Happy New Year!…wait, my wife just told me I didn’t sound excited enough, HAPPY NEW YEAR!
This is of course the time of year everyone makes those fascinating lists of the “Top Ten (put subject matter here) of 2011.” We have everything from Albums to Movies, Tweets to Odd-ball stories and one of my personal favorites; Ridiculously obvious studies. (All those links lead back to Time Magazine but I am sure you could find the same lists on almost any website within the next few days.)
In keeping with the flow of flash-backitus here is my list:
The Top Five things myself and members of my family have learned about life in 2011.
5) Always be sure your credit card is secure in your wallet after making a purchase. This one is entirely on me. After making a purchase at a local store I thought I placed my card back into my pocket, but I missed and a person with no morals picked it up and went shopping—spending about $5000.00 in less than an hour.
4) Be careful where you place your fingers when closing a garage door. When our automatic garage door decided to become possessed—it would open and close by itself or not close at all—we disconnected it and began using the manual control, actually bending over and picking the door up. One early morning I wasn’t paying attention to where I was putting my hand and my finger tip got caught in the hinge. I would have screamed if it wasn’t 4:30 in the morning.
3) Never try to push a stalled car up a hill or never push a car period—you choose. When the kid’s car died during rush hour on a two lane road she attempted to move it off the road with the help of her friend. The car decided the only way it wanted to move was downhill and she ended up running over her own ankle. She’s a screamer.
2) When letting out the dogs make sure the gate that would release them into the world is secure. Enough said on this one, we were reunited within 24 hours at a cost of almost $300.00.
1) If you and your mate wish to spend more time together—make sure you get the kids their driver’s license as soon as they are eligible. Trust me, it works.
The Top Five things I figured out about writing in 2011.
5) Don’t rush it. This one is on me, when I published The Set’la last year there was a nagging voice in the back of my head telling me she was not ready. See number 4.
4) Don’t pay a lot of attention to negative reviews. I’m not saying don’t read them, but if you need your ego stroked read the positive ones. The negative ones usually point out some minor flaws in basic editing along with other more important issues like character development. Just fix them, and move on.
3) You can write a novel in a month. My little 31 days of writing did not fry my keyboard in November, but I did manage to put together a good story which still sits in a file on a computer somewhere and still needs a lot of work.
2) Write every day. I am really bad at this, but the more I try and the more I do the better my writing and typing becomes.
1) Try not to work on more than one project at a time. If you have any ideas floating around in your head—write them down and save them for later. At present I have three running projects plus a major edit (see number 5). If you keep your mind on one thing you have a better chance of actually finishing it. Priorities are important.