Day-to-Day Writer Life & Lessons

Welcoming In The Essence of 2022

Welcome in, 2022. 

The last couple of years have been a gentle spiral down, and I find myself finally rising up out of the mud to unfurl my lotus petals.

In 2021, I focused on measuring all writing – not just fiction. And the results are in.

I wrote 75,120 words overall, resulting in 10,646 words exactly of fiction across the 12 months. 

For another year where I “didn’t write,” that isn’t too bad.

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Reflecting on 2021:

i. Read 12 books: 5/12. I debated starting a short book on December 31st just to hit 6, but decided that wasn’t the spirit of my desire to read more. It’s to learn and train my brain, not to hit some random number on a challenge.

I am currently in the middle of 3 non-fiction books: Women Who Run With the Wolves by Dr Clarissa Pinkola Estés, You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero and Codependent No More by Melody Beattie.

ii. Edit The Felled Gods: Not really. I did do *some* re-reading and collating of notes for this project but a lot of my creativity was quashed under stress in 2021.

iii. Track my wordcount: – Yes. After 1.3 years of tracking all of my writing through “#MilWordy”, I’ve summarised my writing in an annual document again, and hope to increase my fiction writing in 2022.

iv. Wellbeing Comes First: – Yes? My wellbeing wasn’t great in 2021, but I was able to acknowledge that, reflect on why, make changes to my life and take rests. Although my mental health is lower at the end of this year than last, the fact I’ve recognised it, admitted it out loud and sought help is a huge win for me. I have re-shaped my view of movement, healthy eating and ‘downtime’ which are all steps in the right direction.

v. Weekly Connection: – Yes. This was by far my biggest “WIN” for 2021 — I really opened up to a few choice friends about some long-term difficulties and was supported to take steps to improve things, I went away for a 3-day weekend with an old University friend to Glastonbury, and played online games with friends in both America, Australia and the UK.

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This Year’s TA-DA List – I:

– Re-connected with 2 of my oldest and dearest friends <3
– Started a new job in the National Health Service which I bloody love, despite the ongoing pandemic and the issues that brings.
– Had coffee dates, went to the zoo (!) and played crazy golf with colleagues.
– Signed myself up for counselling. Twice.
– Went back to Bouldering.
– Made a new friend at the new job.
– Visited the magickal land of Glastonbury with a hippie friend. It was my first ‘girls weekend’ holiday ever, and it was exactly what I needed.
– Began another mental health qualification (because why not).
– Continued to support our local cat café.
– Three doses of COVID vaccine.
– Co-hosted a panel for the World Wide Writeathon 2021.

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Publications This Year:

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Welcome In, 2022

Anyone else noticing a pattern here?  

It feels like this is always a “pllleeeaasseeeee” to the following year to not be as hard as the previous one. I’m not sure how that’s working out.

Therefore, welcome, 2022.
My word for this year is POWER, and I have a set of specific intentions to focus on during this next 12 months.

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Intentions for 2022:

i. Read 12 books: I debated cutting this down to 6 or 10 books, but 12 really is what I want to be reading as a minimum each year. Reflecting on 2021, with so much time *not writing* my own fiction, I wish I’d read more fiction (since I don’t let myself read fiction during drafting as it tends to influence my story. So 12 it is.

ii. Be A Writer Again: I want to go back to “being a writer” in 2022. The easiest way to measure this is through working on either the Planes Series, The Felled Gods, and/or write and submit short fiction again.

iii. Track my wordcount: I love tracking my wordcount, and the last 16 months of measuring both my nonfiction and fiction has really opened my eyes to recognise just how much I do write when I’m not necessarily trying to.

iv. Focus on Health: I’m basically carrying this one over as I didn’t get where I’d hoped to in 2021. my ‘sub-goals’ for 2022 include intuitive eating, cutting down on sugar, regular movement, journalling, meditation, gaming and relaxing more, craft regularly, and decluttering my environment to reduce stress.

v. Connect with my Community: I feel I did well on this one, and want to maintain it – monthly Medium posts, continuing my newsletter, and deep, honest social connections to refill my well.

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How are you welcoming in 2022?

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