Thursday, 1 January 2015

Looking forward: 2015

Hello and a happy new year to you all. I hope you've had a lovely night, whether you were out partying or, like me, having a quiet evening in with TV, books or internet. I had made great plans to have a big Back to the Future marathon with all my friends, lots of pizza and nibbles - and then December 30th came around and I'd organised nothing. So instead, I just put the second and third films on (I saw the first one quite recently) and watched with my parents. I'm quite disappointed with how many people in the real world don't instantly associate the year 2015 with Back to the Future part 2: hoverboards, flying cars, etc.

My New Year's resolution this year is simply to try to be kinder and less self-centred. But I've also taken the time to reorganise my reading and writing life and plan some excursions.

Books:

Last year I set myself a read one/buy one rule regarding my book collection, but that did not have the desired effect of shrinking my to-read pile, as I did not take into account rereads or books that were already in the house, ie borrowed from parents. This year the rule is read three, buy two - and only books from the pile count. I know some bloggers are imposing a 3:1 or 5:1 rule on themselves, but I don't have the willpower to do that.

I intend to carry on filling in the gaps in Terry Pratchett's Discworld series, which should not be too much of a challenge as here are only about six I haven't read now. But I want to have read those six by the end of the year.

A more long-term plan is to read or watch all of Shakespeare's plays in the next five years. Will I stick with this? Who knows! I read a few last year, and have studied some in school and uni, so that's at least ten down already.

Writing:

After throwing off my writer's block last November and managing to succeed in NaNoWriMo, I intend to continue with my novel in progress, and finish the first draft this year. I took a break in December but now we're into the new year, I'd like to get that finished.

I plan to take the Rilla of Ingleside book-to-script adaptation out of the mothballs and get that finished this year, for my own satisfaction.

And I would like to have another bash at NaNoWriMo in November, see if I can match and beat last year's success.

Getting organised:

I have had to admit defeat. I have no more bookshelf space. Not that that's going to stop me - my first big purchase of this year is going to be replacing my six-shelf bookcase with an extra-deep six-shelf bookcase so I can fit twice as many books on the shelves. (Admittedly having two layers of books is not ideal, but it must be better than the shelf balanced on my to-read pile under my desk.)


When this arrives, I will reorganise my books and get rid of any I don't intend to read again. Likewise, I will be sorting through my clothes, CDs and DVDs - many of the latter I bought just to watch once, thanks to there being no Blockbuster any more, and the films not being available through Netflix or the library.

Travel

This year I may be able to go on holiday to America. I've not done this before because it's hard to ask friends to go with you when you're all poor and single and don't drive - it's a big expense - but when I grumbled about this to a friend who is a bit older than me, she suggested going with me. I'm thinking Boston.
I'd also like to go to York, which I've been meaning to visit for years (and which Hanna tells me is very good for book shopping.)

I'd like to go to see friends living in Liverpool, Bath and Cardiff, who I don't get to see much, and one of whom I've not seen in years. And I plan to return to Coventry and shop at the Big Comfy Bookshop once more.

When I visit my sister in London, I will seek out new bookshops on each trip, not just returning to Foyle's every time.

Finally, I'd like to meet up with some of YOU lovely bloggers in person! I've made some great friends through blogging, but have only met Ellie in person, two years ago. So, what about it? Who would be up for a book blogger meet-up to invade the bookshops for a day?

15 comments:

  1. Good luck with all your 2015 goals! I managed to make my way through most of my Kindle reads in 2014 so this year I'll be concentrating more on my physical books. I don't think I'll EVER clear that out but reducing the pile would be nice.

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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    1. I don't think I'd WANT to completely clear my pile - I like having a choice of unread books. But I'd like to get it down to a sensible handful. Happy new year to you!

