It’s that time again, when the old year rolls into the new. Where everyone makes lists and resolutions, and/or proclaiming their victory over a year that’s barely begun on the internet. Words cannot express how deeply relieved I am not to have seen a thousand and one posts about how “2015 is going to be my year …” on Facebook. As opposed to the other 7 billion people on the planet, of course.
In lieu of proclaiming my dominance over time, I want to focus on the positives of the year I’m leaving behind. I’m notoriously bad at celebrating my successes, being a perfectionist who almost always feels I should be going more, better and faster. So, for however long this post ends up being, I’m going to focus on the good stuff. The stuff I’m proud of, the stuff that made me grow, the stuff from the old year that I hope will help shape the new one.
I wrote 30,000 words in a month. Rather than succumb to the siren call of Nanowrimo this year, I took a different route. I initially set a goal for 25,000 words, allowing myself to write when and however I wanted. With no constraints and especially, pointedly ignoring Nanowrimo’s rule of having to start a new project. I spent the month working on Open Season, one of my top projects. It was pretty awesome, I got to spend thirty days writing scenes that have spinning around in my head for months, if not years and I’m so glad that I made my own goal rather than sticking to someone else’s. I got a bit burnt out at the end because, after finishing a week early, I decided to go for the nonexistent extra credit [surprise!] and write another 5,000 to the original total.
In related news, I opened and managed my first Guild. Writing is typically a solitary pursuit, partially because it just is, and partially because I only trust very few people inside my head. But I knew I wasn’t the only one looking for an alternative to Nano, so I created a Guild on HabitRPG for AugNoWriMo. It was the first time I’ve managed something like that, and it was definitely an experience. In the end there were 40-50 people who signed up, and I enjoyed the few people I got to know in the group. I’m not sure yet if it’ll be repeated in 2015 … at least not without a co-manager this time around.
I bought my first car. My dream car. This is a pretty big deal for me, I’ve been waiting a car since I was at least 15 – I’m now 31, for those keeping track – and finally, after years of waiting, I was able to purchase a brand-new, shiny 2014 Subaru Outback. Her name is Liara (yes, after Liara T’Soni) and she’s a beautiful lapis blue pearl. Also, if I may say, girl is loaded full of goodies. The driver’s license is still in the works, among other things, but I waited years to buy her and many, many months for her to arrive. So, waiting a bit longer for my license? Totally worth it. The fact that she brings out everyone’s inner Fast and Furious side delights me to no end. She’s officially the family race car.
[My sister legit tried to do this. She’s pissed she can’t get Liara to drift or fishtail.]
I found (more of) my inner-German. This year I got to introduce my big sister and her family to the local German fest, which was a big hit. As well as finding a pretty great European place that serves excellent German food. I tried roasted duck there for the first time, various types of schnitzel and the best pickles I’ve ever had. I’m salivating just thinking about it … apparently I’m way better at exploring my German heritage through food than language studies.
I read 53 books this year. I set a goal on Goodreads to read 52 last year – one for each week, in case you don’t feel like doing the math – and managed to hit it with one to spare. I found some new authors [Marissa Meyer, Laura Lippman, Jasper Fforde, Diana Gabaldon and Loretta Hill to name a few] and read some favorites again [Sarah Addison Allen, Neil Gaiman, Harper Lee]. I’d really missed regular reading and I’m glad I stuck with it through the year. At some point I plan to write a post about my favorite books of from the year.
I donated to the Child’s Play fundraiser Desert Bus for Hope 8. I’ve really loved the heart behind the Child’s Play organization and have watched Desert Bus for the past couple of years. I’ve wanted to participate before, but was always too nervous to jump into chat. Many of the people who are apart of Desert Bus, where through Loading Ready Run or elsewhere, feel like such a tight-knit group it can be challenging to jump in. I’m so glad that I did though, DB8 was the best one yet, raising over $635,000 for kids all over the country in less than a week. I’m delighted to have been a part through bidding and taking part. I even purchased my very first D8 t-shirt and poster!
I officially got diagnosed with Depression / SAD and began medication. This was the most terrifying thing for me to do. I’ve probably been fighting depression since high school, but I shied away from getting formally diagnosed for a long time. To me, being diagnosed was akin to being a failure. Rather than seeing as a neurochemical problem that might be outside my control, I felt that if I was just “better” at X, Y and Z that I should be able to fix myself. After months on St. John’s Wort – which did help, though not as much as I needed – I went to a doctor and got a prescription. I’ve been on generic Wellbutrin since the first of November, and while I’m still looking for a psychologist, I’m glad that I took the step to get a diagnosis. More on this in a future post.
I opened my website and updated the blog fairly consistently. I actually almost forgot this one, and you’d think it was fairly obvious. As of December 6, 2014 this blog turned six months old. It’s still a wee little techno baby, but I’m proud of the progress I’ve made so far. I’ve had other other online endeavors before, and I’ve not been known for consistent updating. So far I’m managed to keep up with the blog, and even got some lovely feedback along the way.
While this is nowhere near a detailed summary of the last 365 days, it’s a handful of the accomplishments I’m most proud of. Lastly, if you’re reading this … thank you. Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts, leave comments on social networks offering support, and sharing my writing with others. I hope you had a wonderful year and I’m wishing you all the best for the next one.