Friday, December 31, 2010

I Have Until Midnight

It's that time of year again to say goodbye to the old and bring in the new. That sounds like no big deal, right? We do it all the time. It's just another day.


I PANIC. I wonder: Did I do everything I set out to do last year and keep to the goals I set for myself year after year?

I'M TALKIN' RESOLUTIONS, PEOPLE!!! I make resolutions. I think I posted about this briefly when I first started blogging, but let's face it, I had no followers, so a bit of repeat here won't make a difference (It's HERE if you want to go back and read it).

Resolutions are meant to be life altering. You're supposed to pick these really far-fetched resolutions that will make you a better, smarter, more fit, generous, likely-to-do-it, kind of person. That's why it's so hard to make and stick to these resolutions.

When making resolutions, people don't think: I'm going to lose weight this year--and then put it all back on next year. Or, I'm going to be more generous and donate to my favorite charity--but this year and this year only, forget about those needy people next year.

SEE? Resolutions are meant to be made and kept FOREVER! F-O-R-E-V-E-R!!!

Breathe in breathe out. Everything will be okay. There are better ways to go about this.

Here's how I do it: I pick two resolutions per year. One is far-fetched, and the other is simple--designed to be a fail-safe.

For this year, I picked: Finally write my first book (lots of previously failed attempts). And my fail-safe was: Make one new meal per month that I've never made before to add variety to my family dinners. Guess which one I failed at? But I kept at least one and got halfway through the other. I have a completed book (actually 3 completed books) and made 6 new recipes this year.

Now I'm going through to check on old resolutions. Am I sticking to them? Let's see. One year I resolved to be more generous. Yep, I did the best I could with charity work this year. I focused on my kids' school, Haiti, NaNo, Miss Snark's and Locks for Love. My husband focused on the Challenged Athletes Foundation. At the end of this year, we feel like we've done the best we could to help others in need.

There was that year I planned to get in shape. I was iffy on this one at best. I did manage to participate in Camp Pendleton's Mud Run in June even though I was too busy writing my book to train. I vowed never to do it without any training again, even if that meant a little jog around the block every now and then. That one hurt but I made it back in 1 hour and 35 mins (you can read more about it HERE in an old post, there's even a video). I felt so bad about how hard it was to run this one that I started working out in the living room but then dropped that routine as soon as the kids started school. I'll have to work harder on it this year to stay healthy.

I was able to update a few pictures on my family tree wall, we did buy a new tree for the yard, kept up the vegetable garden, blogged at least once per week from the time I started, but I KNOW I've dropped the ball entirely somewhere. Last year we dropped the ball on making at least one improvement on the house, but we added bookshelves this year so I'm hopeful it hasn't been entirely dropped.

I think I know what I missed: I STILL HAVEN'T SETTLED ON A NEW SET OF RESOLUTIONS FOR 2011! That was a past resolution I made when I was in college. I promised myself I would make at least one new resolution each year for the rest of my life, no matter how big or small. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, huh? At least, I have until midnight.

It's almost easier to make the far-fetched one (even though I'm going to be stuck with it for more than one year) than to pick the fail-safe.

My far-fetched resolution is to query all year and land an agent. That's somewhat out of my control. I can't just say my resolution is to get an agent. I should actually modify that to say, in hopes of landing an agent. Otherwise, that would be like saying I have the power to choose an agent. I can't force an agent to like my work and want to work with me. But, I can say that I will continue to query throughout the year. I tend to query cautiously. I only sent 12 queries out this year. It wasn't terrible. I did get 2 partial requests. But I should have queried more. So, this year, I'm going for it. I'm querying like a querying fool, if you will.

Now, what the heck is my fail-safe resolution going to be? I HAVE NO IDEA. It almost seems easier to call my far-fetched query resolution the fail-safe. I have a lot to think about today.

I'll get back to everyone and let you all know what I picked for my final resolutions. I wish you all a Happy and Safe New Year! If I could make two wishes for each of you it's that I could read more about your journey or your life in querying and that you would all add an Email Subscription to your blog from FeedBurner since I tend to keep up more with those blogs and get behind on many of my other favorite blogs. But that's selfish, I shouldn't say all that. But I did, and now you know. I hope that you query and put up an Email Subscription box. If you can do either of those, please let me know so I can sign up or follow along on your journey.


  1. If I had one resolution for the coming year, it would be to land an agent. So hopefully it's not that far-fetched! :-)

  2. I never make New Year's resolutions, but I wish you much fun and progress with yours. Happy 2011. Happy Writing. And of course, like I tell everyone, Happy Eating.

  3. You picked some good resolutions :) Looking forward to seeing what you come up with for 2011.

  4. My dear friend you are WONDER WOMAN.... I wish I had the time to do all that you do for you and your family....

    May you achieve your resolutions and have a healthy and prosperous new year. I wish only the best for you and your family.


  5. I do believe we should strive to be better and make resolutions year round... but I look at what I haven't achieved this year and think perhaps I'm doing it all wrong.

    I've been a bad Crusader these last few months. I shall try to be better in 2011.

    Happy New Year.

  6. Patty - believe in the power of positive thinking (if you do, I will, since our stats for 2010 querying are the same!)!! Best of luck to you!

  7. Have you ever tried naming "hopes" instead of resolutions? I now name at least three things I am grateful for in the past year, and at least three things I hope will happen in the coming year. I find it way less difficult... I seem to drop a resolution at the first sign of difficulty... with goals or hoping for something, I somehow am more committed, which means I am willing to go through some hardships to achieve the goal.

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