Let's cut right to the chase.
2021 was not my best writing year.
Typically, I close out the year with a review of the goals I set for myself back in January, going over every bullet point and assessing each in-depth. This time around, however, I feel it would be better to take a more reflective approach, like a journal entry of sorts, and just let my thoughts spill out. Overall, it's been a year of realizations and personal growth, things that are more complex and harder to break into segments.
Very little went according to plan, so to speak. There were a few things of note that happened including my most popular blog post to date, starting on a story idea that has been simmering in the back of my mind for a few years, finishing a first draft of a different WIP, and beginning a complete rewrite of Bound to the Heart.
But even though all of this happened, I don't feel as accomplished as I hoped. I kicked off 2021 with a post listing off my goals and everything I wanted to do, just as I've done every year I've been blogging and will do next week to ring in 2022, but whatever plan I had went out the window when I went on a hiatus.
Taking a break from writing was important for my mental health and where I was then, and it also gave me a chance to settle into a new job—which, it's worth mentioning, has helped reestablish some of the confidence I lost post-querying. I've got that feeling of capability back (there's something to be said for getting promoted to Head Cashier, being put in a leadership role, and being given a set of keys), but I will admit I'm still struggling with impostor syndrome and learning to not compare my own writing journey to those of others.
Even now, I'm still finding my way again and figuring out who I am as a writer. My style has changed drastically. I'm continuing to develop my narrative voice. I've gotten better at identifying flaws in my work and recurring errors so I can avoid them moving forth, but that's not without rereading my past writing and cringing whenever these things pop up.
It's been a year of retracing steps, change, and starting over. Realizing that even though I have come a long way since I started writing seriously are fourteen, I still have a way to go—a much longer way than I thought. And that's okay.
It may not have been my most productive writing year. There is so much I wanted to do, but in the end, I feel as though I did what I needed to do. I've started to regroup and not only come back into my own as a writer, but come back to myself.
That's a success in its own right.
I've also learned to be a little easier on myself when things don't go as intended, something that happened far too often throughout 2021. Life finds a way to get in the way, as I'll often tell you on the blog, but sometimes I need to take my own quip to heart. On the whole, there was so much that went against my original plan, and that wasn't entirely a bad thing.
2021 was not my most productive year as far as writing goes. So much of what I intended feels unfinished and underdeveloped. That doesn't mean I failed.
It just means my course is different now than I anticipated at the start of 2021, and I can't wait to see where it takes me in 2022.