The end of December is fast approaching... and today's post is all about the upside of a new calendar year. At this moment anything is possible and your dreams can be whatever you want them to be. Actually, that's true whatever time of year it is, but there's something about a brand new year that feels like starting again with no baggage and no regrets ☺.
I think it's also important to look back and remember the good things about the year that's ending and to postpone any cynicism related to the not-so-good things until another time--indefinitely if you can. New Year, new beginnings. (I'd love to be able to claim this is what I do, but let's just say it's a work-in-progress!)
Here are the ABCs of my New Year's resolutions:
A is for Authors, old and new
To say that I enjoy reading is a bit of an understatement. A good book can force the real world into the background, at least for a while, and that is sometimes a very good thing. Fortunately, reading plays a vital role in writing, and therefore I have a great excuse to make sure I read a lot. Stephen King describes it perfectly: "You cannot hope to sweep someone else away by the force of your writing until it has been done to you."
Finding a new author, whose writing I love, is like receiving a gift when it's not my birthday. I can't wait to discover some new authors in 2018, though I'm also looking forward to new releases from the authors I already know. In 2017 I think Adam Silvera was the most memorable new (to me) author I tried. In the unlikely event that you haven't already, I'd recommend checking out his books.
B is for Book(s)
I guess this one's obvious--I definitely plan to write at least one more book next year. In 2017 I achieved my goal of writing two books, and it would be great if I could match that in 2018, work/life balance permitting. The extra challenge will be in bringing the Legacy of Androva series to an end. I'm working on the seventh and final book right now, and it's tough to know that I'll be saying goodbye. On the positive side, I have a lot of ideas about what to write next, and it will be fun choosing which one to develop.
C is for Characters
Characters are incredibly important. A story is meaningless unless there is at least one character who takes hold of the reader's hand and brings them along for the ride. Next year I hope to create a few memorable new characters of my own and also to discover some amazing characters created by other authors.
Looking back on 2017, two characters that stayed with me long after I finished their stories (for very different reasons) are Starr, from The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas and Monty, from The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue, by Mackenzi Lee. I'd recommend taking a look at both books if you haven't already.
Looking ahead to 2018, for the final book in the Legacy of Androva series, most of my characters are already well-established, so I get to do two things. I get to create a new villain, and I also get to force one or more of my characters to discover something different about themselves because of the actions of that villain. I'm still working on it, but she--the villain--is shaping up nicely, with a deadly skillset my characters have never encountered before.
And as for the book after that... I can create some brand new characters and decide everything about them. (Well, that's the theory. What usually happens is that they kind of show up fully formed and resist all attempts to be turned into someone different!).
Finally, I would like to wish everyone reading this the 2018 of their dreams! Are you making any reading or writing-related resolutions? If you are celebrating the New Year, I hope you have a wonderful time, and thank you for stopping by my blog today!