It feels like only yesterday that I was thinking about all the things I wanted to do in 2011, and already the year is drawing to a close. So, as I like to do every New Year’s Eve, I thought I’d take a few minutes to revisit my goals and see how I did. As I pulled out the list of goals that I created last year, I was surprised to discover that, unlike previous years, this year I accomplished all of them!!
Here is my year in review…
1. Travel to new places. We kicked off the new year in a new place: Savannah, GA. Our travels also took us to some other exciting new places: Versailles, France; Salisbury, England; and Bath, England. And next month they will take us to Costa Rica.
2. Experience new things. I ate lots of new foods (shrimp and grits, fried green tomatoes, frog’s legs), went dog sledding in the Poconos, hosted an igloo party, visited a taxidermist, went kayaking on the Delaware, attended a talk given by one of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Gilbert, went to a keynote address given by business guru Tom Peters, became a book reviewer (for Reader Unboxed), started a small press (Dreamspire Press), and published my first novel (Empty Arms).
3. Make new friends. This year I made a number of new “virtual” friends through blogging, being a book reviewer, publishing Empty Arms, and be an active part of some online writing communities. These friends have been great support systems and they have made my writing life – and my personal life – so much richer.
5. Finish revising my second novel (Empty Arms), then find an agent to represent me, and seek publication. This goal morphed a bit as I worked towards it. As you know, I finished the major revision of Empty Arms earlier this year, but rather than finding an agent and seeking “traditional” publication, I decided to start my own small press to publish my work and eventually the work of other emerging writers.
6. Begin a new fiction project. I already have 4 pages of brainstorming notes for my next book!
7. Finish writing and release my first e-book. Empty Arms was released in e-book format in November!
8. Publish my non-fiction work in new places. This year I was invited to contribute a writing-related article to the popular writing blog, Write It Sideways, when I was selected as a winner of its first ever blogging contest. I was also asked to be a contributor to the fabulous new book review site, Reader Unboxed!
9. Reach 50,000 hits on Beyond the Gray. I was shocked and thrilled when we surpassed this goal by mid-year!
10. Help someone else follow a dream. Earlier this year, when I was working with my web designer, Jason, on my new website, he told me that it had always been his dream to design a book cover…so I helped him achieve that dream by giving him the chance to design the cover of Empty Arms (which he did quite successfully, I might add). As it turned out, by helping Jason follow his dream, he helped me follow mine. And what’s better than that?
What goals are you proud to have accomplished in 2011?