Blog Talk

The End of 2022

Sunrise, Sunset

Warning: this is a rambly-ass blog. It’s a little taste of the ‘real’ aka less edited and tidied up version of my voice than usual.

For me, December is the month of reflection and planning.

I love looking back at all the things I’ve done and/or not managed to do, it gives me a sense of achievement (which is where 70%-80% of my self-worth comes from) and it gives me drive going forward.

I’m also a big fan of spreadsheets and the like because it gives you a way to measure these things which always gives me the warm fuzzies.

And as things only count if you share them on social media, I’m going to share my 2022 reflections with you. The 2023 plan going forward will be another blog.

Read more: The End of 2022

On the writing and horror side…

I managed to sell four short stories this year, those being Frank, which became a Podcast, Beyond the Sea, Stella and The Chest.

I sent Walk in the Woods to a professional horror editor and have worked my way through the edits. Only one last check through and it should be out to agents approx. mid-2023. A Man in Winter was released by Brigid Gate Press and I self-published Firefly.

The Water: Sirens, Selkies and Sea Monster anthology I contributed to won an awesome award. That makes me a contributor to two award-winning anthologies. I’m so damn privileged to be able to be in these books.

I managed to increase traffic to the website and had my best year yet, which is amazing, thank you all so much! I cannot express in words how happy I am that you choose to visit my small corner of the horror world.

I’m even starting to see a very small improvement on the YouTube and TikTok channels, the algorithm is starting to notice me.

I also managed to do a couple of blog tours and was interviewed on a podcast as well.

On the personal side…

One of my goals this year was to get out and do things more. After having the ability to go out curtailed by global events I wanted to make the most of 2023 and I certainly did, this year I went out a lot. I didn’t travel far, everything I did with friends and family was relatively local, I think the furthest from home I went was London on a couple of occasions.

I went for countryside and coastal walks, explored museums and zoology parks, and went on activities like bowling and axe throwing with friends. We also attended live outdoor experiences like Prime Evil.

I think I was probably out and about far more than I was at home on weekends this year. Goal reached!

I also wanted to explore the culinary world more, basically, try new restaurants I’d been hesitant to try before. I certainly did that, I tried proper sushi for the first time, real Korean comfort food, Greek food, and Turkish food.

While this wasn’t a goal as such, as it is a solid hobby of mine, I managed to go to the theatre with friends and family on 11 occasions this year. We finally managed to go to a comedy club for a night of stand-up. I attended the cinema four times, and one of those attendances was at a small independent cinema which I am determined to visit more, it was such a cute experience and I got to see a film I’d never have seen otherwise.

I started a new day job in January, and joined the diverse abilities staff network, which supports staff members who are neurodiverse, and have long-term health conditions or disabilities. I became one of the co-chairs of the network and attended various events to spread awareness and support, including Windrush day, Pride, Disability History Month, and various disability conferences (in person and remotely). I became a qualified mental health first aider and have started learning sign language.

We bought our first home in 2021 and we spent this year doing some awesome small-scale renovations, we put in a new floor in the conservatory, redecorated the hallway put in a cat flap for Finny & Mia and completely overhauled the garden, its got flower beds and pathways now 😊

Lastly, in the miscellaneous category, I got my third tattoo and have booked and

prepaid for my half sleeve (I’m going to be a walking horror emblem).

I started going to a gym and taking walks every day in my quest to become more

active as I edge closer and closer to 40.

I reached out to a couple of universities regarding reading for a PhD, decided on one completed a proposal and an application form which have been reviewed by uni staff and are ready to be formally submitted in January 2023.

I became carbon neutral by contributing to Wren (really can’t recommend this enough. They ask you some questions to work out your carbon footprint and then you donate to projects to gobble up the carbon, you can make yourself almost neutral, neutral or carbon positive). I think it’s impossible in this society to not produce carbon, my commute to work alone makes it impossible for me, so this is a really good way to undo the harm I cause.

Overall I’d say 2022 was a kick-ass year and I’m excited for 2023.

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