We've once again safely arrived to that time of year when we reflect on the past, intentionally connect with others, and make plans for the future. As I've mentioned before, although it seems like fewer and fewer people send year-end greetings, I look forward to this annual tradition—both the receiving of cards, letters, and photos from friends and family and the preparation of my own annual update.
Each year, I begin the process by paging through my (old-style) calendar and making note of the highlights and ordinary happenings in our household. Then I look for themes. I approach the task as an opportunity for creative expression, aiming to convey our family news in a way that is also reflective of the trends or events in our world and/or a major aspect of our personal lives.
Over the past year our family has had the opportunity to travel to a wide variety of amazing destinations, so a holiday greeting modeled after a reservation listing for a travel booking site we regularly use seemed to fit the bill:
Travel (and hosting travelers) has been a longstanding and important companion to my creative journey. Most of my best story ideas and story solutions come to me when I am "in motion," and the sensory experiences of being in new spaces and places opens me up to new ideas.
Although I love to dream about and plan new trips, I often get stressed out and even resistant to the idea of leaving home when I'm in the preparation/coordination and packing stages of travel. But once I arrive to my destination and begin seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touching new and different things, I'm "all in."
Upon reflection, I realize that's very similar to my writing journey. I love to dream up new story ideas and noodle on story problems, but once I sit down to my desk to do the work of writing, it's not unusual for me to freeze up and resist actually putting words on the page. But once I start physically writing or typing, something magical happens, and I'm transported to a headspace that allows me to create something new.
This year's annual greeting captures some of the journeys my family has experienced together and individually over the past year. I look forward to new adventures in the year to come -- on the map and on the page. I wish you and yours a safe journey into a new year filled with experiences that bring Peace, Love, Joy, and Creativity into your life and into our world.
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