To recap this other post:

Rather than have New Year's Resolutions that I abandon with reckless disregard on January 7th, I choose a different theme for each year and then drive my three friends crazy by yelling the theme at them for 12 straight months.

I started this in 2013 and have done the following:

2013: The Year of Attitude

2014: The Year of Honesty

2015: The Year of Standing Up for Myself

2016: The Year of Productivity

For the past several months I've been thinking about what I want out of 2017. Obviously I considered all of the usual options: The Year of Hot Yoga; The Year of Nudity; The Year of Murder; etc.

In 2016 I worked really hard. I got a lot done and I'm happy for that. But over the last few years I have felt like something is sort of missing and that a part of my brain is moving upstate to live on a farm with another family, like my bird Feathers when I was 7.

And so, that's why I have decided to make 2017:

I'll let the now-three-year debate regarding who in the above picture is the good angel and who is the bad angel continue.

My line of work can be incredibly heavy and time consuming and in the last three or four years I have found it so much harder to pursue creative projects than it used to feel. Creative writing especially has felt much more difficult in the last few years than any year before. And because of that, writing anything, especially here, has felt like a chore at times. I've pushed on because I like this outlet and I think it's good for me to keep it going. Plus I like being able to interact with all of you and share a piece of my life with Strangers.

Last year when Jolyn and I started Strangerville, we both noticed how refreshing it was to have a new creative project to invest in. That sort of felt like how art used to feel to me, back when it was fun and exciting.

In the final months of 2016, I became so bombarded with the stresses of my work life that I experienced a kind of burnout that I had never experienced before.

I had something of a series of wake up moments as this stress has sort of forced me to consider what I really value and what I want my life to look like.

The big answer I've felt over and over again is that I want to create. I want to encourage my creative side. I'm happiest when I feel like I'm creating something I value.

So in 2017, when I think it might be fun to write something, I'm just going to sit down and do it. When a project comes into my mind, I'm not going to just wish that I could find the time and then forget about it. I'm going to make the time for it, enthusiastically.

As a part of The Year of Creativity, I have some big plans to expand the Strangerverse (I just made that up! SEE HOW CREATIVE I'M ALREADY BEING?!). I'll unveil some of the plans in the next few weeks and beyond, so stay tuned.

I'm ecstatic to spend this year with all of you, and optimistic about what we can become.

How about you? What have you decided to do this year? Any themes? Or regular old resolutions?

~It Just Gets Stranger