Friday, 1 January 2016

FRIDAY NIGHT NEWS – New Year’s Resolutions


Last year, I decided to set myself a few poetry New Year’s Resolutions for 2015. I came up with five resolutions in the end, and they were all pretty vague and woolly.

According to the agony aunt in Cosmopolitan, you should always set clear and defined goals, or else there’s no way you can ever hope to stick to them. To be honest, I kind of agree with this sentiment, but I reckon that vague resolutions are perfect for lazy people (like me). That way, it’s easier to weasel you way out of them at a later date. Sneaky, eh?

Don’t worry though, the only person I’m really cheating is myself.

Anyway, I had five new year’s resolutions for 2015:
1. Go to more poetry nights
2. Write more regularly
3. Do more workshops
4. See more spoken word/ live literature shows
5. Go to the Edinburgh Fringe

So how did I get on? Well, during 2015, I did forty-five different poetry gigs, twenty-nine of which were nights or events that were completely new to me. (That’s a 64% new gig rate, fact fans!)

I have no idea how favourably this compares to last year, but it sounds impressive, and if you can use statistics to prove anything (which you can) I think we can say that this first resolution has been well and truly achieved. Hoorah! Well done everyone.

And, I reckon I managed to write more regularly this year as well. I've counted them up and it turns out that I've written over fifty new poems in 2015. That sounds much more impressive than it is, because a lot of those fifty are a bit crap and will probably never see the light of day. But it's all good practise, and I've managed to write a couple this year that I'm really proud of, so I'm still calling it a win.

So we’re two for two. Awesome.

This year I also managed to do take on some more poetry workshops, including the Allographic Constrained Writing workshop in October, or the Arts Alive in Libraries workshops throughout the summer and autumn. This is something I really want to do more of in 2016, so perhaps this resolution will make another appearance on this year’s list.

But no one every manages to achieve all their resolution, right?

In fact, during the course of the year, I only managed to see one full-length spoken word show (the Mouthy Poets UK Tour, in Cambridge back in March, which was excellent). I also failed to get up to Edinburgh for the Fringe for the third year in a row. (Booooooo!)

I really don't want to be one of those people who only goes to shows because they're performing a slot, and in the past I've been to quite a lot of gigs and shows, but this year that seems to have fallen by the wayside. And I actually really enjoy watching other performers - and it's much less stressful going to a show as an audience member - so I'm definitely going to make more time to go see theatre and poetry shows in the new year. 

Yeah, so that's a 60% success rate for resolutions for 2015, which isn’t too bad really. (I won't tell you about my personal resolutions, which had all gone catastrophically wrong by the second of January, as usual!)

So I've been thinking about them for a while, and I've finally settled on four resolutions for 2016:

1. See at least six full-length spoken word shows
2. Do at least ten workshops
3. Go to at least thirty new (to me) poetry nights
5. Go to the Edinburgh Fringe!!!!

I'm booking my train tickets to Scotland as we speak! Wish me luck!

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