Well, 2021 didn’t quite work out as planned—did anyone’s 2021?—but when you’re an optimist as I am, you seek out the good things when you look back on a year.
First and foremost, no-one I know and love died of Covid (or anything else). Last year, we joked about 2021 returning to the time when Corona was merely a beer, bubbles only belonged in champagne and self-isolation was not something so many people had to do.
But I am in the extremely fortunate position of living in a country where the vaccination was made available to the masses quickly and I’m starting 2022 having had both doses and the booster.
Let’s raise a glass to science.
Secondly, I didn’t lose my job. The pandemic has wrecked many sectors and businesses (compounded by the mess that is Brexit in the UK). My husband and I have been able to work throughout.
Thirdly, the dreaded writer burn-out didn’t hit. Many writers have talked about this—the inability to find enough concentration to put pen to paper and spin out stories while the hideousness of the pandemic plays out in the background.
(Ooh! Bonus points for three uses of alliteration in that sentence, right?)
I published two books, finished one and wrote another two this year. My book sales are slow but steady, rather like the running style I employed in the days when I jogged. I will never win awards, but I plod on, determined to get to the finishing line.
In the summer, I signed a contract with Wattpad in May for the audio-visual rights to one of my stories. In all likelihood, it won’t come to anything, but I enjoyed a few weeks of casting various actors as my characters, which is more challenging to do than you might expect.
On the minus side. I continue to find reading books a challenge. Ever since I can remember, I’ve read books, often getting through two or three a week. That stopped last year when I started reading newspapers and periodicals instead. Books feel like too much of an intensive work out for my dwindling attention span.
(Though if I can recommend one, I loved Maggie O’Farrell’s Hamnet and raced through it when we holidayed in Dundee in May this year.)
Here in Scotland, we are effectively back in lockdown with large indoor and outdoor gatherings banned, and people encouraged not to mix with more than three households/go out. It’s all a bit same old/same old, but the current situation will end at some point, and I force myself to make the most of it as I’m now at the age where time flies by frighteningly fast and it is wrong to wish it away.
Anyway, thanks for reading. May 2022 bring you health and happiness.
Best wishes, Emma XXX