No, I’m not talking about the dreaded New Year’s resolutions. I’m not too ashamed to admit I suck at them. What I am talking about it setting priorities to help me reach my writing goals for the year. This means not only putting butt in chair but finding better technology to help and figuring out the dreaded promotional issues that have confounded me from Day One.
Looking back, I pretty much hit my output goals for last year. I published five new titles and re-released another with new material. However, looking over the releases, I discovered I had dead time in there, time when I should have been putting out shorter titles if I didn’t have a novel ready to go.
So I’ve spent the last several weeks since surgery looking at how to avoid those down times. I have a handful of short stories that are no longer available or were never released that I’ll be putting out in those months when I don’t have a new novel or novella ready to go. That’s important right now since my keyboarding is still limited as my shoulder continues to heal. This is another post done using my iPad Pro and its handwriting to text conversion. It’s helpful but slow and tedious because my handwriting is not the best.
And that brings me to my next step. Part of my problem writing has always been there are times when I simply need to use pen and paper to doodle out a plot problem. Sometimes it only takes a few minutes. Sometimes it requires pages and pages of writing. When the latter happens, I will then drag my feet about inputting the handwritten notes using a keyboard. No, I don’t use my iPad then because as good as the Apple pencil and iPad Pro are, they still don’t feel like I’m writing on paper. There is something about the drag of a pencil or pen against paper that seems to help break the creative logjam I run into at least once on every project.
So I dipped into savings and ordered a ReMarkable tablet last week. No, not the ReMarkable 2. I went with the original version for a couple of reasons. The first is the cost difference. The second is because I am always hesitant to buy something when it first comes out. So, I will see how I like the ReMarkable and watch the reviews over the next six months or so for the ReMarkable 2. If I wind up using it as much as I think I will, I’ll then upgrade to the newer version.
For those of you not familiar with the ReMarkable, here’s a video.
We’ll see how that goes. I’ll admit, if it does what I’m hoping, it will make all those times I have to sit in waiting rooms or wait as Mom has her hair done much more productive.
I’ve made a schedule for what I want to put out this year. Now comes the debate over whether I should go ahead and schedule each of the books/novellas or not. There are pros and cons for both ways. The pros include knowing I have a schedule I need to keep as well as having actual product pages I can link to when I do promote the upcoming work. The cons come down to hitting those deadlines because of real life interference and Myrtle the Evil Muse. She just loves hitting me with stories I didn’t have planned. But, if this is a business, and it is, I need to pull up my writer’s pants and get it done.
And, as I said, doing so allows me to do more promotion. Not that that is hard since I do little promo as it stands. That is what I need to change. The question becomes how. Social media platforms like FB are splintering and none of them are really great for actually drumming up sales. So I need to look at other methods and that means studying.
So, what’s the publishing schedule look like?
Remember, this is all tentative right now.
Jan: unnamed short story
Feb: unnamed short story set in the Nocturnal Lives universe
Mar: Foil of the Gods (working title), Book 3 in Sword of the Gods series
April: Honor & Duty short story
May: Magic Rising (Eerie Side of the Tracks book 5)
June: unnamed short story
July: Reprisal from Ashes (Honor & Duty series)
Aug: off (or another short story/novella)
Sept: Unnamed Nocturnal Awakenings novel/novella
Nov: Eerie Side of the Creek holiday novella
Dec: unnamed project
Now, that sounds like a lot and it terrifies me looking at it. Then I remember that most of the short stories are already written or at least roughly drafted out. The same for the novels. I have either fully developed plot notes or rough drafts for about half of them, if not a little more. There’s still a great deal of work to do, but it is more than feasible. But, in order to do so, I need to make sure I have all my ducks in a row and that includes having the tech I need to be able to make the best use of my time, no matter where I happen to be.
So wish me luck. It is time to put butt in chair and see how Dragon works for me this morning. But that comes after taking out the trash. The joy of living the glamorous life of a writer. LOL
Oh, here’s the cover draft–and yes, it needs work. I did it one-handed yesterday–for the first short story coming out this year.
And now to work. Until later!