I'd intended to do my 'highlights of 2016' yesterday so that today's entry would be about goals, like I always write about on January 1, but alas, the over-indulgence in sinfully delicious food and vodka yesterday derailed the rest of my day. Even today I am a bit foggy, but I have work to do so once I finish this I have to clean the kitchen and get going, much as I would prefer to spend the day lounging and relaxing and recovering. We'll see how it all goes, shall we?
So, what goals am I looking to accomplish in 2017?
I say this every year, I know, but this year I really need to do something about getting into better physical condition. I weigh 225 pounds right now (which I never thought I would ever admit to publicly), which was my 'fat weight' way back when I first decided to do something about my health in 1994. Granted, my body isn't carrying as much fat-weight as I was back then, and there's a lot of muscle under the layer of fat, and my body composition has changed (much bigger legs, much bigger arms and chest and shoulders) so I have to be careful--I have a peculiar shape to begin with (enormous ribcage, small waist and pelvic girdle--but it won't hurt me to cut back on fat intake and so forth. My family, on both sides, is prone to heart problems, high blood pressure, and I have recently discovered there is also a congenital heart problem on my mother's side. So, I don't really have a choice. I need to get healthier, I need to get my BMI down, and I am already on blood pressure medication. So, if it means trying to figure out how to carve out some more time at the gym--cardio or weights or both--I need to do it. I also need to have a regular massage, at least once a month, and I need to get on a regular stretching schedule. But I am also not going to try to push myself too crazily to begin with; baby steps, and remember my mantra when I first started back in 1994: three times a week is best, twice a week is better than once, and once is better than never.
Get an agent
I also have made this a goal for many years now, and this is the year though that I intend to at least get started on the search. I have a project I need to get back to work on, that's been languishing in a drawer while I work on deadlines and other things, but this is the project that I think I can get an agent with/for, and it's simply a matter of now that it's been sitting for so long, taking another good long look at it and fixing some things (the end needs to be redone), and then start sending out queries. May 2017 be the year that sees this happen for me. Fingers crossed.
More short stories written and published
This is one I also say every year, but at least this year will start off with an announcement (once it's officially official) of a sale of which I am extremely proud, and I want to ride that momentum to get some of these other stories I've been working on now for years finished and out there. I finally learned/realized what I've been doing wrong on my approach to writing short stories (seriously, and it was so glaringly obvious that I cannot believe not only the level but depth of my stupidity), and so these other stories that are unfinished are going to be looked at now again through that cold, observational eye. I also have an idea for one that I want to write that I think will be really good; sketched out some thoughts and ideas on it, and we'll see how it goes.
Learn to speak some Italian
This is another roll-over from last year, and really, twenty minutes a day is all it would take to get going on it. I also think working on another language will help me with my creativity by exercising my brain.
Get the ebooks of the first two Scotty books up
Bourbon Street Blues has been retyped; just needs a re-edit and a cover and to be formatted; Jackson Square Jazz is in process of being retyped. This should be completely do-able by spring.
Be more jealous of my time, and manage it better
I have this horrendous habit of not saying no to anything--I am always so flattered to be asked, and am also always afraid I won't be asked again--but this always leads to me being overbooked and scrambling to find the time to get everything done that I've agreed to do. So, the first step in this process is learning how to say no to people, and if they are offended by me saying no, then they can literally go fuck themselves. I am very busy, with two full time jobs, a part time job, and everything I have to do around the household to keep things going. I don't have the time to get everything *I* have to get done, let alone see friends, stay in touch with people I really care about, and read all the things I need to read, so I am going to have to start managing my time better. That means less goofing off, and saying no more often.
And now, I need to get back to the spice mines.
Thanks for always being there, Constant Reader. Here's a hunk for you: