2015 Year in Review

It’s that time of year, folks! Time to rum up the egg nog and settle down at your workspace to figure out what you’re doing next year.

What? Yes! I do this every year (though not with the rum. I tend toward a nice hot chocolate with a shot of fireball in it to warm my cockles. Who knew cockles needed warming, huh? And what in gods’s name ARE cockles anyway?)

2015 in Review

Anyhoo…Every December I go over last year’s goal list and write up a fresh one. I don’t always stick to it, but it makes a nice mile marker on the road to success. (Wow. How smarmy was that little bit of wording? Maybe I should get into advertising.)

Let’s take a look at my 2015 Goals:

Writing:
– DONE January – create outline/summary for Ginunngagap
– DONE February 1st – submit summary to Bella
– DONE February 1st – begin Ginunngagap
– May 31st – edit completed Ginunngagap
– DONE July – create outline/summary for Skagway Bride
– DONE July – submit summary to Bella
– DONE August 1st – begin Skagway Bride

Website:
– Write one blog post per month for a total of 12 (27th of the month)
– Write one W&W blog post per month for a total of 11 (second Tuesday of each month)

Mailing List:
– Write one follow-up per month for a total of 12 (12th of the month)
– Broadcast website blog entry for a total of 11 (28th of the month)

As you can see, I’ve divided my goals into three categories–Writing, Website and Mailing List. In February of this year I was invited to write here at Women & Words, hence the reason there are only eleven entries required for the year.

I didn’t do too bad this year. (Better than last year anyway.) On the writing front, I haven’t gotten around to editing Ginunngagap yet. Moot point, really, as that tale isn’t going to commercially published. That one turned out to be more for my entertainment (and I had a blast writing it!) than a serious offering to Bella Books.

The Website and Mailing List goals suffered a little in September and October. Real Life ™ struck and my work schedule shifted dramatically for a month, all of which conspired to screw up my normal writing plans. (While it’s awesome when you train yourself to sit down and write at a certain time every day, it sucks like there’s no tomorrow when you have to shift your work hours around!) The losses we all felt in October only made matters worse.

The only Website goal that I attained was Women & Words. It’s one thing to slough off publishing articles on my personal blog. It’s quite another to ignore a professional obligations like this one! (No worries. It’s never a hardship to write for you folks.)

Carrying It Forward

Barring the previously mentioned Real Life ™, I can assume that I’ll write two books in 2016. That’s my norm anyway. I know that putting out a thousand words a day would net me about three books of material if I chained myself to the computer. Allowing for a hundred or more days of not writing, however, gives me a little leeway for vacations, family emergencies and conventions.

So here are the bare bones of 2016:

Writing:
– January 1st – launch Freya’s Tears site
– January 1st – edit completed Skagway Bride
– January – create outline/summary for Project #1
– January 31st – achieve Bella deadline for Skagway Bride
– February 1st – submit summary to Bella
– February 1st begin Project #1
– May 31st – edit completed Project #1
– Achieve Bella deadline for Project #1
– July – create outline/summary for Project #2
– August 1st – submit summary to Bella
– August 1st begin Project #2
– November 31st – edit completed Project #2
– Achieve Bella deadline for Project #2

The list is a little longer because I’m adding in all the required doodads for each project (i.e., outlines, summaries and publication deadlines.) I have the benefit of several years experience working with publishers and knowing my own limits when it comes to writing.

I already know what my first project is for 2016. After spending the last half of 2015 in 1890s Skagway with my mail order bride, I really want to return to the fantastical. My recent book, Darkstone, has brought the fey back to contemporary Earth and my next idea is a spin-off of that.

Redhawk’s 2016 Goals

So, plugging that into my schedule, here’s what it looks like for 2016:

Writing:
– January 1st – launch Freya’s Tears site
– January – create outline/summary for Pixie Freight Hopper
– January 31st – edit completed Skagway Bride
– January 31st – achieve Bella deadline for Skagway Bride
– February 1st – submit summary to Bella
– February 1st begin Pixie Freight Hopper
– May 31st – edit completed Pixie Freight Hopper
– Achieve Bella deadline for Pixie Freight Hopper
– July – create outline/summary for Project #2
– August 1st – submit summary to Bella
– August 1st begin Project #2
– November 31st – edit completed Project #2
– Achieve Bella deadline for Project #2

I figure at some point another character will jump up and down, screaming and waving her arms to gain my attention. When she does, I’ll add her to the latter half of the year for my second project.

I’ll also carry forward my Website and Mailing List from this year. There will be one adjustment, however:

Website:
– Write an additional Freya’s Tears story for the new website

Next month I’m posting Ginunngagap, a sequel to Freya’s Tears, online. I hope to continue the adventures of Els and her space-happy crew with a new website dedicated to them. Ideally I’ll write one tale a year to add to their fun and games, but I know how time can get away from me.

What About You?

Do you plan your year annually or go with the flow? What do your 2016 goals look like? How do you keep track of your goals? What works for you? Share the wealth, people! Comment below with any hints or tricks you have–what helps you might help another writer out there!


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7 thoughts on “2015 Year in Review

  1. My tip for organizing the upcoming year is to watch for your year-end recap. At that point, I siphon off some of your apparently endless energy and put together a list of goals for myself. 🙂 Blog post to follow on my personal blog. 🙂

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