That image reminds me of when I used to read under the covers with a flashlight as a kid. Anyway, forgive me but I'm going to mumble about reading and writing for a bit. I do this because it might be useful for others on the writing path.
So, I've a confession to make. I sort of slowed down on fiction reading to the point of only finishing about four novels a year. That's not good. I may be a slow reader, but I'm not that slow. So, one of my resolutions is to read more. I probably should set a numeric goal, but part of the reason I haven't is that I don't want to put too much pressure on myself. (I'm already stressed as it is due to the political situation.) I'm already doing better. I finished reading Ted Chiang's Stories of Your Life and Others as well as the first two novels in The Expanse series and a couple of short stories (written by women) since the beginning of December. I need to start logging them. I've come to the conclusion that the best 'school' for me at this point is reading. Sitting in classroom situations doesn't seem to be working. There's too much internal emotional conflict going on in my brain in those situations. Enough is enough. I end up undercutting myself. I still beleive that no matter what stage you're in as a writer, you need to continually learn. Stop learning and you stagnate, but I think at this stage I need to do that via reading. Of course, that does nothing for my need for socialization, but one thing at a time. Heh. So, fix that damned bedside lamp already. Reading in bed is what you do.
I've collected a number of anthologies and short story magazines. (I've copies of Ursula K. LeGuin's new short works collections!) It's time to read those. I'll never wrap my head around short story space without reading them. It isn't that I'm incapable of writing shorts. I've done, and I can do it well--particularly after I've read a really great example. So, there's that.
Excercise: riding the bike every day has helped me more than any other form of excercise. Five mile a day doesn't take much time, and I enjoy it. Also, it's time to quit being intimidated by the minimal Japanese I need to learn in order to advance in Hakkoryu. I need to put on my big girl pants and do it already.
Writing: must write more and stop letting my inner critic gum up my progress. Every writer deals with the inner critic. It's part of the gig. Work it out, damn it. All the studying in the world does no good if those studies are never implemented. Write, damn it. (And if you're laughing right now, understand that writing is often every bit as terrifying as it is enjoyable. Hence the procrastination and the reputation for self-medication that plagues most writers. Creativity isn't mysterious and holy. It's hard fucking work.
Time: I suck at time. Always have. It's nothing personal, but my brain doesn't do time like normal people. I get sucked into my thoughts and projects. I loose track of the external world. But it's time to use the freaking phone calendar along with the alarms. I can't pretend I'll remember any more.
Be more politically active. I can't depend on others to do it for me. That one is a tough one because it's depressing, but it's clear that too many Americans have been kicking back and expecting others to do the right thing. (50% of Americans didn't bother to vote.) The more we do this, the more the few who do bother to call/interact with Congress-critters will have power. If that's not you, it's people paid by corporations to do so. Particularly now. Fuck that noise.
I hope you have your own goals set in place and that they're positive ones for you.
is a Science Fiction and Fantasy author living in Texas.