It’s the last Tuesday of 2022! I love Tuesday. I love how it looks when written, I love how it sounds and I enjoy how the number ‘two’ is embedded in the word, especially because we are in the year of the TWO’s! How exciting is that?
What is your favorite day of the week and why?
While you think about that, I’m going to offer you some very random things that, low-key, are inspirational messages and missions for a new you in the new year.
Writers: If you are looking for a place/time/space to write, I suggest you try out London Writers Salon. I’m sure I’ve mentioned it before. We write daily, on Zoom, in community and in silence for 55 minutes. Like Kegels, I’m doing it right now. (I am not doing Kegels.) LWS has kept me sane, it has kept me accountable to myself as a writer and has allowed me to finish writing Harlem’s Last Dance, which is coming out in March on SpaceBoy Books. LWS is FREEEE and occurs 4x per day at 8am in different time zones (i.e., 8am PST). Please allow yourself to try it. I promise it will help you. I’ve been doing it almost 2 years. There are also membership levels you can join if you want access to more resources, other writers, and other stuff. (I learned about pitching to literary journals for example. I now have the confidence to do so and successfully pitched to The Stir, a drink-oriented magazine from Drizly. Fingers crossed I’ll get the order to write soon!) Whatever your passion or career, find a community and join it. Benefits are endless.
YouTubers: If you are thinking about launching a YouTube channel, or a TikTok channel or something, DO IT! It is not easy, you will not have a ton of followers at first, but you will be happy you tried and honestly, THAT is the win. We launched Her Words His Wine (HWHW) this year. It’s great and it’s terrible. Ha! There is no real consistency yet. We have 56 subscribers. The website is a dragon. I don’t know how to shoot video properly and every single thing is a frustrating learning curve. BUT! It is something fun for Matt and me to do together. Other benefits? I am constantly thinking about story, which is good for writing. Also, I was accepted to the MSN.com writing platform and slowly writing articles that are on brand with HWHW which was my goal. Hard work, but fun. Tech-wise, thanks to our video editor Nino Aphakidze, who gently sends me links to tutorial stuff, I am also learning something new about iPhone technology. I’m really proud of my growing photography skills, which was a creative goal and why I invested in the phone. Also, my videographer friend I met in Prague, Chuck Diesal (also listen to his radio show) sent me a message on FB about my video quality. He has a YouTube channel. He said if I was serious about Her Words His Wine, I should get a camera stabilizer, DJI OM5. I DID! $150. I’ve never bought anything fancy like that before (I mean, beside the iPhone; two cool things in one year). I practiced at Christmas. Below is a sample! Let’s goooo! Try something new for yourself. If you do, make sure it is related to something you love, like WINE and food.
Fashionistas: Raise your hand if you want to up your wardrobe and style game? (Me: raising hand.) I looove fashion, I really do. I just don’t participate in it very elaborately. Fashion can be costly and it takes time, just like finding and wearing makeup. These things are an investment — in self, really. Yesterday, I took some first steps to being more fashion forward in 2023. I went to Nordstrom Rack and also a second-hand consignment shop. I went in there with intention. Black boots. Blousy sweaters that fit (I literally wear my dad’s old sweaters). White t-shirts I can use for layering under jackets. I didn’t find black boots, but at the consignment shop I DID find some grey boots for $15!! And some Frye boots (Matt and my brother Shakes hipped me to this brand) that were 70% OFF!! And some Bernardo loafers (classy, apparently) for only $17. I got to have all this excitement while spending quality time with my collegiate niece. What could be better? Then I went home and began cleaning out my closet to make space for the new year, myself and the new clothes I bought. I tried on everything I hadn’t worn this year. I am no longer dancing, nor do I work out, so you can imagine there was some major (major) disappointment happening in the closet. I kept going. I now have a nice pile of clothes I can donate or sell. (Anyone do Poshmark or similar? Any tips?) My next steps will be to tackle the dresser and Marie Kondo-fold all the sh*t in there. I want to dress like an amazing writer and the only way I can do that is to be organized, have a few of the pieces I need to create a fashionista ‘look’, and allow myself forgiveness for not working out. Have a vision for who you want to be and how you might want to look while doing it (i.e., “Act as if you already are”). Good luck if you go for any of this!
Goal Setters, Dreamers & Visionaries: Go for what you want. It will take time. This blog post took nearly three hours to do from formulating the idea to write it, editing it, to stopping to do the photo shoot and edit the photos…and this is all before posting it to social and sharing it with all of you (another 1-2 hours). The YouTube channel launched six months ago and each episode from shooting to posting takes us months. Our editors spend hours. My book Harlem’s Last Dance has taken nine years (to the month) to write. I just want to be transparent that this stuff we see others doing doesn’t happen over night and it takes investment of time, energy, desire and money. I am here to show and tell you that you can do it, too! Just be mentally prepared!
Happy 2023! I wish you the best. I wish you love and I wish you creative and financial fulfillment! And excellent health. xoox