Writer Life & Lessons

Level-Up! Essence of Green :: December 2017 & Annual Review

“And the world keeps turning, sun keeps burning… We are the lost and found.”

January – March

The year began in a difficult fashion. We saw a dying relative in hospital, celebrated 10 years together, and attended the relative’s funeral. Some close friends went through some court difficulties, and my work/uni deadlines all crowded around together. I submitted a short story for an anthology, and a novel manuscript to an agent.

April – June

In April, I began taking a Khan Academy course on story-telling, and things began getting quite difficult at work. We did not have enough staff, and working in mental health, it’s imperative that patients are kept safe. Then our fridge-freezer died, most of the food we lost, and the rest essentially gave us food poisoning, at various levels.

July – September

At the end of June, the freezer broke again: and it took over a month for it to be fixed. I ended up with an unknown illness I could not shake: general fatigue, headaches, sinus and balance issues and low-mood. I finished my University course, had a birthday (yay, wisdom!) and took the time to get my goals for the year back on track: especially with reading and writing.

In September, I launched Map Your Potential – a website focusing on building resilience and managing the stress of over-thinking. I’m still getting clear on exactly how to word what I’ doing there, but that clarity will come with time, trial and error.

October – December 

In October, I ran my first coaching programme for Map Your Potential, and November was entirely consumed by dayjob and NaNoWriMo, which I won with a finished draft of The Temple Forest.

December focused on reflection, planning for 2018, and snuggles with kitties. I barely wrote anything, which was a wonderful break after four years solidly focused on writing.

Reflections on the Journey

i. Read 12 books: 5/12 – I’ve completed a book this month. Didn’t hit 12, but that’s okay.

ii. Edit second novel for submission: 1/1 – I submitted something in October which I’m still awaiting a response on.

iii. Track my wordcount and aim for 100,000 words: 100,002/100,000 words – I took December off, and wrote 1,111 words across 3 days to finish this goal.

iv. Build upon my wellness routine: We finally used our crock-pot, and I received a spiraliser for Yule, so cooking was definitely a big part of the month. I’ve signed up to be a #TimeToChange Champion for my workplace, and we installed an electric fireplace as a Yule present, which definitely helps make things feel cosy and warm.

December’s Experience Collected

  • 200/200XP 
  • 350/350XP
  • 300/300XP
  • 300/400XP

Total XP for December:                    

Total XP towards Level Up:        2,325/7,500

2017 Experience Points Collected:            12,350


This Year’s TA-DA List – I:

– Celebrated 10 years with O.H, and 1 year married.
– Started a business website.
– Completed a new novel-length story: The Forest Temple, and edited an old favourite.
– Completed a PGCert.
– Gave Blood
– Discovered White Chocolate Milkshake
– Ended the year with 100,000 new words of fiction under my belt.




My Writing Statistics:

I didn’t do a standalone post for 2016, but hit 90,000 words across that year. In 2017, my goal was 100,000 new words of fiction. Here’s how the year shaped up:
Words Written:                                  100,002
Days written:                                     331/365 (Only 6 days off from Jan 1st to Nov 29th!)

The Year Overview

Having felt that 2015 was a bad year for my writing, and missed my 100k target in 2016, 2017 had a lot more to say about that.

Happy New Year: May 2018 bring you joy.

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