I can hardly believe it’s already January. I think I missed most of December. Mentally, I’m starting to make the shift from vacation mode to back to work. That’s Monday. I’ve got big plans for this year, lots that I hope to accomplish. I’d love to give a bit firmer declaration than “hope” but there are big doin’s going on at the Evil Day Job, and I don’t yet know how much that’s going to impact my ability to produce. But let nobody ever accuse me of not planning big!
So what can you look for from me?
- Coming sometime in the early spring, you can look for the next Wishful novella, She’s Got A Way, the story of Liam Montgomery and Riley Gower.
- The next thing on the docket is another contemporary romance, the subject of which is a surprise. I’m planning a bit of a contest to go around the reveal (and you lot who already know what I’m doing, keep your mouths shut!).
- Next up in the world of Wishful (which may or may not be done by the end of the year) is the next full novel, currently untitled, which follows head librarian Autumn Buchanan and Chief-of-Police hopeful Judd Hamilton.
- A grand experiment on the blog. I want to write something of a Choose Your Own Romance, where you readers will have the opportunity to vote on where YOU want the story to go. The plan is to have an “episode” or a vote each week. I’m still working out the logistics of exactly how that’ll work and when it’ll start. More details on that to come. Once it’s done, I’ll pull it together in proper ebook form.
- You may have noticed a new button over in the sidebar about The Daily Grind. For those of you who don’t know, The Daily Grind is the coffee shop in Wishful, run by one Cassie Callister. It’s one of the two primary gossip hubs in town. The thing is, since I started working on this series, there’s been the most delightful side effect that people have started sharing with me all sorts of small town stories and gossip. This has the benefit of giving me plenty of fodder for books as well as a great deal of entertainment. So I’ve created a portal where all of YOU can submit YOUR small town gossip–anonymously of course. Cassie never reveals a source. And once a week, she plans to take over the blog to give you the scoop about what’s going on in Wishful (because, Lord knows, there’s a lot that never makes it into the books). Not quite sure when this will start as a regular feature, but it’s on the horizon.
- And I expect there will be a Meet Cute or two in there, as the mood strikes.
This is a lot of writing, and it’ll necessitate I maintain the 30% average increase in wordcount over the course of the year (I’ve done that for the last 5 years running…but eventually I’ll hit my max out point). My daily word count needs to be about 1400 words (up about 300 from last year). In order to do that, I absolutely have to start employing my StayFocused app on my browser again. And I also aspire to write a slightly cleaner first draft. I had about a 38% “waste” rate of words in terms of loss in revisions or edits. A lot of that was because I rewrote the middle of To Get Me To You three times due to procedural concerns. So I’d like to get the waste rate down to closer to 30%. See, look at that, no longer aspiring to a perfect first draft (doing that once in a lifetime is probably a fluke). I’m learning!
On a more personal front, I hope to get through my next two belts in taekwondo.
On the homefront, I want to redo the fireplace surround with Airstone and redo our master bathroom cabinets with Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations in espresso.
And that should be quite a full year!
Whew, now I’m tired after reading all that. Knowing you, though, it will probably all get done. A lot depends on other factors, like the day job thing you were talking about. I think the Choose Your Own Romance idea sounds like fun.
My goals aren’t quite as high as yours, but they are big for me.
I don’t have a problem shooting for ambitious goals because if I don’t make them, I don’t beat myself up about it, but either way, I’ll have pushed more and accomplished more than I would have without goals.
I agree with your philosophy. We should push our limits. Which I feel like I’m doing with two pen names and proofing all of Ruth’s books (plus some others). I’m like you, too, I don’t beat myself up over it if I don’t make all my goals. A lot of people do, and that just makes them miserable. I’m not going there. We do the best we can.