Tuesday, December 30, 2008


2008 is almost over! The number 8 in Chinese culture is lucky, so 2008 was supposed to be a lucky year. Looking back, it was rather a good year for me. I fulfilled some dreams--like walking on the Great Wall of China and visiting Taiwan with my parents. I also finished my novel which definitely took some luck.

The number 9 is synonymous with longevity in Chinese culture (hope that bodes well for the longevity WHERE THE MOUNTAIN MEETS THE MOON!), so 2009 is a year to think of long term ambitions. Here are 9 of my personal goals for the year (some are a little less aspiring than others):

1. Write a new good novel. Make books without any excuses-- work that I know that I have done to the best of my ability so that it doesn't matter what anyone says.

2. Grow my hair at least 3 more inches so I can donate it. This is actually kind of hard, because my hair is driving me a little crazy. I haven't had it this long for a while.)

3. Charity. Robert's Snow is a project that I am proud of but, not only is it too much responsibility for me to take on again, it is also a project of the past that, for now, I want to leave in the past. But I feel strongly about my art and charitable giving...so I'm working on a new project that will be revealed in the new year. Stay tuned!

4. Make dumplings. This is something I haven't done since I was a child with my mother. If I remember correctly, they were far superior than store-bought ones. I think this is a good year to find out if that is true.

5. Participate. I read a fair amount of blogs and lists but I never comment. I rarely even respond to comments on my own blog. I guess I am still in a weird-shy-lurking phase...that I will get over this year.

6. Do every school visit to the best of my ability. I've booked quite a few visits this spring, and I am SO grateful and honored that schools have requested me. The only problem is that sometimes my introverted nature takes over and students, schools, librarians and teachers begin to blur. I am going to make a special effort to check myself this year.

7. Learn how to make a frosting flower. I really want to get some impressive cake decorating skills down!

8. Embrace marketing, but know my limits. In this current climate, I need to give my books all the help they can get. I don't want to be QVC salesperson, but I'd like to get as many people who might be interested in my new book know about it.

9. Be thankful. No matter what this year brings, I know there will always be something to be grateful for. With thankfulness, nothing is ever that bad and the best things are even better. And that is something I hope stays with me for a long, long time.