New Year, New Me? No Thanks.

It’s the first day of the first month of the new year. Apparently, I’m supposed to be changing myself.

No thanks.

I have issues with myself, certainly. Who doesn’t? I’m on the wrong side of my 30s for my personal preference. There are more grey hairs showing their silvery faces each time my roots grow out. My belly is a bit more round than I would prefer. I wake up with creases in my face that aren’t from the pillows – and don’t fade away as I drink my coffee. I play too many video games and read too few books.

But.

I don’t feel that I need a whole new me just because a page on a calendar turns. Self-improvement has no set schedule other than the one you make yourself. You (general you, not you personally, kind soul reading this) know what will and what won’t work in your life.

I can say “this is the year I run a marathon!” until I’m blue in the face, but considering how much I dislike running, jogging, or moving quickly in general, this is not a thing that will happen. However, I do know that making my life a bit more fitness-inclined may not necessarily be a horrible thing, so I can adjust priorities that way. Marathon? Not so much. Trundling along with a newbie 5k program? Probably much more in the realm of reality.

And so it is with life in general. If you see a mountain you want to climb (again, figuratively – unless you really want to climb a mountain, then get down with your bad mountain-climbing self), you don’t buy your fancy shoes and start straight for the peak. You train. You practice. You conquer foothills and relish every tiny victory on the trip up the hillside. If you stumble, it’s much easier to pick yourself up after a short skid than a long fall.

2015 is just another mountain,  and every day is just another inch up a hill. Some will be smooth, others will be rocky. I’m sure more than one will toss me down and kick me around a bit.

But it’s my journey. And I don’t need a new ‘me’ to do it. I’m fine with the one I have.

It Approaches

Today is the first day of October, which means the start of National Novel Writing Month is only a month away.

Rad.

I wasn’t sure if I was going to participate again this year. Last year was awesome but it is so time-consuming and life is so madhouse this year that I was weighing pros and cons.

Then I realized: If I can’t set aside one month – a single month – to focus on writing, whether I complete it or not, I will never finish anything. If I want to write, I need to make time.

Besides, it’s not like I sleep anyway.

So the main question now is: what will I write? The two main contenders are the second in the series that was started by last year’s BookThing and a non-fantasy slice of life piece that is being vaguely outlined. I’m not quite nuts enough to try both at once (no matter what Katie may try and tell you!), and even I know my limits.

This also means I’ll be fundraising for my ticket into the Night of Writing Dangerously again. I need to raise $275 minimum to get in, and there are only 225 seats available. The more I raise (for a non-profit, tax-deductable-donation, awesome children’s literature foundation), the more raffle entries I get, so that’s cool. I was going to attempt to be one of the top fundraisers, but as there are folks with well over $1000 in their kitty already… nope. I’ll just be happy to get there.

Last year’s BookThing, for those who may be curious, is currently having red pen bled all over its pages as I brutally edit (for the first round). Yes, I printed out the whole thing and am going through page by page. I can’t edit worth a damn on a computer.

Part of my prep this year – as opposed to last year which consisted of a whole lot of “Fuck it, I’m gonna do NaNo!” – is taking creative writing courses. Two free MOOCs on creative writing and fiction, and then I was gifted access to Rachael Herron‘s Udemy course How To Stop Stalling and Write Your Book. I’m pretty excited about that, as she is someone who is definitely up there on my “authors I admire” list. Plus, she knits too. So that’s keen.

I just have to survive October, first.