Reflections on 2020

The past two years I’ve written reflection posts in my usual tongue in cheek manner, looking back at my previous resolutions, rounding up the year. But it’s hard to reflect much positivity back on to this year just gone, when it’s just been so fucking horrible for so many people.

We’ve – touch wood – been lucky so far. Covid hasn’t directly affected us yet, or our loved ones, but I’m achingly aware every minute that it could. My anxiety was off the scale early on, but I found ways around it. Writing helped. It always does, though once again, I didn’t write here, but I wrote another novel (and a third of one that I abandoned, sorry about that, I’ll come back to you at some point, pesky narrative that I suspect is actually two books all snarled together.) I had weekly zooms with my writing group, and they honestly helped keep me sane, them and another group of friends I met for adventures in Dungeons and Dragons land – don’t laugh until you’ve tried it. Then you’ll laugh because it’s brilliant fun. But little things kept me going mentally this year, when lockdown and the horrors of homeschooling a child who hates school at the best of times nearly broke me.

Professionally, seeing as I can now kind of say that, actually, it was a pretty good year. My debut novel was picked up by a publisher! It took a while, and I didn’t think it was going to happen, but it did, and my novel is being published in March! I’m delighted. It will be available in ebook format on all your usual platforms, and also on paperback in WaterstonesFoyles and Blackwells. I still can’t quite believe it’s happening, it’s literally my life long dream come true. I’m an author!

Canelo to publish debut by Sarah Lawton

And how amazing is this cover? I can’t wait to have a copy actually in my hands. It still feels unreal.

Book cover for All The Little Things

I do feel like I should stick to tradition though and have a look at last years resolutions, and see how I did. In summary they were:

  1. Train the dog not to be a headcase
  2. Get fit
  3. Write another book

Well, number 1 has been on the list since the start of 2019, and is still a nerp. Honestly, I think it’s a given that the dog is certifiable and I just need to accept her for what she is – a little ball of frothing, snarling, everything hating fur on the end of a lead whenever I take her out. It’s tiresome apologising to every person we encounter, but so be it. Maybe I should start walking her at 4am.

2 was also a fail. I had a good spell at the beginning of lockdown, but I plopped off the wagon. I think I’m a bit slimmer than this time last year, but taking the washing upstairs still makes me out of breath, so it’s staying on the list again this year and I WILL stick to it, seeing as I am actually forty now (gah!)

3 – I managed this one! I sent my second novel to my agent the day before my birthday. I don’t expect to hear anything for a while though, so I had a relaxing and quiet Christmas. I’ve started planning book 3 too…

So what should I try and do for this year, 2021? It’s an odd one I’m sure, post the sadness that is Brexshit and still wrapped tightly in the clutches of fucking covid, but maybe it’ll work out in the end. I still have faith. Anyway, here’s my three for this year:

  1. Get fit (hopefully losing two stone in the process, but I’ll settle for not collapsing on the washing run)
  2. Write book three
  3. Start blogging again

Yep, I’m starting the blog again, but it’s not going to be with all the baggage of trying to get people to read it, like I used to. That’s now reserved for my book (buy my book! Please!) but I do want to reserve some non-fiction headspace. Something I’d really like to do is review books by other debut writers, at least one a month. I’ll enjoy it and I know it’s something useful to do for my new community. Plus seeing as I’m still paying for this space I really should start using it again!!

I’ll sign off sending my love to anyone who might actually read this, and hope that you’re getting the support you need to get through these difficult scary times. I’m with you. 2021, we’re ready.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.