A birthday vow


Today is my birthday. (Old family joke: “Tom was born on Labor Day…but, then again, wasn’t everybody?!”) I know it’s the usual custom to make a birthday wish, but I’m through with wishing. When you get to a certain age (and I’m there, folks), you stop wishing for things and begin vowing them. There isn’t all that much time for wishing anymore, you know? ┬áSo, in that spirit, I hereby vow to make this coming year much more fruitful than last year. (And the year before that.)

I’ve taken some first steps in the last few months toward getting back into publishing. My new friend Beth at Cincinnati Media put together this beautiful Website/blog, and I’m launching my first two ebooks as soon as they’re ready. By this time next year–my next birthday, that is–I should have all my previously published titles back in print in electronic form. And I’ll see what can be done with the ever-growing batch of manuscripts in my Documents file. It’s not enough for a writer to write–a writer must also publish. And that’s what I intend to be doing by my next birthday.

Oh, I have wishes, too, and I’ll see about them as well–lose weight, exercise more, reconnect with family and friends, clean out closets and drawers, moisturize once a day (Yes, men should moisturize every day, just like women, especially after 40). I’ve already signed up to be a mentor with the Mystery Writers of America–I do this every year–but I should find more ways to stay involved with other writers, especially young ones. And I wish I could read more. A writer must write and publish (see above paragraph), but a writer must also read. Constantly. It’s the only way to stay in the game, by being aware of what’s going on around you.

Now that I look back at what I just wrote, I realize something: My vow is probably every writer’s vow, birthday or not. And my wishes sound awfully familiar, don’t they? I guess I just want what everyone else wants. So, let’s all do this together. I’ll work on my vow and my wishes, and y’all do the same, okay? We’ll meet back here on this day next year. I’ll be another year older, and ready for another vow. And so will you.