2020 is gone at last. It’s time to face a new year and make new year’s resolutions.

Resolutions to do this or that, don’t do well for me. BUT I do like goals. Goals solidify intangibles into tangible. To-do lists have always governed my personal life.

When I taught, goals, called lesson objectives, were an integral part of my days. Once I quit teaching, transitioning lesson goals to my writing career was a logical, easy progression.

A pandemic and civil unrest in our 2020 world caused my goals to fluctuate, some to fail. There were days I struggled to simply focus. I think we all did.

We’re a week into 2021 and it’s been a doozy of a week. While I didn’t expect what used to be normal would magically materialize on January 1, I did hope for a better year. Unfortunately, this first week was a reminder that we –you, me, this country– still have a bumpy road ahead.

As a writer, I view 2021 as a book with blank pages to fill any way we want. No goal plan required, but it could help. Whether you choose to write resolutions or specific, measurable goals or fly uncharted ahead with nothing at all planned, that’s up to you.

Me, I’m setting writing year goals/objectives. Personally, I’m determined to hang onto hope.

Hope fuels creativity.

Hope motives through the dismal days.

Hope is a choice that requires courage and action. With hope, we find a well from which to draw grace and kindness for daily living.

Juliet Marillier’s 2013 New Year’s blog post, directed toward writers, is filled with ideas for finding focus. What she labels focus, I’m calling hope. I especially like her #9:


Step away from your screen regularly. Go outside, look at something beautiful and breathe slowly for a few minutes. You live in the real world; it is the source of your inspiration. Honour and respect it with all its flaws.”

Finding Hope on Psychology Today’s blog suggests:

Turn to your faith.

Your faith can be a strong ally in holding on to hope. Sometimes your faith offers the support of not being alone and trusting that a higher power is with you. If you are questioning your beliefs, then talk with someone in your faith whom you respect. Others have encountered difficult times, and they will understand. Voicing your questions is a step toward resolving your confusion and also a step toward hope.”

I believe grace and kindness are what we’re gonna need to weather this new year 2021 . It’s starting out to be another 2020-version 01. Find your well of hope.