Goals //// 2019


this one is a great goal, because lunch can be breakfast or dinner food, i’d just have to learn how to be awake for it. good food and friends. i like this a lot.


Get back to my decade long Kundalini practice that saw a huge hiatus this year

Finish and release two albums that are nearly done

Meditate more

Exercise more

A gas free 2019 (aside from crow and a hordijk modular that I ordered over a year ago)

Less interwebz (not counting lines)


if you or any other linians would like a recipe for ultimate sourdough, please don’t hesitate to message


I jotted my goals down a few days ago and they haven’t changed, so I think that means they’re keepers.

Broad goals:

  • Be ok with others’ disapproval.
  • Keep going to the gym 3x a week
  • Add Qigong and meditation on the off days
  • “Eat clean” - figure out what that means for me and how to make it a routine
  • Prioritize finishing big projects that have been hanging over me

Finish these big projects ASAP:

  • Wrap-up beats and mixing for friend’s hip-hop album (so close!)
  • 3-song mini-musical
  • Beatless chill/ambient mini-album
  • Beat-driven album

Longer-term things:

  • Finish Persichetti’s 20th-Century Harmony. I love this book but it is taking me forever to get through and I have like 7 other music theory books to read and enjoy
  • Dabble with and get the hang of Hydra, just enough to make some basic “music videos”

Regularly-recurring things:

  • Write and record 1 song with words per week (is that remotely realistic)?
  • Learn and demo 1 pop song I like every two weeks
  • Finish 1 short story per month
  • Run one one-shot table-top RPG per month (my friends who game here, or who are interested in gaming, are lovely people and this seems like a good way to spend fun time with them)

Work/Life Balance

  • Learn when to stop doing work stuff and do me stuff
  • Replace mindless fun that doesn’t give me much (web games) with fun that is related to what I like (reading, drawing, etc.)


Buy less gear make more music.

If I have to put some rules on this to make it more realistic. New gear can only be acquired be selling or trading old, or by making it!

Making more music should start with more active listening to identify the areas and routes to improving all the half finished noodling.


Generally in 2019 I want to continue to personal trends that I started in 2018:

  • spend more time working on things I want to work on
  • prioritize time over money as much as is realistically possible
  • make art and/or music every day in some way
  • build local community and get out of the house more
  • maintain relationships
  • be happy with what I have, which is not unsubstantial already

My big goal for 2019 is a major life change — I’m applying to go back to school for my MFA in September. I don’t know if I’ll get in, so I’m doing all that I can to make a great application and we’ll see what happens.

My backup plan is to take the money and time I would have used for school and see if I can carve it out to work on my art practice independently and find my own personal mentors. However, knowing myself as I do, I know I’d get more out of a little structure.


Some old and new goals for 2019:

  • Somehow find a new job with better pay, better benefits, and better work/life balance than I’ve had at my most recent jobs.
  • Pay off some credit card and student loan debt, and try to start saving money for the uncertain future ahead. (starting emergency medical/travel funds, for instance)
  • Improve the physical and mental health of both myself and my fiancée, starting the year with a 30-day detox, and working to reduce and/or eliminate unhealthy food and drink consumption and bad habits and behaviors that keep us from progressing.
  • Devote at least 30-60 minutes a day to reading, writing, researching, designing, or recording when possible. Maintain a notebook/sketchbook to keep track of things rather than trying to preserve them via conversations or my sleep-addled brain.
  • Save up for a new portable recorder, and if possible, upgrade from my 10-year-old Macbook to something a little more powerful and recording-friendly.
  • Play more shows. Try to play at least one show outside of Chicago if possible.
  • Make more art. Make more music. Make more friends who support each others creative endeavors.
  • Get passports, have a low-key wedding, and travel somewhere overseas for the first time in my life.


What a helpful activity. My wife & I already always do this every year. Here is a slight amended version of what I shared with her. (It’s kind of long, sorry!)


Play, record, share, progress, enjoy

The manifestation of the time I spend with music is a difficult thing to quantify. I don’t think it’s productive for me personally to set quotas, for example.

Instead I want to make sure I’m having fun with it. If I am, carry on. If not, take a break. I hope I finish 2019 with more music recorded to share, but as long as I have had fun & progressed, I will be happy.


This has already improved a lot by the end of 2018. In no world do I need to acquire in 2019 the amount of gear I acquired in 2018. Create a budget & stick to it.


Music should not be a solo activity. In general, I want to embrace community more. There are awesome people on this forum doing awesome things in Chicago. Hang out with them.

Even being more active on this forum counts. I read a lot but don’t say much because I still don’t think highly enough of my own experience. Get over it.

