December 28, 2009

Resolution Report Card

Sunday's paper was full of "year in review" and "decade in review" articles that I did not read. So in the spirit of modern journalism, I hereby present my very own year in review that you will not read.

I start with my 2009 resolutions because, well, isn't that the obvious place to start? These resolutions come straight from last year's blog post about the same thing.

  1. Do something proactive with the Unlucky 26. Agents, small publishers, or self publish. Not sure yet, but something will be done.
    Define "proactive." I did get comments from the incomparable Aerin, and I did lay out the whole thing and get 10 print copies in a book form from And I even researched publishers and agents a bit. But it ended there; no queries. I even tried to create a sequel, but that fell flat before it even left the starting gate. Grade: C-minus.
  2. Be more proactive with Andie's Gold. (Assuming none of the outstanding queries bear fruit.) I have faith that this book should be published, and I just need to find the right combination.
    Define "more proactive." I am about 70% finished with revision, including a lot of rewrite of the first half to improve pacing. My midyear goal was to finish the revision so I could send queries in February, 2010. Generally on track but a little behind. Grade: B-plus.
  3. Continue to write. I did pretty well until work got crazy; work will continue to be insane throughout 2009, but I should be able to continue writing at least as much as this year, hopefully more.
    I had modest goals in 2009. Revise one chapter of Andie's Gold per month and write two new light verse poems a week. Ups & downs throughout the year, but on average I came close. Grade: solid B.
  4. Don't skip the gym. It's so easy to say "today is too busy," but the days that I go I feel so much more energized. When I don't go, I start getting down on myself. It helps that I now have a buddy who goes to the same gym.
    Yeah, not so much. The gym buddy and I managed three workouts together. Then I got moved to a different building a half mile away. Then things got really busy. I think I've finally established a new routine, but... Grade: D-plus.
  5. Be realistic about my time. This fall, I had too many obligations. I need to scale back something to retain my sanity.
    The thing I decided to scale back turned out to be sleep. And writing. I still coached soccer, led cub scouts, assisted (less) with boy scouts, and kept up with a number of other things. All while managing through a uniquely hectic work year. I get extra credit for retaining my sanity. That's why this isn't officially a resolutionfail. Grade: D-minus.
  6. Reprise #4 of last year: Write and call family more often. Um, yeah. That's a resolution like for every year of my life.
    Define "more often." I actually did OK with this, for the most part. The bar was already set very low. Grade: B-plus.
Resolutions for 2010 will appear in a future post. Remember, this is a year in review post.

Facts about 2009, the year that is almost over:
  • Professionally, I grew immensely. (Fortunately, despite missing out on lots of gym time, I did not grow immense.) The job I have today is twice as big and twice as complex--at least--as what I was doing a year ago. I don't tend to toot my own horn, but in 2009 I believe I did an outstanding job managing a turbulent, difficult, unsettled situation and turning in stellar results. I work with a terrific team, and I am profoundly proud of what we accomplished.
  • Vacationally, it was a roller coaster year. Two awesome weeks in London (and Paris) along with trips to Disneyland, Tahoe (twice), San Luis Obispo, and Santa Monica. Unfortunately, work schedule (see above) kept me home from my family's visits back east and to Bend, Oregon. One of the main highlights was meeting a few of EE's minions at a Giraffe on the Thames.
  • Computationally, we suffered a complete PC meltdown (boo!) and switched to Macs (yay!).
  • Escritorially, my writing life wasn't as down as it appeared from my resolution report card. I had a short story published in the San Francisco Writers Conference Anthology; I won Jason Evans' flash contest in January and a readers' choice award in his July contest. (He has another coming up soon. Enter!) I had a poem accepted for publication in Caesura, and I started a new private poetry blog for my light verse which now has over 50 poems. I volunteered at the San Francisco Writers Conference. So it wasn't all tar pits and ice storms.
  • Familialy, we enjoyed campouts, roller coasters, soccer, Mario Kart, skiing, and many daily trivias that make being a parent the most wonderful experience ever. (Usually.)
Last, but certainly not least, in 2009 we lost a dear, wonderful, exuberant, joyful friend. I do not hope you rest in peace, Trevor; rather, I hope you are enjoying the afterlife with as much flair and vigor as you enjoyed this one for your sixteen short years. We will miss you for always.

And that's my 2009 in review. For the most part. For me, 2009 will be the Year of the Day Job, in the best possible sense. I am hoping that 2010 will be remembered as the Year of the Winning Lottery Ticket. We shall see.


Aniket Thakkar said...

You did pretty great. There would be a series of F's if I began to grade mine.

Hope you get that lottery next year... :)
I shall concentrate on Poker.

Leslie said...

What a great idea, Pete! I think I'll try something similar for 2010. Looks like you've accomplished amazing things this year... I would definitely give you an "A"!

Keep writing!


PJD said...

Aniket, thanks! I doubt you'd get all Fs in anything. Poker, huh? That's a dicey choice.

Leslie, I look forward to your 2010 goals, and, in a year, your report card. :-) I will keep writing. In fact, I hope to rekindle my efforts, which have been smoldering for many months.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how I'd grade your use of "incomparable" unless you are describing my wit and beauty, in which case you should be more specific.

Just my two cents.

lin said...