So here it is – another year over, a new one about to begin. 2016 was an odd year, wasn’t it? Referendums and US elections yielding unexpected and (to me) unwelcome results; the worrying rise in popularity of the  far right; all those celebrity deaths; the ongoing tragedies in Syria.

I don’t do politics on this blog – there’s enough of it elsewhere. Instead it’s time for my annual goal-setting exercise. I looked back at last year’s new year blog post to see what I’d targeted myself with in 2016 and found this:

So what am I planning to achieve in 2016? Actually for once I don’t have as many definite goals. It’s more a case of keep on keeping on. I want to maintain fitness and try to keep weight off. I want to keep writing the dual timeline novels I love writing, and which people seem to like reading. I will definitely write another complete novel in the year, and as that will be the second contract completed I’ll then need to work on getting another one.

Keep on keeping on. Easy enough, for once! Maintain fitness – yes, kind of. Keep weight off – hmm, crept up a little over the year. Keep writing – yes, definitely done that. I completed a novel which is currently awaiting publication, and I did manage to secure a new contract for three more books, one of which I’m a third through writing.

2017 is going to be a rather different year for me. The company I work for in my day job (John Lewis) give employees six months paid leave when you have completed 25 years service. I qualified a while ago but we’d always known we would wait until both sons had left home for university before taking the leave, and 2017 is the year we ear-marked. My husband’s retired so no issues with him having time off.

Back in February 2016 we bought a  motorhome and our plan is to travel through France, Italy, around the Adriatic, back through the Alps and across to Spain, starting in April and coming home in early October. I’ll be blogging about it – for anyone who wants to follow our travels! While we’re away travelling I do intend writing each day. I have to – to meet the deadlines of my new contract – but I also can’t imagine not writing for that long. It’s too much part of my life now.

So, my 2017 goals are:

  • To make the most of the six months travelling
  • To come home part way through the trip so we can make it to our son’s graduation!
  • To complete the book I am currently working on
  • To be about 2/3 through the next book by the end of the year

Finally, let me wish you all a very happy and prosperous New Year, and I hope 2017 is better for the world than 2016 was. Have a great evening, whether you’re out partying or curling up alone with a good book, and here’s to 2017!

(free fireworks image from here)