I hope you all had a restful and enjoyable Christmas and New Year break. The tone of this post was set by my New Year’s Eve iTunes playlist (mercifully for my friends and family it’s quite short, unlike my eight-hour gargantuan Christmas version).
While singing along to Abba’s “Happy New Year” I realised it’s not actually a lighthearted festive retrospective; rather, it’s an existential warning to us all:
Happy New Year!
Happy New Year!
May we all have our hopes, our will to try
If we don’t we might as well lay down and die
You and I
Sometimes I see
How the brave new world arrives
And I see how it thrives
In the ashes of our lives
Oh yes, man is a fool
And he thinks he’ll be okay
Dragging on, feet of clay
Never knowing he’s astray
Keeps on going anyway
My will to try has been lacking for the last few months; I’ve been struggling with a month-long chest infection that made Christmas preparations fraught. But I can’t blame the preceding months on viral afflictions – rather I’ve been suffering with my own dragging feet of clay, and I’m not sure why.
In addition, a previously long-listed story of mine, Let me Be Your Fantasy was published in Reflex Fiction’s 2nd volume of poetry, The Real Jazz Baby; my stories have featured in both volumes published to date. But that was all for June – December, writing-wise.
The problem is output – I have submit my work to get it published, and my sending out dried up during the second half of 2019. “Shy bairns get nowt”, my son says, an expression he picked up from a Geordie university pal, and it’s true, I can’t beat my breast and curse the world for not reading my writing if I’m not putting it out there.
I also need to do some submission housekeeping; my current process is to submit a piece and then wait for a decision; I’ve got some stories out that I’m really proud of, that I need to chase and/or submit elsewhere; shy bairns get nowt.
So for 2020 my resolutions around my writing are to crack on, be bold, don’t sit back and wait for editors to give me feedback one at a time. Oh, and to WRITE MORE!
So I wish you a year of happy reading, new author discovery euphoria, fruitful writing, and relatively painless editing!