2016 was a rough year for a lot of people. Between celebrity deaths, politics, and natural disasters, I think it’s safe to say that 2016 will go down in the record books as the year we’d all like to forget.
But personally, 2016 was actually a really fantastic year. My resolutions each New Years are generally the same: read more, travel more, make good memories. And I did all of those things. So I want to reflect back on my highlights of 2016:
January: I celebrated my 30th birthday at home with my family for the first time since I was 18. After years of living and working overseas, I made the decision to move back to the US permanently.
February: Sucked it up and submitted my 2015 NaNoWriMo novel, Whiteout, to Riptide Publishing.
March: Went to Japan with my friend DMac and saw the cherry blossoms. Got a phone call from Riptide: they wanted to publish me! Probably the best month of my life.
April: Got contracts to write three more books with Riptide. Went to RT Convention and met some of the most amazing people in the world (and the coolest roommates, too!).
May: Went to NYC and saw Hamilton with my friend Anna. Found an awesome apartment in Brooklyn to move into.
June: Wrote some books. Moved to New York City. NBD.
July: Had an amazing week at San Diego Comic Con. Then immediately went on a Harry Potter adventure in London with my sister and our friend Steph.
August: The Olympics made me cheer, and then made me cry. And then I wrote an entire book about Olympic divers, so.
September: Walked the Brooklyn Bridge (and another 15 miles of Manhattan after) with Anna on the most perfect day of the year.
October: Got my dream job at Google. Went to GRL and met a whole bunch of really amazing writers and readers.
November: Quit my not-so-dream job. Spent Thanksgiving with my family eating all the food.
December: Traveled to Dallas, then Pittsburgh, and then Ohio (for the Diving National Championships!).
Looking back at it like this, 2016 was a year with some pretty incredible memories. While some darker times overshadowed a lot of the joy and triumph, I’m hoping I can move forward into 2017 with the positive memories weighing heavier than the negative ones.
And in 2017?
Well, January will bring the release of my first book, with four more following in April, May, July, and October. I’ll write more. I’ll travel more. And I’ll try to find the positive in what I’m pretty sure are going to be some dark times ahead.