I decided to start my year-review (“Retrospect And Reminiscing”, if you hadn’t guessed that already) a day earlier than originally intended because I realised that I’m due to write a post for the TCWT chain on the 24th and therefore didn’t otherwise have twelve days in which to write about the year. January won’t retrospectively alter itself before tomorrow, though, so I think we’re safe.
It’s going to be impossible to find a photo of me from every month of the year unless I use vlog screenshots, but here’s a mugshot from January anyway.
In order to properly review a month that seems ever so distant, I’m referring to my Facebook timeline from the beginning of the year, as well as any blog posts I wrote. Let’s have a look at it, then…
January had some ups and downs and at many points, it seemed to have more downs. I struggled a great deal with relationships – not of the romantic sort, but of the “daily interaction” sort – as I managed to alienate myself from quite a lot of people.
This mostly took the form of my blog, where attention seemed to be focused on a post I wrote criticising the lack of education about LGBTQ issues in our society, which several of my classmates took as a personal attack, and which resulted in a great deal of cyber-harassment on Twitter. That particular aspect wasn’t much fun, and made me pretty miserable for a while. It was the first time I felt obliged to defend my opinion on my own blog, but I stand by what I said, and I’m glad I wrote it.
I believe that controversy and debate is crucial to strengthening one’s opinions. Being verbally abused by idiots on Twitter isn’t. But I hope as a result I’ve grown a thicker skin, because it was a pretty difficult time.
January was also a month in which my favourite item of clothing, a fleece-lined leather aviator hat, went missing after being dropped at school and was never seen again. I mourn it, and regret its passing, and now endure cold ears because I have no money to buy another one.
But it wasn’t all miserable: it was the month we published St Mallory’s Forever!, five minutes before midnight on the 21st January, meaning that I was still only sixteen, by a whisper. Although book two is progressing more slowly than we’d hoped, nobody has decried us as fakes yet, and most people seem to have enjoyed it, so I reckon it was a successful first foray into publication.
Then, of course, I had my seventeenth birthday and got a provisional driving license. My driving lessons happened later, and without much success, but I’ll cover that in a different post.
After that, I became a YouTube partner, meaning I could monetize my videos. It’s now December and I’ve received no money from it, but the fact remains that I can call myself a YouTube partner and enjoy the (so far non-financial) benefits of that existence, like customized thumbnails, which are always fun. I finally edited the second half of my Sherlock/John cosplay video and uploaded it during that month, too.
Interestingly, Facebook suggests that the mind map of “initial ideas” (which later became my NaNo novel in November) that I have stuck on my wardrobe door was written during that month, suggesting I was stewing that novel around for ten months before it amounted to anything. It’s interesting to look at it now and see how I kept the central concept but pretty much none of the rest of it – it could have gone in a totally different direction and been a very different story.
As for writing, I was working on a second draft of what will one day be the final book in the Death and Fairies series (though then it was the third in the trilogy), which grew by thirty thousand words almost solely as a result of the existence of a character called Fergal. I blame him so much for messing up all my plots; he’s half the reason the series grew so much. I started writing poetry, too, which acted as a kind of journal and by which I can retrospectively examine my emotions.
January also marked the formal beginning (if such a thing can be said to exist) of an identity crisis that continued for, well, months. I’m going to talk about that in a future post, but it was something that started just after my birthday and dramatically altered my worldview. It probably made my emotions quite a lot more delicate than they already were, so it explains why everything seemed so dramatic at the time.
However, the most life-changing thing that can be said to have happened was the discovery that Hamlet! The Musical was on Spotify in its entirety, which was incredible. Seriously, if you haven’t already listened to it, you totally should. It’s glorious.
So that was January. Some ups, some downs, and some changes. Tomorrow, I’ll write about February, but in the meantime – what do you remember about January 2013? What stood out in your life?