Instead of writing a new year’s post about my writing goals for the coming year, I decided to reflect for a moment about the year I just finished. On a non-writing front, 2019 was an odd year for me (mostly personal stuff), and I had some financial difficulties, but all in all it was a good year. I didn’t get nearly as much written as I’d planned at the beginning of the year, but even a little progress is good, so I’ve decided to focus on that. And so, on that note, here are some of my writerly highlights from the past year:
Favorite Book of 2019
Since the dieselpunk historical fantasy novel I’m writing has elements of a mystery story, I’ve started reading some mysteries. My favorite read was Silent Murders by Mary Miley, the second book in a mystery series set in the 1920s. I read the first book, as well, and enjoyed it, but the second book was the better of the two. I have the third book sitting on my book shelf, so I’ll be reading that this year.
Favorite Thing I Wrote in 2019
I’ve been (very slowly) working my way through a Roaring 20s dieselpunk story that is part of a series (I’ve published two short stories in the series thus far – you can find them both on Amazon). While the writing is going slowly, I’m pleased with what I’ve written thus far; however, it’s not my favorite thing that I wrote. Despite my attempts to focus on historical fantasy and the Roaring Twenties, my mind kept jumping back to a fantasy series that I’ve had on the back burner for a couple of years now. And so, in order to get the scenes out of my head, I wrote about 50 pages of scenes and vignettes for a story I’m not currently working on, and which may or may not ever be used in a final draft of the book. So while it was annoying to have something else in my head besides what I was trying to focus on, I really enjoyed my detour, and am pleased with what I wrote. Even so, here’s hoping I can focus better in 2020!
Favorite Writing Activity of 2019
In August my writing critique group decided to take a group retreat. We booked a weekend away at a retreat center in a nearby town, and spent three days chatting, watching movies, and writing. While my personal writing was not as productive as I’d wanted it to be, I still got a lot done, and thoroughly enjoyed the time away from daily life. Spending time with friends and talking about life and writing is always valuable.
What were some of your writerly or bookish highlights from 2019? Please share!