A Quiet Beginning to a New Year

I haven’t been very inspired to post lately, and I thought I might make myself write some reviews. But then I thought, why don’t I just share what’s on my mind? Isn’t that why I created this blog in the first place?

I like the idea of resolutions, goals, and new beginnings like most other people, but I don’t like the hype of New Year’s and I don’t like making promises I won’t keep. So this year, I kind of just decided to not really make any real resolutions. I thought this was a good idea, and then I read somewhere that not making resolutions or goals because you’re afraid of failing is not a good reason to not make them, and I thought, ouch, OK. But then I still didn’t made any.

I don’t want to make resolutions just for the sake of making them either though. I like having direction but right now the only direction I feel really compelled to go in is to keep doing what I’ve been doing. So last year I hoped would be the year I would start querying agents, and it wasn’t, so now I really hope it’s this year and will continue to work towards that. I don’t have any big goals otherwise. I do anticipate things will change in my life, for example, I know my husband and I will be moving into a new house this year, but it’s not like anything I am resolving to do majorly different. Basically, I am just going to keep going forward until I feel it’s time to make changes. I feel like I am usually aware of what  needs improvement in my life and can usually devote myself to at least taking small steps in the right direction.

I asked for this big calendar for Christmas that is all the months together, so you see the year at a glance and you see it more so by weeks than months. It’s a neat idea and I wanted to write all kinds of things on there, but right now it’s just blank. Part of me is upset by this, but then I realize I don’t want to write things on there just to fill up blank spaces. When I get ready to send my story to beta readers, I will write the day I’ll send, along with a targeted deadline for my next step. I’ll fill it out as I go, taking one goal at a time. I don’t want to say today I will query by May and then life happens and it’s too early or I get some crazy creative mojo and it’s late.

So there has been no pomp and circumstance for me in 2016, but I aspire to be do my best everyday. To each day be realistic with what I need to get done and find out how I can do it. And if I mess up that day, I don’t want to beat myself up; I’ll start fresh again the next day.

One thing I am working on pretty faithfully these days, since it’s clearly not this blog, is my new bookstagram Instagram account. Please check it out and follow me if you haven’t already! I’ve gotten a decent number of likes and comments and such, and try to do the same for other accounts, but I don’t have very many followers.

How’s this new year looking for you? Do you have a lot of big resolutions, or has it been a more quiet beginning? 

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Looking Back (2014) and Looking Forward (2015)

Even though I consider myself sentimental, I surprisingly don’t get too reflective around New Year’s. I did, however, want to share a few highlights of 2014 (books, movies, and things in my life), and mention a few things I am looking forward to in the new year.

lizzie-partyBOOKS

I did fill out Jamie’s 2014 End of Year Survey, probably a little too soon, so here are some updated/more detailed stats on my reading this year.

Final reading count of 2014//Books read: 42/Novellas read: 7

Genres I read//Adult fiction: 3 books/YA fiction: 39 books & novellas/Non-fiction: 3 books/Classics: 4 books

Subgenres of YA read: Historical, Sci-Fi, Contemporary, Fantasy, Alternate History, Steampunk, Dystopia, Fairytale Retellings… and combinations of aforementioned genres!

Ratings//4.5-5 stars: 10 books/3.5-4 stars: 27 books/2.5-3 stars: 12 books/1-2 stars: 0 books/DNF: 1 book

In 2015 I want to read: What I want! 🙂 I want to read at least: one adult fiction bestseller (PLEASE give me ideas), one other adult fiction, two writing books, two other non-fiction books, and one Jane Austen book. I also want to try to read all the books I bought/was gifted in 2014 (I’m not counting a stack of books a friend gave me when he was getting rid of a bunch of his… I intend to read them eventually, but I don’t plan to read all of them this year). I also want to try and actually re-read some this year!

2015 releases I am most anticipating: Firefight by Brandon Sanderson, Fairest by Marissa Meyer, The Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski, Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman, Do Over by Jon Acuff, The Rose Society by Marie Lu, and Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Top 3 (Read In) 2014 Books: Across a Star-Swept Sea by Diana Peterfreund, Cress by Marissa Meyer, and Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

Top 3 (Read In) 2014 Book Series: The Grisha trilogy by Leigh Bardugo, Leviathan trilogy by Scott Westerfeld, and Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling (even though I’ve only read the first three so far)

See what I read in 2014

2014readsMOVIES

I still want to do a more detailed post about 2014 movies later, but here’s a couple quick stats for 2014 movies for me…

2014 Released Movies Seen: 13

My Top Three 2014 Movies: Interstellar, Mockingjay, and Captain America

See my Top 10 2015 Movie Anticipations 

2015moviesLIFE

In 2014: I think the most noticeable difference in my life happened in May when I started my new job. I went from an hour plus one-way commute to a ten minute one-way commute. I went from often feeling frustrated and stressed to feeling a bit lighter and much more content. Mind you, my new job is not all rainbows and smiley faces and it does get stressful at times, but it’s so much easier to leave that at work when your drive home is much shorter and you don’t have to wake up at ridiculous o’clock to make that stressful drive again. Also, I have started actually making work friends… I had a few at my previous job but now I can honestly say I like everyone I work with and I actually talk to people AT WORK (don’t worry, we still get the work done!). I had felt very isolated at my previous job, so this has really helped my morale and has been a very positive change in my life.

In 2015: I am looking forward to NOT job hunting this year for the first time since I graduated college! (At least I hope I won’t have to job hunt!) In the new year, my husband and I are hoping we will be able to move to our second home as a couple. There are a lot of great things about our house, but we do need more room and it would be nice to have some things we don’t have now (like a garage). And if this happens, I’m going to try to be good and invest in either a treadmill or exercise bike and USE IT.

My 3 resolutions for 2015 are: Write more. Love more. Pray more.

What are your highlights of 2014 and what are you looking forward to in 2015?