I don’t do this exercise every year, but maybe I should? The idea is to list down all the failures of the year and see what was learned from them, and then note down all the successes of the year and celebrate those. And okay, I’m calling them failures, but they’re really just minor setbacks and none of them caused any permanent damage.
I want to take those lessons and successes with me into the new year, but we’ll leave behind those not-so-great moments, okay?
I’ll tackle the failures today and do the successes tomorrow. Post yours too, either in the comments or on your own blog, and come share the link here so that we can all go read.
- I hate to admit this, but seven years into my career, I still got stiffed by a national newspaper, and I have to say, not only did I not see it coming, but I was hopping mad at the end of it. The story is your usual editor kept asking for changes on her superior’s request and then eventually killed the story because it looked nothing like the original. Then, she stopped responding and never paid my kill fee.
- I agreed to work for way less than I should have because I got intimidated by an editor, and have spent months hating myself for it. I’m now trying to renegotiate that contract, and boy, would it have been easier if I’d just done it right in the first place!
- I let an editor bully me (and a friend) for about a week and only let loose once she reached the point of verbal abuse. I have no patience for bullies and it brings out the lioness in me, especially if it’s happening to a friend, so I don’t know why I didn’t put an end to it sooner. I eventually did tell the editor that I do not entertain unprofessionalism and name-calling in my business, cannot work with someone who doesn’t show respect to me and my work, and walked away from the gig. Go me! (I did get an apology– not very heartfelt– and an excuse for the behavior, but nothing excuses abuse of any kind in my book. Last I heard, two other writers had quit writing for that editor as well.)
- I have this strange inability to say no. I took on two assignments this year that I totally should NOT have. I wouldn’t ask a fashion photographer to cover the Mumbai terror attacks, would I? Right. So why then do I think I can do things I have no experience, talent, or INTEREST in?
- I got massively burnt out towards the end of the year, so just had to shut off my computer, take a breather, and vow to take better care of myself.
Overall, the year was a pretty good one, earning itself a solid A-. It will do better next time.
How did you do this year?