I wasn’t going to do a long post, or bother putting a ‘full stop’ on the past 365 days that was 2014. But as I read so many people’s posts on Facebook and on their blogs, I found that I LIKED reading about their journey’s and valued seeing how hard everyone worked, what they learned, and what their goals were for 2015.
I didn’t do an end of year post last year, but thought I would follow the masses and do one this time—if only just for my records for when the next 365 days have passed. It will be quite cool to look back and see what I accomplished, what dreams I didn’t chase, and what hot air I was spouting at the start of the year.
So…here we go…
TRIUMPHS of 2014
I’m going to bullet point these, because there are a few. In fact, looking back on what 2014 brought into my life, I’m on the floor with my jaw hanging wide. It makes me wish I’d done a list for every year I’ve been alive: taking stock of what I achieved—even if it was just growing into the person I was meant to be. So many people say xxxx was my year—the best year of my life. I’ve never thought of life that way. I’ve always taken each year as one complete leap into my future. I’m not afraid of death. Never been one to say, next year I’ll be rich enough, brave enough, strong enough to try XYZ. I’ve always just done it. I moved away from home to a different country at 18. I opened my own business at 22. I asked my hubby out on our first date. When I look back, it looks like I was rather fearless in going after I wanted—but I can tell you I was crapping myself thinking of ‘what can go wrong’. What kept me going wasn’t blind faith that it would work out—but that I would have the power to brush it off if it did. I believed no matter how bad things got, there was always a new tomorrow.
(Too flouncy? I’ll stop. Lol)
Okay, I got off track…here are the Triumphs.
- I released four books this year. Not many but that’s a total of 600,000 words, which is a lot.
- I attended three signings. Goldcoast in March, Edinburgh in July, and Sydney in November. I still (and doubt I ever will) get used to people coming to see me and ask for my autograph. It blows my mind.
- I hit the USA Today bestseller list three times. Once with Destroyed, once with Twisted Together, and again with Debt Inheritance.
- I hit the New York Bestseller list twice. Once with Make me, and once with Debt Inheritance.
- A big five publisher, Hachette, contacted me to offer me a publishing contract. (I thought it was spam. It wasn’t. Still find that surreal.)
- I signed with Erica at Trident Media to help me with negotiations.
- I sold Turkish rights to the Monsters in the Dark Series.
- I’ve agreed to Audio rights to all my work. (Monsters in the Dark, Destroyed, and Indebted Series)
- I’ve sold Italian rights to Indebted Series.
- I’m in talks to sell German rights of Monsters in the Dark.
- I grew as a writer, wife, and friend.
- Even though my life went crazy, I never let it go to my head. (Least I hope it didn’t—I do my best to stay grateful, humble, and most of all awed by the whole experience.)
- I know just how lucky I am.
- I became super close to a friend who I adore, Skye Callahan.
- I became closer with my hubby as the pressure of money slowly became less of a worry.
- I was lucky enough to go on holiday with amazing friends to Bali and loved every minute of it.
I think that’s enough. However, I could keep going and going. This year has truly been amazing to me and it’s all because of this industry. I have nothing bad to say about it. It’s tough putting out a book. It takes dedication and commitment and tears. But in the end, that’s what makes it all the more rewarding, and I wouldn’t change a thing.
TRIBULATIONS of 2014
This part, I’m not going to list. Not because I didn’t have any, but because I choose not to remember. If I had a sad day, an angry day, or a day where I let negativity consume me, then that day is deleted. I refuse to focus on the bad, when there is so much good. I believe that it’s this mentality that allows me to focus on my dreams and also makes me a happier human being.
If I hear something that makes me upset, I’m not Wonder Woman and can brush it off in an instant. Sometimes it takes me days to get over something. But I do get over it. I move on and forget as I have no time to bring up the past that only hurt me.
If I lived through something that took a toll, I do my utmost to twist it around and make it a positive. Again, I’m not a rocket scientist so this is a lot easier said than done. Sometimes all you can do is let it sit, cry it out, and then eat a tub of gummy bears. You can’t force yourself to move on if you aren’t ready, but you do need to use tough love and make sure you aren’t dwelling.
