This year I participated in Julie Hedlund’s 12 Days of Christmas for Writers. As part of the process, Julie challenged us to reflect on our 2016 successes so we could build on them for 2017. This is a more positive path than creating New Year’s resolutions, which are often built on negativity and efforts to fix things that went “wrong” in 2016.
I enjoyed the time spent combing through my 2016 journals and reviewing all I was able to accomplish. Julie challenged us to share our lists, so here is mine in no particular order:
- Signing with my wonderful agent, Lara Perkins of Andrea Brown Literary. I couldn’t ask for a bigger cheerleader, better brainstorming partner, or tougher editor.
- Having Lara submit my first picture book to publishers. Though it hasn’t sold yet, we have been close a couple of times, and many editors offered encouraging words about my work.
- Finally holding nine of my books written in 2015 in my hands. They include the six-book Protecting Our People series (Amicus), my first book with Capstone (Special Ops), and my two latest from Rourke.
- Receiving a good review from School Library Journal on the Protecting Our People series.
- Writing six new books for the school and library market, including four for Amicus, one for Capstone, and one for Rourke.
- Researching and/or drafting five new picture books.
- Revising four existing picture books.
- Finishing a young adult novel I started as part of 2015’s NaNoWriMo and partially revising it.
- Reaching thousands of young readers and writers during visits to seven schools and one public library.
- Taking two courses that stretched my writing: Novel Writing through UC San Diego and Renee La Tulippe’s Lyrical Language Lab.
- Reading many books on writing and creativity, including Big Magic, Creativity Inc., Story Genius, The Originals, Year of Yes, Writing Poetry from the Inside Out, On Writing, In the Palm of Your Hand, The Artist’s Way.
Putting together this list has me excited to start work in 2017. What did you accomplish in 2016?