1. To start running again and enrol in a 10k run event
As I was writing my last check in post of 2011, I remembered how much I enjoyed running. It's a real shame I seemed to have ground to halt especially when I was doing
2. To continue doing morning pages every day
Another activity that fell by the wayside upon the arrival of New Job. Morning pages are an activity suggested by Julia Cameron in The Artist's Way. The idea is that, upon waking each morning, you immediately write three pages of.... well anything you like. This allows all the flotsam and jetsam of your mind to escape and, hopefully, opens up the creative taps.
I did enjoy doing my morning pages. They got me up half an hour early and, despite most pages being utter dribble, meant I was still writing every day. This compliments goal no. 3 which is
3. To stick to my weekly schedules
One bad habit university taught me is that I could produce a 2:1 standard essay in the space of a week. Unfortunately this doesn't always translate well to long term projects or the workplace. Part of my plans for this year include taking my writing more seriously; treating it like, well, a job. New Job requires me to work approximately 3 days a week. That frees up an extra 2 days a week to work on my writing as well as enjoying a 'weekend'. I've worked at the weekend since I was sodding seventeen. I deserve to enjoy having a 'weekend' that isn't based around which shifts I'm working that week.
I'm also trying to work out a way of blocking any Internet and television access on my writing days. I do have a small writing space in my bedroom (photograph to follow when I've cleared it up a bit) that is far away from any links to the outside world. On days I need to work on the computer I shall simple pull the plug on the Internet. Stay tuned.
4. To avoid getting into music ruts
This is partly based on a drunken conversation with Him Indoors in the early hours of 2012. I can listen to the same Spotify playlist for months on end whilst he is constantly seeking out new music. Some nostalgia for gigs gone past resulted in us searching Spotify for Franz Ferdinand, Cooper Temple Clause, El Presidente and what I like to call 'Obscure Shouty Guitar Stuff Him Indoors Listens To.'
My Creative Zen died a messy death in November. To compensate for its loss, I subscribed to Spotify via my Blackberry. This allowed me to download playlists to listen to when I was out and about. This musical freedom should have resulted in me waxing lyrical about aural pleasures. Instead I've been listening to the same playlist for two months. This one in case you're interested.
In order to make more use of this blog, I shall choose one artist a month to write a blog post about. Even if they're extremely uncool. Like this
5) To keep track of the books I read and participate in the Sunday Salon once a month
In a hungover haze on New Year's Day, I lay on a massive sofa and trawled through Twitter. A common pattern emerging was people posting about their favourite books of 2011. I have a dreadful memory and could name some of the books I read in 2011. But perhaps I read them in 2009? Or was it 2008 I read that one?
If one wants to be a writer, then they must read. There is no "if" or "and" or "but" about it: they must read. Most importantly, they need to remember what they read and whether it was any good or not. This is where the Sunday Salon comes in.
I was introduced to this lovely concept by Alex in Leeds. Each Sunday, across the world, bloggers discuss what they've been reading. Here's the blurb from the website:
Every Sunday the bloggers participating in that week's Salon get together--at their separate desks, in their own particular time zones--and read. And blog about their reading. And comment on one another's blogs. Think of it as an informal, weekly, mini read-a-thon, an excuse to put aside one's earthly responsibilities and fall into a good book.Currently there are over five hundred weekly participants. For a time I did attempt to blog on a regular basis under the Sunday Salon banner. A quick glance at my blog's archive reveals my last post was in 2010. I think it's time to kick start that habit.
So there are my goals for 2012. It's your job to give me a boot up the backside if I'm slacking off, okay?