2017 was an interesting year for me. I accomplished a lot, and while I’ll probably never be satisfied with how much I’ve done in any given length of time, I know that my life has been headed in a good direction.
There are three major reasons for why I feel that way.
One, my girlfriend, Emily, has stuck by me through it all. Somehow she hasn’t gotten sick of me. Not even on the numerous occasions she’s come home from work or university to find me writing in the dark because I didn’t notice the sun went down. The two of us manage to hang onto our independence while simultaneously making one another better and yearning for each other’s company, and I know from experience that that’s a rare love to have. I owe her big for believing in me during a volatile year and supporting my efforts to succeed as a freelance writer.
Two, I’ve become a cat dad. I’ve always been a dog person, and not just because I’m mildly allergic to cats. But Emily is a cat person. (Yet another reason it’s surprising we work so well together.) She wanted a cat. So, having lived with a cat for several years and somehow surviving, I agreed that we could get one. This led to us adopting Nelson, a snowshoe kitter with a marvelous(ly askew) mustache. I know now why so many writers were cat people. There’s nothing quite like having a furry bundle of love purring at your side while you work. As a bonus, Nelson plays fetch, smells good, and doesn’t make me itchy. I’ve no doubt Nelson has made my year much better than it could have been.
Three, I’ve managed to make a living wage as a freelance writer. It was shaky at first, back when I only had twenty-dollar jobs writing articles I didn’t get credit for or editing people’s wedding vows, but I soon got into game writing and ghost writing, which paid better and allowed me to take pride in my work. I don’t know if I’ll freelance forever, but at least I’m building a professional profile while I work, rather than pouring coffee and spending my evenings on personal projects like I thought I’d be doing.
I’m going to provide a list of things I’ve accomplished this year, mostly as a reminder that I am accomplishing things, even though I’m always worried I’m not using my time wisely.
In 2017, I:
- ghost-wrote five novels and a novella,
- wrote for four commercial games and a few more private game projects,
- did the 2017 global game jam,
- edited two tabletop RPG manuals (this is one),
- wrote six game articles (not counting ones on here),
- became over 50% fluent in French on Duolingo,
- started a writing group for local game writers,
- created several digital illustrations,
- applied for an arts grant (but I didn’t get it, sadface),
- wrote a few Twine games, and
- moved into an arts cooperative with my girlfriend and my cat.
They say you have to write a million words before you become a competent writer. Well, I’ve easily done at least half that this year alone. So I’m halfway to competency! (That’ll be the title of my autobio.)
I’ve got big plans for 2018, but I hear you’re not supposed to tell people your plans if you want to actually accomplish them. Something about brain chemistry or whatever. So I’ll only leave here with one resolution:
I’ll be blogging far more often than last year. Maybe not as often as 2016, but often enough.
See you next time, Reader.