There were some really great highlights, of course, but on the whole, I do not look back at 2017 with any sort of fondness.
It's mostly because of personal stuff. 2017 was the year I became much more open online about my struggles with depression and also my coming out as asexual (actually grey/demisexual, but gods I don't want to spend my entire life explaining what that means, so I just say asexual. The net results are the same). Both of those were, apparently, controversial enough to destroy relationships. That was really hard. Really, really hard. And really triggering, actually. I spent a lot of this year angry and depressed in a way I hadn't been since high school. I had to let go of people. The number of tears spilled over people and relationships that are now no longer a part of my life was astronomical.
I had a lot of letting go to do, and letting go was really, stupidly hard. But I've been much happier and healthier since doing so. I'm sometimes hit with bouts of melancholy over it all still, but the really dangerous moods, the ones that are a literal threat to my life, they've reduced significantly.
That provided a significant percentage of last year's suckage, but there was plenty more.
The political climate in the world took a sharp turn south, and the whole affair crept into everything. It's been so stressful watching the slow-motion plane crash that is the United States right now. The trash-fire in the south sent smoke clouds to obscure everything, making breathing hard, let alone any other kind of work.
I was completely unable to write. I tried, but found all my will sapped from me. So I spent so much time, too much, staring blankly at videos on YouTube, sinking further and further away from my goals. I was supposed to have finished the first drafts of two books in 2017. Instead, I have the first drafts of none. I'm angry at myself for letting it get that way. It really sucks.
In fact, I had a lot of trouble keeping up with any of my projects. It was not good. Not at all.
But it wasn't all bad. Some really wonderful things happened.
Silver Stag was nominated for an Aurora Award, which was both surprising and hilarious to me. Of course we did not win, but the nomination alone made me very happy. And I have phenomenal friends who continue to volunteer for the panels, and who make filming Nights at the Round Table fun for me. I really owe them all so much. Thanks all! You're all amazing.
I started streaming this year, as well. That is tonnes of fun. I genuinely enjoy gaming with folks there to chat to, even if they're in some random part of the globe. It's great. I'm really glad I started streaming. Actually, I had planned to stream every day while on break, but just couldn't find the energy to. Which is weird, because I love gaming so much.
Also, side note, I got a new controller for Christmas (it's fancy and gold-tone), so hopefully I'll be able to game without constantly being interrupted by a malfunctioning controller. That'll be nice.
In fantastic news, Daughters of Britain found a home with the wonderful folks at Renaissance Press. It's had some pretty good reviews, which makes me happy. That was such a great part of the year. I'm so fortunate to have this wonderful publisher on my side. They're lovely.
Particularly wonderful is my women's kick-boxing classes. They're awesome ladies, and it's so gratifying to watch them gain confidence in their fighting skills. It's hard to get out of bed on a Saturday morning, but these brilliant women make it more than worth my while.
So, despite the absolute cesspool that was 2017, there were things well worth having last year. It was rough. It was hard. It was devastating. But there were moments of light. It wasn't all rough. It wasn't all hard. It wasn't all devastating.
2018, I hope, will be better. I already know I can handle the awful stuff. I've come through 2017 stronger and better, and today I'm full of energy and determination. I will be making the most out of this year, because fuck all the bad stuff. I've got this.
So, to that end, I have goals for this year that I'm going to share.
Writing Goals (The Most Important Stuff)
- Complete Soldier.
- Complete working title Oulander, book one of the Avalon series.
- Find a home for Skylark or self-publish it. Whichever. That book will see the light of day.
Even though my resting heart rate is around 54bpm (that's athlete level, y'all... not that you could tell looking at me (#ChubbyBunny)), I feel there's a lot more that I can do for myself and my health. So here goes:
- Gym (almost) every morning during the week; cardio and weights Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, cardio and swimming Monday, Wednesday, Friday (swimming is my slow, happy exercise. It's not for anything but gently working the pain out of my muscles). Sunday is for sleeping. And Nights at the Round Table filming. Hey, here's a question, anyone want to be my gym buddy? Downtown at 7:30 am Mon-Fri. I can handle Saturdays on my own.
- NO SUGAR! Okay, maybe not entirely no sugar. The only sugar I'm allowed is from fruit and honey in my morning coffee. And alcohol. But I'm limiting that this year, too. So, greatly reduced sugar, I guess. Just as soon as I'm done my last tin of Milo....
- Meditate. At least 10 minutes before bed every night. I'll be downloading an app.
- Help my kick-boxing ladies reach the next level in their training. They're awesome folk, and helping them makes me feel good.
- No more skipping training Tuesday and Thursday nights. Part of the reason my depression got as bad as it did this year was because I let it get between me and the things that make me happiest. Training is my happy place. It's where most of my friends are, and often is the only reason I get out of bed sometimes.
- Paint along with Bob Ross. Yep. I genuinely want to work through the first series of Painting with Bob Ross. Oil paints scare me, and I'd like to get some experience with them. This seems like a good way to do it. Maybe I'll even film it for a YouTube series. Sonia loses her mind trying to learn to paint with oils. I'LL GIVE YOU A HAPPY LITTLE TREE, BOB!
- Art harder in general.
- Continue streaming. Maybe double my Twitch followers?
- Continue with Silver Stag YouTube channel. We do small, geeky things, and aren't likely to get big, but it's worth it.
- Maybe have enough money saved to visit family in Australia. *snort* A girl can dream.
- Hug my friends more.
I've got this.
What's butt do you plan to kick in 2018? Let me know in the comments below.
Now I have butt to kick. Ciao!