“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.”
~ Zora Neale Hurston
2017 was a year of getting back on track. The year before, I closed my freelance copywriting and web design business to return to full-time work. In reality, I was recovering from a bout of severe depression that had made it difficult to work or pursue my business for a couple of years and as a result, I racked up quite a bit of personal debt. I started taking anti-depression medication, saw a therapist and took a job . 2016 was beginning the journey towards a healthy life.
2017 was about completing that journey. I worked hard all year, scrimped and saved, and paid off my debt in full in December 2017. It was a huge accomplishment and a massive weight off my shoulders.
2017 was also a year of deciding that I really wanted to focus on travel-themed fiction and non-fiction writing. Since I was working full-time, I’ve begun by telling the stories of my previous travels during my teen years, 20s and 30s.
I also decided I wasn’t going to pressure myself into making money from my travel writing — at least not initially. Instead, I’m focusing on the art and craft of writing and sharing it here, and eventually in print and online publications.
Since I stayed close to home most of the year, I went on several mini adventures around Toronto, mainly in the city’s many parks and nature areas.
I did travel to Corte Madera, California to attend the Book Passage Travel Writing and Photography Conference. You can read my blog post about my experience here.
I also tried my hand at travel sketching — something I want to do more of this year.
What will 2018 bring? I’m working on what I hope will be the final draft of my memoir about living aboard a sailboat as a teenager. I’m also working on an ebook about creating a daily journal writing practice. I’m also working on a bunch of personal essays that I want to share here on my blog as well submit to publications.
Working full-time means I won’t have as much time for travelling as I would like, but I will continue to explore my city. Despite having lived in Toronto for more than 20 years, there are still areas I don’t know that well. I am also hoping to take a couple of short trips to Montreal and Quebec City, as I’ve been learning French for the last year.
If 2017 gave me the answers I was looking for, then 2018 will be the year of living them.