Posted by: penpatience | January 1, 2016



WRITERS WORDS:  “We do not think ourselves into new ways of living. We live ourselves into new ways of thinking –Richard Rohr

 Reminder…my article “A Lady of the Light,” has been recently published in the November-December 2015 issue of the Lighthouse Digest.




One of my favorite sayings is “Life Happens While You’re Making Other Plans.” And how does that relate to making new resolutions for the coming year?

All too often present and future plans go awry when day-to-day occurrences intervene. Many times planning takes a back seat to instantaneous “happenings” not within our control:

The toilet overflows just before you leave for work; you get the flu-bug before you’ve had a chance to get the vaccine; the job you’ve held for the past ten years is relocating to India; your son flunked out of college and is coming home; your latest manuscript has been rejected four times with other harbingers of doom still possible. How depressing! How can one remain resolute under these circumstances?  But Hey! Hang on! Positive interventions also occur:

You receive a new job offer at a higher salary than you’re presently earning; you won $50 on a State lottery scratch off card, a co-worker buys your morning coffee, and a magazine editor likes and accepts your story–“HOO-RAH!”

So why plan ahead and make new resolutions if unforeseen obstacles are strewn in your path like large rocks instead of small pebbles easily kicked aside with your foot?

My Answer: Never Lose Sight of Your Goals!

A resolution made for the upcoming year is a goal you expect to achieve. It’s okay to postpone it due to unexpected events, but better late than never—it shouldn’t be cancelled. Unfortunately, if a writing assignment has a specific deadline (OH NO!) well then, burning the midnight oil is a must to get it done and then rest another day.

Here are a few of my 2016 Writer Resolutions:

I will write every day (unless I’m sick with that flu-bug).

I will begin the novel this year, the one I was supposed to begin this past summer (it was postponed due to dreaded research and tending the garden).

I will update my Writer Site pages on a more regular basis (Sheesh! One page dated back to 2012).

I will read one non-fiction, historical book, one memoir, and one book in a genre I dislike: i.e. – science-fiction. (an easy one—I do this every year).

I will continue to hone my writing craft through perusing hard copy, online resources, and writer sites (I love reading successful writers’ work).

And many years ago I was and still remain a fan of Harvey Mackay, successful businessman and author of “Swim with the Sharks,” “Sharkproof,” etc. Harvey also wrote a weekly newspaper column titled “Mackay on Business.” One column early in his career highlighted his Mackay’s Morals collection. Here is one of my favorites that might help writers achieve their 2016 resolutions:

“A dream is just a dream. A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline.”

I’m sure life happened to Harvey, but I doubt he made other plans.

Happy New Year!


  1. I like Harvey also. 2016 here I come!


  2. So true! We carry on. Happy 2916!


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