Looking Ahead to 2021

2020 pretty much sucked for most of us in one way or another. That’s why I started looking ahead to 2021 a lot sooner than normal.

But humans are by nature resilient. We adapt and muddle through the best we can. We also learn from our mistakes and our erroneous assumptions that we are complete masters of the planet. Lest we forget, Mother Nature is still the big boss. We are powerless to stop things like Ice Ages, asteroids hitting us, massive earthquakes, droughts, polar vortices, and so many other natural phenomena. Pandemics come and go too. Thankfully not too often . . . yet. There’s no guarantee that once the current pandemic has run its course, we’ll be “safe” for another hundred years or so. After all, how many of us have experienced numerous “100-year” floods, wildfires, hurricanes, tornadoes, heat waves, earthquakes, or other natural disasters in the past few decades?

 

 

really weird COVID mask
picture from Twitter

I and my family and friends have been relatively fortunate this year. We escaped negative 2020 events a lot more than did the average person. For that I’m grateful. But that doesn’t mean ill-fortune won’t befall me or someone I know in the near future. Nothing is guaranteed. But I’m certainly not complaining about the minor inconveniences dumped upon me in 2020.

Forever the optimist, I’m looking forward to 2021, especially as an author.

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel when LIVE author events will return. I’m pleased to put a favorite book festival back on the 2021 calendar–the Deep Valley Book Festival scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 2, in Mankato MN. We had to do a virtual fest this year, which was better than nothing. The organizers have scheduled a “warm-up” virtual DVBF for the first weekend in March. I’m looking forward to that event because I’ve been asked to host a live, online discussion tentatively titled, “The Ins and Outs of Mystery Writing.”

Check back on my “Events and Appearances” page for more details as the date approaches. While some of the spring live events I’ve done in the past might not happen, I’m hoping that by June many live events will be starting up again. But that depends in large part on how we all behave for the next six months.

I’m hoping to visit bookstores for signings again. Hoping to browse my library shelves at will. Hoping to travel to Hackensack MN for the fantastic Northwoods Art & Book Festival. Hoping to visit with book clubs in person rather than virtually. Hoping to finish my w.i.p. and release it to the world. Hoping to sit and write in my favorite coffee shops. Hoping to greet the occasional stranger who recognizes me and my low budget advertising . . .

Soft-sell marketing at Central Park Coffee shop
I’ve sold several books because of this advertising

. . . and spontaneously tells me how much they enjoyed reading one of my books.

Looking ahead to 2021 in other ways

I hope to see my stress level drop by about 90%, hope to sell many more books than I did in 2020, go to the movies, dine in a crowded restaurant and not worry about getting the virus, HUG THE PEOPLE I LOVE, sit at the bar with fifteen other golf buddies and give each other crap about our golf games for an hour, attend a live music event or baseball or soccer game, spend in-person time with my Little Brother Ethan, not worry about my parents’ and older friends and relatives’ health, and not subconsciously judge people who aren’t wearing a mask.

Most of all, I hope my good friends Paul and Mary get a chance to meet their 10-month-old granddaughter, Louise, for the first time in person. She was born just as travel restrictions to foreign countries went into effect. So, they had to cancel the trip to Singapore.

So stay positive and test negative.  And prepare for a lot more good in 2021 that will far outweigh the inevitable bad that makes life, life.

 

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