Organize tasks

Sometimes I neglect the boring parts of making music, when in reality, paying attention to those boring parts is 1- important; 2- probably just as satisfying as reading Twitter. I want to be better about documenting the tasks outside of just experimentation / play.

Stop caring so much about what music I’m making

Not uncommonly, I make music in a couple of different styles: one more experimental, one more traditional (I am terrible with genres, so I cannot get more specific than that :sweat_smile:).

When I am working in one space, I almost always find a way to put down my effort and convince myself that I ought to be working in the other. It’s like a hyper counter productive grass-is-greener thing.

It’s fine that I have both of these interests, but I need to find a way to relieve myself of the burden of shitting on decisions I’ve made about how I’m spending my time on a given day.


(I’m a software engineer.)

Go deep & have an opinion

Two years ago I was tricked into a management position. While I’m sure there are awesome people out there who can do this without losing technical depth, I am not one of those people.

By late 2018 I was back just writing code, on a team working on a project (API gateway) and with technologies (golang & gRPC) I find very interesting. It’s a great start.

I have spent my entire career being happy to be employed at all, suffering from imposter syndrome. (I have no degree; I’m entirely self-taught.)

In 2019 I want to take the time explore the things I’m actually interested in, and remember that I know what I’m talking about. And if I /don’t/ know what I’m talking about, there is nothing wrong with me, and it’s within my control to better understand it until I do.

Lifestyle / community / politics

Keep running

By the end of 2018 I became a cranky cyclist, so I stopped doing that & started running again. It feels right for the moment. Keep that up and integrate it into the commute.

Be social

2018 is probably the most social I’ve ever been.

I identify as an introvert, and, as a recovering alcoholic who used to only spend time with people if it meant drinking with them, it’s been a Big Deal to get to the point that there are people with whom I can spend time and feel energized, not drained.

(Conversely, it is important to accept that /this will never be the case with everyone/. It’s ok to distinguish between people I jive with and those I don’t.)

I just want to keep this up.


I just celebrated 4 years sober, but it’s always worth noting that all of the good things in my life stem from this. No matter how long it’s been since I’ve had a drink, this is still a goal / resolution worth calling out every time.

Be politically active (again)

I was active politically in 2017 & early 2018, burning out at the end of the 2018 state level elections. I miss it a lot, and more importantly, I think it makes me a less angry person.

I’ve already started to put the feelers out there again, but I really want to be doing something, and I want it to be well-enough integrated that I don’t need to go at it hard until I burn out again.


My wife is pregnant, and the little one is expected in late March. We fully acknowledge we have no real idea what life will be like once he arrives (despite an amazing thread on this forum that was started just in time). We want to embrace it but also not lose ourselves in it permanently.


It helps. Actually do it sometimes.

Thanks for all everyone contributes to this place.


I haven’t fully formed my resolutions for 2019 (maybe minimizing procrastination should be on the list). But I definitely need to meet you fellow people from Chicago (at least and more worldwide). It is such a massive resource to have a lot of you here online and possibly right next door.


This year is going to be interesting – my wife and I are both on J visas that expire in May, after which we have no idea where we’ll end up. We’re anxious about what comes next (maybe a little excited, too), but I don’t want that anxiety to get in the way of stuff I want to do this year.


  • Dedicate at least one weekend day per month to cull/evaluate/assemble existing recordings instead of turning on the gear and making new stuff. Sub-goal: don’t get upset if nothing materializes from this practice every time. Be patient, and enjoy the process.
  • Organize recordings from the last 8 months into an EP, and explore the label landscape.
  • Hopefully connect more with the lovely Lines members based in Camberville/Boston!
  • Complete Long Form Ambient piece.
  • Commit to doing 1 Junto a month.
  • Read 20 pages of fiction a week (at minimum)


  • Over the course of Jan/Feb, I’d love to check out an introductory yoga class and hopefully find something I can stick with on a weekly basis. Might do the same for qi gong if I can find something local.
  • I’d love to expand my cooking, especially seeing as my schedule is far more flexible than my wife’s (and far, far less hectic). Would love to start cooking 1 meal/week.
  • Continue with psychoanalysis, which has lead to some pretty drastic changes in my life and personality this past year. Depressions are less acute/frequent, and my creative side has really developed into something I’m proud of.


gonna cut/paste my post from last year with a reflection on that, as i feel like comparing your expectations and your own growth (in the context of what you planned on doing) in addition to what you actually did is hugely important.

keeping this as a goal for the next three months because i don’t think i’ll be able to keep myself honest if i timebox for the whole year…
learn how to play piano - just scheduled lessons (:
read two of the “heavier” electronic music theory books

