What a year it has been. A year filled with joy, hope, love, adventure and more.
When the year started, there was no sign of it being anything out of the ordinary. Then with the launch of my first Falgu book, I discovered my love for performing in front of an audience.
I did more storytelling events this year than ever before. I pushed through doubts, believed in what I knew and kept going.
Of course the year was filled with rejections from agents and publishers, but there was no time to dwell on those. I took a big decision to go part-time in my very successful and high-paying banking job.
The reaction from my colleagues was not what I imagined it would be – of course they want me back full-time – but most people wished they too could have done it. I know two people who were so inspired that they decided to focus on their passion in their free time with more conviction.
I registered to go into schools now that I had days off during school week. I did school visits, I wrote more. I experimented with my writing more. I paid my own way to be at Bookaroo. I wanted to be in that atmosphere and what an experience it was – launching Falgu Book 2 and meeting so many wonderful people.
I joined Golden Egg to find my way through this publishing landscape. I wanted to get better – I have now committed the time and I wanted a mentor, a guide to help me find the way.
I almost stalked my storytelling mentor Jan Blake and did coaching with her. I learnt the rudimentary of storytelling – but also discovered my love for my own stories, my inner-knowledge,the joy of telling stories that you grew up with.
My school visits, my storytelling and my interaction with the children I met changed my writing. I had better grasp of what would make them laugh and enjoy. My writing changed as I approached it as an aural storyteller. The process changed for the better and I am enjoying it more.
And the best part of 2014, with my extra off days, I spent more time with my favourite nephew Isaac. I had a day every week with him most weeks and we are good friends. He knows I can cook for him and carry him around and give him big hugs. But he also thinks I’m his buddy. We discuss trains and planes and we setup bridges and traffic scenes. We tumble on the sofa together and sing our own version of Row-Row-Row a boat.
2014 has been good to me. I had some scares about my mum’s health, had guilty pangs about living far from aged parents. I still wonder if I would ever be taken on by an agent, I still wonder if I would find someone special in my life. (It would be absolutely faritytalish if I did a meet a man who was an agent… hey a girl can dream).
But I’ve also been blessed – I had so many good things happening. The balance in my life is perfect in many ways – I’ve become happier, nicer and much more of a risk-taker with myself. All my life I’ve been careful, took the sensible decisions, worried about not making a fool of myself.
2014 has taught me it is okay to make a fool of myself. 2014 has shown me that it is okay to let go of control and go with the flow. I’m giving more so I am getting more.
2015 is starting with a first date. Is it a good omen or is it just funny? Either way I’m okay. I have learnt not to count my chickens, lay out plans for my life and I have learnt to welcome the unexpected with joy and curiosity.
2015 will bring another book into the world hopefully. Farmer Falgu would be wiser and funnier. 2015 will bring another nephew into my life. The joy could only double. Love is like that – there is always more of it as you start giving it.
Bring it on 2015 – I’m ready for you with an open heart and the curiosity of a 4 year-old.
Here’s to 2015. A new year, unwrapped with hope and joy.