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As I’m writing this post, it is 3.45 pm, and it’s snowing heavily outside. Power is out for the second time, and I’m just glad we live on the sixth floor of a seven-storey apartment. (My intolerance of heights disappears when there are floods everywhere, and I’m just glad we are safe, warm and dry.)
2016 has been a weird year, to say the least. I’ve had personal and professional ups and downs, as well as financial ones. I’m not going to talk about what a terrible year it has been on a global scale. We all know what happened. News and social media feeds and friends’ updates, and even our favorite cartoons, constantly reminded us that the world had become even more dangerous than many of us knew.
Best of 2016 for This Writer
Let’s not mock anyone who feels 2016 has been the worst year ever. If they live in a country where terrorism attacks have increased, it might truly be the worst year ever.
Now that we acknowledged that, below are some of my highlights:
- I finally decided on the theme and launch date of my travel blog.
- I was published on The Washington Post’s Solo-ish blog.
- I took some great courses on advancing my writing and my writing career.
- I started to stick to some of my earlier resolutions.
- I read some great books.
- I’ve made some important decisions to make 2017 different in a terrific way.
- I was active on some amazing FB groups, made great connections and friends.
- I started cold-pitching.
- I responded to calls for submissions, meaning I wrote according to a given theme and sold two articles in this vein.
Some of My Favorite Movies of the Year:
- The Girl on the Train starring Emily Blunt and Justin Theroux.
- Hacksaw Ridge starring Andrew Garfield.
- Allied starring Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard.
Favorite Series (That Premiered in 2016)
- This is Us
- Good Behavior (My review on my entertainment blog.)
- Designated Survivor
Plans and Goals for 2017
- Train my Dragon Dictate: Apparently, there is a book on it. My hands hurt, but typing has always been my favorite method of getting my point across and recording those points.
- Move, move, move! I plan on getting a gym membership or taking regular dance classes again. I’m particularly interested in zumba.
- Travel, travel, travel. I haven’t been aboard since 2015, and I’m itching.
- Pitch, pitch, pitch! This goes for both fiction and non-fiction. Gina Horkey’s 90 Day Pitching Challenge was an awesome prompt in the right direction, but I still have some organizing to do. I haven’t been able to keep up with the 10 pitches-a-day goal. I fully plan to this year.
- Eat more healthily. If I can’t eat perfectly healthily, I will at least add healthy stuff to make the relatively less healthy better. For instance, to keep my blood sugar level in check, I’ll have some nuts with your dark chocolate. Advice borrowed from one of my country’s top nutritionists.
- Launch my first e-book on productivity.
- Take on more coaching work
- Respond the more submission calls.
- When you are taking a course, actually apply the sound advice.
2016’s Top Posts on the Blog
- Bad Traits for Characters: From Mildly Annoying to Deal-Breaker, From This Makes for a Fine Villain to Let’s Put This Person to Jail Forever. Sometimes, it is harder to “corrupt” our darling characters than killing them. Do your characters need an extra flaw or to make them more human? Read this post for a through list. I also wrote part 2.
- How Not To Pitch An Editor: Be Vague and Impatient. Pitching is our bread and butter. Whether you’re looking to guest post, apply for a staff writing job or pitching ideas, you need to know your pitching etiquette. I offer two of the most important things to avoid with real life examples.
- Life is Too Short, David Bowie is Dead, and Why You Should Make 2016 Your Best One Yet. More than a tribute post, this is a post that celebrates life and the living while paying respects to our idols and favorite pop culture influences.
- How to Handle The Negativity Toward Your Writing No Matter The Source. Whether it’s a tough-loving editor, a bitter client or yourself, you need to be able to handle negativity and rejection. This post shows you how.
- This Writer Is Getting Smarter About Money: And How You Can Too. A post on knowing how to manage your finances, including setting goals for our dream life, knowing where our money goes and how to make more.
- A Love Letter to All Freelancers With a Health Condition. Are you a freelancer writer whose productivity takes a huge blow due to health problems? You’re not alone. Read on for motivation, inspiration and support.
- The Incredible Productivity of Stolen Moments. Will you do better work when you feel like you’re cheating on what needs to be done with your writing? You just might.
- Starting All Over Again: Rejection and Planning Again. Based on how I got stung by and got back up after being rejected by the University of British Colombia, this is a post on life after big rejections.
That is it. What about you? What are your favorite moments of 2016? What are your goals and plans for 2017? Let me know in the comments!