Lauren's New Year's Resolutions 2010

Yes, it's that time of year again. Unlike prior years when I've set New Year's resolutions, this year is the start of many new things in my life. As of three weeks ago, I'm a college graduate. On Christmas I moved to LA to start a new life and career. So these are my resolutions. Feel free to steal a few of them.

1. Blog regularly: I haven't blogged properly for about a year now. I took the CICM internship this time last year so I shifted my blogging habits there. Immediately after the termination of that internship, I began blogging for CoPress (and still do so today). You can find more of my journalism-related posts there, but for more casual, personal blog posts, the goal is to post something here at least once a week.

2. Become a better task manager: I'm taking on a lot of projects these days. I soon plan to launch a new site for my hometown radio station, KTIP. I'm finishing up freelance work for Spot.Us and Cal Poly University Housing. Now that I'm graduated, I'm doing work for CoPress and I'm full time at Publish2. I recently started using Remember the Milk to help myself stay organized, but if you know of any better tools, throw 'em in the comments.

3. Stop being an anti-social freak. Anyone who knows me in real life (i.e. people who didn't meet me through Twitter), knows that me + social = fail. It could be because I'm a workaholic, but I'm also partially a workaholic to avoid being social. Since I'll be rooming with the lovely Vanessa Bezic and living in a cultural hub of the country, Los Angeles, I plan to take advantage of the city and network myself silly. I got a good start last night by kicking off the new year at Noel Baron's home.

4. Read more books. This one is self explanatory. I want to start with the classics that I never read in high school or college (starting with Crime and Punishment and Great Expectations). Then I'll move on to this list (stolen from Jane Lehr's women and gender studies class).

5. Go to more conferences. I rarely went to journalism conferences because (1) I couldn't afford it and (2) I couldn't afford to miss class. Now that I'm a graduate with a job, both of those factors are eliminated. I'm also working with organizations that have team members spread across the country, so meeting with them in person whenever I can is important.

6. Build a WordPress theme from scratch. I'm perfectly capable of doing this. I just haven't. Don't ask why. Perhaps time and reason were the restraints. Now I'm giving myself the time, which is reason enough.

7. Master PHP and start on Django. Working at CoPress (and now with Publish2), my role has always been to design something pretty in Photoshop, then hand it off to the boys for execution. After reading Megan Taylor's list of hacker-journalists (comprised entirely of men), I have a goal of being able to add "developer" to my Twitter bio in addition to designer and journalist.

8. Pitch a story using Spot.Us. I'm not working as reporter in the trenches for my first post-graduate job. As a result, I don't want to lose touch with my reporting roots. Now that I'm living in LA where Spot.Us opened its second branch, I intend to get to know the issues in this area and use the site to pitch and report as a freelancer and publish it on my own.

9. Stay married to my career. I was pretty good at this in college, but post-college, I'm ready to really dive into the work I'm doing.

10. Learn how to cook (well). In college I lived off of salads, sandwiches and ramen out of practicality. Now it's time to finally eat well to keep up energy levels required to follow through with the rest of this list. The goal is to master one dish a week. Over ambitious? Perhaps.

That's all. Peace. Happy 2010.