Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009: Was It The Best It Ever Was?

Since it's that time of the year where everyone and their Aunt Sally and Uncle Ernie comes out with a Best of 2009, I figure I might as well throw in my seventeen and a half cents (adjusted for inflation) in and offer my opinion on this past year as it applies to little ol' me.

In keeping with the oddball tone of this particular entity, of the two things that I deem most noteworthy to come out my land of the right coast (literally and politically, so there, nyah!) in my Best of 2009, one will be connected to the Cyber World and the other will be connected to both the Real World and the Cyber World.

1} Writing.

Going into 2009, my writing was what you can say, not quite meeting that high standard of excellence I usually set for myself. Quite frankly, most of my stuff was basically bleech and not really worthy of showing to the general public in any particular way. But within the first couple of months of '09, that all changed for the better.


I have about a half dozen blogs that I follow that are populated by both great established writers and up and coming writers. Blogs such as Razored Zen, The Education of a Pulp Writer, One Word One Rung One Day, Rule of Three, Elaine Ash and Fumbling with Fiction gave me great tips and showed me what my writing was lacking at the time.

Reading these blogs gave me the confidence to start tinkering and expanding my skills to levels that a couple of years ago I wouldn't have thought possible. The yield of this exploration was bountiful indeed: a year long fascination with flash fiction, rediscovering the medium short story, a new story blog and my first commercially published short story.

It also gave me the confidence to once again start writing a novel (yay!) with the goal of finishing it in the spring of 2010, where I will (with much trepidation) explore the twin yellow brick road of querying agents & publishers (have no fear, I also have Nathan Bransford's fine blog bookmarked as a fave).

Where does that leave the other part of my writing journey? For the time being, self publishing will go to the back burner, as I realize that I don't quite have what it takes to self-publish at this juncture of my life. Maybe further on down the road it will be something worthwhile to explore, but for now, I think after an almost three year hiatus, it's time to start getting my ego bruised again.

note: the above paragraph will give my two personal chat room stalkers quite a bit of ammo for the coming year. I know this because both of them actually visit my blog for info to harass me about.

2} Blogging.

Coming into 2009, I was starting to hit my stride with my blogging. I managed to pound out 160+ posts in 2008, built up a small but loyal following and was having fun while doing it. For 2009, I added a few new things to the overall content, one of which was book reviews. As opinionated as I am, one of the things I never really offered my opinion on before this blog, were books. My reading tastes are to say at the very least, eclectic, at the very most, provocative. So I never felt very comfortable offering my two cents on stuff that I liked.

But, to use a baseball analogy, the grounder done hugged the chalk line for extra bases. I decided to do this review of a book that I first heard about on David Cranmer's blog (see link up above). Well, the responses I got to the review gave me enough of a push to make it another feature of my blog. If you click on the tag "Book Reviews", you'll find seven more reviews totaling about 10 books and a book series, all of which are about as informative as you will find elsewhere.

Besides doing book reviews, I also added in more posts about writing, music, work and whatever else that happened to cross my path. I also picked up more casual readers and friends along the way, who helped turn my blog into what you see today. For that I will always be eternally grateful.

To sum up my 2009: It was a very long and eventful Real Wolrd/Cyber World journey that brought me to new highs (getting a short story published, creating a new story blog), new lows (getting severely stalked and harassed in the chat room over my first book, losing a few fellow bloggers), and some growing pains (creating a new story blog, reluctantly tidying up my blog by nuking a few posts).

So, how 'bout your Cyber World and/or Real World of 2009? Was it all that you expected it to be?


  1. I went from 2 commenters to about 20 regular ones. For that I am thankful.

  2. Cyber world rocked pretty much throughout. The real world did too until about September. Then a lot of hassles began to occur. But the writing world in general was very good to me in 09.

  3. Good post Georgie. I'll have to think about my last year, but every day since Christmas has been awful so far, so I'll avoid making any judgements because the last few days would make for a very negative response!

