It’s a new year and apparently also the start of an Ice Age.
Mother Nature is rapidly burying the Northeast in snow and ice, and I fear the only logical next step is to build an ice wall the likes of which George R.R. Martin has never dreamed. If it comes with someone who looks like Jon Snow (pronounced “Jonn Snaugghhh”), though perhaps a smidge taller, I might be okay with it.
I am having a snow day from my day job, so I can stay inside with my heater and my jammies and my Christmas tree and be perfectly fine. Yes, I said Christmas tree. If there’s anything better to do than be cozy and look at twinkly lights while it snows outside, I don’t know what it is.
For at least part of this day I intend to be productive, and do things like empty the dishwasher, fix my rapidly dying aloe offshoots, and write this blog. Part of me wants to set my kitchen on fire, not for the heat, but because kitchen cupboards are the least useful storage spaces that I have ever had the displeasure of using. Advancements in the industry have not reached my little apartment. Everything looks like a jumbled mess and I have never hated inanimate objects more than I currently hate every cookie sheet, soup pot lid, and loaf pan that I own. But that project is for another day, and I digress. Digress from what, exactly? Not entirely sure.
I didn’t really have a plan for this post. I needed to write one, and I had some vague thoughts about New Year’s resolutions. Generally, I think of New Year’s resolutions as roads that lead inevitably to disappointment. What exactly changed when the second hand ticked over to 12:00:01? Movies would lead you to believe that something magical can or will happen, or that you should at least FEEL as though it could. But what we really get is a big disco ball on a stick and some lackluster musical guests with “technical issues.” Way to start the year on a down note.
If you disagree, please believe me when I say that I’m not trying to poison your positive vibes with my cynicism. If you make resolutions and they work for you, that’s great! I have simply never experienced it. There is a switch somewhere in my brain/heart/personality that needs to flip, and thus far I have been unsuccessful at synchronizing it with an arbitrary milestone in time.
That doesn’t mean that there aren’t things I’d like to change. I’ve got plenty of those. The problem is that some of them are like my kitchen: I try to put away a measuring cup and I get a burst of rage so intense that I could (and have in the past) start tearing the place apart. I would just stick my arm in there and shove everything out onto the floor, like a contestant on Supermarket Sweep, only filled with anger instead of excitement. Then the moment would pass. I would realize that I had just started a project that will take an entire day, to the detriment of all other time-sensitive tasks. I have learned that this is not the way to productivity, and it just makes me angry at myself for being so impulsive.
So, long story not at all short, I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, other than to resolve more. My constant goal is to make informed decisions. I don’t want to be a victim of my own id, sitting on my kitchen floor surrounded by baking gadgetry and wishing I’d just emptied the dishwasher like I was supposed to. I want to solve problems, and make changes where they’re needed, and most of all not be afraid of doing either.
I’m probably supposed to be writing blog posts about character development or proper grammar. If you’ve come here for those things, I am sorry to disappoint you. Maybe someday I’ll write about them, but that day isn’t today (obviously). There are oodles of sources about that stuff on the internet, and I’m pretty sure I’m not going to say something about it that nobody has said before. As writers, we all know it’s important to have strong believable characters; what more is there to say about it?
I can talk about the things I see in the work I do, the common threads that tie new authors together. That might be useful to someone out there who is also new at this. You can expect to learn some things about me, and to hear some social commentary, and hopefully to learn some things about your writing that you may not have noticed before.
I have resolved to do this, and so I shall. Sometime next month I will put up another blog post. Maybe I’ll even write it before it’s “due,” but I make no promises. See you in February :)