Reflections on 2013 and Hopes for 2014
As a new year approaches, it always feels like the past year has gone by so fast. I’m just getting used to thinking it’s 2013, and soon it’s going to be 2014. This year has been full of changes, and I wanted to write down everything that’s happened, followed by goals for 2014.
If you have a similar list, link it in the comments so I can see it!
1) This was the first year I didn’t worry about what would happen if I “never ever got a publishing deal,” because on December 13, 2012, that dream finally came true. (Instead, I have to worry about hoping the book does well. But all I can do is my best, so worrying is pointless.)
2) In the beginning of 2013, I set a goal to read 50 books annually (instead of 100) so that I would be more social. I failed this goal, because by mid-December 2013, I’ve already read 80 books. I can’t help it … I’m addicted to reading!!
3) Joining social adult kickball teams to make new groups of friends isn’t effective when you dislike playing AND watching sports, because you’ll have a hard time fitting in with the people who find kickball (and team sports in general) enjoyable. But I did meet a handful of people (AKA about two) who I remained friends with outside of kickball, so there’s that.
4) I saw the covers for all three books in The Secret Diamond Sisters trilogy. They’re beautiful, and I stared at them for hours, imagining the day when they would finally be on the shelves in a bookstore. Feb 25, 2014, when I’ll be able to walk into bookstores and see my book, will be so surreal.
5) I realized that there was no point in doing dating website to please others when I was receiving no joy from it whatsoever … and felt like I was wasting loads of time. (Not to mention how fake it all felt.) Now is my chance to do whatever I can to make my books take off, and I’m 100% content putting all my efforts into that, despite what others think. If I meet someone, it happens, but it will happen in its own time.
6) I wrote Book 2 (Diamonds in the Rough) in The Secret Diamond Sisters trilogy. It hasn’t gone through editing, but I’m proud of how the story is progressing, and hope you all will like it, too.
7) After six years, I decided I was done being a blonde, and got my hair dyed deep red. The new color fits my personality a lot better. I’m ready to rock it in the new year!
8) I realized that my goals for what I want in my life are way different from the “norm,” and that I’m more than okay with that.
9) Stick by your beliefs and morals no matter what, even if it means letting go of certain people because they go against your major personal values. I’ve always known this, but it was reinforced this year.
10) Never stop appreciating family and friends who have always been there for you. I am beyond grateful to have such amazing people in my life. You know who you are!
1) No more goals for how many books I want to read in a year. It’s not like I have a problem reading tons of books. If I want to read only 50, fine. (Although I doubt that will happen, since reading energizes me.) If I want to read 200, then that’s fine, too.
2) I need to buckle down during January and February and draft all of Book 3 of The Secret Diamond Sisters. (Or as much of it as I can.) Even though it’s due on May 1, if I can do that, I’ll feel a lot less stress when Book 1 comes out on Feb 25.
3) I would like to get rid of the stage fright I feel before speaking to an audience and just have fun with it, since I’ll be doing a lot of speaking at events in the new year.
4) I’ve always planned on putting 150% of my efforts into spreading the word about The Secret Diamond Sisters. So this isn’t really a goal, as much as a hope, that the series takes off and is a success.
5) If the above (#4) happens, I want to test living in a city like New York for a few months. While I love the weather in Florida and being near family, I’ve yet to feel like I fit in here. Living in a city full of people in the arts and entertainment fields (or just being surrounded by people who love the arts and entertainment) might be good for me. This might not happen in 2014, but it is more long term of a goal.
6) I want to trust new people more and get better at opening up to them. Hopefully I will find a balance between trusting people better and doubting those who give me reason to.
7) I would like to meet a group of ambitious, insightful, open-minded, fun people around my age who have similar interests to me around where I live. This is so much harder to do once you’re out of school. Especially when you work from home.
8) By this time in my life, I feel like I’ve come so far in personal growth. Since sitting down four years ago and deciding to write my first book, I’ve learned so much about who I am, and how to embrace what makes me unique and express that to the world. But there’s always more to learn (and change in positive ways) about yourself, so I look forward to all new discoveries in the new year.