Last Day of the Year!!!

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The last day of the year is a time for reflection and celebration, is it not? I love New Years. It’s like finishing a book and moving on to the next one. You get to look at the second book with fresh eyes, but you still have the experience and the knowledge from the previous one.

2010 has been QUITE the year. I graduated from  high school, I got my driver’s license, I took care of my nephew, I learned to appreciate my siblings a little more. I read tons and tons of great books (the Secret series, the Private series, the Privilege series, Eon, Phantom Stallion books, the Caretaker Trilogy, etc), listened to tons of great music (Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Secret Garden, Two Steps from Hell, Eminem, Rihanna, Pink, Jason Derulo, etc).

And, of course, I wrote! I wrote Summer Rush, I started writing Elsewise and Not Another Stupid Romance. I finished writing The Promise Child, and I wrote Dark Angel Rising. I started California Girl and I’m Not Pregnant, Just Fat. I blogged and I wrote school papers and emails and letters. Summer Rush got a gold star on Inkpop, was a Project of the Week in Inkpop’s email newsletter, and was nominated in the Best Humor category in the Inkie Awards! I participated in and won NaNoWriMo (my sister and I are doing a million words in a year next year! Whoo!).

 I watched movies. Tons and tons of movies. Some of my favorites were Easy A, Law-Abiding Citizen, Avatar, Man of the House, Gracie’s Choice, and Sugar N Spice. I also watched lots of really depressing movies that were supposed to be inspirational or whatever. Awfully depressing (AVOID THESE AT ALL COSTS: Speak, Perfect Body, Mom at Sixteen, and Little Girls in Pretty Boxes). Honestly, I get that they were trying to convey important messages. But they were really sad.

I’ve got to talk to dozens and dozens of amazing people. Beatrix.Renning, Mirriam, RedWriter, Ryley, Karlee, Carly, Lily, Katherine, Hannah, Mary Kate, Leighann, Feena, Mars, Effie, Alexandra… *pants for breath* And lots of lots of other bloggers, writers, fellow volunteers, family members, and passing acquaintances!

Lots of good stuff happened this year. Some of my favorite memories are: going shopping with my sister Kyra, my birthday when I had all my family around me, visiting my grandparents, my first day of school, the wedding in Chattanooga, the Fourth of July, riding Gideon bareback, winning NaNoWriMo, setting of firecrackers, doing my younger sister’s makeup, buying graduation dresses (!!! FUN!!!), hugging my parents, hanging with my dog, and my first night in a bed OF MY VERY OWN.

There were some tough times, too: almost failing Algebra 2 (*shudder*). Losing my BFF. Fighting with my sisters. Losing my Nana and going to her funeral. Losing my baby sister. Looking at my dad when he was so tired and discouraged.

And then there were things that seemed awful but I ended up laughing about later, or that ended up helping me. For instance, getting harsh critiques on my books. Some of the critiques were honestly helpful, some were just from nasty people and I managed to laugh those off (In time. Lots of time. Occasionally Chocolate/Buffy the Vampire Slayer therapy was needed). Hurting my ankle pretty much threw me out of gymnastics, but it also gave me tons more free time to concentrate on school and writing. My sister/roomie Elizabeth and I had butt-loads of fights this year but we always ended up laughing them off. Fortunately, we can’t stay mad at each other for long. I think we had an argument about the comforter that we put on our bed and it go wild. We were yanking on the blanket and yelling. And then we ended up busting out laughing and rolling around on the floor like maniacs. Absolutely priceless.

Laughs, misery, and movie-watching aside, I do think I actually accomplished some things in the lovely year of 2010. I have tamed 65% of my bad temper. I’ve learned the importance of a clean room (took me long enough, huh Mom?). I have come to terms with the fact that a writer is not just a writer, but an editor, too. And that all the great stories in the world don’t do you any good if you toss them in a desk drawer.

2010 was an awesome year and I am super, super, super excited to know what 2011 will bring! This is going to be our year, people! Go forth and conquer *firecrackers go off and dramatic music plays (maybe Hallelujah Chorus or Remember the Name)*

No, seriously. I hope you all had a great year and that next year is even better!

Gabs xoxoxox

My New Year’s Resolutions

* Finish writing, rewriting, and editing a book

* Read my Bible from cover to cover

* Hop off my lazy bottom and do some exercise!

* Get a 4.0 GPA for the spring school semester

* Love everybody, myself included

* Try harder at everything

* Write books that I love

* Get published, be it novel/essay/poem/short story

* Be with the people I love

* Ride horseback more often

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