31 December 2023

by | Dec 31, 2023 | Random Thoughts, Writing | 0 comments

The end is nigh!

At least the end of 2023, anyway…

I’m starting this post at 9:25pm, which means less than three hours remain in the year.

Part of me wants to ask where the year went, but while I didn’t accomplish everything I wanted this year, I still accomplished a decent amount. I don’t have my baby wood shop yet, but I prioritized the Vegas trip over that… and I don’t regret it. Before adding this post to the tally, I’m already 23,000 words and change over 300,000 words. I didn’t expect I’d crack 300,000 words, and I’m glad I have.

As you’ll see in the graphic below, I’ve made excellent progress on Hyperion, a novel of Sorcerous Pursuits. I “lost” almost three hours today, because I was so wound up thinking about the climax and getting it just right that my mind was (once again) little more than a super-bouncy ball inside a Plinko machine. That doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it is especially frustrating. It obliterates my concentration until I can get it reined in.

Like its predecessor, Dawn of the Sorcerer, I am loving how Hyperion is unfolding. As long as I do an acceptable job of translating the movie in my head to words on the page, this is gonna be a fun read.

I didn’t come anywhere close to winning the first challenge I started this year, The Great Dean Challenge. I signed up for the Full version, meaning I had to meet or exceed his word count for April through tonight at midnight. Matter of fact, I’m not even sure I would win if I had chosen the Half version. I’d be close, but it all depends on what he’s written in the last week.

I’m not signing up for any challenges in 2024… at least not other people’s challenges. Focusing on building a consistent, daily writing habit is far more important to me at this point, so I’ll stay with participating only in my personal challenge: write 1,500 words every day in 2024.

I’ll be honest with you. I probably won’t manage it. But as long as I write more words in 2024 than I did in 2023, I’ll still be failing to success. That’s the good thing my chosen career: the only way I can truly fail is to quit writing.

I’m here to tell you… that will never happen.

If I have my way about it, someone will find my corpse either slumped over in my computer chair or laying on the floor beside it with a partially completed story on the screen in front of me. Ideally, this will be many, many years in the future, but none of us really have full control over that. We can do our best to influence it… making healthy habits and such… but it is largely outside our control. I’m not really a fan of that, but Mom told me something roughly thirty years ago that totally applies here.

Grant me the courage to change the things I can, the serentity to accept the things I can’t, and the wisdom to know the difference.

That still seems as challenging as it did to my younger self, but we are all works-in-progress.

I hope 2024 is better for you than 2023 has been, regardless of how 2023 has treated you. No matter how good we have it, there are always aspects to Life that could be better. But if we’re lucky, these shortcomings are merely our perceptions.

I hope the final hours of holiday season are kind to you.

I wouldn’t classify myself as an optimist, but I do have a rather impressive “To Write” list… and I love every story on it. That–plus my friends, family, and family by choice–are why I look forward to 2024 and all the years beyond.

And for my last hope in this post, I hope you can look forward to 2024 and all the years beyond, too.

Stay safe out there, folks!

Daily Word Count: 6,477
Sprint to the New Year with Kris Challenge Word Count: 43,696
The Great Dean Challenge Word Count: 288,617
2023 Total Word Count: 324,317


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