Some years feel like transition years. I turn the page on November and December arrives with all of her twinkling lights and cheer, and suddenly I know that change is at the tip of my toes. I don’t usually put much stock into New Year’s resolutions, or that whole turning over a new leaf for the New Year thing, because I like organic change. But I feel that organic change is happening, unfurling its toes over this holiday period and giving me some much needed perspective for the next few months. Ever since Ludo arrived back in July I have been living in the day to day, and then in the week to week, some days a slow chug, others a rapid high speed train, but with no real regard for more than a week or a month ahead.
However, every day I have let myself be bombarded with the assaults on our civil rights and general intelligence, thinking I need to fight alone on all fronts, this strong instinct to protect what is mine, and also what is yours. I promise to channel this instinct and need more productively from now on. But I also promise to cut myself some slack too, because if I don’t care for my own needs now and again no one else will. And that caring for myself means asking for help when I need it, not an easy feat for me.
Over the past year I have been working on many different fronts, writing for clients, for myself, and for non-profits. One of the projects I have been working on over the past 6 months is an ongoing guide on how to publish and market your own work efficiently, and I have realized that in order to actually sell your own work you need to be brilliant at selling yourself. While I know that my work is worth reading I’m absolutely terrible at promoting myself, and people really don’t care. I don’t mean that in a negative way, but in general people really don’t care much about anything apart from what is going on around them, and what they need. I think this is why I’ve seen a lot of really talented people get so frustrated and upset with social media: we are taught that if we want to build our sphere of influence we need to work on getting more followers, hashtagging everything, commenting on everything, liking things we don’t always care about, following people we really don’t have any interest in. I just have never had the heart for that. I use social media in a way that I use everything else in my life: a way to share with others, make friends and discover new writers/artists/musicians, and just to keep up with my friends and family all over the world. And I’ve just found the instant access to information and the incessant scrolling in no chronological order has heightened my anxiety. So I have removed certain platforms from my phone over the past few weeks and feel a lot more balanced and ready to attack my career as a writer in a different light. Well, actually I am just going to work at marketing my work differently, in a way that works for me. I focus a lot on the mistakes I make, or on things that don’t work as well as they should when I really should look at everything I have accomplished! I wrote a book this year. I’m writing a second and a third and a fourth. I wrote some pretty amazing essays and thought pieces. I had a third child in the space of 4 years and moved to a new home. I’m nursing three children and still functioning somewhat normally. I am working, although not as much as I was before Ludo was born, still enough. I have had articles published in some awesome publications that have been read and shared many, many times. And despite my worries for the future, despite the state of this country, and despite the fact that every morning I wake up knowing that there is another hill to climb up and always more battles to fight, despite all of that, I promise to myself that I will remain positive. I’ve never been one to be complacent and accept my lot.
I have many, many stories and essays that I am writing, as well as few projects in the pipeline, and I’m looking forward to sharing them with you over the next year. If you are interested in keeping up with my ramblings and book release dates please feel free to sign up to my mailing list and/or “like” or follow my Facebook page. 2018 will be a year of words, of resistance, and of play. Drinking used to be my means of decompression, but nowadays in times of high anxiety I have to remind myself to just breathe and laugh, without my beloved Powers. Being seriously serious all of the time weighs heavy on my heart and my brain. 2018 will be the year where I focus only on what matters the most to me, and because a lot of that also matters the most to others, on what matters to you too. Thank you for all for reading, for commenting, and for buying my book this year, I’m really excited to share the next one with you in a few months!
I’ve made a list of some of my favorite pieces from 2017, the rest can be found in my Archive. Read them while listening to my playlist for this year, a playlist I made for Ludo’s birth, one that helped me through the 36 hours of active labor I was in with him, and that I have played for all of my kids over the past 5+ months (hit shuffle though).