Monday, January 5, 2009

The New Year and A Few Resolutions That I Won't Keep

Let’s start the year off on the right foot: HAPPY NEW YEAR to all you folks out there.

It’s been a while, I know, but a lot has been going on and I haven’t been posting as much as I should. I know. I know. Bad, bad AJ. But, hey, it’s life and it is what it is, right?

Okay, here we go. It is January 5th—the first Monday of the New Year. I’ve set for myself some goals with my writing and would like to share them to all of the three people who read my posts. I set goals every year but these are a bit different. They are a little tougher and will make me work harder if I want to reach them.

Here they are in no specific order:

1) I want to write 1000 words a day. Every day. Yeah, that one might be tough. If you do the math that’s 365,000 words this year. Personally, I think that is attainable. For an update on that: So far this year (all of 5 days), I’ve written 4 flash stories and 2 short stories, which equals a little over 8000 words so far.

Now, just to keep that enthusiasm and pace…

2) I want to publish 50 stories this year. Yeah, that’s a LOT and that may be a little tougher, considering the most stories I’ve ever published in one year is 27. But, I’m thinking positive here and setting the sights kind of high on purpose.

3) I want to get paid more this year than last year for my stories. I have a goal of 500 bucks, which isn’t a lot but when you consider the small press, it’s a bunch.

4) Here is the part that may be toughest of all for me: I want to branch out more. I want to write some things that are not horror related. I’m already breaking a sweat on this one. That nervous tick is coming back and I’m grinding my teeth.

5) Finish the novel I started for NaNoWriMo. I reached the word count easily enough but I haven’t really worked on it since reaching the goal. The story is too good not to finish.

And then there is the final goal for this year: To write more blogs and network a little better than in the past. That includes these little pieces like the one I am writing now.

Okay, if you have read this far, I would like to point out my personal New Year’s resolution, which I almost blew on the first day.

Catherine, my lovely wife, and I were talking and I said to her, “Hey, Babe,” (Yeah, that’s what I call my wife), “I think I’m going to try and be a kinder, gentler Jeff this year.” For those not in the know, the J in AJ stands for Jefferson but I go by Jeff. Don’t call me Jeffery or Jeffy. It might get you—oh wait, I almost blew it again.

“Really? Again?” Catherine said as she stirred her coffee full of creamer that could put hair on your chest, but thankfully, not hers.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” I asked, feigning that I was wounded by her two words.

“Didn’t you try to be nice before?”

“Well, yeah, but that was a while back.”


“What? You don’t think I can do it?”

She didn’t really answer the question, per say, but she did say, “Well, I heard you tell Keith that a couple of years ago and he started laughing at you.” She gave me one of her pretty smiles. I think she was trying not to laugh at me.

“Yeah, but that was a few years ago.”

“Okay, if you think you can do it.”

At this point I am waiting for her to say something like, I will support you or back you up on this, but NO, that never came. Just, “Okay, if you think you can do it.”

“You don’t think I can, do you?”

She glanced at me. It was one of those looks that said everything. No, she doesn’t believe I can do it.

“You see, this is why I can’t do it. No one believes I can be a kinder, gentler Jeff. This is why I don’t make it past the first day.”

After that she was laughing, but I think it was one of those, ‘you’re pathetic’ laughs.

I walked away. And, as I sit here now, my muse on my shoulder whispering in my ear and rubbing his hands together, I have decided to use this disbelief as motivation. It’s bulletin board material, folks, and if I cared to use Facebook I would put it on the bulletin board there. But, I don’t care to use Facebook that often so I’ll just post it on my forehead and look in the mirror each morning.

By the way, I haven’t blown it yet and I’m five days in. I think the excessive writing has a lot to do with that.

Okay, I am finished running my mouth or fingers, depending on how you look at it. Until next time—and there will be a next time—I am AJ and I’m out.

1 comment:

  1. You published 27 sories in one year? ou rock!

    Good luck on being kinder and gentler. That was my goal for 2008, and by all accounts I succeeded. It wasn't easy, but I set myself two sub-goals.

    Never leave home without saying "I love you" to my wife - and MEAN it. Not just lip service.

    Pick one person and do a random act of kindness.

    I also smiled - whether I needed to or not, I smiled everywhere I could. It tool weeks to remember to do it, but I done it. It changed everyone around me noticeably.

    God luck!