Thursday, December 31, 2009

Ring out the old

Today’s a day for looking back. What kind of a year has 2009 been?

Not bad.

(That’s probably about 380,000 words. If this was anyone else, I’d be cheering them on. But it’s me, so the verdict is ‘could do better…’)

There were some really fabulous career highlights – I was shortlisted for the RNA Romance Prize 2009 with Sold to the Highest Bidder!; my book Hotly Bedded, Conveniently Wedded was chosen as the first Presents to be an enhanced e-book; and Romantic Times gave me my first ever Top Pick for Surrender to the Playboy Sheikh AND shortlisted the book as Best Presents 2009. The year ended on a nice note, too, as Temporary Boss, Permanent Mistress made the Waldies list - thank you to everyone who bought it and put me there.

Bit of a rough year again – health problems in the family, redundancies and bullying issues. I’d like to thank everyone who’s been so kind and supportive, either with blog comments or private emails/phone calls. It really was appreciated.

So how did I do with my goals?

  1. Work-life balance/stress management. Well, I’m still the family fixer and that’s fine. And I’m getting better at managing deadlines, by going back to the way I used to do things in my ratrace days, i.e. keeping a proper schedule/to do list.
  2. Exercise. Hmm. Well, I was a bit better with this, particularly from September onwards. (Probably helped because I have a list of the week’s meals pinned to the fridge and there’s a space for me to write in the number of steps. That’s one management tool I’ll continue to use next year: I need structure!)
  3. Weight management. Thanks to the Harcombe diet, I’m actually taking some positive steps here. I’ve lost almost stone so far – mid-November was a bit of a struggle (note to self, reaching for the chocolate when you’re worried sick doesn’t do anything except stop the weight coming off; and Christmas was overindulgence) but this works without making me obsessed with food.
  4. Writing. I said I wanted to lift my game. I’ve had some really lovely reader letters this year and some fantastic reviews. I was shortlisted in the 2009 RNA awards. I’ve done well in the bestseller lists (top quartile of the Waldies for Playboy Boss – behind two REALLY big-name authors, so I was delighted) AND I got a Top Pick from RT, so hopefully I’ve met my goal there. And I think my Norway book (written mostly this year) is one of my best to date. The project that fell through the cracks? I wrote an outline and a dirty draft of the first chapter. That’s something to build on.

I’m a notorious goalpost-mover where my own achievements are concerned, but I think I’ve done OK with my goals this year. I’m lighter than I was at the beginning of the year, I’m a little bit fitter, and I’m happy with the way my writing and work-life balance/stress management are going. It’s a matter of consolidating it all and using it as a base to move forward in 2010.


Zoe Harcombe said...

Hi Kate - I get Google alerts when someone mentions my diet. Usually it's some acai berry advertising scam, but it's lovely to hear from a real reader!
Thanks so much for trying The Harcombe Diet and I'm really pleased to hear it's been of help
Happy New Year!
Very best wishes - Zoe Harcombe

Kate Hardy said...

Zoe - wow, nice to see you here!

Your diet fits in with the family, it's easy to stick to, it works for a 'foodie' who loathes prepackaged stuff, and it's the first diet for years that has worked for me. (And your butternut squash recipe is brilliant.)

Happy new year to you, too :o)

Katie said...

Congrats on all you have achieved in 2009 especially with everything you've had going on.
Intrigued to hear about the diet - where can I learn more?
I write my 2009 Ta Da list on my blog yesterday - it's amazing how much it adds up when you look back doesn't it?

Jane Holland said...

It's not for eeryone, I know, but two years ago I joined a gym and did weight machines for about six months. I loved it and lost FOUR STONE!! I couldn't afford the sunscription though when the recession hit and stopped going, put all the weight back on, and I now weigh roughly what I did when I started at the gym. Disaster!

As I said, it's not for everyone, but if you can go at quiet times - late evenings, for example, or afternoons when most 'normal' people are at work, lol, it's pretty good fun, AND I did a lot of thinking/planning on the rowing and running machines.

Just in case you've ever been tempted to join a gym ...

Jane Holland said...

Oops, sorry about the typos. I'm horribly pithed, it being New Year! ;)

Kate Hardy said...

Katie - thank you! It's the Harcombe Diet. You can find the first week here(is a bit less strict after this!) and recipes on Zoe's website here. The butternut squash curry is really good.

And congrats on your tada list!

Kate Hardy said...

Jane - interesting, but you're a braver woman than I am! *g*

(The worst thing is, we do have a treadmill. Bought it some years ago. Turned into a very expensive clothes horse...)

Diane said...

Congratulations on the weight loss, that's absolutely brilliant, and on the daily steps you've been doing.

That's really lovely of Zoe Harcombe to drop by. Makes me want to look her up myself.