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Writing Goals for 2019

Yeah, I know. We’re over a week into the new year; who starts making their goals now? But these are ideas I’ve had in mind for a while.

Real life threatens to intrude, as usual, so I’m hoping that, by writing them down and sharing with other people, I’ll be more likely accomplish some of these instead of letting them fall by the wayside. Which is what I’ve been doing lately.

Has anyone else been terribly unmotivated these past couple months? I’ve been the laziest bum in the world since November, and it’s only with the addition of massive amounts of caffeine that I’ve been able to do anything. Okay, relatively massive amounts of caffeine. I’ve gone from ‘maybe one cup of tea if I’m feeling really flat’ to ‘two or three cups of coffee sounds good’. This isn’t exactly untenable, but I don’t like being dependent on caffeine, so I may experiment with diet, exercise, and routine changes as the year goes on.

Because I have a lot of things I want to accomplish. I want to publish at least ten books this year. Twelve would be nice, one per month, but looking at my current rate of production, I don’t know if I can do it. Last year I published three novels and a short story, so ten books is a significant increase, even if they’re relatively short (30- 40,000 words).

In the realm of specific goals, the next three months are devoted to getting the Hartington series up and running. It’s a space opera trilogy that follows three siblings after their father loses his fortune and commits suicide. They all need cover art, but aside from that, first one is almost ready to go, the second one needs a bit of rewriting (a day’s work if I really knuckle down and concentrate), and the third just needs to be checked for continuity.

Some of you know that I’m getting married this spring, so publishing the Hartington series has to fit around two wedding ceremonies (one out of state, the other out of the country). Which is why I scheduled them for this part of the year; they’re almost done, leaving me time to concentrate on wedding planning.

The rest of the year is a little more vague. I have a half finished Pride and Prejudice variation that I should be able to finish in a week. More realistically, it’ll come out in April or May.

A Writer’s Guide to Horses needs rewriting/editing, and I need to find diagrams and illustrations that fall under Creative Commons (or I need to start writing letters to various authors and universities asking permission to use their work).

I have two other regency romances in various stages of doneness, and ideas for five or six more.

There are between six and eight more books in the Garia Cycle, all partially finished. Part three of the Garia Cycle, tentatively called A Land in Chaos, is about half finished. As it’s a fantasy, it’s longer than any of my other projects. I’ll need time to read myself back into the setting and rework the parts that stymied me on the first try.

In between all of this, I need to find time to write for MGC and develop my social media and advertising platforms.

Looking back over this post, I think I can refine my goals for 2019 a bit: I want to finish the WIPs and publish 10-12 of them. In between getting married and finding a regular job, because regular work means regular pay. I’ve got my work cut out for me.

Better get to it, I guess.

20 Comments
  1. The last three months of 2018 were frenetic. I was energized, wrote like the wind, and launched book after book. Come January through February? Screech, splat. Happens every year.

    I’ve already revised one goal to “survive spring term with sanity mostly intact.” A third party is already making things challenging [Semper Gumby!] and I’m willing to take survival over success.

    I’m much farther in the WIP than I’d anticipated being, so that’s good. I want to write five more books over the course of the year, and publish four that are currently in the stack.

    Anything else is gravy.

    January 9, 2019
    • (Waving hands and fingers) Be SANE!!!!!! Be COOL! Take some TIME OFF…and eat the gravy.

      January 9, 2019
      • BobtheRegisterredFool #

        Sanity is over rated.

        I will be cool when I’m dead.

        I’m not sure I can eat gravy.

        January 9, 2019
        • Luke #

          Gravy really is much better when it’s on something else.
          Although I’m now imagining a character who would be thrilled to take a slug straight from the gravy boat.

          Hmm. Do they even make Gravy Train dog food any more? It’s the breakfast of champions.

          January 9, 2019
  2. Mike Houst #

    “We’re over a week into the new year; who starts making their goals now? ”

    Mike raises his hand.

    “I do.”

    You see, it’s a problem when you give yourself hard, but achievable, measurable goals; and then you actually achieve them. You see, without goals, we have a nasty tendency to rest on our laurels, stagnant, retrogress, or even in some cases I’ve seen, just lay down and die.

    Whenever you achieve a goal, as soon as you’re done celebrating (You did celebrate didn’t you?), you should take time to reassess what you want out of life, and establish new goals.

    January 9, 2019
  3. Mike Houst #

    p.s. Congratulations on your impending nuptials.

    January 9, 2019
    • Blake Smith #

      Thanks! I’m trying very hard not to be bridezilla; hopefully writing will keep me relatively sane.

      January 10, 2019
      • Add my felicitations…

        But, they’re both yours? Now, I’m planning a second ceremony – but only after fifty years to recover from the first one! Seven plus years isn’t all that much time, really, although it shouldn’t take quite so long this time around to convince her to do the deed.

