Celebrating 2015 – Reflections

IMG_5608.JPGWhat went well in 2015?

2015 was the year of new beginnings for me: I birthed my baby-girl and my business. My baby-girl is growing fast. She is crawling and a proud owner of three sharp teeth. Her dazzling smile melts my heart, and she jigs to every beat.

My business is growing too. This year, I’ve created a 1:1 offering to help women-writers to unblock their creative flow. The feedback and testimonials have been amazing. After our sessions, people start writing with more ease and joy, and unexpected breakthroughs  (including money) show up in their writing careers. Check out some glowing testimonials here, and if you are drawn to experience this work, drop me a line.

My book proposal won a prestigious prize in the Christine Kloser’s Transformational Author Experience writing contest. It was in the top 10 to be considered for a traditional publishing deal with New World Library. I just heard back from the contest organisers that the publisher liked my proposal enough to send it to the editorial and marketing departments for further consideration. The final decision is due at the end of January. There are no guarantees of course, but this news boosted my confidence further.

2015 has been the first full year of blogging for me. I’ve started a series ‘The Story Behind The Story’. What’s been amazing is how international this series has been, and will continue to be in 2016. I’ve got an amazing line-up of writers in January with inspiring posts. If you’d like to contribute, please get in touch. Here are a few examples to give you an idea of what I’m looking for:

‘The Challah Tin’ by Nicky Tate

‘Answering my True Calling’ by Solveig Werner

‘My Writing Adventure’ by Angela Guidolin

‘Family Threads’ by Gwynn Rogers

I also thoroughly enjoyed contributing to other blogs this year. They stretched me, helped my growth and getting comfortable to share my story with a wider audience. If you missed my guest posts, here are a few of my favourites:

How Agatha Christie saved my life

Taking Up The Invitation

3 Stages of Writing a Memoir

The Value of a Supportive Community of Writers

My First Christmas at the Age of 31

Another blogging highlight this year was taking part in the April A to Z blogging challenge. Here is my favourite post from those series: F is for Family.

And speaking of family: this year I visited my family in Azerbaijan, which was heart-warming. Seeing my grandma again is a highlight of any year for me. I’ve been deepening my connection with my own family of four by spending time in Embercombe and attending a family camp, which is a huge resource in helping us to parent our children more consciously. Interestingly, ‘How Do You Speak to Your Child’ was amongst the most viewed posts I’ve published this year.

What didn’t go well in 2015?

Despite a beautiful labour in a birthing pool in my dining room, my baby girl ended up arriving via an emergency C-section. I still feel a tinge of sadness for not experiencing a natural birth.

Technology made me despair in 2015. My Premium WordPress account turned out to be a liability and not an asset. So, I’ll need to move my website to a self-hosted one in September 2016 when my current subscription with WordPress expires.

Overall, automation was slow in 2015. I’ve prepared a PDF file with a list of ideas which may help your creative juices flow. You can get it when you sign up to my newsletter. There haven’t been many subscriptions yet, partly because I haven’t told many people about it. And, I’m yet to publish a newsletter. I’m still building this particular muscle…. Here is the link to the PDF file in case you’d like to sign up. I’ll be sending newsletters once a month soon.

I’ve managed to make a start on some clutter-clearing activities. It already feels good to have the extra space in the bedroom, but I still have some way to go.

How was your year, dear reader?

A very happy New Year to you all! Thank you very much for reading. 

P.S. The questions for review in this post (What went well this year? and What did not go well this year?) come from Chris Guillebeau’s annual review post. http://chrisguillebeau.com/2015-annual-review/

 

18 thoughts on “Celebrating 2015 – Reflections

  1. The list of successes is larger than the small bumps on the road so you deserve to celebrate a great year. I’m happy for the book as it seems on a good track. I’ll see you in 2016 for more great posts. I need to revisit because I missed your participation to the A to Z challenge. Happy New Year to you and your loved ones, Gulara, and thank you for having me on your blog.

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    • I’m sure there’s plenty more to write in both sections 🙂 Thank you for your kind words, Evelyne, it’s a true blessing to find like-minded people through this blog, and I’m so glad our paths crossed in 2015. I look forward to continue journeying together in 2016. Many blessings!

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  2. Lovely post Gulara thank you! I’ll double check that I’m signed up to your newsletter – I know it is/will be valuable ..

    My study desk awaits … much tidying and organising to be done. We’re down to the sea on Sunday. My son, friend and husband are out golfing so I have time alone for MUCH to be done 🙂

    It’s been such a pleasure meeting you Gulara and reading your always lovely and thought provoking posts. Thank you for your support to mine – I’ve so appreciated your lovely comments, thank you.

    Yes NY’s Eve is here! Here’s to a blessed 2016 with joy peace compassion creativity your daily companions – for you and your family 🙂 🙂 🙂

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    • I feel so much awe and gratitude towards you, Susan. I treasure our connection, and deeply grateful for every opportunity to exchange views and learn from your wisdom. Many blessings! I look forward to nurturing our connection further in 2016. Wishing you a productive afternoon 🙂

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  3. What a dazzling 2015 you experienced! Congratulations on all your successes. I’m sure 2016 will be even better for you. Right now the end of 2015 and the start of 2016 is not going well for me, so things can only get better. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What a productive year you’ve had! Congratulations on all your achievements, and about your book proposal being considered for publication.
    I just signed up to your newsletter, although I may have already done so—I’ll know if I get sent two!
    I’ve nearly finished tidying up my piece for your Story Behind the Story. I need to add some photos and then I can send it to you. Thanks for your patience with that!
    I’m making a commitment to my blog again this year as I’ve neglected it for the past six months. I did that deliberately, not just to concentrate on my novel but also because I was feeling quite vulnerable, given everything I’d shared. I needed to retreat for a while and post easier pieces, like what I’d been doing during the week and photos! I kept writing in my journal, however, so I have much that I feel up to sharing publicly now.
    2015 was a good year, and I have a feeling 2016 will be even better! Best wishes to you. x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind words about 2015, Louise. It’s wonderful you will blog more in 2016 – I love your writing so much! You’ve been an absolute inspiration throughout my blogging life. All the best for 2016! Many blessings.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Welcome to 2016! Oh my what a year you had!
    Congratulations! Since I discovered your blog through your guest post on how Agatha Christie saved your life I have tried to miss as little as possible of your blog. You have been so encouraging and such an inspiration for me in 2015.
    And thank you for being my guest twice already!
    I wish you, all the best for this year 2016!

    Liked by 1 person

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