End Of Year Round-Up 2019
The end of 2019 is upon us. And with that, goes another year of resolutions made and broken. At least that’s how it is for me.
I spent the start of the year on a high, going vegetarian for three months, only not to do it right and end up having to come off. I made new connections and some long-lasting friends. My mental health took a roller coaster ride before crashing and burning towards the end of the year. I rewrote chapter two of What Are You Scared Of? at least five times and I changed the opening to How To Build The Perfect Boyfriend a couple more! I went to a bunch of country concerts and redecorated my writing room. I went to MCN Manchester and Thought Bubble conventions.
Some good things, some not-so-good things. That doesn’t mean that 2019 was a bad year. It was a year for growing and discovery for me. Even when things looked like they got bad, I learned more about myself and who I am. Starting the process of getting a hard autism diagnosis helped me understand how I behave better. Going to get checked for cancer gave me a clear thumbs-up on my health but showed me what I needed to improve. I gained and lost some amazing writing partners this year but they gave me inspiration and memories that I will hold for a very long time.
I have decided that going into 2020 isn’t about erasing all those not-so-good things in 2019. It’s about learning from them and using them to make me stronger. I’ve spent the last week thinking about what I can do going forward, what comes next for me, and how I can go forward.
When it comes to being creative and doing my writing, I have decided that if I want to do this, I have to make it happen. No more procrastinating (easier, said than done, right?) and getting distracted (damn you TikTok!). Research and inspiration, yes! But two hours watching stuff with no real purpose other than “I’m bored and can’t be bothered”, no more.
One thing I have decided to do is to start blogging more. Whereas I want to talk more about my characters and books (which I promise to do as well) I also want to start writing more, interacting, sharing and getting out in the community. I want to podcast, maybe even vlog in the future, but there are some things to work out around that first. Also, I want to start doing newsletters, but again, still working on that!
One thing I do know that I am going to do is to start participating in the writing hashtags on Twitter. There are a couple and I really fail on keeping up with them. I’ve set reminders and starting utilizing the calendar in mail apps (about time!) to keep up with them. It will give me the chance to get involved as well as gain some valuable experience and practice. And each week / bi-weekly / monthly (clearly I haven’t decided!) I will give a Hashtag Round-Up of these on my blog.
There is a great hub of writers in these hashtags and connecting with them is a great way to meet new and fellow writers, discover new stories and get involved with the wider community.
One of the new hashtags starting in 2020 is #DailyWriteLGBTQ. Hosted by the amazing @EvieDrae, Evie has done a lot for the LGBTQ+ writing community, hosting and promoting a variety of different hashtags while still working on her own writing projects as well. She was one of the first people I interacted with when I delved into the world of writing hashtags and I have appreciated their advice and support!
There are a lot of other hashtags but I will report on them in the Hashtag Round-Up as I come across them.
I want to take a moment to give a shout out to some of the amazing people I have got to work with in 2019. Creating these characters in my head is really fun but being able to bring them to life in art form is utterly amazing. I am honored to get to work with these people, some of them even on a regular basis to help me bring my characters to life!
I have got to work with @muepin back many years ago when I was mostly into commissioning fanart. This year, Mue has given me some fantastic artwork on my characters, one of them which is of Finn playing Spiderman on his PS4 which is now my lock screen wallpaper! He also helped me create the final design of Marc, Finn’s older brother!
Overwhelmed by their success, Michael “Mitch” Rust decides to take his rock band Frantic from the US to his second home, Germany. But the band that used to sell out shows overseas finds itself unable to take off in Europe. Mitch sticks with his decision – but his band finds it hard to deal with the new situation and Mitch’s often rapid fluctuations in mood.Frantic Live by Mue.
A drama/romance with LGBTQ themes, and a protagonist living with bipolar II disorder.
@batwynn has done a lot of work for me this year with about five different pieces. Some of their work features on my site, including Finn on the 404 page! The Summer Vacation piece which featured all five of my characters was a personal favorite and I really appreciate all the great work he has done for me this year!
Batwynn also does a lot of Teen Wolf fanart which I adore, some amazing photography, has an Etsy store with goods to sell, and does some amazing concept and design art. Go take a look at their Twitter for more information!
@moodyspoodys made my characters Finn and Harrison into characters from cheesy horror movies so I could create a retro Halloween poster for my writing room! Amazing to work with, kept me in the loop and gave me some great ideas to work with.
Other shout outs go to @vampesque, @xmencryptid, x-kedar-x, mink, @norangellll, @LadyShezka, @smnius, @kamidog, @hlrart and a handful of others who have, unfortunately, changed usernames, closed accounts or moved on but I still appreciate the work they have completed for me.
Please check out the artists linked above and show them some love. Some of them have comics, art projects, zines, Patreons and many other ways to show them support!
And that about rounds up this post, the final one for 2019. Thank you to everyone that I have met and talked to this year, those of you I have got to work with professionally or fan out with, those who have inspired me and those who continue to support me. I really appreciate it!
If you stuck it out to the end of this post, thanks for reading! I hope you had a wonderful holiday season and all the best in the New Year! See you in 2020!