2015, amsterdam, Bachelor of Letters, edinburgh, Goals, Graduation, Inspiration, live music, Music, NaNoWriMo, New Year's Eve, New Years, New Years Resolutions, performance, review, Travel
For the last couple of years, I’ve written a little review of my year in reference to the goals I set at the start of the year. I don’t like New Year’s Resolutions, because they have such a bad reputation for not sticking. Instead I like to set a bunch of goals. Some are stretch goals, which means I’ll have to work pretty darn hard to achieve them, some are hangover goals, which didn’t get done but which are still on the to-do list, and some are more like lifestyle aims.
Here is my list of goals for 2015, taken from my post last year:
- Win NaNoWriMo
- Finish and submit We Can’t Have Nice Things (the novel I started for 2014’s NaNoWriMo)
- Redraft the Adventures in Mediocrity script
- Visit the Netherlands
- Finish my Bachelor of Letters
- Perform with the band I’m in
- Find/perform at new spoken word events
- Find a ‘good’/’real’ job
- Talk to strangers
- Eat well
Let’s go through them!
1. Win NaNoWriMo
Yep. Totally did it. Wrote a Choose Your Own Adventure novel with 50k or so words. Editing this will be on the list for 2016.
2. Finish and submit We Can’t Have Nice Things (2014’s NaNoWriMo manuscript)
Well, I finished the initial draft. It took me longer than I’d hoped to get done. I slogged away through January forcing myself to write it, and then ignored it totally until about June when I’d finished studying. The manuscript ended up being about 65k words.
I sent it to a couple of people for an initial read, and I had some really interesting structural feedback. I haven’t yet been able to redraft the manuscript, fill out some parts, and shuffle the focus a bit. It seems super daunting but it’s on my list of things to get started on in January 2016.
So I guess this one was half done.
3. Redraft Adventures in Mediocrity script.
This one’s a bit tricky to say yes or no to. I’ve redrafted it a couple of times, I’ve broken it up into six half-hour long episodes, sit-com style, and then I’ve redrafted those. But it’s not really finished. It’s been through a few iterations, and I think it has a bit more work still to be done to it.
4. Visit the Netherlands
Totally did this one! I visited my dear, beautiful friends Simon and Katharine who have moved to the Netherlands. It’s gorgeous there and I had an amazing time hanging out with them and eating good food and playing board games and riding bicycles around canals.
I also spent two weeks at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival filling my brain with arty goodness, see also this post and this post. Now I have to think about where I’m going to next! Possibly Asia somewhere.
5. Finish my Bachelor of Letters
Yes. Completely finished it, and I even graduated like a mother-flipping grown up! Go me! It feels a bit weird not to be learning in a structured environment. I might look into online courses/communities and other ways of keeping the flow of good stuff coming into my brain for 2016.
6. Perform with the band I’m in.
This one is a big old no. But there’s a reason: the band broke up. I am, however, in a new band, which is looking really good for performing early this year, end of January or early February we hope. We have a set of about half an hour, which is a bit rough around the edges but what better way to polish it up than performing for people, right? So I’m actually counting this one as partially completed.
7. Find/perform at new spoken word events
This one is also a no, but I feel like it’s a purposeful one. I was invited to perform some of my work at an event in mid-September. It was listed as being an edgy event where boundaries would be pushed. I was a little wary of what that meant, I mean, there’s edgy and there’s edgy right? So I sent off some suggested pieces to the organiser and she came back and said they weren’t really in the tone of the night. I was going for dark/gritty, almost horror type edgy, she apparently wanted titillating with a hint of 50 Shades of Grey type edgy, so I actually declined to perform. I’m not really sure spoken word is my jam. I think I’ll take it off the list for 2016.
8. Find a ‘good’/’real’ job
This one is a bit more vague, but I think this is still a bit of a work in progress. I’ve got a reasonably steady income doing temp work and life modelling, and I’m pretty happy doing that for the moment.
I’m still looking for what I really want to be doing. I know HR is not a sustainable long-term career choice for me, but it’s what I’m qualified in, what I’m good at, and what I keep getting offered. So I’ll stick at it until something more suitable for the long-term shows up.
Now we get into the more esoteric, even less-well-defined goals.
9. Talk to strangers
14. Eat well
For these goals, overall, I feel like I’ve done pretty well. I’ve met new people, I’ve kept up a reasonably regular exercise regime, I’ve read a bunch of books, I’ve also discovered the freedom to not finish ones I don’t like. I’ve explored two new European cities as well as discovering more about Melbourne’s live music and theatre/performance scene.
I’ve expanded my mind, I’ve had singing lessons and have a piano keyboard now. I’ve made changes to the composition of my social world, I’ve brought in some new people, let go of some old people, and strengthened connections with some people on the peripheries.
The last one, however, Eat Well, I still have room to improve on. I’m not in the habit of cooking properly for myself, partly I blame the lack of solid routine, and partly I blame not feeling like I’m worth it. I am totally worth the effort required to make up a batch of food and keep it for left overs. I am totally worth going to the markets to buy good quality meat and veg. I am totally worth spending that extra $20 to buy good food. I’m learning all the time and I know I’ll be better over the next year.
In summary, I’ve done some of the things I wanted to do, and I haven’t done some of the things I wanted to do. I’ve done things that weren’t on the list. It’s been a year of ups and downs, and hopefully I’m working towards something that’s a bit more stable, without being less exciting. Tomorrow I’m going to be doing a New Year’s goals post for 2016, so keep an eye out for that!