Posts Tagged ‘resolutions’

Goals! Yes, I have some, although after the past few years I’m starting to feel like that’s just asking for trouble. A lot of these goals are sort of my usual, but formed in a specific way so that I can have firm markers for progress.

Publishing Goals: I plan to finish writing The Tale of the Drakanox, which already is well under way. If possible, I will publish it in May. Once that’s in the bag, I hope to collect novellas 4-6 into a paperback edition, as I did with 1-3. That would hopefully be out by Christmas. We shall see. For my short work, the goal is to submit them to at least 5 markets before giving up on them. (Assuming there are 5 markets to submit to. Often my work is between genres in a way that makes paying markets scarce.)

Publicity Goals: My books sell best when I do personal appearances, so I intend to make at least three of them. Usually I go for six, but with the way Covid cancels things, three might even be pushing it. One of the three will definitely be Queen Titania’s Court.

Painful Goal: Get back the rights to some of my already-published novels. Promises have been made and broken, and I’ve been patient, but the publisher has clearly changed directions and will not be able to support me further.

Anyway, at some point you might hear me yelling GOALLLL! and then you will know why.

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my websiteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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Goals! Everyone needs them. Otherwise, why even get up in the morning? As an independent writer, having some goals keeps me motivated when I feel tired and discouraged. So here are my goals for 2021:

1) Write novella #5 in the Minstrels of Skaythe series, and possibly #6. Publish #4 and #5 in May and November respectively. This will keep up my current schedule of releasing something every 6 months, and that consistency is important.

2) Queen Titania’s Court. It didn’t seem to achieve much in 2020, but these things take time to build up. Plus, I felt like I was doing something for my career.

3) Keep blogging, twice a week. I’ve been a little shy about promoting my work regularly on Twitter, Facebook and elsewhere. I need to be more persistent on those platforms.

4) Submit to more anthologies. In the past, I’ve tended to ignore these invitations, unless they were something that really grabbed me. I need to look at them more closely. My friends who are doing the anthologies need to feel supported, just like me with Queen Titania’s Court, and getting submissions is a first step to that.

5) Investigate selling at a farmer’s market. This would be a way to replace the in-person selling I used to do at book stores. One of my friends mentioned on Facebook that she took her books to a farmer’s market over the summer, along with some journals. She felt it was successful. If I did that, I could bring some of my older paperbacks and offer them for $.50 to draw people in. This would be a big time commitment, and it might require financial buy-in. That’s why my goal is to investigate and decide whether it’s worth it.

How about you? What are your goals for 2021?

Have you read one of my books? Then it would be great for you to leave a review! Meanwhile, if you’d like to learn more about me and my work, check out my websiteFacebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

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After my last post on achieving my writing goals, I suppose I need to share what this year’s goals are. Hint: they’re going to look a lot like last year’s goals.

1) Increase sales over 2019. This is again a risky goal since it depends on the decisions of others. However, after writing professionally for 20 years (my first sale was in 2000) it’s important to not fall into a rut. My other goals will be in support of this one.

2) Continue with the Minstrels of Skaythe series by writing novellas 4 and 5, and self-publishing novellas 3 and 4. Minstrels of Skaythe is really challenging me, and I want to keep that energy going. In addition, writing more books is said to be a great sales tactic on its own.

3) Host a blog event called The Fairy Queen’s Court in June of 2020. Previously, I’ve been issuing a monthly newsletter as a sales tactic. It’s been frustrating to receive so little response. I’m giving myself permission to quit that one and try something else. I’m excited about The Fairy Queen’s Court. You can look forward to more about that in future months!

4) Make 6 public appearances in support of my career. Between SF conventions and writing groups, I have hopes to meet this goal. Appearances will raise awareness of my being present in the community, both locally and on the Internet, and I definitely need that.

On a related note, I’m always happy to help other authors who need to publicize their new books. Don’t hesitate to ask if you can do a guest spot here.

As for this blog, I will certainly go on posting twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays. I don’t seem to have trouble thinking up topics, but it never hurts to take suggestions. So if you have any questions or want to learn more about my novellas, my working methods, or even what’s growing in my vegetable garden, I’d love to hear from you. Let me know what you think I should blog about!

Did you know I have an author newsletter? You can get it! I’ll even give you a free e-book for signing up. Just click here.

