I'm late with this, but I hope you'll forgive me in the timing of this somewhat Janus themed post (looking back and forward at the same time). A lot of things have been whirling around my head from coursework to novels, to working myself into pointless stress over roleplaying... something I've decided to cut out of my life almost completely for now because I've come to the conclusion that at present it simply cannot make me happy. So my 'this is a new year, oh my God' post ended up being put on the back burner a bit.
If I'm honest I don't have a lot to say, my resolutions largely boil down to 'keep doing what I'm doing', to keep reading and writing and working to get up the mountain to being published (fully aware that there's another peak to climb after that one). The only change to 'situation normal' is that as I'm not gaming I'm going to have to seek out a new social life. I'm an introvert and I'm also extremely uncomfortable with pushing things I want onto people, preferring to open up discussion and talk about things rather than make unilateral decisions (unless I'm flouncing off, apparently). As a result whilst I want to be around people I need to be sure I measure it out carefully and give myself lots of buffering space so I don't feel overwhelmed (in addition to giving me the chance to get coursework and other writing done). I'd like to get fitter too, as I'm aware that my tummy is getting a bit too big, but that's going to require me to set up a routine and stick to it and I already feel as if there's not enough time in the day.
2013 was a mixture of ups and downs, there were times when I feared I was coming down with depression and just felt stressed for a goodly chunk of the year. I had concerns over my marriage, my course, finding work (taking a long round trip to Southampton and succumbing to a black mood of bleakness on the way home isn't exactly a good way to spend a day) and other things. On the other hand, the good things that happened were that I got to meet new people and make new friends, got more work published and was asked to review a book of short stories by Adrian Tchaikovsky. I won the prize at Fiction Vortex and saw two of my favourite bands in concert, wich was briliant. I got a job, even if its not one I plan to stay in forever, and I think my marriage is back on track, though it still feels touch and go in places. A good friend of mine quit gaming and in doing so opened a can of worms that led to me just feeling too discontented to continue, something that ultimately led to my decision in the tailend of last year to quit the group.
I'm really hoping that this coming year will be less fraught and I'll find a nice balance for all the things in my life. I'm hoping to get my novel finished, pass my MA, make new friends and expand my social circles, hopefully making more contacts within the writing 'industry' and meeting more writers - something that's increasingly important to me. One thing that I'm hoping to steal from my friend Mave (he of Stormy Port Games, check them out) is recording the good things that have happened to give me a catalogue of positive things rather than just a groundswell of rubbish to focus on. I'm going to try and blog about one good thing every week, whether its meeting up with a friend or going to a gig or whatever.
In the meantime I have a largish book voucher to spend, any suggestions?