It’s been an odd year. An odd, plague-infested dumpster fire of a year.
Determined to take it easy, I forced myself to take weekends and evenings off. I started a new exercise regimen which I’ve mostly kept up. I’ve spent more time with my wife and daughter, and less time staring blankly at a blinking cursor on a blank Word document.
Nonetheless, I managed to do way more work than I probably ought to have done. I wrote three novels, around a dozen short stories, most of two novellas, a dozen lore chapters for Smite and various blog posts et al. And a goodly number of unfinished projects, doodles, scribbles and scrapples of all sorts, shapes, and sizes. Some of those might become more substantial later, but only time will tell.
Work aside, I managed to resist the ever-present urge to change how I do everything on this site and in general. That should count for something. It’s a pernicious form of procrastination that I’ve yielded to all too often in the past. Let’s see if I can resist the urge for another year. On a related note, I made great strides in my quixotic quest to winnow my social media footprint to something manageable and sane, at least insofar as the current state of affairs allows. Eventually, I might even achieve my dream of becoming a modern-day hermit and retiring to a cave in the Peak District.
I also managed to kick my reading habits back into shape. I managed to read more books this year than I have in probably the last three combined, which is nice. Standouts include S.A. Chakraborty’s Daevabad Trilogy, P. Djeli Clark’s A Master of Djinn, and Ron Weighell’s posthumous novel, King Satyr. I found some new music to listen to, including Adia Victoria’s album, A Southern Gothic and Dessa’s newest, Ides.
On the downswing, I lost a good friend this year. I’ve borne witness to the difficulties of other friends and family, with no real ability to help. I send money and well-wishes, but none of it seems to help. The world is aflame, in more ways than one, and sometimes it feels like all I can do is tell stories by the light of the conflagration. All I can do is try and distract you from the encroaching flames.
Needless to say, I think about the meme below a lot.
Think of me as your ominously reassuring frog.
Anyway, here’s to the coming year and whatever fresh hell awaits us all. Hail horrors! Hail, infernal world!