What Kind Of Year Has It Been?

2013, eh? Damn. Where did that come from? All of a sudden it’s time to make plans for a new year to come, but not before taking a moment to review the one just passed.

On the plus side, 2012 did not see the world ending a fiery conflagration. (If you’re wondering why not, then NASA’s got you covered.) But on the negative, I was almost certain that 2012 would finally be the year of hoverboards and flying car technology. Thwarted again.

On a more personal note, the year was pretty spectacular. Here are some highlights, in no particular order.

I got married. Lovely girlfriend agreed in January to become lovely fiancee for six months, before changing title once again in July to be lovely wife. She rarely reads this blog, but in case she catches this post–thanks, honey. For the last nine years, and the next ninety.

I got promoted. I don’t talk about this much here, as it’s not really what the site’s about, but my writing career’s still at the stage where I need a day job to pay the bills. Happily, it’s a day job that I really enjoy, and in late January I got a promotion which has made it even better. If I never get to the point where I can write full-time, I’ll still be quite the happy bunny.

I finished my first novel. On May 9th, I completed the first draft of my first novel. After some twelve years of faffing around and daydreaming about being a writer, this was quite dramatic for me. I may even have done the Snoopy dance, but there’s no documentary evidence, so you can’t prove anything.

I published my first novel. This wasn’t even on my radar until April of this year, when I discovered how viable an option self-publishing had become in a couple of short years. Prior to that realisation, I was resigned to several years of wearisome grind submitting my book to agent after agent, hoping to hit that magic confluence of events that gets a book published. But lo and behold, self-publishing is here to give writers the chance to publish–and readers the chance to read–great books that might otherwise never see the light of day. It’s a special time to be a writer.

I sold my first book. And then another fifty-nine more. I’m still at the stage where every sale gives me a little frisson of excitement and pleasure. Long may that continue–but if it doesn’t, it’ll probably be because I’m selling so many copies that I can’t keep track. That would be fine too.

I finished my second novel. The first draft of ASCENSION POINT took one year to write. The first draft of VENUS RISING took five months. I’ve done the calculations, and if this trend continues drafting my ninth book should only take half an hour. I can’t wait.

I started this blog. It was only in April of this year that I jumped into the blogosphere and started spewing random thoughts all over the internet, like a cat coughing up hairballs onto a fireside rug. (Hmm. That simile ended up being more disgusting than I planned. Oh well.) Why the blog? Well, initially it was because I read lots of advice for writers containing the words ‘platform’ and ‘network’ and ‘social media’, which made it all sound like a tedious necessity. As it turns out, blogging’s a hell of a lot of fun, and mainly involves reposting videos I find on io9. So that’s fine.

And finally…

I became a writer. In 2011 I wasn’t one, really. Sure, by the end of the year I was writing a few hundred words, a few times a week, but I still had a long way to go. Now, at the start of 2013, I’m there. And what do you know: it turns out I’ve still got a long way go.

Happy New Year, everyone. I hope this year fulfills some dreams for all of us.

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