New Year’s Day. Go back a few years and you’d have always found me scribbling away in my journal on 1st January, writing long lists of resolutions, hopes and dreams for the coming year.
This year I’ve made just two:
The first is to publicise The Little Board Game Cafe as best I can. I’m not an Instagram influencer – I barely have any followers. Sometimes I tweet something and don’t even get one like, let alone a retweet. But I’m going to try and engage more with people on social media because I’d like more people to buy my novel when it’s published on 13th April. It’s not about making money (though obviously that would be nice). I love writing. I want to continue writing. And I recognise that if that’s going to happen, I need to achieve enough sales.
The second is to get fitter and lose some weight. For me, this isn’t about looking good. Now I’m in my fifties, I’d like to ensure that I live a long and healthy life. Writing novels is very sedentary. I need go outside more, go walking and perhaps even running, in the beautiful countryside that surrounds our Yorkshire farmhouse. I need to stop nibbling on snacks when I’m stuck with a plot.
In previous years, my resolutions often – no, make that always – included some variation on ‘meet my soulmate’ as I was lonely for many years after my divorce and really wanted to find the right person. In February 2017, I finally met him on the OKCupid app.
Having a novel published was another long-standing goal and 2022 saw me finally ‘achieve’ that. (Well, I got the book deal; it won’t be out until April). I’ve written ‘achieve’ in inverted commas because although I did work hard on my writing, ultimately a lot of luck was involved, just as it was when I found the right man.
It’s good to have resolutions, to set targets for ourselves and form new habits. But I look back at the many years when I didn’t meet Mr Right despite all my best efforts, when I didn’t get that book deal or that promotion at work, and when I didn’t manage to lose ten pounds, and I wish I hadn’t beaten myself up quite so much, thinking that I hadn’t made enough effort. Because I realise now that it’s not just about effort: many things in life depend on luck.
Here’s to us all being lucky in 2023!
I’d love to hear what your resolutions so feel free to leave a comment if you’d like to share.