Back in 2013, I set a goal to write weekly for a year.  Mostly as an exercise in setting and keeping a goal, but also as a way to produce something that would capture who I was and where I was in my life in that year and also talk about some memories I wanted to capture.  Aspirationally, my audience was, more than anything, my kids.  I recall that I didn’t have a great sense of who my parents were other than my parents.  I didn’t know them as people who had lives before, well, me.  So, I thought, maybe I can share some memories with my kids to help them know who I am and who I was and how I got to be the version of me that they knew, as well as kids know a parent.

So, I did write for a year.  I wrote approximately 100k words or what I declared to be a book.  Success!  

While I was reflecting on this last year and what I wanted to work on in the coming year, I thought fondly (because even hard things can be thought of fondly once they are done and in the rearview mirror) of that year of writing.  Fondly enough that I went back and looked at a bit of what I did and was surprised to find that that was a decade ago!  Ten whole years have come and gone since I captured who I was then and where I was in my life.  That got me thinking about whether I wanted to do that again because surely I’m not entirely the same person I was in 2013 as I am and will be in the coming 2023.  That might be fun to explore.  And, I might have some thoughts on some things that I want to write about.  

I looked back at the kickoff post from 2013 and decided to steal/recycle/reuse the basic rules from that post as a framework for my efforts this year.  Those rules will be:

  • A minimum of 1000 words per week
  • Vacations are allowed but I will not break the schedule – which means pre-writing is allowed
  • Published to my blog at weekly by end of day Sunday
  • The first will be on January 1st (this year) and end on December 31st (Yes, there are 53 Sundays in 2023)  
  • The subject will vary from week to week from stories to anecdotes to, probably, random ramblings  
  • The only consistency will be in the cadence, not the content
  • After the posts are up on the blog I will post a brief note on Facebook and Twitter (Yeah, I need to think on this one.  I don’t do Facebook anymore and I’ve recently divorced myself from Twitter.  Tentatively, I’ll say that I’ll post on Mastodon, but more on my thoughts on the state of Social Media in another post)
  • Comments will be on but I will not commit to publishing all of them

I’ve started to brainstorm ideas for things I want to write out this year.  I think I’ll be good for a while.  Just thinking about the last decade a bit, there have certainly been some big events in our world, my country, my life, my kids and even where I live.  Just off the top of my head:

  • I’m retired from a career that I enjoyed and did well at for more than 30 year
  • My kids are firmly on their own paths as self-sustaining adults with good people in their lives
  • I moved from the house and town we lived in for roughly 13 years to an entirely different town and home.  There were definitely some adventures there in the last year that I’d like to talk about.
  • A global pandemic, a “once in a century” event that certainly can’t and won’t happen again any time soon…
  • Eight years of my favorite presidency followed by four years of … my not favorite presidency
  • As noted above, a decade has been enough to change the landscape of social media and what that even means for 2023
  • ChatGPT.  I have thoughts.  If you don’t know what that even is, we’ll talk about it a bit.  I suspect this will turn out to be both bigger than folks realize in long term and smaller than folks fear in the short term.  Yes, it can be both.
  • Retirement, It’s Not For Everyone and thoughts on doing it just before a global recession.  Yup, I’m a genius!
  • Getting older is definitely not for the faint of heart.  Some of this stuff is not fun.
  • What do I want to do with myself now that I work for myself?  How will I know if I’m successful in this phase?

See?  Lots of stuff to think about and talk about and write about for a thousand words a week for a year.  

I’m not going to kid myself that there will be tough weeks.  As much as I can look fondly back at 2013 and what I accomplished, I can also recall the dread of sitting down in front of the keyboard with nothing to write about, convinced that there was no way I could do it.  But I did it then and, barring something that I can’t control or can’t predict, I’ll do it again in the coming year.

I do wonder what the coming year holds for us.  In the US, I suspect we’ll still be dealing with inflation and some form of the recession which unsurprisingly has followed a global pandemic.  So, market instability will likely impact most of us in some way.  Hopefully, the pandemic is largely behind us, so long as we believe in the efficacy of vaccines and continue to make efforts to look out for those folks in our society who most need protection.  On the downside, again at least in the US, we still have some real problems to deal with in our political systems and that’s going to take real work from a large number of people to figure out.  But, I hope we do the work.

In the end, I don’t expect to be 2023 to be radically different from many of the years in the last decade.  There will be things that make us angry, there will be things that pull us together and there will things that make us happy and sad and all of that is alright and part of being a human in this world.  Here’s to a great year and a great Year of Writing!

Categories: Writing


Diane Hardman · January 3, 2023 at 5:17 pm

I look forward to reading your insights and perceptions this year. I too retired the end of June 2021 and am learning to find meaningful endeavors during retirement. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    darrin · January 8, 2023 at 11:25 am

    That’s exciting, Diane! Congratulations on retiring. It’s an exciting new time of life. I hope you’re enjoying it. My best to Dave.

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