Resolved: I will have a fracking good 2011

Last year I made three concrete resolutions.

  1. Finish another book.  (DONE: Singular.)
  2. Take a photo every day.  (DONE: 365 Project)
  3. Study Japanese and Chinese.  (Epic Fail.  Within about two weeks.)

Two for three!  That’s not bad.  So.  For next years resolutions, I’m being a little more ambitious.  More specifically: there are a lot of them.  I figure if I can keep up the same ratio of success, it’ll be a good time.  Though it’ll probably be a good time anyway, because I pretty much have the greatest job ever.  (Have I mentioned my 20 days of vacation lately?  My good health care?  My amazing paycheck?  No?  Well, now I have.  But, I digress.)

So!  I have split them into three areas: work, writing, and personal.


    Someday, baby.

  1. I will speak less Japanese in Class: My students have been using my ability to speak and understand Japanese as a crutch.  They don’t use English, nor do they understand English, because they know they don’t have to.  NO LONGER.  And I will have talks with my teaching partners about translating less, or at least only when I give them my wide-eyed look of They Don’t Understand What the Hell I’m Saying HELP ME NOW.
  2. I will apply for the Peace Corps, probably in December.  Because I don’t want to be accepted before I leave Japan, necessitating me to pay for my plane ticket back to the states.  That would be laaaame.  If I get accepted.  OR I will find a way to work in Europe.  Because I’ve decided I love Europe.
  3. I will study Japanese and Chinese. Japanese for 30 minutes every Monday and Wednesday, and Chinese for 20 minutes every Tuesday and Thursday.  The goal: get back to conversational Chinese.  Take (and hopefully pass) the JLPT 2 (Japanese Language Proficiency Test, level 2) in either June or December.
  4. I will apply for the Foreign Service and take the Foreign Service exam in February 2012.  (Can I make resolutions that happen in 2012?  Well, the first half will happen in 2011).  This requires me to re-subscribe to some kind of newspaper.  I did like the NYT reader…


  1. I will finish two novels, a young adult and a romance.  REALLY SCARED FOR THIS ONE, FOLKS.  I have only ever managed to finish one MS a year, even if I can write books in two months.  (Did it for both Singular and Saguaros and Spaceships.  Apparently I also like titles that start with “S”.  Hm.)  Also, haven’t worked on a romance MS in aaages.  But!  I believe in myself!
  2. I will be more active about Marketing Myself.  This means several things.  Updating this blog four times a week (except when traveling).  Commenting on other blogs more often.  Going to online classes and “conferences”.  And, perhaps the most terrifying of all: I have joined twitter.  OMG.  How will I ever finish Writing #1?!  With that to distract me?  WHY MUST THESE CONTRADICTORY GOALS BE SO NECESSARY?!
  3. Okay, enough melodrama.
  4. I will query Singular until I either get an agent or am certain certain CERTAIN that no agent on earth wants to represent it.  Oh god, the second half of that sentence really made me depressed.
  5. Exempting emergencies/travel, I will not take longer than a week to crit.  Ever.  Because it just makes me feel guilty.

Oh, querying. Other writers will get this joke.


    I love this charity bad.

  1. I will enter at least one photo contest.  I am proud of (some of) my photos.  I work hard on my technique and my framing.  And though I may not be the greatest at editing, I think I do pretty okay.  SO.  I want to see whether others agree with me.  And thus I will enter contests.  Most likely free ones.  Or not free ones that benefit charities.
  2. I will get my credit card balance below $1000 and keep it there.  The damn credit card may be helpful for purchasing plane tickets, but it is a main contributor to my still not-paid-in-full Student Loans of Doom.  (Okay, not doom.  Just Chinese water torture.)  This also means I will only travel if I can afford to pay for it all upfront.  OH NO.  I will never leave my island.
  3. I will read a book a week, and possibly do the 2011 Debut Author Challenge.  But nonfiction books count as two books, because those suckers take a crapload of effort to read.
  4. I will donate at least $20 a month to charity: water.  I am blessed enough that I can afford to give twelve people clean water for twenty years.  It won’t hurt that bad.  Swears.  (And maybe you could, too!)
  5. I will hold another charity: water drive.  In 2009, I raised $2500.  In 2011 I’m going for $5000.  I want a well with my name on it, DANGIT.  I want a whole village to have water because of me, my family, and my friends.  DANGIT.
  6. I will run 5x a week, even if that running is only 5 or 10 minutes.  Especially when I eat a lot of cookies, cause goodness knows I love the cookies.

NOW DO YOU SEE HOW CRAZY I AM?  Yeah.  Super crazies.  Can I do it?  Well, maybe 2/3.  😀

SO.  Do you have any resolutions?  Do you think I’m crazy?  Will you please, please, PLEASE keep me accountable for some of these!  I’m nervous as heck!