        Okay, it does sound long. But I want to get a tux without going to a special fitting at the “Big and Tall” shop. Right now, she’s at least forty pounds ahead of me…

        January 10, 2019
        • Blake Smith #

          Congratulations on making it to almost fifty years! That gives me hope that it’s possible.

          To answer your question- the short explanation is, my family lives on the East Coast and some of them can’t travel, so we’re having one ceremony there; some of his family lives overseas and can’t travel, so we’re having a second ceremony there. I’m going to need a month to recover. Then it’s time for Liberty Con, and the fun begins again!

          January 10, 2019
        • Blake Smith #

          Congratulations on making it to almost fifty years! That gives me hope that it’s possible.

          To answer your question- both weddings are mine. We live in Colorado, my family is all on the East Coast, and some of his family lives overseas. Since the grandparents are to frail to travel, we’re having two ceremonies. I’m going to need a month to recover afterward. Then it’s time for Liberty Con, and the fun begins again!

          January 10, 2019
          • Blake Smith #

            And I have no idea why WordPress refused to show my comment, then coughed it back up as soon as I posted what I thought I wrote the first time.

            *sigh*

            I’m functioning really well today, can’t you tell?

            January 10, 2019
            • Because WordPress Delenda Est. It’s not you, it’s wordpress; your first comment probably got stuck in the spam filter for just long enough that you gave up and rewrote it. Or, the very act of reposting ti convinced WordPress that the first one wasn’t spam…

              January 10, 2019
      • Mary #

        Good luck. I hope you don’t run into the vendors like my sister’s, who tried to turn her into bridezilla, and expected her to have passionate opinions about the most trivial matters.

        January 10, 2019
  4. BobtheRegisterredFool #

    My writing goals will be set when I remeasure my capacity, and am back in touch enough with my emotions to design stories. I may be aiming for a short a week for a period of time.

    January 9, 2019
  5. Mary #

    I made goals for January.

    January 10, 2019
  6. thephantom182 #

    “Has anyone else been terribly unmotivated these past couple months?”

    I was, but just lately since the Holidays are over I feel MUCH better. ~:D Today I ripped into the mess in the workshop and cleaned up some crap that’s been sitting these seven years or more. Very satisfying.

    Now, with that lot out of the way, I’m cleaning up some antique tools I bought several years ago. Did y’all know that you can throw a really rusty Stanley #4 plane in a bucket of Evapo-Rust overnight, and the next day its ready to rinse, reassemble and use? I planed a piece of oak with it, it worked better than a new one. Didn’t even dress the blade yet.

    Next up, a rather nice, if rusty, Stanley #5 plane. Kind of a narrower, shorter jack plane.

    And The Discarded Shoe is finally finished. Last chapter came together. Nice.

    January 10, 2019
    • I have never heard of Evapo-Rust. Nice.

      January 10, 2019
      • thephantom182 #

        It is a miracle substance. You know how hard it is getting rust off things? The wire brush, the naval jelly, the acids, the reeking chemicals… Its a pain in my nether regions.

        But this stuff? It is amazing. A couple of hours ago I dumped ten pounds of miscellaneous rusty steel and tarnished brass into a bucket. Hammered the lid on. Tomorrow I will lift the bucket out, run it under the hose outside on the grass (unless it is really honkin’ cold) and that is all. Job done, rust removed. All of it. Even down in the bottom of threaded holes, even on screws, even in the surface pitting on sheet metal.

        Disposal of the spent material, you can use it as fertilizer in your garden or spray it on the lawn. Meaning you can dump it on the ground. Non-toxic.

        I’m having a blast with it. All the stupid little rusty antique fittings and whatnot kicking around Chez Phantom, instantly made usable. Wow.

        January 10, 2019
    • Dorothy Grant #

      Hey, congrats on getting the story finished! …and sounds like I may need to lay in a stock of Evaporust. For Reasons.

      January 11, 2019
  7. The word well has been frozen over since the end of November; attempts to get some words to splash on a blank page are met with a dull “thud” and an empty brain bucket.

    That said, we’re still getting a lot done on the home front, getting preventive maintenance done, reorganizing, throwing out stuff that’s past its use-by date or worn past wearing outside the house. End of the year taxes always slows my darling man down, but he’s still working away on the latest fantasy.

    With the lovely winter lack of daylight, I’m in danger of sliding into feeling very flat – the lack of words are a symptom of passing a threshold on that, for me. So I keep weightlifting at least twice a week, and keep making stabs at herding the diet more toward low-carb. (Not that I succeed enough to say I’m on such diet. Like herding ferrets, meal-planning around here is.)

    Here’s to the upcoming nupitals and book releases being low stress and awesome, and free of unpleasant surprises or unexpected challenges! Congratulations to the both of you!

    January 10, 2019

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