End of Year Reflection: Go Fuck Yourself, 2017

I feel like I’m saying that a lot these days. Every New Year’s I turn to the past year and scream BURN IN HELL YOU ASSHOLE and then turn to the next year like it’s going to be better. And then it’s not. Or it is in some ways, but worse in other ways.

Anyway, this year is no exception. 2017 was long and hard and yet surprisingly short, and while I’m glad it’s over I also want to hit Pause for a few days because I am so not ready for 2018, y’all.

In Writing

I did not accomplish what I wanted to accomplish this year — namely, finishing From the Ashes, book 2 in The Borderlands Saga. Actually, more accurately, my goal this year was to write From the Ashes, The Moonrunner (book 3 in TBS), and most of or all of Anala, book 3 in The Bellica Trilogy. Because I’m insane, obviously. But I figured, hey, lots of indie authors are out there doing a book a month, why not me?

Because you’re disabled and chronically ill you goof, my brain replied. After fucking me over all year.

So I didn’t finish a book this year. I didn’t even come close. I started another project, too, thinking I’d whip it out quickly and then be able to tackle From the Ashes with renewed vigor. Said secret project sits stagnant on my hard drive, waiting for me to FIGURE OUT THE PLOT before I finish it.

Currently, to help combat this dearth of finishing things, my mom Kaimana Wolff and I are on a mini writing retreat at a local B&B. I’m hoping I get something written on From the Ashes before New Year’s Eve drags me kicking and screaming into the new year.

Despite my utter failure at finishing projects this year, I did write over 128 thousand words, which is pretty nice. So I’m happy for that.

I also started a Patreon this year, which you likely know, because I finally believed I was marketable as a writer. December saw some serious upset there with changes Patreon rolled out that no one wanted, but they listened to feedback and did not roll out the changes, so I’m still there.

As part of my having a Patreon I’m trying now to write more short stories as exclusives for Patrons. I’ve done one so far; I have another one kicking around in my head that I just haven’t had a chance to write yet. Hoping to get that done on this retreat.

In Reading

In 2017 I read 18 books. Well, 17, but I’m hoping that I’ll finish another one before New Year’s. My initial goal on Goodreads was 36 books; when it got to the last week of December and I was still sitting at 17, I changed it to 18. It’s not cheating, since it’s not really a competition and just something I do on the honor system and for my own benefit. It benefits me more to change the number as the year goes on.

Of those books, my favourites were The Bottle Stopper by Angeline Trevena, Showdown by Diane Morrison, Shadows Cast by Stars by Catherine Knutsson, and Valor’s Choice by Tanya Huff. I also got to finish a series this year that I started reading in the late 90s or early 00s when it first came out — the Symphony of Ages Saga by Elizabeth Haydon. The ending (The Weaver’s Lament) was satisfying and brought the world and characters to their deserved rest.

What’s Planned for 2018

Well, writing-wise I want to do better. I’m setting myself deadlines again, and hoping against hope I can actually make them this time. I am hoping that somehow the infusion into my life of a hard-set schedule — I’m going back to school — and thus a restriction of time for writing (even more so than my work does now) will give me the galvanization to get more done. Don’t ask me how that works, but sometimes it does and I’m hoping it will for me in 2018.

Oh yes, school. I start on Tuesday and I’m in a sheer blind panic about it, because it’s been 5 years since I was in school and also #anxiety. I’m going for a year-long certificate that will hopefully make me gainfully employed in a job I can physically do and that will support us in a way my freelancing is not right now.

School is going to be…well, crazy, really. I have 8:30am classes on Tuesday and Thursdays, which is quite a change from my current schedule of “get up sometime in the afternoon; go to bed sometime after 4am”. I’ve gotten accustomed to my night-shift working husband’s schedule. With the school schedule I’ll barely see him, and it will be hard to use my willpower to go to bed on time and not “just stay up a little later!” so I can see him when he gets home. I need every ounce of sleep — something I’ve learned about my body in the past few years. Less than 8 hours and I’m a non-functioning zombie.

Luckily Mondays and Wednesdays have later starts for class times, so I won’t have a 5am wake up every day. (6am instead.)

Despite how crazy my schedule will be and how busy I’ll be, I’m hoping to get not only a large amount of writing done this year, but reading too. I’m signing up for Beat The Backlist in 2018 and I plan on plowing through a LARGE number of books on my TBR shelves.

I’ll be posting actual numbers and a list of books at my Dreamwidth once I figure out which books I want to tackle in 2018. Book reviews will be posted at my Dreamwidth and either here or at my pagan religious blog, depending on the type of book.

I am also hoping to blog more in 2018. Book reviews here, at Dreamwidth, and at Everyday Magic, and also more posts about my knitting, crochet, bullet journalling and more at Eventually a Hat. I also want to post more non-book review posts here, but not sure what about yet. Life, the universe, and everything, likely. (42.)

That’s it for me tonight. I need to drag mom away from the computer so we can get a couple of episodes of Grey’s Anatomy in before bedtime.

Till next year, I remain loonily yours,

~Katje

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