I’m a list maker, which might be surprising to some, especially my writer friends who know how much I hate outlines and synopses. My books are character driven, as opposed to carefully plotted. When I travel, I’m far more likely to book my first and last night accommodations in a city I’m visiting, even for the first time, then let the rest of the trip unfold however it might depending on things that catch my eye, or people I meet and conversations I get into. I revel in that way of travel – it becomes an adventure with surprises around every corner. I see things and go places I’d never have considered had I planned out my itinerary in detail. Likewise, in life, I have, in the words of my favorite poet, Robert Frost, “taken the road less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.” All of life is an adventure.
But back to the list thing. Even though I don’t pre-plan my traveling adventures, I always have a list of things that need to be done before I leave and things that need to get packed. At Christmas there are lists of gifts that need to be ordered or shopped for, gifts to be sewn, cards to be sent, decorations to be put up, and cookies to be baked and delivered. On days that I seem to have a lot to get accomplished, out comes the pad of paper and a list gets drawn up. There is satisfaction and a sense of achievement to be had in checking things off as they get done. And, of course, if I do something that wasn’t on the list, it gets added and promptly checked off. At the end of the day, all those check marks are a reward for hard work and diligence.
Thus, in spite of the fact that I love to live my life by the seat of my pants, January 1st always inspires me to consider the new year, another clean slate, another beginning, and ponder what resolutions might make me a better person, or my life more rewarding. Out comes the pad of paper, or more often in today’s world, the Notes app on my phone, and the list of possible resolutions get jotted down. Eventually, I narrow that list down to just a few. Like the sage advice when applying to college, I try to pick one thing that I know I can achieve, one or two that I can achieve if I stay focused and work at them, and one that is a reach, but if achieved would definitely make my life much better.
I’m no better than anyone else, though, and far too often on January 15th or February 6th or some other day not long into the new year I find myself admitting I’ve already failed to meet even the easiest resolution. I’m a lot more likely to meet my goals if I tell someone else what they are so this year, I’m going to post them here for all the world to know. It’s so much easier to justify not meeting my goals when I’m the one who knows what they are. But my kids know about this blog so the likelihood of not having to answer to anyone is slim to none and my excuses would have to be really inventive. So here goes:
• Write at least one more book in my Tide’s Way Series
• Edit and submit my Time Travel Historical for publication
• Get back in shape and walk the beach EVERY day
• Lose weight
• Take a trip to at least one place I’ve never been before
• Make one new friend
So – what about you? Are you making any resolutions this year? You are invited to comment on mine, make suggestions or even add your own, or explain why you don’t make resolutions. (We’re all different so this isn’t a judgment.) And however you begin your new year, make 2015 a good one, live every day, try not to miss opportunities. And God bless you. Skye-Writer