01. What did you do in 2014 that you’d never done before? - worked as a software developer in a proper web development company - lived with David MacIver as well as David Stark (my boyfriend) - got cats of our own! - started coming out as non-binary gendered/genderqueer - went to two conferences, oddly enough both of them in the same venue in Berlin - went to a gala dinner, because David was nominated for a prize at the Ludicious games festival - knitted a hat and a scarf, and went to a knitting meet-up group - went to two roller derby bouts
02. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I didn't specifically write down my resolutions, but I think I wanted to do well in my new job (success), start cycling to work (partial success) and finish a first draft of my novel, working title The Cold Shores (faaaail). This year I would like to go to the gym consistently, cycle to work once it's warm enough to start, and give a talk at a conference. I also really want to write The Cold Shores, but I need a new psychological strategy to make that happen, I think.
03. Did anyone close to you give birth? A friend's baby was stillborn.
04. Did anyone close to you die? Yes, David's grandmother Ruth. It was very hard on the whole family.
05. What countries did you visit? Switzerland (where I live), the UK (where weddings and Podmas happened), Germany (for conferences).
06. What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2014? More willpower and better self esteem, like every year, I guess? This year was way better than 2013, though.
07. What dates from 2014 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? The 6th January, when I started my job. The 7th May, which is the kittens' official birthday.
08. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Making new friends, at work and online.
09. What was your biggest failure? Writing my novel ... but I did lots of research for it! *sets out to write a silly vampire story, accidentally becomes expert in the Arctic*
10. Did you suffer illness or injury? I fell off my bike once, and caught a couple of nasty viruses, but nothing serious.
11. What was the best thing you bought? A new bicycle.
12. Whose behaviour merited celebration? All my friends who achieved great things with their creative work. I am amazed to know so many awesome folk.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? The weasels from the startup David and I worked for last year, who still haven't paid us the thousands of francs they owe us despite us throwing more money after it in court costs.
14. Where did most of your money go? The above-mentioned court costs, travel and the cats' vet bills. A fair way after that, books and music. (I'm not counting rent and food here.)
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Getting the cats! Ancillary Sword! Prince Lestat! My youngest brother getting married! Open Knowledge Fest! Podmas! Mister Lucian's Ars Goetia!
16. What song will always remind you of 2014? Seeming, 'The Burial'.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you: (a) happier or sadder? Happier. (b) thinner or fatter? Fatter. (c) richer or poorer? Richer.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of? Writing. Cycling. Making time to see friends in person. Going to gigs.
19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Procrastinating and mindlessly surfing the internet, though I do think I was better this year than in some previous ones. Reading about GomblerGort, because ugh.
20. How did you spend Christmas? We went to David's grandmother Rose's house for a relaxing few days, and saw his cousin and aunts. I had to chase a runaway dog through the streets in the dark, with no shoes or coat, which added a bit of excitement. Then we went to his dad's family for dinner, an overnight stay and brunch the next morning. It was very loud but also lovely.
21. Did you fall in love in 2014? I'm still in love with David and expect to stay that way for the forseeable future. I developed a couple of new crushes, though.
22. What was your favorite TV program? Hannibal.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year? No, I don't think I have the attention span to really hate people.
24. What was the best book you read? I read some really fantastic books this year. Picking a just a few from that list, I would say Ancillary Justice and Ancillary Sword, The Makioka Sisters and In the Kingdom of Ice.
26. What did you want and get? A nicer flat. Kittens! To move into the API squad at work instead of the Wordpress squad. To go to Podmas.
27. What did you want and not get? I don't think I felt the lack of anything external to myself this year.
28. What was your favorite film of this year? Only Lovers Left Alive.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I went out for a Chinese buffet meal with my family in Essex. My mum brought a cake for me and one for my stepbrother (who has a very close birthday) and the waitresses brought them out at the end with candles in them. I'd never had that before - it was very exciting! Then, a couple of days later, David and I spent the day with our friends Hayley and Miguel, and Miguel performed a healing ceremony for us as a gift. I was thirty.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Less cat pee.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2014? In the winter and spring: strained attempts to look smart for my office job. In the summer: androgynous bermuda shorts, baggy t-shirts and the previously undiscovered joys of a sports bra. In the autumn and winter: the same, but with jeans and blue hair.
32. What kept you sane? My boyfriend, and venlafaxine.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? Mads Mikkelsen, Gillian Anderson, Conrad Veidt, Michelle Rodriguez.
34. What political issue stirred you the most? The Swiss mass-immigration referendum.
35. Who did you miss? All my friends in Cambridge; Hayley and Miguel; Sarah; my brothers.
36. Who was the best new person you met? I met a lot of great people at work and on the intertron, mostly through the Vampire Chronicles fandom, which I only discovered this year is an actual, wonderful thing.
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2014. It really is much easier to fill in your timesheets at the end of each day than once a month. You should probably get pet insurance before your cat starts needing ultrasound and CT scans for a bladder problem, not afterwards. Fanfic is fantastic.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year. "I really don't care, neither does he / if this hotel melts into the sea / polished and so rare, this way that we see / the coldness helps, it's our favourite remedy." - Rasputina, 'The New Zero'.