Oh jeez, that year went by quickly didn't it? This time last year I was listening to the same Christmas songs, I'd only just met some of the blog friends that keep me enthused about writing. I hadn't had our Labrador Mac very long at all, but now it feels like we've had him for years. I hadn't yet moved house to our third rented home, a house by the beach. The Strange Chemistry Open Door, through which I met some amazing friends, hadn't even happened yet.
I was worried about how I'd handle my new job role, and by this point in the year I couldn't remember which job that was -- I changed my role again in the summer and work's been a roller-coaster ever since.
At this time last year, I was looking forward to getting REBEL critiqued and out on submission, which went well for me, but funnily enough I'm back in a similar place -- revising it with my agent to go on submission to publishers. How very circular.
But in between revisions, I wrote a new book. I'm ridiculously proud of this, because I've been working on turning REBEL into a coherent book for almost four years. I also took part in Write On Con (a hugely exciting online convention) and I had a great time just hanging out with my online writing friends there.
I came up with the idea for REBEL AGAINST HEAVEN (new title soon, maybe) on 5th April 2009 as a script for ScriptFrenzy before I realised I love the bitter, wounded narrative voice and wanted to take it further. That's almost four years of working on this book. I didn't properly knuckle down to finish the draft until April 2010, taking the story from 13,000 words to 44,000 by September and 60,000 by May 2011 (there's a gap in my records between September and May, not sure why). After that, it's been revisions for the past two years.
I feel like my art has taken some significant leaps this year as well. Some personal highlights include my work at digital painting, black-and-white sharpie doodles, character redesigns, and colour theory. I hope to continue this slow-but-steady progress into the new year, where I'm going to be doing more life drawing and trying to get better at some of the things I'm weak at (hands, feet, dynamic poses, backgrounds, ethnic facial features).
My Favourite Blog Posts This Year
- Writing A First Draft -- This was an important milestone to me, because I proved to myself that I could a) write something that wasn't REBEL and b) write it surprisingly fast.
- I've Got An Agent -- I'd been struggling in the query trenches for over two years, with plenty of near-misses and painful set-backs, before I hit this point. *confetti and party poppers*
- How I Got My First Tattoo
- The Week Long Birthday
- How I Get Over Writer's Block
- Stornoway in the Summer and Stornoway in Autumn!
My Favourite Books of 2012
Disclaimer: these are all books I've read in 2012, not books released in 2012.
- Blood and Feathers
- Blackbirds & Mockingbird
- The Fault in Our Stars
- The Raven Boys
- The Knife of Never Letting Go
My Favourite Games This Year
That's right, I'm a gamer too! It's been 2013: The Year of Indie over here, with my top games all being major names on the indie market.
Disclaimer: these are all games I've played in 2012, not games released in 2012.
- Cave Story+
- Sonic Generations
Today, for their Road Trip Wednesday question for bloggers, YA Highway asked: About how many books do you read in a year? Do you want to read more? Or, less?
This year, I set myself a Goodreads Reading Challenge to read 35 books. I've already passed that, despite a year that's been (sometimes) hectic and (always) busy.
Looking at the responses from my blog friends, though, this achievement feels a bit low. Next year, I'm raising the bar to 50 books! And according to my big 2013 to-do list, which I'll be posting soon, next year will be focussing on the for review pile, the personal to-read pile, comics, short stories and some non-fiction.
I can't believe this year is almost over. It's been a good one, all things considered and weighed up. I'm hoping 2013 goes just as well as this year, and I can't wait to see what surprises it brings.