My Creative Odyssey for 2011: As Told Through Books

Today it’s my turn to share my ‘Creative Goals for 2011’ as part of the fantastic ‘Creative Odyssey Blog Hop‘ put together by Jess. There are lots of amazing bloggers taking part, so be sure to check out the full schedule. To give you just a little taste of the fine company I’m keeping, yesterday the Blog Hop visited the delights of ‘Tasha Chawner‘ and ‘Sweet Rustic‘, and today Alanna from ‘Bobishi and Suki La‘ will also be sharing her creative goals.

While I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed with ideas and projects at the moment, I thought I’d restrict my creative goals to a more manageable number of ‘three’.

No.1 – Finish two manuscripts (one fiction and one non-fiction):

I’ve been a bad writer. Not the writing, the words have been fine … this ‘badness’ is all levelled at me and my undisciplined writing habits. Over the years I’ve started off many pieces of fiction and even a few non-fiction works, but I’ve never pushed myself to completely finish ANY of them. Next year this WILL change, and I’ve already selected which projects I’ll be drafting up first. Perhaps this will mean my bookshelves will one day hold a copy of one of my own books?

No.2 – Be inspired by travel:

The Mr. and I have been planning an overseas adventure for a while now, and next year will be the year that it’s going to happen. Even though we’ve changed our intended destination a few times, the bottom line is that it will be overseas and it will be fabulous. I’ve felt the pull of travel for a very long time and I can’t begin to imagine the ways in which it will influence my writing and change my perspective. Given that my novel is partially set in England, travel will come in very handy indeed for my first goal too!

No.3 – Master some craftiness:

I used to be a very crafty person (not ‘tricky’ you understand, just good with handmade-y things), but then I got a little older and just stopped making. There is such pleasure to discover in making things yourself, and it’s a feeling I’d like to rediscover again. While crafting can sometimes bring challenges and frustrations, the end result of creating something is incredibly rewarding. I’m thinking a little knitting, a little crocheting and (fingers crossed) a little sewing will be just the thing for the new year.

So that’s enough about me for the time being. I hope you’ll be ever so kind to wish me luck with my creative plans. The only challenging part (well apart from staying committed to them of course), is to MAKE the time to achieve them, not just hope I’ll magically FIND the time … Now, who do I need to see about getting some extra hours put into the day?

Do you have some creative goals and dreams of your own for next year?


  1. Erika Lee Sears


    You are so talented and love your goals.

    I know sometimes I get overwhelmed by the what ifs instead of doing. 🙂


    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Erika – Awww… you’re so lovely saying such kind things *blush* (thank you!). I think that writing my goals down and sharing them with people will definitely help me bring them to fruition.
      Those ‘what ifs’ can be really tricky to tame … though sometimes it is those ‘what ifs’ that can lead to wonderful things. Perhaps it’s just a question of finding a balance? 🙂

  2. Jess

    First – I want to read your novel!! Get writing! 🙂

    Second – travel is awesome. I can’t wait to finally visit England and France next year – to see family and friends, but also to see that place – you know – that almost feels like home because we’ve grown up always hearing stories about it?

    Third – yay! I’ll come over any time to share my (limited) knitting and crochet skills – and I am being lent a sewing machine early next year, so I challenge you to a sew-off at the end of 2011… hehe…

    If I know you, you’ll make all of these things happen and more – how exciting! xx

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Jess – Haha, well the novel is definitely a work in progress … it’s probably about one third of the way through the ‘story’, so I really need to catch back up with writing it and remind myself of just what all the characters were up to when I left them last…

      I’m so looking forward to doing some fantastic travelling about the place (and I know that you’re much the same). It will be wonderful for you to visit England and France (especially given all the family and friends you’ll be able to catch up with!). I’m so with you on those places feeling ‘like home’ because we hear so much about them … it will be great to make the dream a reality! Perhaps we’ll all end up being somewhere overseas at the same time? 😉

      Thanks so much for offering your help with sharing your skills for knitting and crochet … I will definitely take advantage of that offer in the new year. Though it might be a bit tricky because I’m a left-hander, and that often complicates things (I’m assuming you’re a right-hander?). How wonderful that you’re being lent a sewing machine early next year … a sew-off will DEFINITELY be on at the end of the year! 😉

      Thanks for your warm encouragement Jess! 😀

  3. kellie

    Well there you go, I just learnt a little something more about you. Good luck with the writing. These are fantastic goals. Time is a recurring theme though isn’t it. And you’re right, it’s about making time. For me, it’s about organising myself better so the creative stuff can just fall into place as well. Will be watching your journey with interest! {and ps. your parcel shipped this morning}

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Kellie – I’m glad to hear you’ve learnt something more about me (sometimes I lose track of what I have and haven’t shared on the blog) … 😉
      Thanks for your good luck wishes with the writing (any help is most appreciated).

