44143751.jpgHow do you wrap up a year? A decade? I was wondering that while on my walk tonight, meandering along Riley Creek in the footsteps of what looked like a couple other people who had the same idea and their dogs’ zig-zagged/excited pawprints in the snow.

I’m still unpacking 2009. I’m glad I stayed away from lots of people and high amounts of con travel, because people ask about my health, and I’m liable to babble on about it because I still don’t have all that shit worked out in my head. It wasn’t until August and my encounter with a cardiologist who talked to me that I started to believe I would be around for a long while.

Until then I’d been playing things month to month, with each racing heart episode or ER visit being a major mental setback. Hard to work on a novel, a project that takes a chunk of the year, when you’re not entirely sure that time’s available. I’m a bit more confident of that now, but it’s only been four months, it’s still sinking in.

I did write a bunch of short fiction, climb out of the medical debt. Hurrah. I’ve avoided a lot of blogging, because I didn’t want this to become Tobias’s medical thoughts and self-pity central. You should all thank me with chocolate and nice scotch!

Becoming a dad took my attention away from focusing on a lot of this, which was great. It’s a new facet, new set of experiences. I dig them more than I thought I would. Baby chortles crack me up, and they interact with me way more than I thought they would. April was a haze of getting adjusted. May-August was learning how to juggle freelancing and being dad, and I’m happy about it. Despite predictions, my health had more of an impact of my ability to write than they did.

So no new novels, things feel a bit silent, but I made it through. 2009 is on the way out. I couldn’t be happier. Fuck 2009 for all the shit. I’m glad the year’s over. 2010 is going to rock. All new numerals. One year of all this stuff behind me. Distance and time is a cure all itself. I can do things this December I couldn’t last December. I can walk every day without having to catch a ride home. It’s a small victory, but each month is better. For the last half of the year, Montreal was my only ER visit. That’s something to be happy about.

I’m planning on blogging more steadily in 2010, you’ve been warned. I think I may be different. A little bit more opinionated. I think it’s a result of this year, obviously. I’ve been resisting it, killing posts, but if I’m to continue blogging easily, without having to think hard on it each time with lots of editing, this is how it will be.

So it goes.

The decade. Wow, if it wasn’t for that bump, it’s been a great decade.

December 1999 I was making my second and third professional short story sale (Writers of the Future and Nalo Hopkinson’s Whispers From the Cotton Tree Root anthologies). I started the path of being a writer. I’ve sold 35 short stories, 3 novels from my own worlds, and 1 based on a video game I truly played a lot of and loved getting a chance to write in. I graduated college. For the last 35% of the decade I’ve made my living as a writer/freelancer. I got married to an awesome lady. I’m a father of twins, own my own house. I’ve achieved just about every life goal I set out to achieve by 30 except one. I’m still in Ohio. It’s not so bad, considering all the other stuff.

Considering how many people don’t achieve any, or many, of their big goals, I do look back with satisfaction.

It’ll do. It’ll do.