Monday, January 1, 2018

5 For 2018

1. Getting another tattoo: Yeah, yeah, you all heard this last year, but the crazy part is that I know exactly what I want, I know where I'm going to get it, I just need to stash away some ducats and get some time to go and do it. Didn't get it done in 2017, so onto the list for 2018 it goes!

2. Finishing my Year of Books: despite the seven books on my list from last year that I didn't read, the overall goal of my Year of Books was more than met. I'll be honest with y'all: I have book reviews scheduled out until March- that's how much reading I've gotten done. The original idea was a germ of a notion I picked up from Stephen King's On Writing (at least I think so), but basically it was this: to be a better writer, read everything. So, onward and upward to finish off my list:

The Book of the New Sun, Gene Wolfe
Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon
Catch-22, Joseph Heller
Wolf Hall, Hilary Mantel
War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
Ulysses, James Joyce
Use of Weapons, Iain M. Banks

3. This is my Year of Health. I'm going to be thirty-five this year and I'm going to have three kids and if there was ever an opportunity to get serious about being as fit as I want to be, I think it's this year. But this is a somewhat vague declaration, so let's break it out into specific goals for the year:

-Learn and master 24 form Tai Chi
-Kettlebell (a full routine) at least once a week
-Train for and specifically run a 5k
-I'm not a huge fan of BMI as an indicator of health, but I'd like to be closer to make ideal BMI than further away from it.

Why these goals? Well, 24-form Tai Chi seems the obvious place to take my tai chi. I have a kettlebell that is gathering dust that I want to start using again and running a 5K is something I've wanted to actually be fit enough to do for awhile now. All of these seem achievable. We'll see how I'm looking at the end of the year.

4. Up my writing game. My general philosophy has always been 'to do better.' I started last year with a blog that had about 8K in pageviews and ended it with over 25K in pageviews*, so whatever I'm doing, I'm doing something right, at least when it comes to the blog. My goal this year is to hit 50K for the blog. But more generally, I want to crafting a more coherent identity for my blog. I've always sort of had a 'whatever flies into my brain that's interesting' sort of approach to blogging and I want to make Lit City Blues more of a unique brand. People obviously take time out of their days to take a minute or two to read what I have to say- I want to make the time the take as worthwhile, creative and interesting as possible.

I also want to keep writing short stories and getting them out there so see if someone will publish them, relaunch both my books (The Prisoner and The Assassin and The Arrows of Defiance) and finish my latest book and get it ready for launch by year's end.

5. House projects...  I have this short list of things I'd like to around the house that are practical in nature this. They include in no particular order:

-Staining our deck
-Building a raised bed so we can start a garden
-constructing a built-in bookshelf in the house so we can consolidate all our books into one place
-Getting a farmhouse sink for our kitchen
-putting a new back splash in the kitchen

2018 is officially underway. I've got 365 days to see what I can do.

Game on.

*I'm not sure how accurate Blogger's stats actually are, but I purchased my own domain name through Google, which means if you Google 'Lit City Blues' this is the first thing you'll find (which is gratifying)- so I don't think SEO is a problem. I think it tracks unique pageviews, but I'm not 100% sure, so that 25K number might not be as accurate as I'd like. I know for sure it's not all me though, so some of y'all are reading what I right. Thank you for making this what it is and I look forward to making this even better in 2018.

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