Thursday, January 3, 2019

2018: A Year in Review

Happy New Year!

I’ve been sick for over a week (this is actually Round 2 with the Cold From Hell in the last month), and instead of continuing to go full-tilt like I normally do, I’ve taken the time to rest and relax, plus reflect on the past year and plan for the year ahead. One thing I know for sure going into the new year: I need to be more mindful. It was something I intended to work on in 2018, but now when I look back and so much of the year was a blur, I realize the life of intention and mindfulness I wanted to lead turned into a big jumbled mass of days with a few highlights in between. Despite that, unlike the last several years, I can look back and say 2018 was mostly good.
Here are a few of the highlights of 2018:

I wrote and published a new contemporary romance, ONLY YOU, plus worked on a few other projects. I thought 2018 would be the year I finally got back into the swing of writing and publishing, but it was still a struggle. I’m proud of what I did accomplish though, and I love this sweet, funny, sexy romance.

In June, I met one of my favourite authors, Susanna Kearsley. My mum and I have been big fans of hers for years, so I was excited we could share that experience. Susanna was so lovely, warm, and funny, and I had a total fangirl moment when she immediately recognized me and came over to hug us and speak to us. She spoke for an hour or so about writing, publishing, and researching, and then signed books. If you follow me on bookstagram, you'll recognize Foxy, my little felt fox in the picture below; I brought him along and Susanna didn't bat an eye when I asked if he could be included in one of our pictures. It made me love her even more!

I didn’t travel far in 2018, but I did get to go to one of my absolute favourite cities (Kingston, Ontario) twice to visit my friend Krista. It was hot as hell when I visited in July, but we had so much fun playing tourist, eating a ton of amazing food, and vegging at her apartment. One of the highlights was visiting Queen’s University while it was completely deserted and getting to wander around and take a bunch of pictures. My trip in November was equally amazing, especially because we got to attend a Victorian Christmas tea; we’d wanted to do a high tea when we visited London in 2015 but didn’t have time, so this was amazing. The November trip was an early 35th birthday celebration for me since my birthday is so close to Christmas and I rarely get to do anything out of the ordinary. Both trips and all the new memories I made with Krista are high on my list of best days of 2018.

Bookstagram continued to be a huge source of joy for me. I’ve made so many wonderful friends there, and I love the creative outlet it gives me. Two major highlights this year: being chosen as a July rep for Canterbury Road Co and recently being asked to be a rep for 1107Studio. I love these companies (and their respective owners) and it’s such an honour to get to represent them.

Looking ahead at 2019...

I have a lot of writing-related goals this year. I'm currently working on a companion book to ONLY YOU, and after that, there will be one more book in that standalone series. I also have a romcom I wrote year before last that I plan to edit and publish toward the end of the year. I've also been thinking about mixing things up and working on something different from my norm...but it's early days yet, so you'll have to stay tuned to see what I'm talking about!

I read 105 books in 2018, and my goal for 2019 is to read at least 80 books.

I want to be more consistent about blogging. After 8 years of having this blog, I finally bit the bullet just before writing this post and officially bought a .com domain for it. No more for me! Hopefully that'll inspire me to do something with this little of the net and produce more content. My goal is going to be at least one post a week, ranging from bookish and writing posts to travel posts to general lifestyle posts.

I don't have any concrete plans yet, but I decided last year that 2019 is the year I'm finally going to Scotland. Stay tuned for more as I figure out the how and when and all that fun stuff. I'm going to make it happen!
My word for 2019 is CONNECT. I want to connect to my self - be more mindful, intentional, and work on a lot of personal things that are important to me. That also includes connecting to my body and working on getting healthier and stronger. I want to connect to readers, both old and new, and make them laugh, feel, and fall in love when they read my stories. I want to connect to my roots by finally visiting Scotland. I want to connect to nature and not spend so much time at my desk. I feel good about this word because it's broad and it covers a lot, but it can be specific in a million little ways that mean a lot to me.

How was 2018 for you? What were some of your stand-out moments? Do you have any goals or big plans for 2019? Do you have a word for the year?

Previous Yearly Recaps:

2017: A Year in Review

2016: A Year in Review
Looking Back on 2015
Reflecting on 2014 and Looking at the Year Ahead 
2012: A Year in Review
2010: A Year in Review

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  1. It'll probably be no surprise to you that I'm glad 2018 is over. My mom says she doesn't want to jinx 2019 by saying it will be better than last year. I kinda agree.

  2. Congrats on your novel! I'm a writer too but I'm pursuing traditional publishing and working on a novel right now. Seems like you had a good year! (Found you via Helene's link up)


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