Typically, I ignore the beginning of the year as an externally-imposed Opportunity For Reflection for the obvious reasons, but I have found myself falling into the trap nonetheless. So, here I am, talking about the past and the future.
I’d rather not, really, and the reasons are part of the continuing issue I have with keeping the personal separate from the professional. Blogging, as a writer, is a means of keeping an open channel with the wider world, but so much of the day-to-day is filled with mundane shit that no one cares about, especially when it is of the “I didn’t get shit done, again, today” variety. And the rest is not really of anyone’s business, and I have, over the last year, come to realize that the last thing I really want to do–ever–is process my private life publicly.
So, briefly, 2011 was an incredibly hard year, but it was also an amazing year, and lot of it falls in the category of “Look, ma! Personal growth!” Professionally, I didn’t have a lot of fiction released that I could point to explicitly and say, “Yes, I wrote that,” but I can point to The Mongoliad and say, “Yes, I was key to that happening.”
In 2007, I wrote The Potemkin Mosaic, and it was the hardest thing I had ever done. When it was finished, I vowed to never do anything like that again. Last year, I didn’t; I did something harder. As we wrap up The Mongoliad, I have heard myself say that I don’t ever want to do something that complicated and difficult again, and in 2012, I won’t be. I’ll be doing something harder.
I am very fortunate to be able to keep what is fabulous and enriching in my life, as well as being blessed at being able to let go of what is rotten and broken. Much of the latter was my own attitude about life; much of it was my own fear of change. Change happens; what we do in response is nothing more than seizing opportunities.
Nothing is ever destroyed. It simply becomes something new. It is up to us to decide whether it is an obstacle or a piece of the foundation of something new. Do we keep climbing, or do we get caught up in the detritus of the past?
I’m climbing. You are all welcome to come along.