  • computer music
  • theory and technique of electronic music

write some form of summary for the above so when i inevitably give up i have a jump off point next january
make 2 ambient tracks
learn a new jazz standard every 2 weeks

the general focus of my goals were to build my musicianship with the piano/jazzy stuff. i ended up falling off on working out more jazz standards because i’m still pretty weak with improvising and the point of learning that was to push my limits with reading/understanding chords/modes, but the music i want to make is not exactly that. i’m still taking piano lessons and it’s kinda taken over as my main instrument. i haven’t gotten super far beyond chapter five of theory and technique of electronic music, but i’ve still learned quite a bit about puredata.

this year i don’t really have any major milestone goals in general:

continue practicing and studying piano
create a small release on some physical media
expand my knowledge of electronics/hardware
make a rudimentary signal generator that works with puredata and teensy

my non personal enrichment secondary goals:

reassess my internet usage (stop using twitter/tumblr as a mindless/endless scroll)
volunteer more to help other people learn programming/hardware stuff
work on healthier habits

there are probably others, but i feel like these goals aren’t super lofty which means i have a better chance of achieving them.


i misread that last line as “yachty batman”

which would be good, i think


I use a ~$600 refurbished Mac from here - you can probably go lower than that. I also have an h1 I’m not using right now ?

play in my house pls ?



I’m really new to modular and a long time removed from music as a whole. This year I dealt with a lot of external stresses and depression but by making time to enjoy the process of being a complete beginner at something I’ve managed to find a lot of happiness.

I’ve set a really low bar for myself and instead of post x number of tracks, I’m simply prioritizing the enjoyment of making music. This has been really therapeutic for me and gives me the energy to tackle the more measurable goals in my life.

I wrote an article for people more in the animation business (because most of us tend to just work and then work some more). Thank you Lines for being a really positive place to learn and explore more abstract ideas about art.


Last year I tried to be super ambitious and, for me, got overly precise with goals, which meant that I got overwhelmed.

This year:

  1. Take more baths
  2. Less work/more play (sometimes this is just a change in perspective for me)
  3. Some kind of positive career change
  4. Keep meeting folks from lines :heart:
  5. Be less afraid of making mistakes

Hopeful that the rest of the details will fall into place/make themselves apparent :pray:


Good idea. I’ll keep an eye on that site.

That could be fun for field recordings, but I’m actually in need of something more like an H4 or H6 or one of those Mixpre recorders that can be used with multiple 1/4” and/or XLR inputs.

Has Amanda been in touch with you about me possibly sharing a bill with her and her collaborators? I just need plenty of notice to request off from work on a Sunday, but I’m definitely into it.


I put off releasing five songs for a year, because of hassles with shared mixing/mastering duties. Then when I focused I turned it around in a couple weeks, including making a cover, releasing on Bandcamp, etc. So for 2019:

  • develop clear promotion pathways and get some traffic on release;
  • no more re-polishing of old recordings, record new songs with recent skills;
  • Make a comp of my Disquiet pieces for Bandcamp, release as a cassette;
  • Get sleep and exercise in order;
  • Make time for creative work, but also give in to life tasks that are procrastinated on;
  • less internet, more people;
  • Ruminate on how these sound pieces and songs can resonate with someone besides myself;

Speaking of “promotion pathways,” here are those five songs - the first deals with the personal component of dealing with climate change driving mass migrations; the others are dealing with one’s ancient history, coming to terms with the limited time we have without totally resenting it, and how over time we have to let people around us die off – does that resonate with any of your experience?


best of 2018. same for 2019:

  • keep breathing (i suffer from a chronic disease, so i´ve to be grateful). no health = no life, sir.
  • enjoying family, friends & my dogs as much as i can. they´re my treasure.
  • no social media since 2 years ago. just lurking ig for family-friends only.
  • no gear acquired. i´m selling lots of my stuff, tbh…but i love to read about sound devices.
  • i´ve to be careful when travelling and buying old vinyls. i´ve to fix 3 old turntables, too.
  • vaping! i´ve been a cig chainsmoker for almost 23 years. i quit 5 months ago. never expected it was so easy using those devices.
  • updating my new-old computer from 2014 and (finally) finishing my 5th album. it has been worst than throwing out a kidney stone.
  • still reading books about history, anthropology and ancient cultures.
  • learning from nature is a joy and great influence to me.


new year’s goal number one complete: buy cloud storage for entire studio and personal data archive (~15 terabytes). looks like it’s only gonna take 141 days to backup!


if all you need is stereo in an h1 would be my recommendation. there’s a 1/8 stereo Jack but adapters will getcha what u need

haha yes