So yeah, tribulations…didn’t have any. Lucky me
Now for the Truths of 2014.
I’m not entirely sure where I’m going with this part. I guess I’ll segment it up into Truths for 2014 and my Ultimate Goals (which is blatant truth and shows how large I dream) for 2015. Normally, I keep these close to my chest as I don’t want to seem as if I’m completely nuts for chasing after things so huge.
The truths of 2014…um… okay, I have a few.
I neglected my health.
There. That’s probably the biggest one. I’ve always had a small frame, but the past year has seen me eating convenient food because I work till 8-9pm, and sitting on my arse 14-15 hours a day because I’m writing too much. I have jiggly bits where there was none, and my cardio is shot. Also, with writing and spending so much time on a screen, I screwed up my eyes and now have to wear glasses. So yeah…pretty brutal to neglect the body that brought me through life up to this point because I was afraid this amazing ride I was on was about to fizzle and disappear.
I doubted my own stamina.
I threw myself into writing and publishing as if it would end tomorrow. Not only did I screw my health, but I didn’t pay as much attention to my wonderful husband, or just take time out of the day to do what I really enjoy. I like to scrap-book—haven’t done that this year. I like to paint—my oils are dried up and useless. I used to just like blobbing in a patch of sunshine on the weekend and reading until my bladder was about to burst and I couldn’t be bothered getting up. All of those I gave up in order to work. But it’s become painfully obvious that I need to keep doing those little silly things to keep my happy.
I compared myself to others.
I think we’re all guilty of this. Someone once said to me: There will always be someone smarter, richer, prettier, and healthier than you. Yet, it shouldn’t matter because they aren’t YOU. I get that. I don’t begrudge that. But sometimes when I was down, I let myself sink. I’m glad I only lasted in that space for a week (right around the time Debt Inheritance came out) Then I slapped myself and took stock of all I’ve achieved. Sure, I’m not a leggy billionaire who lives on a private yacht. Sure. I’m not able to retire yet and buy anything and everything I want. But what I do have is priceless. I have love. I have contentedness. I have the freedom to do what I please. And I’m exactly where I need to be in my life and I intend to no longer want more, want it faster. If I keep putting out a quality product written from my heart, I have no doubt everything will work out the way it’s meant to.
Right, onto the truths for 2015.
I want to walk 10,000 steps every day.
I’ve rigged a contraption on my treadmill that will let me write while walking. If I go 2 miles an hour (a dawdle) I can still write and do 10,000 steps in 2.5 hours.
I want to reduce my work hours.
I want to write better books and release more often. But I also want to potter about with hobbies when the urge strikes. I need to find a balance and I’m already on my way to finding a better one.
I want to seduce my hubby more.
Rather personal, but there you go. In this day and age we’re guilty of letting phones, laptops, and TV get in the way of spontaneity. It’s not good—for us or our physical relationships.
Those are all ways to make my mental space be as formidable as possible.
Now onto the material goals…
- I want the Indebted Series to be optioned as a TV Series. (Told you I dream big)
- I want to sell more foreign rights so my reach to readers expands.
- I want to hit the Wall Street Journal List.
There we go. Three major goals for 2015. They’re in print on the interwebz, never to be deleted. Let’s see if this time next year if I’ve achieved them.
I hope you all had an incredible 2014. If there were more Tribulations than Triumphs then I know it only made you a stronger person. If there were more Triumphs than Tribulations, then you’re on the right path and only going to get richer in happiness, health, and love.
I truly couldn’t have done this without you. I’m endlessly grateful every day. Not just for you buying my books, but for the incredible emails, the messages that just make my heart glow, and the support you’ve shown me. The world is nothing but doom and gloom these days, but the people I’ve been lucky enough to get to know have been nothing but cheer and confidence.
I’m so very lucky.
I love you all and look forward to riding the 2015 wave with you. Xxxx