Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Not a Resolution, but Resolved

Can it really be February already? Just yesterday I dated a school form "2009" and was forced to cross it out and realign my thinking. January often does that to me, sneaks by before I've fully acclimated to the new year, and bam! Here we are in a brand new month, no longer a brand new year.

As a writer, January can be a daunting period. A fresh slate, sure, but that means that it's a time for beginnings. Only this year I didn't really begin anything new in January. Oh, I wrote a short story that was new, a piece that I think might actually be part of a chapter in a future novel, but other than that, as far as writing goes, it wasn't about novelty at all.

But I think that's okay. There's nothing magical about January 1, unless maybe you had a kid that day. We make up the calendar, we make up our deadlines, we make it all up. So now, in February, a mini-month fraught with romantic expectations and an abbreviated calendar, well, it's here, and the only goal I have set is in fact a couple of months away, not in twenty-five days.

I'm all right with that. There's something satisfying about starting the new year without a specific goal, and getting past that month when so many of those goals fall apart is really a bit of a relief. I didn't have any resolutions, nor did I break any. Now that the next holiday is closer than the last, it's fully 2010, no more scratching out dates on checks. And no more wondering if the guy next to me at yoga will be there next week; he's there to stay, just like me, not a resolution but a commitment.

It's February, and come April I'll be attending the DFW Writer's Workshop Conference, and my plan is to have a finished, polished, ready-for-prime-time new manuscript to talk about and pitch. That would be the NaNo book, in case anyone wondered, my 50K words from November, with a bunch of friends tagging along. Which isn't, and wasn't, a resolution. But now that a new month is upon us, it is a commitment. And now a public one. Gulp.

So if you'll excuse me, I've got some work to do. Hope to see you in April. With a new manuscript, perhaps?


  1. I'm rooting for you! The end of January brought about a big change for me: My second move to Italy. Now that I've settled into an old tufa farm house in Monterosi (30 miles north of Rome), I'm going to get back into my book about the two times I lived in China. My goal is to have most of it done by the time I return to Dallas this summer. Wish me luck.

  2. Hey, Deborah, yes, good luck! Sounds like you have ideal circumstances in which to write, or at least delicious ones. Here's to fruitfulness.


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