My New Year’s Writing Resolutions

I’m not one to do resolutions normally as I don’t really believe in self-improvement, which makes me un-American, practically. But last year, I had a mini-breakthrough with resolutions. I resolved that I wasn’t going to fiddle with my phone looking at emails or texts when somebody was *actually there* talking to me, and I did it–and I stuck with it–because fiddling with your damn phone rather than paying attention is rude. I mean, the email will always sit there; time with a real person is valuable.

To wit, I’ll make some writing resolutions.

1. I am going to finish my conference paper 3 weeks before it’s due. Since I am only planning to attend ACSP this year, this should be manageable.

2. I am going to turn around revise and resubmits in a month or less.

3. I am turning off the Internet entirely when I write.

4. When critiquing my own drafts, I am going to write positive, constructive things instead of “this sounds deranged” and “where’s the argument?”

Things that scare me, in no way related to cities

1. Crocodiles. Eek.

2. Junior high English teachers. This is just common sense.

3. Dolls. They have eyes, they don’t blink. Creepy.

4. Aliens. Star Trek has never satisfactorily explained what all this probing was about, and I don’t believe any of that pre-Prime-Directive ranny-gazzoo.

5. Snakes, spiders and rats. There is a reason that vampires don’t run with guinea pigs and koala bears.

6. Sharks. If you’ve ever watched Spring Break Shark Attack, either the original or the sequel, or the discovery channel, you just plain know: DON’T GO INTO THE WATER.

7. Getting floss stuck in my teeth. What if it never comes out?

8. Fish hooks. They may seem like inert metal barbs, but they are really sitting there, plotting against my eyeballs. I just know it.

9. People with velociraptor sternums. Where do those come from? Madonna, whom I admire as a business woman, is looking way too much like an East German weight lifter these days for comfort.

10. Everybody on my tenure committee, people who used to be friends and colleagues and mentors, and are now people behind closed doors and closed conversations.

11. My own monkey brain. The more I don’t think about tenure and how much it is bothering me, the more the anxiety comes out in odd, unpredictable ways.

I’m going to go back to coding.