As we reach the bridge between 2020 and 2021 we can look both ways, like Janus. We look back over the distance we have travelled and we can see just how much the landscape has changed around us. And we can look forward into 2021, into the mist of uncertainty. We have learned the hard way this year, that our plans and resolutions could turn to dust in an instant.
In 2020, the world changed around us and some recovery time is essential if we are to stay well and continue to be creative. Some of us have lost our livelihoods; others lost their lives in this time of extremes and we are desperate to return to normal
Except that no one is clear what ‘normal’ is anymore. In many ways, everything has changed; we have been forced to embrace new technology which allows us to do things we didn’t know we wanted to do. Some have learned how to work from home, whilst others are having to retrain and look for other ways to earn a living.
There has been a seismic shift in perceptions as well. What really matters to us has changed; how we live our lives, who and what we value. And we have witnessed the true spirit of humanity in random acts of kindness.
My plan for 2021 is quite simple: I want to write more, read more and deliver my planned workshop programme.
My Big Project, funded by Arts Council England’s National Lottery Programme is A Month of Writing Adventure. I will be working with The Grand Theatre of Lemmings, Author Gerald Hornsby and Illustrator, Charlotte Cleveland. Between us, we will deliver a series of creativity workshops, and a beautifully designed and illustrated workbook. There will also be daily videos with writing prompts to excite and inspire the children to develop a daily writing habit. It is a big programme and will take much of the year to deliver, and I hope to share the first illustrations with you in the new year.
I also plan to:
- Finish the second book in the Ruby Sixpence series – Ruby Sixpence and The Mother of The Bride – for publication in the summer of 2021
- Plan and write the third book in the series for release in February 2022
- Write a non-fiction book to accompany a workshop we are delivering at Swanwick Writer’s Summer School – How to be a Writer in the Gig Economy
- Develop Writer Support School by adding more courses and recruiting more students. I will also attempt to add my schools’ workshops to this platform
- Continue to deliver the Cultural Awareness Junior Ambassadors Programme in schools across Tendring District
Most importantly, I will need to be flexible, resilient and maintain my sense of humour, because it may all go to plan or it may go to pieces. So, I will take my own advice and write daily, read daily and stick at it.
In 2021, I think we will all need to embrace a new normal, and I believe that we have learned to cherish the people and things that matter to us more than ever.
Happy New Year to you all. Thank you for being with me this year. I hope to share more of my Adventures in Writing and the Stories behind the Stories in 2021.