2019 // The Year of Musicals, Memories, and Meetings

December 29, 2019

Happy Sunday!

Who’s ready for 2020??? It’s the beginning of a new decade, which is a little weird to think about, honestly. The thought of next year scares me - it brings with it a lot of change and uncertainty, more so than previous years.

But there’s still two days before the new year, so let’s look back at 2019 for a moment.

(I’ll just stop the intro here. You know what this is - you’ve read a billion of them this month. XD)

So this year, I’ve decided to highlight the top five favorite memories in my fandom, blogging, and writing lives, along with . . . you know . . . actual off-Internet life. Because apparently that exists. XD

Most of these are in no particular order - do you really think I’d be decisive enough to pick my favorite 2019 fandom, for instance? HAHAHA, no.

Keeper of the Lost Cities. Obviously, this one had to go here. Legacy was one of the best installments of the series, and I am SO PUMPED for next year's release. Even if it means that something I used to prefer in the series doesn't happen. :_(

Marvel. Endgame was pretty great. Captain Marvel and Far from Home were decent, too. But EXCUSE ME if I cry any time someone says "I love you 3000."

The Flash. (only seasons 1-3 because basically anything after season 2 isn't that great) This was the first TV show I watched in 2019, and WOW was I obsessed for a solid six months. Even now, I fangirl anytime Cisco is mentioned, and the soundtrack never fails to get me pumped up. (The show's theme song is one of the best themes I've heard in a long time that was not created by John Williams. XD)

Big Hero 6. This was another obsession early on in the year. I'd been meaning to rewatch the movie for FOREVER, and one day when I was home sick I decided to just do it. Best. Decision. Ever. I am now re-addicted and will probably become your best friend if you love it too. XD

TwoSetViolin. yes, I am counting this as a fandom My WORD, I have never been as interested in a YouTube channel as I have been with this one. I even changed my iPad background screen to this screenshot from one of their videos:

my productivity has gone up by at least 60%

Yeah. It mayyyyy not have been a good time to discover them around finals. . . . XD

Realm Makers. I debated putting this under the Life category, but it was a writing conference after all. I met so many of you guys and learned so much about writing and the publishing industry! And while I don't think I'll go next year, I so want to go again and meet you all in person. <3

Finishing my NaNo ‘18 first draft. This happened during April's Camp NaNo, and while I think the ending is still a bit rushed, I'm overall proud that I finished my longest manuscript yet (about 60k words, I think) and that I wrote some of my favorite characters ever into existence.

Sending off The Inhumans #1 to my alpha reader. This was terrifying - the last time I let someone outside of my family read my work, it was in seventh grade, and . . . well, my stories weren't great. But I really like my alpha reader, and I'm excited to look through her comments soon and start implementing them!

Re-outlining The Inhumans. This was one of the things my alpha reader and I discussed, because for about a year and a half now I have HATED the pacing of the series. This is still something I'm currently working on, though - I hit a roadblock on Christmas Eve and am NOT HAPPY ABOUT IT. *threatens outline*

And I thiiiiiink this story might turn into a duology instead of a trilogy. *shock*

Getting published. (!!) So . . . I may not have told you guys this, but recently Havok published my short story. I didn't mention it on my blog or on social medias because it's not under this pen name. XD Anyways, that day was super surreal and crazy and it still doesn't feel like it happened - but I GOT PUBLISHED BEFORE THE END OF THE DECADE.

Passing 50 followers. You guys - I never thought for one minute that I would have more than twenty followers on this blog, or more than 1,000 pageviews. But right now I have SIXTY-SEVEN followers and about TWENTY-FOUR THOUSAND pageviews.

*mind explodes*

THANK YOU GUYS SO MUCH. *hugs* You guys give me the motivation to keep blogging, and I love the friends I've made on this platform. <3 *gives virtual chocolate*

How to Write a Bestselling YA Fantasy Novel. This was my personal favorite post, and you seemed to like it too. It's not my most viewed post, but it's number 2 on the list. It was really fun trying out a satire post on this blog. Who knows, maybe I'll do another one in 2020! XD

It's So Classic Tag! Somehow this ended up being my number-one viewed post. maybe I would have put a little more effort into it if I had known

The top five currently are:
  1. It's So Classic Tag!
  2. How to Write a Bestselling YA Fantasy Novel [told you guys]
  3. My Bullet Journal Journey // aka bring on the cringe [I'm surprised this was so popular - if you want a New Year bujo post, let me know in the comments!]
  4. Realm Makers 2019 // the play-by-play no one asked for
  5. August 2019 Happenings // I Am Exhausted [how was this so popular?? SOMEONE EXPLAIN]
(Also, 4/5 of these were published in August. ????)

