We’re rapidly approaching the end of another year, so it’s time for me to throw another bunch of words at the internet concerning what’s happened in the last twelve months and what I have planned for the next twelve months.
On balance I think it’s fair to say that 2016 has been a pretty shitty year. The loss of so many great celebrities, the seemingly implacable rise of the right-wing, the continuing escalation of troubles in the Middle East, the steadily growing onslaught of climate change; it’s all a bit disheartening when you stop and think about it. I often say I love living in the future, but this definitely isn’t the future I signed up for. I really hope, generally speaking, that 2017 isn’t anywhere near as shitty.
For me personally it hasn’t been a particularly productive or promising year. For most of the year I’ve done little or nothing with my artistic endeavours, though I have managed to churn out a good chunk of writing in the last two months. The figure painting I started to get so hyped up about at the back end of 2015 has all but fallen by the wayside, and my plans to get back into tabletop miniature war-gaming didn’t really go anywhere. All in all, my creativity in the last twelve months has been pretty much non-existent.
On the plus side, I did get back into tabletop role-playing, and thoroughly enjoyed that. I’m genuinely grateful to the guys at my regular Monday night game for welcoming me into their group, and while I may have been absent for a few weeks due to work pressures I will be going back in the New Year for more. I offer my thanks to Mick, Dan, Kyle and Stephen for the fun times so far, and my thanks to the staff at Patriot Games Sheffield for giving us a space to indulge our strange little hobby.
Getting back to the writing side of things, I’ve cobbled together a few short stories in the last two months, at least one of which is going to be submitted to the Sheffield Sci-Fi and Fantasy Writers’ Group’s ‘Book In a Day’ project. I’ve also been making slow but steady progress on the Jacob Moon weird west series I started back in 2014, and assuming my motivation doesn’t go walkabout again I’m planning on making that a priority next year. I also have another project on the back burner, but I’m going to keep the details to myself until such a time as I know it’s actually going somewhere.
Socially I’ve been a bit of a hermit (other than the aforementioned role-playing), but I have started taking steps to mend a few bridges with my family, which is good. I was supposed to have gone to EdgeLit in Derby earlier in the year, but due to me being crap I ended up not going. However, I did go to a few author events at the local bookstore, and got a few signed books and friendly chats out of those. I’m planning on making more of an effort to be sociable in 2017, and hopefully I’ll even get to a convention or two.
And that’s about it for the general stuff. I do have a few hopes and aspirations for 2017, most of them centred around the topics I’ve mentioned above, but I’m not going to be making any promises (or even half-promises) this year because I’ve learned to my detriment that New Year Resolutions NEVER come to pass. I’m just going to do what I can to move forwards, not set my sights on any specific targets. At least that way I won’t be letting myself down too much.
Anyway, that brings us to the end of 2016. I wish you all a very Happy New Year, and hope that you all have a fantastic 2017.