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  2. Me please! I'd definitely be up for meeting up - this year, one of the things I want to do this year is find a better balance between work and...everything else! Part of that means finding more time to see friends and not just hiding away at weekends with a book! So in short, we really must sort something out and all meet up. I have no clue how it would work in practice but I do very much fancy

    And Boston is delightful - it's so pretty and has some lovely areas of quirky antique shops and coffee shops. I hope you do make it!

    Happy new year! :)

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    1. Woohoo! If I schedule the York trip over a weekend (I am assuming you have a normal working week) I could take a train over to Leeds one of the days, that would be brilliant! (Leeds is another place I don't think I've ever been.) Not sure when that's going to be yet though.

      I like the idea of Boston more than the more "typical" places like Disneyland, New York, Vegas or LA, and your holiday post made it sound so lovely. I really hope that comes off.

      Happy New Year to you too, and I hope you manage to get a good work/life balance.

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    2. By "normal" I mean Monday to Friday - I know the hours you've been doing have been more than normal, and I hope 2015 is not too crazy-busy for you.

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    3. Yay! Let's do this! Alternatively we could come and meet you in York - it's great for book shopping and eating :)

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    4. Yay! Yes, that would be awesome too.

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  3. Your travel plans sound so exciting - it looks like it will be a great year :)

    Following everyone's NaNoWriMo progress has made me think about doing it this year, just to shake out some creativity. I've never thought I have a novel in me, but I guess you don't know until you try.

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    1. I hope so! I decided it would be better to spend money on experiences than on yet more "stuff" to clutter up the place (although books are the exception here!)

      It's definitely worth trying NaNoWriMo - even if you only get a short story written, that's a short story you didn't have before. I'm not very good at keeping stories short and simple, though, they kind of grow and get out of hand. I've really struggled with writing for a while, but last year one idea came together just in time for November.

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  4. Charlotte and I were talking about organising a big meet up for all of us at some point if such a thing is possible. Otherwise Laura and you and I could organise a meetup and trawl of some London bookshops when you're visiting your sister sometime :-) Kent to London is easy!

    We had a quiet night as well, which was actually really nice, and I've already broken several of my resolutions, which is what comes from being overly ambitious but oh well. I love the shelf balanced on top of your to read pile, that is some truly genius book storage. Although you are right, a deep bookshelf would probably be better. A lot of mine are double stacked and it's annoying to have to keep pulling stuff out to find out what's behind but like you said, better than having them all over the place!

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    1. Both! Both would be great, although I work most Saturdays (other days are subject to change from week to week, anything from 24-39 hours. Sundays are always off though.) But I can give you advance notice when I go to see my sister and we can arrange a meet-up. The next visit will probably be some time in the last week of Feb.

      I've already failed to live up to all my daily to-do lists this year. I hoped to start the year by reading a whole book the first day. Day two and I've read... about a chapter and a half. Oops!

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    2. Saturdays are generally rubbish for me too as Rhys almost always works them so I have no babysitting unless I drag the boys up to London with me and give them to my mum for the day :-p So other days are good! Maybe email me and we can sort something out? :-)

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  5. Wow horrible punctuation! Sorry about that!

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  6. Happy New Year, Katie! I definitely second Hanna's recommendation of York for book shopping. It was better when the huge Borders was still open, but there's a Waterstones, some charity shops (including at least two branches of Oxfam Books), an amazing labyrinthine second-hand bookshop near the Minster, and a whole slew of quirky independents as well. Okay, now I want to go as well... MEET UUUUUUP!

    P.S. If it's any consolation, I spent my New Year's Eve(ning) in the Accident and Emergency waiting room. My grandad had a funny turn at teatime and had to go for some tests immediately to rule out a stroke etc, and we didn't get home until 11pm. Fortunately all was well, for now anyway... :(

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    1. Yes! Let's do it!!!! Haven't scheduled my trip yet, so I'll make sure to check with you guys and make sure I can get a date you're all available for BOOK SHOPPING! (also food and cake.)

      Oh, Ellie, that is not a good place to spend New Year, and I hope your granddad's doing better now. *hugs*

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