I haven’t made new resolutions for 2018.
This is the story of why, or at least how, two resolutions — count ’em, two — have worked for me and lasted for decades. (Don’t count how many decades.)
For Christmas when I was in sixth grade, I got a “day-by-day” book from my parents. It was (and is) paperback, with Peanuts cartoons for each day. I resolved to write in it every day, so I wouldn’t miss a cartoon. (Seriousness started early.)
Then, on Jan. 1 of that year, I wrote my two most significant words: Dear Diary.
Now, even a long nap will find me waking up needing to write — it’s that hard to sleep without writing something. That’s helped a lot in my life as a writer. It’s made me a writer.
My other resolution began with the diary I started halfway through my junior year at Valparaiso University. I was reading “tons” of books for classes, but I didn’t know how much I was reading outside of classes. I resolved to keep a list of Books Finished in 19–, which has become an annual fixture now headed Books Read Completely — 2018.
(I raced to finish the third part, but first book, of the Winston Churchill biography I was reading, “The Last Lion,” and got it onto 2017’s list — as book 31 — around 11:30 p.m. That must be why I adjusted this year’s title to Books Read Completely. As of Jan. 5, that’s all the list has — the title.)
Now, as long as I can recall when I read a particular book, I can look up a review, or at least a reaction. Also, it’s fun to look at trends of who and what I was reading at a particular time.
Looking up what I’ve read by particular authors can be treacherous, however. Cross-indexing the list (back into the past century) would take away precious time from reading — and from writing.
Seriously, you wouldn’t want that, would you?
Margaret Serious has a page on Facebook. Resolve to stop by!
Filed under: Writing