Some things will change, of course. I'm to become a father again. I know precisely what this will entail, my partner does not. That'll be fun. My three existing daughters will get a half-sibling and my complicated, modern family will acquire a slightly different dynamic again. In this regard, stuff whirls around me while I'm at the centre. For a professional communicator, I'm really very bad at talking about things and if I have regrets over the way things have gone in the last decade, they would largely be around how I have handled (or haven't handled) things. I don't think I would change anything, but I would have established a comms plan first and stuck to it.
I turn 50 this incoming year. Many of my closest friends are a decade behind me. Actually, the gap is closing in that the life experience you gain between 40 and 50 only really cements who you already are. When I'm out with my chums, we're already the oldest people out so my particular position in the age hierarchy isn't important. There's to be a party. I don't know if I'm to arrange this myself but on behalf of the organising committee - YOU'RE invited. Terms and conditions apply, of course - it will be somewhere on the North Coast of Northern Ireland sometime near the end of June and my guest room is already booked. Oh, and no gifts, strippers or shenanigans. Thank you.
As a younger man I made a fair bit of money writing screenplays for other people which were never filmed. I have inverted this trend in recent times by publishing my own scribblings and having no-one buy them. I'm hoping that with a proper push the new subKultur imprint will become properly established as a channel for some new writing and music - my own but chiefly others' - in 2012. I don't really care about not selling any stories but I do care about doing something I enjoy and failing. Better that than to sit and regret the things I should have done. It might be simply that I'm not good enough at writing or brazen enough at self-promotion. One of those things, at least, can be fixed.
One of the revelations of the year has been Twitter (find me = @carlpeter). Read recently something along the lines of Facebook being about people you knew but you wished you didn't and Twitter being about people you largely didn't know but you wished you did. I intend to remedy this next year and meet a few of you (you're all invited to my party, remember?!). Would be invidious to name the good folks I have 'met' electronically this way in recent times but the chat and support and just general banter has been a genuine pleasure and a bonus. There's an industrial amount of dross, boasting, snobby whining, polemic and general unpleasantness there too (some of it from me, naturally), but it's worth wading through it for the gems. To all of you contributing twittery goodness to my life, a sincere 'thank you'.
There has been a fair bit of pain and distress in the wider family this outgoing year too. I hope the 2012 brings some respite/relief or at least better strategies for dealing with that which can't be changed. Change itself is the only constant, however. I know I'm going to abandon at least one long-held principle next year but if there is a theme to 2012, it's to be that I will be more selfish or, less perjoratively, more self-reliant.
To conclude, next year I'm going back to some of the things I have already tried: fatherhood, writing, maybe another year of playing the bass in a rock n roll band. No new fresh horizons, no alarms and no surprises. It could be a good year :-)
Have a good one.