Alllllll my hiatuses. ;) Just kidding. But seriously, I took like three of them this year for some reason. My hope is that I will only have one or two hiatuses next year. Fingers crossed.

Getting Instagram! (yes, this totally counts) I got it this month, and it's actually been really fun talking with you guys on there! But MY WORD, taking aesthetic pictures is hard. I mayyyyy do a post next year about Instagram, but I don't know. *shrugs*

Starting bullet journaling. I started to use a bullet journal in the first few days of January, and I fell in love with the system! Honestly, at this point I don't know how else I would plan my days and weeks out if I wasn't bullet journaling. XD

my 2019 brown bujo next to my 2020 blue one! <3

A musical. I discussed this a little in my November wrap-up, but basically I participated in a musical this semester and loved every minute of it. <3

Our family's July vacation. And I discussed this a little in my July wrap-up, but my family went to California and explored some national parks and such. I don't know how you people in San Francisco survive with 60 DEGREE WEATHER IN JULY. *shivers*

Meeting online friends for the first time. Not only did I meet online friends at Realm Makers, but I also went to a graduation party where I saw a friend that I haven't seen in years. This year was the year of reunions and meetings, and it was amazing. :D

Listening to over 490 hours on Spotify. So I mayyyyy have a little bit of a music problem . . . but I am proud to say that my artist of the year and of the decade was Hamilton. *nod of approval*

Overall . . . 2019 was probably one of the best years of my life. I met so many people I'd only communicated with online, I did some amazing things that I thought I would never do (like try sushi), and even though there were some VERY stressful periods, I'd like to think that I was generally having a good time this year.

My motto for this year was trust. I honestly don't know if I learned to be more trusting this year, but I definitely had to trust more people this year. From trusting God on plane flights to trusting that I would be on time to rehearsals, trust was a key factor.

I thought over what I wanted 2020's motto to be, and I finally decided on no fear.

2020 is not only the beginning of a decade, it's also the beginning of a lot of change that, frankly, I am scared of. I don't like change. I don't like stepping out of my comfort zone. I like where I am right now. But 2020's going to throw all that out the window and step on it and burn it.

I have to learn how to take a deep breath. Change is coming whether I like it or not, so accepting that is the only way I know of to get through it. I still have to work on trust this year, but I also have to learn to adapt.

*deep breath*

Bring it on, 2020.

-Nicole <3

How was your 2019? What was your favorite thing you did this year? Are you excited for 2020? Nervous? Sad? Let's talk!

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  1. If it makes you feel any better I listened to about 780 hours of music this year xD So...yeah. But the good news is...MUSIC IS LIFE PEOPLE.

    Aghhhh KotLC (and I can't wait for book 9) *flails*

    And it was truly just the best to meet you at Realm Makers! <3 <3 <3

    1. I still don’t understand how in the world you did that. XD But YES, MUSIC = LIFE.

      BOOK NINE WILL BE EPIIIIIIIIIC *flails with you*

      That was one of the biggest highlights of my year! <3 <3 <3 *hugs*

  2. Sounds like such an awesome year, Nicole! (Also put in a good word, but I hear Snapper likes Big Hero 6 too ;) ).

    Happy New Year’s! I’m so excited to see what 2020 has in store! <333

    1. Yes, it really was! (Haha, I'll take that into consideration. ;) but who's Snapper's favorite character??)

      Happy New Year's! I hope 2020 brings lots of achievement and joy for you. <3 <3 <3

  3. My biggest fandom this year was Marvel! I had only watched a few movies in other years, but I watched almost all of them (okay, okay, I still have quite a few to go) this year. Oh, and Big Hero 6 is so good!!

    Your year sounds fantastic! I have loved finding your blog and reading all of your posts! I would love to see another bullet journal post! Hey, you and I both tried sushi in 2019! *high five*

    A late Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    1. Aaahhh, that's awesome! Do you have a favorite movie so far? And yes, Big Hero 6 is an amazing movie!

      Aw, thank you!! <3 Meeting you has been so awesome! *thumbs-up* It is currently in production now. ;) Ooo, nice, did you like it? I like the cooked stuff, but not the raw ones. *high-fives*

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you too! :D

  4. This was honestly one of my favorite 2019 posts I've seen!! I loved every part of it. I also loved big hero six for probably a solid year LOL. It's such a good movie!! I haven't been into it lately, but I was for a loooong time there haha. I absolutely love your motto for 2020, No fear. I'm totally going to have to think about that, because thats where i really need to focus on fixing myself. I'm going to go write my 2019 post now haha!
    Loved the post Nicole!

