Every New Year I begin with a cargo train of optimism that this one, this brand new set of days is going to be a lot better than the last one, or at least no worse. Does it ever turn out that way? Good question. The problem is finding a benchmark, a reference point, a normative baseline against which to measure the new one and the old. I don’t know how to do that. Instead, I look back and think some good things happened this year, some real good things. My first novel is out, available, and some people are reading it and apparently liking it. My life situation has changed dramatically. No complaints, not really. About some things, sure, but you always have that. And those I will work on. They are fixable. Overall, the Year Gone was good enough. You can ask for more, but you won’t often get it. And it could have been worse, much worse. I’m still here, and still hopeful. I’ll put that in the win column.