      Time is most definitely a recurring theme … a year or so ago I would never have imagined being as busy as I am today, but I suppose that’s just life isn’t it?
      Your own plan of being more organised is a great one – I also believe that it can help lead to more ‘space’ for creative thought / projects to happen when everything is where it should be.

      I’ll no doubt keep everyone updated with my progress towards achieving my goals … it’s good to be publicly committed to them!

      PS. Thanks for sending on my little parcel … I’m so excited for it to arrive! 😀

  4. Gabrielle Bryden

    Best of luck Tracey with your creative plans – but you won’t need the luck I’m sure. I hope you keep blogging when you travel – it’s a great way to keep a daily record of events. One goal of mine is to finish two of my Pompadour and Blanca children’s illustrated stories and try to get them published. Second is to keep blogging and writing poetry as regularly as is possible (when you have 2 kids who vie constantly for ones attention).

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Gabrielle – Thanks for your good luck wishes with my creative plans!
      I will most definitely keep blogging whenever I travel … as you say, while it’s lovely to share what I’m getting up to with everyone, it’s also a great way to keep a record of my trip for my own benefit too!
      I’m so excited about your goals to finish your children’s illustrated stories – I have no doubt that they will be wonderful, witty and educational all at once! How could a publisher resist such a combination? 🙂
      I think you do fantastically well to keep writing and blogging as much as you do with such a busy household … I know I struggle to find a balance in my house, and that’s just a house with me, the husband and my dog! 😉
      … I send you all the very best wishes to help you on your way with your goals too Gabrielle!! 😀

  5. Sarah - Dodeline Design

    Best of luck! If you find some more hours, could you send some my way? ….*as I sit here struggling through taxes, ahh!*…

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Sarah – Haha, it seems everyone is after a few more hours in the day. If I do manage to find a few more I’ll be sure to share them with you! 🙂
      … eeep, you poor thing having to struggle through taxes … I do have some business paperwork to attend to and that’s bad enough, but business tax is on a WHOLE different level of pain … good luck with it! 🙂

  6. Amanda

    Writing is such an wonderful talent so if you are good at it do it! I hope we see your books on the shelves sometime soon. Travel, travel, travel – it is in my blood and I think it is so important to go out see other places, expirience other cultures and be inspired.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Amanda – I’ll keep my fingers crossed that my words don’t yet abandon me, but for the moment I adore writing pretty much anything and everything … but most of all fiction is where it’s at for me! 🙂
      My goal is definitely to work towards publishing some words, so I’d really better get myself cracking and get more disciplined with my writing … there’s no time to waste.

      Travel is fantastic and it’s amazing how much it can influence and change us … as you point out, experiencing other countries and other countries is an important part of discovering ourselves I think.

  7. Angela Flicker

    What great goals! I wish you the best of luck with your two manuscripts. That’s amazing!

    And travel?! Yes please! That also sounds like a great goal and something you’ll remember for a lifetime.

    Lastly, the crafting, I find crafting soothes the soul. If you ever need help with sewing, let me know –sewing is my therapy 😉

    Good luck in 2011 with your awesome goals. I can wait to see how everything turns out.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Angela – Thanks so much for your encouragement of my creative goals for next year … I’m happy to accept all offers of luck for writing my manuscripts … it’s going to be a challenge! 🙂
      Travel seems to figure high on many of our goals for the future … I can’t wait to launch myself on a new adventure and gather many new experiences! 🙂

      I’m really looking forward to getting back in touch with my crafting … it’s been too long since I devoted any time to them, and as you say they are very rewarding. I’ll definitely let you know if I need any help with the sewing (it’s likely), as I think getting tips from ‘real people’ is often much better than trying to decipher things from books.

