So January 2015 came and went. Wow, was that fast! Other than not posting to my blog, what else have I been up to? Writing. Oh my, all the writing. Remember that million word goal I set for myself? Yeah. So I need to average about 2740 words a day to hit that goal over the course of the year. Did I do that in January?
Oh yes. I hit my monthly goal of about 84,000 words around the 27th, and then my wife suggested I try pushing to break 100k in January. Challenge accepted, and succeeded. I wrote just over 100k words of new content in January, a personal record for most words in a month. Pretty sweet, right?
Well, words on the page doesn’t mean much if you’re not translating them into complete stories. I’m pleased to note that while a good chunk of those words were me practicing story openings (I have about 25 openings to short stories and scenes to move forward with now) I was able to finish a short story, a novelette, and a 32k novella that will be the first installment in a new Weird Western series. Once those stories are edited and finalized, I’ll publish them all some time this year.
So, yeah, lots of good writing practice, lots of content to digest, and some really good forward momentum heading into February.
Wow, what a year 2014 was. Not so much for my writing, but for everything else. Started the year house-shopping and wedding planning, then packed up two households to combine into one, moved, got married, went on honeymoon, and had lots of packing, unpacking, sorting, and living squashed in there as well. Also got some freelance writing done on the side, along with writing about 125,000 words of fiction that are in various stages of work.
So, lots of positive life events and things, but not a lot on the writing front. That’ll change heading into the new year. I’m still working on my publishing goals for 2015 and beyond, but the first step is to generate a lot of new content. To that end, my new year’s resolution for my writing in 2015 is to write 1,000,000 words of new fiction. That comes to about 2,740 words a day. A very ambitious goal, but one I’ll strive to hit.
Oh, and update this blog more often. Yeah. Happy new year’s everyone! May your 2015 be successful and joyous.
In case you didn’t know. Sheesh. I feel like I’ve been packing, painting, and moving since March. *looks at calendar*
I *have* been packing, painting, and moving since March. End is in sight, fortunately. More to report soon, but in the meantime, writing is progressing. Hope your summer is going well!
I posted this on a works-in-progress thread over at kboards, and figured I should share it here as well, just for grins and giggles. This is from the current WIP, a weird western meets ancient Egypt fusion:
Tjety stared at the solemn array of bodies in the communal hall, satisfied that they would remain unmolested for a little while longer. He made a silent vow to them and to Mayat that he would do all he could to rescue their fellow villagers and to also mete hard justice to whoever was responsible for their pain and suffering.
With those vows firm in his heart, he mounted Heker and left the shattered village behind. In the bright moonlight, even his modest tracking skills picked up wagon tracks, interspersed with many prints of shod and unshod hooves, leading away from the village and into the rugged frontier. Meret and his horses and more besides had also ridden out that way.
Tjety focused on those tracks, heeled Heker into a canter, and rode toward retribution.
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So, in addition to writing, I’m in the process of going through my home and packing in preparation for a relocation to Alexandria, VA. One of my main areas of focus has been to go through my collection of books, partly because it’s a huge PITA to pack and move a lot of books and partly because bookshelf space is a limited and precious commodity at my new digs. I’m letting go of the books I’ve read and don’t intend to read again, the books I haven’t gotten around to reading and almost certainly never will read, and the physical books I’ve read and want to keep but can or intend to get in ebook format.
I’ve taken some 16 boxes to local used bookstores in my area (primarily McKay’s Used Books in Manassas,VA–love them!) and expect to take another half-dozen or so boxes before the move. I could have taken even more, but what’s stopping me from really cleaning house is that many of the physical books I own have a measure of connection, of meaning, that I got from first-hand, direct contact with the author(s).
It’s a nuance I didn’t expect when I started packing up boxes to give away, but it hit me as I was riffling through each book before putting it in either the ‘keep’ or ‘get rid of’ piles. The books I had bought without any form of personal connection to the author were much easier to let go of, but the ones that I’ve had signed by the authors, whether the signature was just their name or included a personal note; those were the ones I had a hard time letting go of. Even if I didn’t expect to ever re-read the book, remembering the personal connection with that author at whatever event we were at that led them to sign that copy was enough to make me either hold onto that book or agonize over putting it into the ‘to go’ pile.
This process made me realize how important that personal connection is for me, as a reader, and it’s one of the many things that has me excited about self-publishing my writing. Every sale is hard-fought, and I want to do what I can to provide that personal touch to encourage a reader to hang onto my books. Not quite sure how that’ll translate to an ebook sale, since one can’t really sign an ebook, but I have to think it’s possible to get that personal interaction with a reader and a writer through other means. Whether it’s sending out signed bookplates, making signed copies of books available, being present at various conventions and signings, etc.
How about you? Do you feel a personal connection to a writer if they’ve signed your book? Does it even matter if you have a personal connection to a writer? Share your thoughts below. And thanks for reading.
So who am I and what am I doing? Beyond what I posted on the “About” page, I’m a genre writer currently working on a weird western novella series that I’ll start self-publishing sometime this summer. I’m hoping to have the first book in the series published in time for the Shore Leave convention this August.
Aside from the weird western series, I have outlines or plans for several other series in different genres, including space opera, traditional fantasy, paranormal thriller, and a few others I haven’t quite pinned down a subgenre for just yet. I also have short stories to write as well as other projects and ideas yet to take firm shape. So if weird western isn’t quite your thing, perhaps you’ll find something else to your taste hereabouts.
For now, I’m revising the website and blog, getting the infrastructure to my publishing imprint together (yay paperwork), but most importantly, writing the first novella and outlining the next several in the series. My intention is to release a new novella every month starting in August; I hope to eventually increase that release schedule if I can get my workflow properly calibrated.
Feel free to say hello here in the comments, and if you happen to hang out on the kboards Writer’s Cafe or the SFWA discussion forums, do please drop me a note if you feel so moved. I’m looking forward to getting to know you and am really looking forward to entertaining you with my stories in this brave new world of publishing.
Finally got around to pulling the new blog and website together. This is a work in progress, so please be patient as I pull everything together and continue to add new features and functionality.
And thank you so much for visiting!