2014: My Writing Year in Review

It’s easy for me to get discouraged with how long some of my writing projects take. I will be finishing up my second

Photo credit: Philip Chapman-Bell
Photo credit: Philip Chapman-Bell

year of revising my Rapunzel retelling in 2015, and I always want to be writing more than I actually am. But when I paused to take stock of what has happened in my writing life this year, I realize that I have been writing all year, and that projects take me longer because I’ve diversified how I spend my writing time. Here are the highlights.

January – My husband and I took a three-day retreat at Pine Rest Cabins, where I began preparing to self-publish Rumpled.

February – I began the practice of Morning Pages — writing 3 pages in my journal every morning. I’ve been doing it about 4 times a week ever since.

RumpledMarch – I published Rumpled, and I traveled to Dayton, Ohio to do a reading of my essay “Where I First Met God,” which was published in Unruly Catholic Women Writers. (Later in the year, it also appeared in Living True: Lesbian Women Share Stories of Faith.)Living True

April – I finished my year-long journaling project, A Year in the Life, and I started a Writing as a Spiritual Practice group at my church.

May – I had to practice what I preached and rely on the healing power of writing as I wrote and cried myself through saying goodbye to my beloved cat, Phoebe, who died on May 30.

June – I began writing Phoebe’s life story in my Pet Remembrance Journal.

August – The news organization I work for ramped up its news coverage, so I’ve written a lot more stories for pay than I usually do. My favorite was this story about voting rights on a Sioux reservation.

September – I attended a phenomenal Master Plot Workshop with Cheryl Klein. Putting my middle grade novel through her rigorous editing prescription is one of my goals for 2015. I was also featured in the September/October issue of New Moon Girls, with a bit of advice to girls about self publishing.

October – I gave a presentation at my local library with tips for NaNoWriMo, then gave the same presentation at the beginning of November at a different branch. I also went on a writer’s pilgrimage to the East Coast to see the Emily Dickinson Museum.

Winner-2014-Twitter-ProfileNovember – I wrote my 6th NaNoWriMo novel, which is both a sequel to Rumpled and a retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Snow Queen.”

December – My Booklikes blog topped 500 readers, and I set up a blog for one of my 2015 writing projects, A Year in Disney Movies.

I also continued to write for Young Adult Catholics, where my post about Natural Family Planning continues to be the most-viewed entry, and I read over 100 books, including the following writing-related ones:

My writing goals for 2015 are to finish revising my Rapunzel story, do another edit on my middle grade novel (which has been “tabled” for a couple of years), and finish writing Phoebe’s life story. I’m looking forward to seeing what other writing adventures 2015 has in store for me.

Happy New Year!