Writing Resolutions

New Year's resolutions from some of our favourite Canadian authors

To ring in the New Year, we asked some of our favourite writers from across the country to tell us what their writing resolutions are for 2013.

David McGimpsey

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  1. My resolution last year was to become "20% more adorable" and, so, this year I must first resolve to deal sensibly with the fallout from the stunning success of last year's resolution.
  2. Write more poems that start with the phrase "As Reba McEntire would say . . ."
  3. Pay less attention to people who hate poems that start with references to country music divas.
  4. Teach at least one class, preferably on Gogol, while wearing a white, Adidas track suit.
  5. Start to publicly voice concern over the intensifying of the Ontario accent where "vague" increasingly sounds like "vogge" and, much worse, "bagel" sounds like "boggle".
  6. By December 31, 2013, my roofing business will be 100% legitimate.
  7. Revisit novel I started about a very sad man whose only friend is a Colonel Sanders bobble-head doll.
  8. Tell my Colonel Sanders bobble-head doll the difference between "fiction" and "biography".
  9. Come into next holiday season with more knowledge of nogs beside the egg version of nog.
  10. More rock, less talk.

Lorna Crozier

I hereby resolve to hire a grocery shopper, a cook, a housecleaner, a gardener, a cat walker, a launderer, a courtesan for my husband, and a resident Swedish masseuse who will give me hourly messages while I work on the novel I’ve never started in my decades of writing poetry. Oh, but first, I have to buy a lottery ticket, a purchase I’ve never made before, so all of this has a struck-by-lightning chance of happening. If I don’t win, I’ll go back, as ee cummings suggested, to trying to write one brilliant image that will outlast my life.


Todd Babiak


For one spectacular year, I am going to name all of my characters "Cory." Women, men, children, cats: all of them Cory. I know this sounds like a stunt but I call it art. Art, my friends. 


Kathleen Winter



Work on my series of murder mysteries and my manuscript of unprintable erotic stories.



Will Ferguson


For 2013, I have a four (4) part resolution:
 
  1. I resolve to be better organized
  2. I resolve neither to repeat and/or reiterate my ideas, nor rephrase the same idea or concept immediately after making it 
  3. And finally, to finish what I start

Emily Schultz

My writing resolution for 2013 is to actually admit that I'm a writer. Until now I've always been afraid of making people with normal jobs feel uncomfortable when I talk about being a writer. I have a weird combination psychology: I'm socially shy but I still enjoy seeing my name on a hardcover book. So in 2013 I'm just going to say it: I'm a novelist. I'm 38 years old, I'm committed now, there's no going back, for better or worse I'm going to die a writer.


Robert Sawyer



  • Stop worrying about the impending collapse of traditional publishing.
  • Stop eating salted cashews at my keyboard -- they make a mess!
  • Resign myself to the fact that the Giller and Governor-General's Awards will never smile on science fiction.
  • Stop pretending that surfing the net is "research."
  • Learn to spell "occasionally" and occurred."
  • Stop writing manuscripts in Courier 12-point using underlining instead of real italics.

Alix Ohlin


Less talk, more vampires.


David Bergen 



Win The Literary Review Bad Sex in Fiction Award.


Caroline Adderson


Read more poetry. As a fiction writer I think so narratively that whenever I try to read a poem, I always end up wondering, "But what's the story?"  At the same time I know great fiction supports itself with a poetic attention to language.  So I'm going to challenge myself this year.


Lisa Moore


I resolve never to leave writing a novel to the last minute, to skip the actual writing and go straight to the rewriting, to have a theremin in the novel and a ballet dancer and a knife and a lip reader and a mind reader and other forms of mysticism.
 
I resolve to have a revolving Christmas tree in a Chinese restaurant around the bay and a caribou with brain worm and a boy in grade eight because they are the most ultra-alive human beings on earth, now or ever. The boy will require a party with a game of spin the bottle and a fog machine and strobe lights and the girls will show up all together after a volleyball game and they will be more mature than the boys.
     
I will have a shed with a 1970s orange and white speedboat and an ATV and a snowmobile and a hand-hewn sleigh made before there were electric saws jammed in it and behind the shed a field of snow with straw sticking up and a twisting black river with boulders capped in snow. There will be a Rottweiler on a chain in a dark garden with snow falling on his broad black back.
 
I will have the ocean across the street with white foam and a break-in at the convenience store caught on surveillance camera and the culprits running into the barrens, leaving the door of the stolen van open in their haste and the police will unleash a couple of dogs.
 
I will have shrubs wound up in burlap and black ice on the highway and sex under an electric blanket, turned up on bust, with the wind slapping the branches of the apple tree against the window so the ice skin on each branch falls off and skitters over the hard, shiny crust on the drifts below. There will be a jump cut in the lives of the lovers of forty years that leaves them in separate old age homes.
 
I resolve to have a character make fun of children’s choirs and people who vacuum their cars more than once every five years and people who are very serious about Christmas or Halloween decorations and people with sensitivities such as allergies to wheat.       
 
And I resolve to have the novel end unexpectedly. And just simply be over.

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What are your writing resolutions for 2013? Share them with us on Facebook or in the comments below.  



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