    1. Aw, thank you! (But yours was EPIC, too. :D)
      Haha, yessss, Big Hero 6 is the BEST. XD (Who was your favorite character?)
      Yes, GO FOR IT. We can work on improving that together! :)

  5. Awwww! It fills my heart knowing you had a good year!!! Meeting you was definitely one of my highlights! RM was my FAVORITE thing about this year. SO MUCH FUN!

    It's been so great having you on Instagram! :D Almost all my peeps are over there now and it makes me happy. ^_^

    I'm just thrilled you had such a good year. I hear you on the stress though. I'm learning sometimes the best things COME with stress, like Realm Makers and things. But it's soooo worth it.

    And oh my goodness, "no fear" is SUCH a wonderful thing to live by come the new year. I love that so very much! I do hope your 2020 is full of brave, amazing, beautiful things. <333

    1. Aw, it was amazing meeting you at RM!! Seriously one of the biggest highlights of the year. <3

      I’ve been surprised at how many people I know on Instagram - it’s been nice seeing you and other bloggers!

      SO TRUE! I’ll have to take that to heart this year . . . XD

      Same to you, Christine - I hope you have such a wonderful 2020! <3 <3 <3

  6. Yes hello I haven't seen Endgame yet and I probably shouldn't be watching that Tony/Steve GIF over and over but I am because AWWWW. The last Marvel movie I watched was Civil War, so I needed this. xD

    I KNEW ABOUT YOUR HAVOK STORY AND I'M SO SO SO HAPPY FOR YOU!! I just read it and WOW WOW WOW it was so gooood. *drools*

    I'm so happy to have you on Instagram!! I only just started this year too, and it's been so much fun. <3

    YES PLEASE I WILL TAKE A NEW YEAR BULLET JOURNAL POST. Give me allll the bullet journal posts.

    I'm SO pumped for 2020. I'm so ready to change some things and improve some things and yeah, I know that's how people feel every year. But like, I'm SOOO ready lol. The last few months of this year I've just stopped trying in a lot of areas, and it just kept getting worse BECAUSE I knew the New Year was coming. And I'm ready to stop slacking and get on all those things I want to do. Yes, I'm already prepared to fail because it's bound to happen sometime in at least one area. But I'm ready to TRY.

    Happy New Year, Nicole! I'm so glad we've gotten to be friends this year! <3


    1. This makes me so grateful that I picked a mostly non-spoilery GIF, because I don’t want to be the one to ruin it for you. XD Oof, Civil War is . . . a rough one to be sure. ;)


      Woo-hoo, go us for starting right before the new decade! *high-fives* it’s been awesome seeing you on there!

      Haha, it’s up now! (I am SO LATE in responding to comments. . . .)

      I completely understand you - and I hope 2020 has been productive and fun so far! I’ve been doing better this year than all of December, so . . . yikes. XD

      Happy New Year to you, too, Emily! <3 <3

  7. Yayyyayayay NICOLE!!!
    Congrats on the followers and I'm definitely taking allllll the chocolate. xD

    1. THANK YOU, Danielle, and *nods* That is the proper response. XD

  8. Ooh, I love your motto! And CONGRATS ON THE FOLLOWERS, THAT'S SO AWESOME!! :D

    1. THANK YOU, GRAY!!! *hugs* I hope you have a great New Year! <3

  9. Replies
    1. haha, same, but it’s already here, so YIKES XD

  10. I can agree with you about Big Hero 6, but I’ve got to catch up with the rest of your fandoms (I promise I’ll check out KotLC soon hehehe)! And I’m so happy for your writing this year!! *gasps* I WISH I HAD READ THAT HAVOK STORY (I definitely understand about it not being under your own name but it must have been sooooo good *cries*)

    Also, I am in love with your How to Write A Bestselling YA Fantasy Novel post (it’s hilarious but also so sad because it’s extremely true 😭), and please do a 2020 bujo post!! I would love that ;)

    Anyways, you always post such quality content, Nicole!! I absolutely adore this wrap up (your motto is lovely), and I’ll talk to you again in 2020!

    1. Yess, Big Hero 6 is great! (and DO IT, you will probably love it, although I can’t make guarantees XD). And next time I do publish a story, I’ll send you a message. :D <3

      Aw, thanks! (True, it’s very sad . . . *sigh*) and it’s up now! (Because my comment-replying skills are very slow XD)

      <3 <3 <3 I hope you have an amazing 2020, Ash!

