So figured I’d drop by and share the writing resolutions I’ve made for 2013. They’re pretty modest, but at the same time if I can actually hit all of them I think I’ll be making good progress on this whole writing thing.
1. Write and submit 12 short stories.
2. Finish at least the first draft of Novel B.
3. Finish at least the first draft of Novel C. (The backstory for one of the characters from Novel A.)
4. Revise at least four of my existing short stories and submit each one to at least five more markets.
5. Make at least 50 short story submissions.
You’ll see that I have a pretty heavy focus on short stories. That’s because they’re really not my thing, so if I don’t set goals I won’t put effort into them. And at least one agent told me that trying to get a deal with a top publisher for an adult speculative fiction author who doesn’t have any publishing credits is really difficult. So if I can get a few short stories published that’ll make my queries that much stronger.
And I pretty much have the ideas for the twelve short stories and two novels already. It’s just a matter of sitting down to write them. (AND making them interesting enough that someone else will enjoy reading them.) (Right, like that’s easy.)
I only met two of my three writing goals from last year. For comparison’s sake, they were:
1. Finish the second draft of Novel A. (Done by June and then followed by drafts three through five. Silly me. I thought I’d have a publishable novel after the second draft. Hahaha! I wasn’t even willing to show it to anyone until after draft three. Live and learn.)
2. Submit to agents. (I did this. Somewhat. I aimed high. I got some constructive feedback, but no requests for partials or fulls. It could be an issue with the query, but I think the real issue was with the story, which is why it’s on a shelf at the moment while I let my mind work through how to either explain it better or recraft it so it’s more compelling.) (The problem with a multiple viewpoint novel where there’s no large overarching struggle.)
3. Publish a book of my father’s poetry. (This was going to just be a personal little family project, but then I found Kickstarter. I haven’t taken the plunge yet, but I may try a project at some point combining his poetry with my memories of him and trying to put the poems into context. I hesitate because it could just plain suck and I’d hate to do that to my dad’s poetry. So, we’ll see how this one goes.)
Not on last year’s list were (a) this blog (over 200 posts made for the year, so not bad), (b) short stories (I made nine submissions on a total of six different stories, one got to the second round, and two got personal comments, so not bad), (c) writing conferences (made it to one, almost made it to another), and (d) writing workshops (got waitlisted for one that would’ve been very good to attend).
You’ll see that I’ve upped my production goals substantially for 2013. Partially because I could’ve written a lot more in 2012 and didn’t and partially because my list of ideas to write is growing far too big and I need to start writing and getting things off that list and onto paper.
Oh, and, of course, I had to start the year off with some new book purchases. Because, you know, I have so few books to read already. (Wow, I barely managed to write that with a straight face…)
I am finally reading the Harry Potter books. (I know. Shocking that I, a self-professed SFF fan would’ve missed out on reading Harry Potter until now.)
I also just picked up books by Kafka, Schopenhauer, and Machiavelli. I was feeling a weird lack in that general area, so I’m going to try to fill that in. (Yes, a bit of an odd combination when you put Harry Potter in there. Well, that’s me for you.)
Anyway. Hope your new year is off to a great start and wishing you all good luck with whatever you set out to accomplish this year!
(Oh, and, yes, I know I need to submit more. I’m just still in that learning/growing mode, so I submit here or there “just in case”, but I don’t think I’m quite ready to be doing this for real quite yet. Soon, though. Soon.)