Writer's Refuge

What’s Your Word for 2017?

Project for New Year 2017

Happy New Year! Are you sad to see the old one go? Thrilled to see this new one come? Vice versa? When I sit down and take a moment to think back over the year, 2016 was a pretty good one, but I’m hoping 2017 turns out to be even better.

Last year, I had two words to propel me into 2016: optimism and perseverance. While I didn’t stay optimistic 365 days out of the year, I did see progress in tamping down my negative thoughts and not letting them drown out my self-pep talks. As for perseverance, my goal was to finish my latest (fourth?) draft of my Christmas story and start sending out queries by summer’s end. I told myself I’d send out at least 35 queries before taking a break and revamping my strategy, if need be. I ended up only sending out 30, because…

…Query #21 to a small publishing company was rewarded with an offer of publication!

Yes, my Christmas YA (young adult) fantasy novel, Tinsel in a Tangle, will be published by Clean Reads in October 2017! *happy dance* More on that in upcoming posts. The decision to sign with CR came with a few lessons and epiphanies, and I really should write down what I learned so I can refer back to it when Negativity comes knocking in the months to come. (Because you know it will; Negativity is relentless that way.)

So what’s my word for 2017? PURPOSEFUL.

Purposeful in how I spend my money, what books I choose to read, movies I choose to watch, but mainly, this word has to do with how I will spend my time. Because somehow I’m supposed to find the hours to research book marketing so I can help promote my book when the time comes, find the hours to begin writing a new manuscript, continue posting on my blog, and then there’s the whole non-writer part of my life in which, as wife and mother, I play the part of companion, confidant, laundress, cook, housecleaner, chauffeur, teacher, counselor, shopper, etc.

In order to do these things well—according to how God would have me perform these duties, not according to society—I need to approach my days with purpose and prayer. I need to remember God is in control of my book’s success, not the writing world telling me I’m supposed to do A, B, C, D, and E in order to see success, because that could easily paralyze me. While I will do what I reasonably can for the sake of Tinsel when it’s released, my talents do not fall under “marketer,” or “promoter.” I’m the type of person who’d like to be recognized without having to call attention to herself, yet I’m not naiive to think God doesn’t have some growing for me to do in these areas. 🙂 Somehow, He’ll help me bring it all together, but it will be done with purpose.

How about you? Have you chosen a word for 2017? Did you choose one last year and see an improvement in that area? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.




4 thoughts on “What’s Your Word for 2017?

  1. Purposeful is a great word! I do believe mine will be, “unhurried”. There is a line in a Christian song that says, “lay down what’s good to find what’s best”. I think that will define much of this year. I have been hurried and busy doing “good” things. It has felt out of control but the bottom line is that my decisions control about 90% of my life. So-here’s to laying down what’s good so I can find God’s best. Jesus never hurried…


    1. One has to wonder what Jesus would think about all our busy schedules and the fact we have little computers glued to our bodies almost every minute of every day, and we have electricity to supposedly make our lives easier, yet we’re running around more ragged than ever. I love how you said “my decisions control about 90% of my life.” So true, and seeing it in black and white hits home. I’ll remember that the next time I have to make a decision regarding my time. 🙂


  2. I’m so happy you revisited your word of the year! I feel like optimism and perseverance was a great way to focus last year and this year I think I am going to follow your lead again but I am going to use the word Present. I want to be present, in the moment and engaged. I find myself planning my family’s lives down to the minute and logging it on FB. I no longer want to keep us on schedule and rushing to the next fun activity; I want to live and be present, give my full attention to my family and what ever we are doing.
    Congratulations on your offer!! I can’t wait to dive into your book!!!!


    1. Oooo, that’s a great word! What I love about having a word for the year is that it’s kind of like having a goal, but one word is so much easier to remember than a string of sentences or plans. It’s a quick reminder wherever we are and whatever we’re doing to keep on track. Blessings to you and your family as you move forward into 2017!


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