Q4 Progress Report for 2015 Goals

The year certainly turned out very differently from what I planned. I did manage to achieve some successes.

  • I self-published two of the three planned sales books – “Insight Sales (Corporate)” and “Insight Sales (Retail)” are now available in paperback and Kindle e-book formats at Amazon.
  • I self-published a collection of haibun entitled “intimate moments” and it is also available at Amazon in both paperback and Kindle e-book formats.
  • I produced one proof copy of the paperback version of “Insight Sales (Corporate and Retail)” but it needs significant revision and didn’t make the deadline for publication in 2015.
  • To accomplish the above, I had to learn as much as I could about how to move manuscripts through the paperback printing process and the uploading of digital e-books. This proved both tougher and easier than I expected – very tough when the things I was doing that should have worked were not, and easy once I made the changes and they worked completely as expected. I now have a deep disappointment in Microsoft Word as a tool for the CreateSpace process and an appreciation for Open Office Text Writer, which is freely available as open software.
  • I finished a second draft of “Insight Problem Solving”, but more revision is required.
  • I wrote about 15 new haibun in the year, some of which appear as new material in the published haibun collection.
  • In order to produce manuscripts that I could successfully load into CreateSpace, a printing company for self-publishers, I had to learn a new word processor – Open Office Text Writer – and bring the fully formatted documents into Text Writer and completely layout the documents once again.
  • I developed a new website for my published works under a publishers imprint of Insight Publishers. You can see this new site at www.garyrford.ca/insight.
  • In training for a bike ride around Pigeon Lake, I had several rides in excess of 30 km and many of 15 km or more.
  • I managed to lay about 750 bricks to create two bricked-in walk-ways near the house, and moved larger decorative bricks to create a better border around a plant area in our front yard.
  • I did manage to learn to cross country ski again. I had not skied since my thirties and I was intimidated about getting back onto skis but I did manage to get out for several trips around a couple of the local ski circuits during the last few days of December.
  • I continued to engage in relationship activities with my family. We had many visits during the year by my mother, granddaughter, Dianne’s mother and brother and a couple of visits by my son and his wife and son, my daughter, and Dianne’s siblings and friends.
  • In the last two months of the year, my mother significantly declined in physical and mental health and we spent a large chunk of that time living with her in our home and traveling to and from the city for doctor appointments and hospital visits.
  • I managed to get in one week long trip to Jasper by motorhome with Ray and Kathy where we did a lot of bike riding, photography and talk.
  • In the month of May, I traveled with Kathy in a new-to-her Roadtrek van to Utah where we met up with Ray and Nancy, engaged in photo shoots in Arches National Park, then traveled back an entirely new-to-us route where we explored several interesting areas including Goblin Hills, the Gatlin Mountains, Dinosaur National Monument, and Yellowstone Park.
  • Dianne and I visited friends, family and MegAnne in Victoria for a week, travelled by truck to Osoyoos on a twelve day trip, joined Dianne’s family in our RV for a three day weekend in Kananaskis, and spent another three day weekend boondocking on a farm near Radway with the Chichaks, Tomas’ and their friends.
  • As guests of Steve and Mary Lynne Gokiert, we journeyed to Bucerias in February where we were joined by one of Dianne’s friends for a week while Steve and Mary Lynne had returned to Edmonton, and then for a week with just Steve and Mary Lynne once they returned to Bucerias. We really enjoyed the proximity to the beaches and beach side restaurants, and a jaunt to Puerto Vallarta for a day of exploration and dining.
  • I was able to give feedback to one other writer on about 20 of her pieces, and to Ray and Kathy on several of theirs.
  • I completed 22 photo-shoots during the year.
  • In July of 2015, I decided to fully subscribe to the use of the full Adobe suite of software and learned to use basic features in the new versions of Photoshop, Illustrator, Adobe Acrobat, Dreamweaver, and Lightroom.
  • I sustained much of my previous physical activity either walking, riding, or skiing at least 4 times every week, and usually more often than that.

Consequently, I generally feel good about what I accomplished during 2015. However, given my personality, I haven’t lost site of those goals that I failed to achieve.

  • I completely failed to stop eating after 7:00 p.m. I think I could count on one two-fingered hand how many times I actually managed to stay out of the refrigerator or the candy and chips cupboard. As a result, I finished the year at 221 lbs and feel quite discouraged about my physical wellbeing.
  • I failed to write a word for the “Insight Peer Counseling” book but I did think about what I would choose to do in terms of the content of such a document.
  • I did not establish a writer’s critique group.
  • I did not build garden boxes, train a young puppy, or fully learn Adobe Lightroom, although I did stay relatively current with the newest versions as I participate in a monthly subscription to Adobe software products.
  • We did not manage to get Dennis and Carol back out to the lake so that Dennis could put his sailboat in the water and enjoy time pursuing the wind.
  • I allowed my worry about what was happening with my right eye as it experienced for the first time the emergence of floaters, my concern about the dropping value of the Canadian Dollar, and my anxiety about finding storage space for our RV during our planned trip to Eastern Canada, and as a result, I cancelled that venture. I briefly contemplated a trip to northern Italy including ten days in Italy and then a nine day Windstar cruise down from Venice to Athens but also chickened out on that because I couldn’t face the discomfort of air travel and the total cost of such a trip.

So in assessing the year, I didn’t work in an organized fashion through the monthly goals, thereby failing to achieve some of them, but I did manage to accomplish many significant results, and I’m poised to achieve more significant results in 2016. I am much more ready to fulfill new writing and publishing goals.

bright sunshine casts
long tree shadows
warm winter temperatures