Holiday Traditions

One of the things I most love about the holiday season are family traditions. I adore hearing about what other people do to celebrate and connect during the busy-busy stretch from Thanksgiving to New Year's Day, and I look forward to the moments we revisit our own family traditions, from making fondue on Christmas Eve, to attending the candlelight service at church, to watching The Sound of Music while eating homemade Chex Mix, to picking out a Fraser Fir at our favorite tree vendor on Broadway. And now that I'm a mom, enjoying these experiences with my young son and making new family traditions that he (hopefully) will cherish too, means the world to me. 

I'm a regular reader in general, but I find that during the craze of the holiday season, I treasure my quiet reading time more than usual. When it's cold and snowy here in New York City, and I've just returned from walking the dog, all pink-cheeked and penguin-walking in my puffy parka and snow boots, I love curling up on the couch with a good book. I brew hot tea, crack open the living room window, and slip on a pair of fleece socks. Our little apartment fills with the aroma of peppermint (from the tea) and pine needles (from the tree.) My dog curls up on the carpet beside my feet. My winter nights wind down by entering the world of a good story, and the sounds of soft doggy snores, the rattling radiator, and cars whooshing along the West Side Highway, simply fade away. All I need is a fireplace, and my reading ambiance would be complete (one can dream!).

One of the things I want to incorporate into my life is an annual holiday season writing tradition… Something that's not too challenging, but exciting, and something that sticks. I've considered setting a word count goal for December (a la NaNoWriMo). Or dedicating the month to carefully outline a new project or think through writing goals. I've also contemplated putting away creative projects entirely so I can focus on crafting pitches for my work-related writing. In general, I've been doing a smattering of many things, much like my schedule throughout the year. But I'm craving something creatively special – something that'll trigger a little nostalgia each year, and get me ramped up for a writing endeavor before December draws to a close. In other words, something that doesn't involve me wiping away my tears with postcard rejection SASE's.

Do you have any annual writing traditions? Do you reign in the New Year by typing to the backdrop of fireworks, or sketch out ideas beneath the stars, or try your hand at writing a screenplay? I'd love to hear!


No real writing traditions, other than evaluating whether I've reached my writing goals over the year, and planning out goals and deadlines for the next year. I like the idea of making December something special for writing, like maybe doing short stories for the month, or trying my hand at an entirely new genre or format...The good news is, I've got eleven months to think up ideas for next December!

I love the picture you paint of your cozy writing cave (and imaginary fireplace). It sounds...quiet. :)

I want to come to your place next Christmas, Jodi!

I may have started a new Christmas tradition this year. Last year, I spent most of the holiday writing--fast drafting Manor of Secrets--and missed so much of the holiday. This year, even though I had a personal deadline for a draft, I took a few days off completely and just spent it with my family. Not only was it nice to savor the moments, but it also unlocked a story problem that I'd been struggling with! Definitely a good thing to remember.

Post a Comment

Grid_spot theme adapted by Lia Keyes. Powered by Blogger.


discover what the Muses get up to when they're not Musing

an ever-growing resource for writers

Popular Musings

Your Responses

Fellow Musers