2021 Year in Review

For my final blog post of 2021—the year in review. It was a wild year, deeply creative, with a lot of output.

This time last year, I’d just finished writing a book (first round writing, not editing and such), quit my job due to COVID concerns, and was going to see what I could do to be a writer instead of a teacher.

I edited the book with the help of a professional editor and have begun submitting to publishers.*

Also in writing, I’ve written twice a week here on the blog, missing only three posts on that schedule. Additionally, once a week, I share photos I’ve taken or edited recently, sharing my progress as a photographer. On the whole, those are looking better than they did. Improvement!

My weekly newsletter revived in January, reaching over 100 people every Friday without exception.* I receive replies to most of them, continuing the conversation. “Thank you for talking about that,” “I see that a different way,” “This really made me think,” “Oh my gosh me too!” and “These messages are so generous,” are among the responses I’ve received.

That’s a lot of writing. I love it.

Somewhere along the line, I took a tangent and started a podcast, Ordinary Chaos, with Rocket Kid. We published the trailer at the end of June and have created four episodes every month beginning in July. Each month also has a teaser for that month, giving listeners a taste of what’s to come. Total: one trailer, six teasers, and 24 full-length episodes. If you’ve missed any, you can catch the full-length episodes here or wherever you get your podcasts.

It’s funny how many people I know who have asked me about Ordinary Chaos and how they can listen to it. I tell them their phone should have a built-in podcast player, at which point they interrupt me and say they already listen to podcasts. Well, go to your player and look for Ordinary Chaos! It’s a real podcast, just like all the other ones.

100 Days of Art is the first paid service to hit this list.* Beginning in mid-November, today is the 40th day I’ve sent via email a piece of art to those who subscribed. Several recipients respond each week, sharing with me how the day’s photo touched them—a memory it triggered, a feeling it evoked, laughter it caused. Occasionally, a photo has elicited multiple replies with different emotions that were called up.

HRK Photos was a failed attempt at a service, though with some tweaks it could be revived. A Daily Nudge ran in May and was small but successful. I had considered running it again around now—it’s well-suited to New Year’s resolutions—but I don’t want to run more than one daily service at a time and while I think A Daily Nudge is practical and yields good results, 100 Days of Art is better for the soul.

What a year!

Looking forward: more blogging, more newsletters, more photos. 

I have something on parenting in the works, though it’s still foggy (emails? pdfs? online course? video series?).*

I’ll have a presentation on fear and working through fear coming out soon.*

I have planted the seeds for a new book but not fertilized yet. 

I have another podcast that I had hoped to launch in December but is still in process.*

And I have a big plan for community-building yet to be shared.

Friends, in all of this, I am grateful for you. I enjoy creating all of this, but I do it for an audience, and that’s you! (The stuff that I don’t do for an audience, well, that all’s not on this list.) I love hearing from you, and as always, if you’re enjoying my work, please share it—with someone else who you think will enjoy it and/or to your social media circles. Your shares are how I grow, and I’m grateful for them.

Here’s to the end of 2021 and to a 2022 steeped in creativity.

I can’t encourage you strongly enough to find something creative to do. Not to share. Not to be great at. Just to swim in a bit.

All the * above lead to links for things here:

I wrote a book: If you’d like to follow the journey of attempting to get it published, I have a newsletter here. Those messages are sporadic, only coming when something book-related is happening, and only contains book-related content. Joining this list does not add you to the main list.

I have a newsletter: If you’d like to see what that’s about, you can join us here. No spam, no external ads. Writing, recommendations, invitations to interact. Easy unsubscribe if you try it and discover it’s just another thing in your inbox. “Over 100” because the number has changed over the course of the year. It’s consistently over 110, but “over 110” sounds weirder.

100 Days of Art: There are 60 days left for you to receive art in your inbox, and you’re still welcome to join. It’s a pay-what-you-want service: minimum is $5, recommended is $10, average at the beginning of the 100 days was $25. When you join, pick a number between 1 and 40, and I’ll send you that day’s piece as well.

Photos and paintings are available for purchase here. Bookmark it—I add new designs regularly. If you see a photo, either in 100 Days of Art or on the blog, and you’d like to purchase it as a print or on another item, please contact me and I can ensure it’s available.

Click here to be notified about parenting stuff, and here to be notified about the fear presentation. These links also add you to the main newsletter, which you can join if you want information about the new podcast.

And if you don’t want to add yourself to anything but would like to support my work, you can make a one-time donation or a recurring donation here.

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