2017: The Year That Was, 2018: The Year That Will Be (For Me)

I remember during the final days of 2015 telling a friend the following:

“I’m looking forward to 2016.  Even-numbered years are always great years.”

To be honest, I’m not even sure what data I was basing that assessment on.  When I think of recent even-numbered years, no especially noteworthy occurrences immediately spring to mind.

Continue reading

If You Can Dream It, You Still Have to Do It

dream-it-wish-it-do-it

The year 2016 knocked the wind out of a lot of people’s sails.

Politically, it showed considerable regression in the progress of equality and human rights.

A seemingly inordinate number of notable figures and celebrities passed away, many surprisingly young, which suggests we haven’t come as far in disease prevention, mental health treatment, and drug harm reduction as we may have thought.

Continue reading

On Recognizing the Interim Rewards of Writing

My chapter revision tracking system, with special emphasis given to chapters 7, 15, 21, and 30 (formerly 31)

My chapter revision tracking system for draft 2, with special emphasis given to chapters 7, 15, 21, and 30 (formerly 31)

The ultimate reward of writing, obviously, is publishing a book and having it read to widespread appeal.

But long before reaching that point, should a writer reward the intermediate stages of his/her writing journey?

In the past, I’ve written not only about both the importance of goal-setting, but also of ensuring your goals have corresponding plans to power their fulfillment.

Continue reading

The Day(s) I Became a Writer

Minions birthday

As far as months go, I can’t say I care much for February.

This isn’t for the reason most might expect.  It’s not the weather.  For most of Canada, February is dark, cheerless, and frigid – the furthest thing from the festive winter wonderland of a couple months prior.

I experienced 30 straight years of that.  But now, living on the west coast in Vancouver, February days are noticeably longer, the temperatures rest well above zero (some winters, it never even goes below freezing), and although it rains for days and weeks on end, at least you don’t have to shovel.

Continue reading

What’s New for the New Year? (or, On My Ongoing Efforts to Get Sh*t Done)

Toshiba factory reset

What’s new for me for 2016?  In a word, not a heck of a lot.

For all that that’s actually six words.

New Year’s is my favourite time of the year.  I love new beginnings and the opportunity to forecast what shape the coming year will take by setting goals to help chart its course and advancement.

Given this, I’m no stranger to New Year’s resolutions.  I even have a fairly decent record of achieving them.

Continue reading

How I’m Spending My Summer, 2015 Edition

It’s that time of year again.

Summer is the best season there is.  This may be my personal opinion on the matter, but I do believe there’s some degree of universal truth to it as well: the weather is warm, the days are long, people are friendlier and happier, and the clothing is less encumbering.

Continue reading

When What’s Old is New Again for the New Year

Rearranging New Year's ResolutionsF**king Twitter!

I love the concept of Twitter – of microblogging in general.  I love the way those who are Twitter-savvy are able to use it to meet new people, remain connected to friends and fans, and obtain information that’s of value and of interest to them.

I just don’t seemed able to do any of those things myself.

Continue reading

I Never Miss a Deadline … Except When I Do (which is often)

Deadline

So, my WIP, such as it is, is indeed still IP.

To date, despite have been writing seriously for some six years, I’ve yet to complete anything novel-length that stands as a fully completed story – a fact that haunts me continuously.

I’d originally resolved to finish my WIP last year by my birthday, which is at the end of November.

I didn’t make that deadline, but consoled myself with the fact that I had an entire other novel to write to finish the story, my previously anticipated duology in fact being a trilogy.

But there’s still something about deadlines – something definitive and binding, which I suppose is the whole point.  I almost never set deadlines.  I really don’t like them, even though my “type” is supposed to thrive on them.

Continue reading

Do I Need a Bucket List?  Do You?

Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman in The Bucket List (2007).

Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman in The Bucket List (2007).

A fellow writer friend once told me:

“When I finish and publish my novel [a long-standing project of hers that’s faced many setbacks along the way], my life will be complete.”

“You mean, that portion of your life will be complete,” I clarified.

“No,” she persisted, “I mean I’ll have achieved my life’s greatest goal.”

“Until you come up with the next great goal, that is, right?”

My friend, after all, is only 37 – a bit early to peak in life, if you ask me.

For many writers, the writing and publishing of a novel – whether traditionally or via self-publishing – can take years: years spent finding the time, finding the motivation, finding one’s voice and message, and, of course, finding the skill to effectively convey it all.

Continue reading

How I’m Spending My Summer

Summer

No, it doesn’t involve an awesome vacation, but more on that in a bit.

I’m having a “working summer” this year. This isn’t unlike how I often have “working weekends”, during which I get caught up on all the errands, chores, and other adult-life necessaries I didn’t do during the week because I was busy writing.

Full-time jobs are hell on both writing time and fun, relaxing weekend time, though I guess we all need to suffer a bit for our art.

But I’ve currently got some BIG tasks that need doing.

Hence the working summer.

Continue reading