Another year, another review. As I explained last year, I’m not big on doing deep introspection any more, but the end of the year should at least be acknowledged so here goes…

On the writing side of things 2016 has been one of my least productive in years, for a few reasons. I put all my eggs in one basket when I decided to write an entire book back in 2015. This year was supposed to be about putting that book out there and submitting it to agents. Alas, six months without any traction made me reevaluate things. Another of my short stories did get accepted though, so that’s a plus, particularly as it was one I’d really struggled with.

The big change in my writing has been my shift from pantsing to planning. Because I’ve made the decision to not start writing a new book until the new year, it’s left me a few months to plot it out (even longer than I might otherwise have given myself). As a result, I’ve picked up on holes in the plot and various other issues which in the past I wouldn’t have noticed till I was tens of thousands of words in, or several drafts along. It will be interesting to see what effect this has when I sit down to actually write it.

On the blogging side of things, I continue to float along, updating monthly. I’m starting to find my blogging voice here, and the last few posts have come quite naturally. However, it continues to be a low priority project.

A few months back I threatened to make the leap to Medium. I decided to test this by publishing some posts from my old blogs. A piss poor test in hindsight as the posts were woefully outdated. But I didn’t see enough there to compel me to make the switch anyway.

Now I like to detail what media I consumed over the last twelve months, to see what I was interested in and how my tastes evolved over the year.

Gaming has been a mixed bag. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided and Fallout 4 were both games I’ve been waiting a long time for and while they were lots of fun (deeply so on occasion) did they live up to the hype? Arguably not. I also played all the Uncharted games, though wasn’t blown away with them. Exilerating action moments always seemed to be followed up by boring cliff climbing. I hope this isn’t a sign I’m outgrowing gaming…

I’d give a breakdown of my musical tastes like last year but Spotify has seen fit to “simplify” what information they give out. So, I’ll keep it simple too. My top five bands were The Lafontaines, Lonely The Brave, Sunset Sons, Twin Atlantic and (strangely given they’ve split up) Kids In Glass Houses. My top genre was the hip sounding British alternative rock. In fact all my most listened to genres were rock-based. The lack of metal in there suggests my musical tastes have mellowed somewhat.

As for books, Sand by Hugh Howay was a good read, and I was introduced to Cormac McCarthy with The Road. Not the sort of book to read while on the sun loungers but powerful nonetheless. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress was also fascinating. but the real highlight had to be Uprooted.

Regarding TV, Walking Dead is Walking Dead, I think we all know what to expect now (apart from who Negan’s going to kill next). And Game Of Thrones continues to astound at times. The Battle of the Bastards was better than what can be found in most films. Also, I enjoyed watching The Exorcist and Outcast, even if they weren’t mindblowing.

And on that note, that’s my review done :)