  4. I had no expectations, so they were exceeded :) Happy New Year!

  5. Not at all like I expected. The changes were all good, except I wish I had gotten more done, professionally. What I got done worked out well, but I wish there had been more of it.

    Congratulations on a great year, sounds like! :-)

  6. Bearman: glad to hear it. when you're good, people are bound to find out about you through word of mouth.

    Charles: my real world was a bit in turmoil after October as well. i'm hoping to have some kind of similar success for '10.

    Joe: thanks. the real challenge I'm going to be facing is not letting my real world issues bleed into my blogging too much. i don't want the crap i'm going through affect my blogging to the point where i'm simply a grump all the tiem.

    R.K.: sometimes having none makes it that much better when things go right. :D Happy New Year as well.

    Natasha: sometimes having a year with just a small peak is better than having a year that's flat.

    Thanks. I think overall writing-wise it was more than I expected it to be. now i want to build on that little bit of success to have a better 2010.

  7. There's a real world?

    And, what is up with these chat room people?

  8. Mama Z: sometimes there is a real world out there. one that needs to be conquered on a daily basis in order to feed the need of this world.

    as for the chat room folks...i could make a fourth blog just dealing with the three years spent meandering around a truly toxic part of the cyber world.

    but with those in particular, they're actually people i know who decided for whatever reason, to develope an intense hatred of yours truly.

    doesn't really bother me much anymore. they have their own pathetic little lives while I have my own rich and robust life to explore.

  9. I must be getting old because Father Time is definitely zippity-do-dahing along so quickly, I haven't even had time to take in what happened in July yet - never mind the end of the year upon us!

    I'm glad the toxic part of the cyber world isn't infecting you any longer, G!

  10. Zippity-do-dahing? I don't think I've heard that phrase used in that particular way before....

    Noooooo, now I got that song wandering around in my head....:D

    I know, it really is amazing how quickly the year has flown by. Father Time had his track shoes on this time around.

    Yeah, it's taken almost three years to finally wise up and take the cure...I do have some friends from there that help me stay afloat while I'm visiting, so all is now right with that little part of my Cyber World.

  11. Yoo reely kikking bucktotts in 2009, G!!

    and reememmber -- nobutty kan broose yor ego unless yoo letting dem!!

    blue bunny

  12. Blue Bunny: No truer words of wisdom could possibly be said.

    If it were up to me, I make sure that you get an extra special bonus for being such a dedicated worker.

  13. See then, the year wasn't all bad! N you made some gains-
    I neglected feeling obligated to a recap, so didn't.
    Looks like it's a good thing I don't get into chatrooms- Folks are too clicky n cruel-

    I for one have enjoyed the journey portrayed in your intense mission here-

    Happy New Year!

  14. Congrats on a great year of blogging. Your blog is always a great place to hang out and chat for a while.

    Happy New Year!!! Keep writing.

  15. Snaggle: Fer shure. I just went back after a four day break and it's gotten more insane over there. Makes me kind of glad that I've cut done.

    Originally, I wasn't going to do a recap, but I figure since a lot of other people took the time to create thoughtful posts about how their year went, I might as well join in the festivities.

    Hope you had a goody.

    Kelly: Thanks. And that is the best comment I've ever gotten about my blog. I really do appreciate the fact that you feel quite comfortable in visiting and staying for awhile.

    Hope you had a goody.

  16. Not many people would so publically share their development as a writer.. all credit to you:) Best of luck in 2010 G. Onwards and upwards!

    2009 wasn't my best either rw/cyber - guess I was still reeling from the number of deaths in my family in 2008. I'm gonna make a more determined effort to get my act together this year:)

  17. Jane: I have no problem in sharing my development as a writer. I've been hammered from pillar to post for the past two years in the chat rooms, so I'll be damned if I'm gonna let anybody say otherwise about me without me responding to it.

    I will be sharing more about my continuing growth as a writer this year.

    2009 was actually a decent year overall for me, and I am looking forward to a better 2010.


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G. B. Miller

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