As 2011 comes to a close, I can't help but look back at this year with a mix of frustration and pride.
On the more frustrating end, I was unable to follow through with the writing game plan I had set for myself and I barely made it past the 10,000 word mark in NaNoWriMo this year. I was so busy with my life outside of my creative pursuits that my writing suffered. I went through a creatively-depressed period that was so bad, I couldn't bare to even look at a copy of Writer's Digest for fear it would send me into a pit of self-hating guilt.
Okay, I'm being mellow dramatic, but I really couldn't read anything about the creative process without feeling poorly about myself.
But I'm happy and proud to report that I'm on a an up swing right now. I've been reevaluating my interests and have found that while writing stories isn't my primary driver in life - as I've always secretly wished it would be- it is something I still feel the need to do. I would be lost without my journal to pour myself into and board if I no longer told myself stories. What I'm working out now is what I want to write and share with others.
I think my primary misstep in 2011 -perhaps my greatest misstep about writing in general - was not sharing my work. By always being convinced that what I had was too rough or not of interest to others stunted whatever growth or motivation I could have gotten had I been more open about my work. I'm lucky enough to be a part of a great writing group, but have barely been a participant for the last year. That saddens me and I want it to change in 2012.
While I have many half written stories I could work on, what I'm most interest in pursuing at the moment is writing a personal essay about my experience with food. I love reading food writing, so I'm excited to try my hand at it. Admittedly, I'm not quite sure how to go about food writing or about personal essays, but I plan on just going for it!
2012 is a blank page that I'm looking forward to filling. There will be many challenges - I plan to start culinary school possibly as soon as March while still working a full time job - but I feel more confidant than ever that I will find the time and discipline to accomplish what I want in 2012.
Let's toast to the end of good ol' 2011 and raise our glasses to 2012! Cheers to you all and thanks for reading!