Our Arbitrarily Assigned Calendar Start Makes a Nice Time To Reflect on the Future

I mentioned yesterday that I wasn’t going to be thinking much about last year, but that doesn’t mean I can’t look at the coming year and pin some goals to its cork board. Of course the biggest chunk of 2014 will be adapting to my new role as Exhibit A editor. This is a new imprint and even though the hard work has been done to get the imprint up and running, I’m looking forward to taking everything to the next level by adding my own flavor to the line and making Exhibit A more of a visible presence in the large crime fiction community. Of course it would be nice to have a big hit or a movie from one of our books, but I’m also looking forward to giving a few writers their first breaks and some other writers a second chance.

With my own writing I have a number of goals. I’m still working on the crime novel I mentioned in my open letter to Kelly Braffet and I want to finish that novel, get it revised, and get it out of here. I also want to finish the first draft of my beer cozy that I’m still very excited about. I have an urban fantasy idea I want to work on as well, though I’m not sure what form that will take. Maybe that will be a 2015 novel or a 2014 novella. I would like to write one crime fiction short story as well since it’s been quite a few years since I’ve done that, but that’s at the bottom of my priority list.

The only way I’m going to have enough energy creatively to get any of this stuff done is to read more for pleasure. This past year was by far my worst year reading-wise at only 8 novels read and one other half read. My goal, as always, is to read a book a week and I still think that even with manuscripts to edit and submissions to read it’s still possible if I cut a lot of the wasted time out of my life. Spending as much time as I do on the computer, it’s important I spend some time every day away from it reading an actual book to clear my head and energize my soul.

Personally I want to be a better husband and father because none of the other stuff above will matter if I suck at my main job in life. I struggle with laziness in both areas and I don’t know how else to frame this goal except to put more effort into playing with my kids and playing with my wife. I also need to eat less crap and move more. I hesitate to say exercise more, because I hate exercising, but I can get out and walk and move more than I do now. And I can certainly eat less crap with little effort.

I also want to get back into church. I’ve had some trouble reconciling my changing political and spiritual beliefs with my current churching situation, but it’s important to me to have this in my life so I need to put in the effort to find the right situation for me and my family.