What are the major themes of your life, the areas where you want to invest your time, energy, skills and resources? Over the course of the past year, as I hit 40, I identified four areas that I wanted to broadly commit to: write, read, run, lead.
So how did I do?
I have ambitions to write my own books and this year I wrote zero. So on that score, 2015 was not a success.
For many years I’ve measured success in my writing but the progress of this blog. This year was OK. 19,000 people read this blog in 2015, which is not an insignificant number. Although it is 10,000 less than in 2014. Interestingly I posted more than twice as frequently, so make of that what you will about the quality of my work. Although I achieved more views on half as many posts as I managed in 2011.
The summary of this blog though was I began to write more but have fewer people read it. By that token 2015 was a mixed success.
I didn’t really write for anyone else and I would like to do more guest blogging if possible. It’s a good exercise because here I can be lazy and hit publish whenever I feel like it – for other sites, an article has to be more accomplished and that’s a good discipline.
However during 2015 I’ve been earning regular money from writing and editing. Not everyone can say that. I’ve had opportunities to work on some book projects at least one of which will come out in the first half of 2016 and if that goes well will lead to further projects.
I’ve also had the privilege of talking with friends as they’ve published their books and through some friendly consultancy seen positive results. It’s exciting to be a small part of other people’s success. Even more than before having your book published, irrespective of what happens next is a success.
Editing then by most measures has been the most fruitful aspect to writing of 2015 and that is a little unexpected. It also takes a little adjusting to because I was discouraged. I was discouraged by my lack of reader growth on this blog, my lack of books, and I was, frankly, disappointed by what I was producing. A few hits but an awful lot of misses. Finding pleasure in helping other people succeed then was a challenge to my pride and ambition but it has been a good one.
During the autumn of 2015 I began to discover a fresh desire to write both here and on other projects and am much more hopeful about my writing and editing prospects for 2016.