Happy New Year!

Considering that I wrote a novel titled, “Next Year I’ll be Perfect”, I decided that I couldn’t miss the opportunity to write a blog devoted to the New Year and New Year’s Resolutions.

So what are my resolutions this year?

1.  Take advantage of living in Greater Portland.  Living near the biggest city in Maine, there are countless interesting things to do, see and visit.  While I go out a fair amount with my friends, we always seem to choose the same restaurants and bars or maybe go see a movie.

And that is a shame.

On any given night I can find music of every genre, book readings, independent films, live theater and art exhibits within a 20 minute radius.  In the past I’ve attended poetry slams, guitar recitals, and amateur comedy improv nights, but not on a regular basis.

  • In 2015, I will branch out and find more of the diverse experiences that are available to me in Portland.

2.  Go with the flow.  I am a planner.  For those people who know me, that sentence is right up there with “The sky is blue.” and “They really screwed up the last episode of The Sopranos.”

But when I look back at 2014, some of the best times I had were those that were the least planned.  For instance, I was on a road trip with friends this summer and our only mission was to find a lobster.  Not a difficult task in coastal Maine.  Due to an unplanned side trip, we never got the lobster and instead spent several hours singing showtunes at a dueling piano bar in Ogunquit.

  • In 2015, I will leave myself open to the unexpected and embrace the unplanned.

3. Experience first. Document second. In December, I visited Universal Studios with two of my best girlfriends.  Before we entered Diagon Alley, which had been constructed to match J.K. Rowling’s description from the Harry Potter books, I made a conscious decision to put my phone away and not take any pictures until I had first walked through the setting and experienced it with my own eyes and ears.  Only after I had fully taken everything in, did I pull my phone out.  I still have a million pictures to show for our trip, but I also have those first memories where my senses were not blurred by looking through a camera lens.

  • In 2015, I will remember that social media shouldn’t replace first-hand sensory experiences.

4. I will eat more kale. Oh, come on… it wouldn’t be a true New Years’ list without some comment about losing weight or better health, but I hate putting negativity out in the world that expresses dissatisfaction with myself if I’m not perfectly perfect. So, since I kind of like kale anyway, and all the cooking shows say that kale is the new black, this seems doable.

  • More kale in 2015!

5. I will write a little bit every day. I am just about 15,000 words away from finishing my second novel.  That is both a lot of words and not very many at all.  I’ve been known to write 1500 words a day, meaning that I could be finished in 10 days.  The problem is that of the 1500 words a day I write, very few are words I want to keep.  Most of them are edited out during my next writing session.  Writing is a slow and painful process, and there is no timetable for progress.  I can sit down to write for eight hours and produce nothing of value, or I can jot down a few words before leaving for work in the morning and find that they are pure gold.  I’m feeling a huge amount of frustration at being so close, but not quite able to reach the summit, but I know that I won’t get there at all if I don’t continue the upward climb.

  • In 2015, I will finish my second novel.

Well, I think that’s about it.  We’re just a little over twenty hours in, but so far 2015 is shaping up to be a remarkable year.

Happy New Year clip art

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