  11. *sits down and eats chocolate*
    nicole nicole nicole it's my favorite blogger
    she feeds people chocolate
    yayyy i'm so glad you had a great 2019
    dudee rm sounds amazing and i freak out any time someone talks about it :DD
    ohhhmygoodness congratulations on your published story! that's incredible!
    SOMEONE JUST SAID BIG HERO 6 O-O probably fav or second fav movie ever <333
    also kotlc aughhh i can't wait for the next book ;-;
    cisco cisco cisco <3
    congratulations on all your followersss :D so exciting
    *sits here waiting for inhumans to be published*
    you tried sushi?!? i'm so proud of you
    wow i definitely approve of your spotify picks ������
    hope you have a fabulous 2020 :DD

    1. *eats chocolate with you*
      Bwahahaha, that was my plan all along . . . I mean, I’m happy you appreciate the chocolate. XD
      Aw, thanks! <3
      Haha, same here - and I’m sure I’ll keep flailing over next year. XD
      THANK YOU!
      AND YES I DID JUST SAY IT. :D honestly, same, it’s definitely in my top five
      ugh same, book 9 can’t come soon enough.
      Thank youuuuuu.
      (Would you like some more chocolate while you wait? It could be a while . . . XD)
      haha, thanks! Have you tried it before?
      *nods* I am glad you approve ;)
      You too, Isabel! :D

  12. OH AND DO ANOTHER BUJO POST forgot to say that in the first comment hahaha

  13. I cannot agree with your choice of fandoms more!! I love Twoset and I've been following them since probably 2015 or something when I still took violin. Your year sounds great! Hope 2020 has just as much good stuff in store for you!

    1. Haha, yessss, another TwoSetter! They’re SO GOOD. (Okay I need to stop now. XD)

      Happy New Year, Bethany, and I hope 2020 is an amazing year! :)

  14. CONGRATS ON 2019! It sounded like you had an amazing year! CONGRATS ON PUBLISHING, AND THE FOLLOWERS, AND EVERYTHING! Hope you have an EVEN better 2020!

    Maybe I should make my lock screen something that calls me out for procrastinating...

    1. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! And the same to you!

      Yesss, do it, although I will warn you, I feel called out every time I exit an app. XD

  15. My Spotify is so weird...like bluegrass, progressive bluegrass, celtic, Russian, soundtracks, gaming tracks, equine podcasts, celtic rock...and then I listen to SoundCloud half the time, so I can't get an accurate "how many hours spent listening to music" thing, lol

    Seriously, though, TwoSetViolin is HILARIOUS. I don't even listen to or play much Classical, but I find them a hoot.

    I really need to read Keeper of the Lost Cities. Heard so much about it...

    1. XD Yeah, I can see how the results might be a little skewed . . . ;)

      YOU WATCH THEM TOO???? They’re SO FUNNY!

      *nods* You really do, it’s such a good book series . . .

  16. Bring it on, 2020!!! Sounds like you've had an absolutely amazing year, and I can't wait to see what posts you'll do this upcoming year!

    1. Aw, thanks Madison! I hope your 2020 is amazing!

  17. Wow! It really sounds like you had a great 2019! 2020 is scary...
    I really liked the format of this post!
    Hey, would you mind taking my survey? It's at the beginning of the 2019 recap on IH12OP.

    1. 2020 IS scary, and we're already in it . . . XD
      Thank you! I hope 2020 is a wonderful year for you!
      (and no problem!)

  18. Congrats on getting your short story published and getting past 50 followers on this blog!! That's so exciting! Also yes on the Keeper of the Lost Cities. That is one of my all time favorite series! <3


    1. Thank you, Melody, and congrats on YOU publishing a few of your books!!
      Yesssss, KOTLC is the BEST. <3 <3


    Okay but YES, 2020 is THE YEAR for change. I'm a little bit scared of all I've got coming for me too, but... it's going to be epic. God's got us. No fear <3

    1. YES I DID!!!! THANK YOU!!

      Oh my goodness, yes, it is. I’m panicking internally. XD But you’re totally right. <3 <3

  20. So glad to hear you had a wonderful year, Nicole! Best wishes for a 2020 full of growing, learning, and creating! <3 (Also, congratulations on your Havok publishing! That's so exciting!)

    1. Thank you Kathryn, and I hope your 2020 brings you the same! <3 (And thanks!!! Congrats to you, too! :D)

  21. Congrats on getting published! Havok is awesome!
    Glad you had a great year!

    1. Aw, thank you - and I agree, Havok is amazing!
      I hope your 2020 is amazing (even though we're already 1/12 of the way through it XD)!


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