December 30th, 2011



This last year ended up being so very different from anything I could have predicted.  I learned so much about people, and about myself, but in ways I never would have sought.  Yet learn I did, those lessons of love and mortality and loss and parenting and doing what I never thought I'd have the strength to do.  I didn't know what raw emotion was until I held someone as he died.  I didn't understand grief before I lost someone I wish I'd had more time to love.  I didn't understand parenting until I realized I'd have to do it alone.

Then I learned lessons about reconnecting with lost friends and making new ones, rediscovering cool parts of myself I buried years ago, and reigniting my passion for creating and creative people.  I didn't realize how lonely I'd been until I not only opened my arms to people I hadn't spoken with for years, but to new people I hope to know better in the years ahead.  I didn't know how flat and closed I'd become until my old California friends reminded me of who I had once been.  And until Viable Paradise, I had forgotten how critical--how vital--it is to surround one's self, as often as possible, with people who thrive on the glory of creation and exploration.

Great big lessons, all of them.  I am grateful for all of you who helped me learn those lessons, and for those who will help me learn lessons in the year ahead.

If I made resolutions last year, I can't remember them.  I don't think I made a single one.  I felt depressingly out of control at the time anyway.  This year, I am committing to practice greater kindness, to ask more questions than I answer, to give more than I take, to let myself enjoy more than I fear.  I want to spend more time zip-lining--literally and figuratively--and less time fretting over the possibility of falling.  I will be a better parent, a better sister, and a better daughter.  I will strive to be the kind of person that the wonderful people in my life deserve.

I have but one writing commitment this year: I will publish in a pro market.  Short story, novella, novel, whatever.  That third sale will cross the SFWA-eligibility threshold.  To meet that commitment, I'll have to do all sorts of things like write new stuff, revise old stuff, get feedback, give feedback, and send stuff out.  But the actual commitment is the sale.  Nothing less.

That's it.  I'm going to make it happen.  Period.