me work in that direction.

Good luck to us both.

lostindustrial said...

I wish you much luck Jan. I'll do what I can to help (remember the thing I asked you to send me?)

As far as 2013 for was a roller coaster! From the depths of depression at the beginning of the year, I found a job, moved out on my own for the first time in my life and got accustomed to the trials and tribulations of that, only to be threatened with it being taken away with the loss of my job only 7 months later and having to endure months of unemployment again. I went to Germany by myself and fulfilled a years-long dream of seeing my favorite band in concert there and got to meet some distant family as well. It ended on a pretty good note with finding a new job and having made some great friends. I feel more stable now :) and I'm glad to have met you :)

balyien said...

Meghan, Thanks for the info!

Patricia, Best of luck! I know that you'll do great because you always do.

Christa, I'm so glad that everything worked out well for you. I'm happy to have met you as well, even if we have to be long distance friends now. :)