Bye, 2020!

Don’t let the door hit ya where the good lord split ya.

Or as I said to my husband on a walk today, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” (Thanks, Mr. Dickens) Although I don’t think Charlie had a year like this in mind when he penned those words. But in my case it’s true.

There’s a ton we didn’t get to do. This year had promised to be extremely travel-heavy for us, but all our lives came to a screeching halt in February, as I’m sure it did for you, too.

I wasn’t upset right away, because like everyone else we thought this was going to be temporary. That this was going to last longer–a lot longer–was a slow dawning accompanied with cookies, pajama pants, and a DisneyPlus account.

I had goals for 2020. Goals I had completely forgotten about until last month when I happened to stumble across them and had a right good laugh. I was going to submit 2 articles to McSweeney’s and The Washington Post. Didn’t happen.

Train for a 5k race. Ha!

Outline 2 more books. Nope.

Query 8 agents a month until one says yes. This one is complicated.

I finished editing a mystery book. A darn good mystery book, if I and my high school English teacher do say ourselves. I started submitting it to agents as planned.

And then I got an interesting twist. One of those agents ask me to do an R&R. An R&R is a “Rewrite and Resubmit,” which means the agents likes something about that manuscript. There is something special in there. So they give you pointers and set you loose to see what you can do.

I spent from September 5th until December 14th working on that rewrite. Page by page, line by line. It’s even better than it was before. It really made the end of this rotten year fly by. (I submitted that R&R to 3 agents on December 14th. It’s the holiday so I’ll hear more in January or February.)

But I also stopped querying agents so I could concentrate on the rewrite. So, that’s a goal that fell by the wayside, but for a really good reason.

I also finished the rough draft of another book (woo hoo!) and I have a solid idea for Book 3 in the series which I’m very excited about.

These developments have opened up new possible goals for 2021, which I’ll post about next week.

I also usually have a Word of the Year–a word that embodies qualities I want to strive for over the year. Hilariously, my word for 2020 was Persist. I certainly did persist. I continued to exist. I kept on a path and course of action, stubbornly, in spite of difficulty, opposition, and failure.

2020 was chock full of difficulty, opposition, and failure and I kept going. Sure I didn’t meet some goals I had for myself, but I did achieve something. And while I still feel in limbo on some of my larger goals I can be proud that I persisted.

I can also hope that 2021 won’t be quite the dumpster fire 2020 turned into.

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