Friday, January 8, 2010

The Dark Side of the New Year

I’m one of the first to wax on about how wonderful new years are, with all that shiny promise (365 days of it!) stretched out ahead of us. Anything is possible. Diets, exercise, love, health, happiness! It’s pretty darn fantastic, actually.
Usually my expectations include writing-related goals. But with those particular possibilites there is a dark cloud hovering nearby in the form of one simple, lung quaking word.


(Insert crashing, ominous organ music here.)

It’s simply impossible to avoid. For my writing life, the new year brings paperwork, spreadsheets, and filing. I keep two folders for receipts—one for household, one for writing (obsessive?). I have an Excel spreadsheet for writing expenses, too, because when I try to add up all those receipts with a calculator it’s not pretty (am I the only one who gets through one stack only to hit a wrong button and have to *&^&# start all over again?). January 1st rolls around and I need to create new excel sheets—and so far I already have several purchases including OVRWA dues (filed under “dues”) and JB’s new book & Mary’s new book (“Research”) and postage for some books I mailed out last week (“postage”).

Does January first bring out your inner organizer, too? I always have to create new files for all my writing. “2010” subfolder “New Writing” already has in it three new proposals, my current work in progress (which was dragged over from 2009), and a brand new project. All last year’s paperwork has to be sorted through, filed, and packed away. Tax info has to be filled out, checked and double-checked so that the nice people at the IRS won’t see fit to do an audit.

In truth I’m a very organized person (the Virgo in me?), but I admit, it’s organized chaos (I can get others to verify this). I’m not so picky that I mind. As long as I know where everything is, I’ll be just fine as I seek out those new possibilities—like that brand new project sparkling with promise.

How about you and your possibilities? Anything special you’re planning this year? Do calculators give you fits?

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