Progress last year: Wrote a book, shopped it around, discovered that the only way to combat the limbo of waiting during the Great Agent Game is the write more stuff. I wrote two short stories (sold one–more on that to come later this week!), and I spent most of the past three months trying to make a novella work that decided it wasn’t ready (someone once said that writing stories is like juggling chainsaws, and if that’s the case than this particular set of story-chainsaws turned into rubber chickens on an upswing and anvils once they crashed back into my palms–that story’s shelved for another year!)
Hope for THIS year: Sold a story I wrote last year (did I mention that details would come later this week? I did? Rad.) so I hope to sell a few more of them! And while I feel a little discouraged at the cost of time and hope and anxiety, I would LOVE to win at the Great Agent Game, and find someone who enjoys my work AND knows how to sell it. (Because this is something I’m learning, folks–there are going to be agents who love your words but have no idea how to SELL the stuff, and I’m grateful every day that they were honest enough to admit as much to me.) I’m also working on an all-new, all-different sort of novel (with a co-writer, even!) and I’m keeping the dream alive by plotting, developing, outlining, musing, note-taking, world-building, dreaming (and day-dreaming, and nightmaring because I’m a freakin’ HORROR writer, too!) a slew of new worlds, new words, new stories to try and put out into the world.
Good stuff of 2019 (presented here stream-of-consciousness style, mostly for myself to look back and go, “Hey, at least it all wasn’t nightmare politics and fear!”): The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow. Knives Out. Killing Eve. Encore! on Disney Plus (The show is weird as hell, but for my money it’s worth having a new streaming service WAY more than The Mandalorian.) The Imagineering Story. My kid being a straight-A student, a well-adjusted middle-schooler, and a kind person. The Immortal Hulk. A Stranger in Olondria by Sofia Samatar. Full Throttle by Joe Hill. The rock weather shelter at Cape Perpetua. Wounds by Nathan Ballingrud. Growing Things by Paul Tremblay. And a ton of other stuff . . .
Things to do in 2020: Keep a better record of things I enjoy. Try not to die in a possible nuclear war. Finally get around to seeing Watchmen.
If you’re still around, then I’ll let you in on a secret . . . this is an experiment. I don’t really believe in New Year’s Resolutions (mostly because the only one I’ve stuck with consistently every year is KEEP WRITING and I feel like that one’s easy because I’ll dry up and die if I ever stop!) but I made one this year, and that resolution was to be more social, more open, and more consistent with the content on this site. Even if I just randomly spout a bunch of nonsense for a few minutes once a week. I mean, I’m going to try harder to make them interesting next time, but let’s face it–this is the first day my kid’s gone back to school since the middle of December, and if you’re a parent, you get it. I just need a recovery day from the winter break, man.
I’m Jake, and this is going to be a great year, if the world can be molded and shaped by my imagination and willpower alone. Happy New Year, everyone!