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Technically, it’s still 2019 as I post this, but really, at this point in the year, who cares? It’s just tradition to take a fond look back at what my goals were and what I achieved in 2019.

“A fond look.” Did I really write that? How trite.

Anyway! Looking at my Super Fancy Goal Tracking System (a.k.a. the collection of sticky notes along the hood of my desk) I see that I set three goals for myself in 2019.

1) Increase sales over 2018. This was the most risky, because it depends on other people’s purchasing decisions (editors and/or readers). That is something I don’t control. My other goals were intended to make this one happen.

2) Issue a monthly newsletter with a snippet from one of my books. Make it so fun and engaging that it drives the aforementioned sales.

3) “Finish 3rd novella and publish them somehow.” Somewhat vague, but aimed at Minstrels of Skaythe. This time last year, I was just finishing the second of those novellas and didn’t want to let the series drop.

4) Make 6 public appearances that relate to your writing. This one, I didn’t actually write down until later. It was aimed at driving sales and building newsletter readership.

Believe it or not, I achieved every goal. I brought out the monthly newsletter. (It hasn’t done much for me, that I can tell, but I did it.) I made 6 appearances during the year. I finished the third novella, The Ice Witch of Fang Marsh, so the series did continue.

And my risky goal? I even met that one. My income from writing, although pathetic, is still more than it was in 2018. That’s largely due to the judging fee I received from Idaho Writers, but I also sold books at SpoCon and RadCon in 2018.

With this encouragement, I will now take down those sticky notes from the hood of my desk… and start to make some new ones. Onward!

Did you know I have an author newsletter? You can get it! I’ll even give you a free e-book for signing up. Just click here.

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My super fancy goal tracking system:
sticky notes!

My new year’s resolution this year was to improve my writing income over last year’s lack-luster performance. At right, you see the super fancy organizing system I’m using to track my priorities. That’s right, I have an array of sticky notes on the edge of the desk top. Assorted small creatures stand guard.

You can probably see that I have an annual goal, then monthly and weekly goals to support the annual. This month’s goal has been to reorganize my social media. I’m feeling good about it. When I’m critiquing work, I often tell young writers that they need to focus everything on one point (their theme, big idea, etc). Now I’m taking my own advice. By this time next week, anyone who visits my web site, Facebook author page, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram should see a unified “look.”

All these changes will necessarily extend to this very blog. You must already have noticed that the tone and focus have been different. But this is where I need your help. Yes, you! I have to decide what this blog should be about going forward, and I would love to hear your suggestions.

For seven years, I had a laser-like focus on dragons. I could switch over to another type of creature. Witches, perhaps, or Fairies? Would you rather hear about fantasy tropes and why they endure? Perhaps you prefer the general ramblings about my career and work in progress.

I need to know! Please take a moment to drop me a comment and share your ideas.

Did you know I have an author newsletter? You can join! I’ll even give you a free e-book for signing up. Just click here.

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It’s 3:30 p.m. as I write this, and already the pop and boom of fireworks echo across the town. Yep, we’re getting ready to celebrate 2017. That brings me to the annual ritual of setting resolutions for the new year.

What makes it tough for me is that a lot of common resolutions involve things I already do. Write every day. Blog regularly. Work my social media. Make appearances. Support my groups, specifically SCBWI and SpoCon. Keep watching my diet.

So those don’t really seem like resolutions. They’re not goals so much as maintenance. So after casting about, I have three resolutions related to my writing, and one personal resolution.

1) Write at least 15 chapters on a totally new novel. It always takes me at least 1-1/2 years for a new first draft, so a whole novel would not be realistic, but 15 chapters will be a good chunk of one.

2) Write at least 4 short stories during the year, and market them to young readers. Novels tend to take up all my time, but I need to keep up with the other stuff, too.

3) Self-publish my second short story collection, this one by Deby Fredericks.

And the personal one, 4) Be more of a dragon in defending my political views, while remaining courteous. Dragons are powerful, after all. So powerful that rudeness diminishes them. The amount of fake news, gas lighting, and just plain lies have really become intolerable, but while confronting the dishonesty, more rudeness only muddies the waters. So I’m going to be practicing phrases such as “we weren’t talking about (insert inflammatory topic) so I’m not sure why you decided to go there” and “please stop being rude to my friends.”

A tough one, I know. Wish me luck!

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