Ran a 10K race (in 48 minutes, to my astonishment) and did some DJ'ing. In fact, I DJ'ed more frequently than I did spoken word gigs in 2011, although nothing should necessarily be read into this (I am definitely, unquestionably not a better DJ than I am a writer).
2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't think I made any. I probably will make some vague ones for 2012, though, mostly revolving around being less lazy.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Staggeringly, not this year.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
5. What countries did you visit?
Morocco, Switzerland, The Netherlands and France.
6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
A tiny bit more of a sense of direction.
7. What date from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
To be honest, the very fact that I'm having to get up and look at my calendar to remind myself of the dates of events now doesn't bode very well for the future.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Starting a new job for an arts organisation, and getting the position despite being up against around 170 candidates for the post.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Not getting any short stories published. This sticks in my craw a bit and is one of the only things I've allowed myself to get bitter about (which I'm usually good at avoiding) - true, short stories aren't something I've done much of in the past, and I shouldn't expect to be brilliant straight off the bat, but I was genuinely proud of what I'd created and honestly thought it stood a fighting chance.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
A sprained knee and a slightly knackered hip (the former in Spring, the latter in Autumn). A woozy, early morning hip collision with a concrete bollard whilst out running is probably a very stupid injury to get as well. Luckily nobody witnessed it.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Some nice clothes, my wardrobe was getting faded and tatty and needed a complete change-around. It shouldn't have been enough in itself to make me feel a bit more sprightly and confident, but it has. Sorry.
12. Whose behaviour merited celebration?
Quite a few people who encouraged me and pushed me on this year. Without them, I'd probably have given up on some areas of my life.
13. Whose behaviour made you appalled and depressed?
The Government's, and on a purely personal level people I know who just seem determined to sleepwalk through life ignoring their issues and problems, hoping everything will change for the better as if by magic. They don't appall me, but I do wish I could make them change, and thus I do find that depressing.
14. Where did most of your money go?
No idea! Most of it probably went on holidays, but I can't be bothered to sit down and work it all out.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Starting a new job.
16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
Oddly, I don't think any one song "defined" 2011 for me. I may change my mind later, though.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder?
ii. thinner or fatter?
iii. richer or poorer?
A bit richer. Amanda's freelance work started to pick up pace this year, so whilst we're not living in the lap of luxury, I don't think we can rightfully call ourselves skint anymore. Which is a relief.
18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Everything! I should have written more, socialised more, just generally been a bit less lazy. I note my answer last year was similar, so I really need to work at this to prevent my life from descending into middle-aged blandness. If these memes have any purpose at all, at least they've now convinced me that I've developed a bit of a problem with my personal motivations.
19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Pissing around on the Internet, like I'm doing now.
20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent it in Morocco.
21. Did you fall in love in 2011?
Stayed in love.
22. How many one-night stands?
None, and even if I had had any, this would be a peculiar way of confessing the fact, wouldn't it? What an interesting start to 2012 that would create!
23. What was your favorite TV program?
Nothing really stood out massively for me this year. There was nothing I would have made an effort to stay indoors for. Even the Eurovision Song Contest was a bit disappointing.
24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
No. Last year I came very close to hating a work colleague, but they're out of my life now, thank God. A dim and distant memory.
25. What was the best book you read?
Not sure.... a lot of contenders. I hate these questions, because I never really put a mental datestamp on what I read and when, and I lose track of time quite easily.
26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I'm very late to the party, as I seem to be with all this stuff lately, but Rose Elinor Dougall's album impressed me. Ditto Slow Club.
27. What did you want and get?
A new job.
28. What did you want and not get?
To get short stories published, to generate a reasonable amount of opportunities for my written work generally - the last year I got so few pieces of published work or live appearances was 2005, so that's a bit worrying. A massive backwards step rather than anything else.
29. How will you see in the New Year?
In the flat, which I'm completely fine with. I'm not a fan of New Year's Eves in London, anyway - Londoners are really BAD at bouts of spontaneous sociability, just look at their miserable little faces under the fireworks on the telly and you'll see what I mean. In the footage from other cities and countries, people are smiling and dancing around. Not so yer average cockney.
30. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I didn't do anything at all this year, it fell in the middle of the week and I couldn't much be arsed. Amanda and I had a meal, I think.
31. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
A sense of momentum.
32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Pseudo-retro bollocks, but it's very smart looking. I've CLEANED UP MY ACT. Largely because I'm getting far too old to get away with looking cheap and cheerful.
33. What kept you sane?
Myself and my own cool head.
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
36. Who did you miss?
The usual long-distance suspects.
37. Who was the best new person you met?
I wouldn't want to embarrass anyone (or make anyone else feel left out) by naming names. I've met some really inspiring people this year who were just fleeting presences, though, largely thanks to my job. I hope I can take a leaf out of their books in 2012.
38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011:
Arguing with people on Twitter and Facebook is an utter waste of energy and time, even if you think you know the individual well.