      I’ll keep everyone posted with my progress throughout the year! 🙂

  8. Brandi

    Writing is such a great skill! Best of luck to you as you follow that dream!

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Brandi – Thanks for the encouragement with my writing goals for the new year. I’ve been too slack for too long, and it’s time I got myself back on track with what I really want to do! 🙂

  9. Mel

    Good for you! I wish you luck too 🙂 Be sure to let us know how you get on, and share some travel photos with us, too!

    My main creative goal for next year is to get to grips with photography. I’ve made great strides with it this year, but I’m getting my first dSLR camera for Christmas so in some ways I’ll need to start over! I want to get out of auto mode as often as possible 🙂

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Mel – Thanks for your best wishes in completing my goals … I’m really excited by the opportunities and adventures that next year will hold. I’ll most definitely let everyone know how I’m going throughout the year (you can all help to keep me honest and remind me of what I committed myself to). As travel happens, I’ll happily share my photos and experiences … you can all virtually ‘come along with me’. 🙂

      Working hard on your photography next year is a great goal you’ve set for yourself! How exciting to be receiving a digital SLR for Christmas – that’s such a lovely gift! 🙂
      I’ve always been slack with relying too much on auto modes, so I completely support anyone who’s trying to make the move to learning more of the manual modes. I’ll send the very best of luck to you!!! 😀

  10. Rol

    Extra hours are definitely needed in both our days.

    Like you, my creative goals next year are endless… but unlike you, I’d struggle to boil the list down to 3.

    Main goal: just keep going.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Rol – I can’t believe how busy life is … or is it just because we’re trying to cram so much into our days outside the dreaded ‘day jobs’? … Perhaps it’s just a bit of both.
      I tend to have too many ideas to keep track of with my writing, and never seem to get very far with anything because of my disorganised / cluttered mind, so I think it was good to just try and focus my energies on a few things.
      … but having endless creative goals for the new year is a great thing Rol (it just means the muse is favouring you, and you’d best listen!). 😉

      I wish you the very best wishes and thoughts on your creative goals for the year ahead … and I just know you’ll do more than ‘just keep going’. Take care.

  11. Marjorie Dawson

    I’m glad to see that you are hoping to pick up crafts again! I can’t imagine living without making stuff so it’s good to see you thinking about taking a step back into crafting.

    Workshops are always fun and good, as are dvd’s and books. A real teacher is the most fun though, well I think so :-))

    Good luck with the words – they are a powerful thing.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Marjorie – I’m really looking forward to getting back into some crafting … it’s something I really miss and need to dedicate some time to. People like yourself, who make things are always telling me how rewarding they find that process to be – and that’s regardless of whether they craft for business or pleasure.

      I think a real crafting teacher would definitely be the way to go, so I think I’ll be reliant on talented friends, easy to follow books and perhaps even a few instructional DVDs … with all those things combined, hopefully I’ll get there! 🙂
      Thanks for your best wishes for the writing … I feel grateful to be so supported! 🙂

  12. Dannielle

    Such wonderful goals Tracey! Thank you for sharing them with us!

    Good luck for 2011, I hope it’s a fantastic year for you!

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Dannielle – Thanks for the support with the goals I’ve set out for myself in the new year … I can’t wait to get started on them, so may just do that before this year is over! … *sneaky* … haha 😉
      I have every confidence that 2011 will be a fantastic year for everyone … and you can quote me on that! 😉

  13. Kristen

    Hi Tracey, I’m a little late and playing catchup! Sounds like I am need of a few extra hours too, haha. I love your straightforward goals, it sounds like a wonderful year ahead of writing, traveling and crafty inspiration. I wish it all for you! Best of luck in 2011 🙂

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Kristen – (I must admit that I’m a little behind on the creative blog-hop too … it’s lovely to work my way through all those inspirational posts though).

      Time is that tricky thing to find more of isn’t it? We need to all find some and share them around I think.

      Thanks for your kind words about my goals … I think ‘straightforward’ is the key for me to actually achieve them … I tend to be an over-thinker and over-analyser if I give myself half a chance! 😉

      Best of luck with your goals too! 🙂

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