Celebrating a New Year

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal

“Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” That quote is on a refrigerator magnet my daughter brought home years ago. We’ve had a lot of new years and new days since then, but that doesn’t make the saying any less true. There’s also the saying about yesterday being gone, tomorrow is not here and all we have is the present. We need to treat it like the gift it is and rejoice in the precious present and embrace our new beginnings.

But New Year’s is a time when we’re more aware of those new beginnings. The chance to change. The motivation to change. The challenge to change. I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions because I don’t want to only be ready to change once a year. I want to be ready to do some resolving to change any time I recognize that I need to do that changing. That’s pretty often.

But this year I’m seeing the necessity for making a few changes and it happens to be right now here at New Year’s. I’m going to have to carve some working time out of my schedule. I’m going to have to stop letting myself be distracted by the many tasks and chores – fun and not so fun – of writing and do the writing. So much of Facebook and even posting here on my on-line journal feeds my need to write, but not that deeper need to create a story. So I am searching for hours each day to do the real writing.

A self-employed writer has to learn discipline or nothing gets written. That writer sees other writers posting that they wrote thousands of words or three books a year and it’s easy to begin to feel a tad down in the dumps. That writer – me – knows she’s never going to be able to spill out words like that, but that writer also knows without a regular schedule with a goal of so many pages a day, no book will ever get written. So in spite of life happening with a mother who needs me along with all the usual busyness of my life, I’m going to have to find a new writing routine. That’s my New Year’s goal. I’m ready to begin on the book. I have the characters. I have a bit of the idea. Now to find the hours. Early or late or squeezed in the middle, I will find them. God willing, the book will get written.

So what are your resolutions? Changes you want to make in this new year of 2011. The second decade already of the 21st century. Wow! Time does speed past. Just ask my mom who is feeling her age tonight. She was sad earlier because she was feeling old and didn’t want to leave us. All I could think to tell her was that she was looking at it from the wrong direction and that she needed to look back at all the good years she’d had and the love she’d shared with us so long. But that probably didn’t help much. The hugs I gave her may have helped more and in the end I’m sharing her tears because I’m not ready for any leave taking either.

But if you’ve stuck with me this long, on to happier things. I drew the winners for my Christmas/New Year’s giveaway. I’m going to be keeping the Post Office in business for a while. The never won before winner is Eva who left a comment here on the blog to enter. Linda H won the Christmas story drawing. She’s the one whose best Christmas was surviving a heart attack this year. I do appreciate all of you who entered and I had such fun reading your Christmas memory stories. The other winners are Laurie L, Crystal C, Sandra A and Laurie C. I’ll be contacting you by e-mail to find out which books you want and to get your mailing addresses. I hunted up some of the surprises today. One’s a Shaker Christmas ornament. I have two Shaker wooden bookmarks, a Shaker clothespin and cake tester bundle of straws and other possibilities along with some good books by well-known Christian authors.

So thanks for reading and for entering my book giveaway. Give me a week or two and I’ll think up something to give away to celebrate Angel Sister being released. Enjoy!