I promised myself I would not do this. I really like reflection, but I really dislike it when it feels arbitrary. Like, oh, I don’t know, on New Year’s Eve. But I think reflection is catching. And there’s something to be said for taking a minute to reflect on where you’ve been.

I will run down what happened in 2015 in just a moment, but before I do I would like to take a minute to celebrate what’s ahead. We will celebrate Contributor Appreciation Month in January, sponsored by Channillo.com, and get to give things away, which is fun. Honored contributors will get to be interviewed, which I’m super excited to share with you. Submissions are once again open and in a week I will announce a special submissions announcement related to some plans for springtime episodes. And it is still a ways off, but I have some fun stuff in mind for our first birthday and 50th episode at the end of May/early June.

Thank you to this community of writers and listeners. I am so excited to bring this show to you every week and continue to be grateful to all who have pressed play. Now…for some history!

In April of 2015 I participated in Camp Nanowrimo and got inspired to write and share flash fiction. In May I prepared to launch the podcast and on May 29 released Episode 1, featuring 2 original short stories by me. A couple of days later I released the Everyday Writers episode and we were off to the races.

Episode 3 on dyslexia got us our first iTunes review and Episode 4 featured our first ever contributor. For Episode 5, the Summer Camp episode, I broke format and solicited feedback from the listeners, and for Episode 6 got three contributors! A scheduling snafu released the ever hilarious Episode 7 early, forcing me to hit the public domain for content for an unexpected Episode 8. Episode 9, Ask the Locals, was our first explicit episode and took listeners beyond their comfort zones in all kinds of good ways. And after that we became a weekly show.

Episode 10 featured the wit and wisdom of three talented contributors right out of the slush pile and we left summer behind with spooky stories in Episode 11. Episode 12 asked us to mind our step and Lucky #13 featured our first story read by a contributor. Everything was a first in 2015.

We checked out Gen Y in Episode 14, learned hindsight really is 20/20 in Episode 15, and for Sweet #16 went back to adolescence and got picked on. In Episode 17, we were living in our own future, in Episode 18 we thought about our mental health and in Episode 19 had a great family storytelling session with our first episode to feature four stories by four contributors.

Episode 20 was legendary in more ways than one, with two stories read by contributors. Episode 21 honored Armistice Day with a poem and two minutes of silence in addition to a story, and Episode 22 tried to take us to Fantasyland but as life so often does didn’t get us there. We celebrated a bittersweet Thanksgiving, as so many of them are, with my lucky Episode 23.

Episodes 24, 25, 26, and 27 were our Christmas Serial specials, a delight for me to bring to you. And we rang in the New year just yesterday with Episode 28, featuring new theme music and intros.

Whew! All told over the 28 episodes of 2015 we aired 63 short stories, one poem, and the longer 4-part Christmas serial. 46 of those stories were by contributors, the rest were by me or from the public domain, with one by a listener. And it’s been awesome. Lots of lessons learned, lots of literature shared. Bring on 2016! I’m ready.

Happy New Year,