2013 Year in Review

Alrighty then. Despite my grumpy/contrarian post yesterday (I’m
feeling much better today, thanks), it’s my nature to end the year with a
review, and start the new one with a fresh list of goals. This review
certainly shouldn’t make anyone feel “less than”, due to the sheer
number of things I didn’t hit the mark on last year. We’ll talk
about goal/achievement comparison and why it’s unhealthy tomorrow, K?


So…here’s
my list of resolutions from last year. I’ll just go down the list and
strike through those that were completed, and give a quick commentary on
the ones that weren’t. Ready? Here we go:

  Writing

– Serialize only published or waiting-to-be-published work
Total fail. Tried it, missed it, went back to it. We’ll revisit this tomorrow.
– Minimum of 1k words per day, 5 days per week
I have no idea – I don’t keep track of word count, only scenes finished. So fail, and unnecessary.
– Writing time 11pm – 12am Mon/Tues/Thurs/Fri, & while the dog food “incubates” on Weds
Yeah…no.
This past year I decided to write in shorter snippets on my breaks at
work, and then a longer session right after work, which is better
because that’s my optimal “awake/alert” time.

– Publish at least one story every month
Another
fail…because I still haven’t mastered the art of tailoring my stories
to specific lengths, and I also have focus issues. Another one to be
revisited, though perhaps not in this exact form.

– Write one short story/novelette per month along with other drafts.
See
above – I have plotting issues (namely, I’m a pantser, though I know I
can still learn better structuring techniques to make stories fit).


Business
– Get accounting in order and maintain monthly bookkeeping schedule
I did this for about 6 months, and then bombed again. *sigh* Guess what’s going back on the list?
– No Anthologies
– Cut blogging back for all blogs (schedule out serials/excerpts so content is largely automated)
– Once monthly BSB newsletter, newsletters for author names on new releases only.
– Light promo, review copies, site updates, formatting & cover art evenings while watching TV.

Personal
– Make time on the weekends for hobbies
– Keep up with housework weekly
– Continue morning yoga workouts
– Workout at least 3x nightly per week – focus on strength & toning
Fail on this…but still managed to lose weight and stay healthy, so not as big a deal as it could be.
– Reorganize morning routine for better efficiency
– Archive tea & nail blogs


So,
out of 16 resolutions for last year, I completed 9…which is actually
better than I thought I did. Go me! Normally my goal lists (daily,
weekly or yearly) end up about half or less complete, so that’s not bad.


You’ll
note that many of the resolutions I missed the mark on were writing
goals…and a lot of that is because I’m just not experienced enough as a
writer to tailor stories for specific lengths yet. And honestly, in
this day and age there’s no real reason I have to be, since a story can
be whatever length it needs to be and doesn’t have to conform to any
specific word count (though longer stories do sell better, and I think
it would be good, creatively speaking to have that kind of control over
the craft).

I
also side-tracked myself in a couple different ways last year – one was
taking on an impromptu project that ended up being far more
time-intensive than I thought it would, and the other was going back to
the serial drafts, rather than forcing myself to learn a new, possibly
more efficient way of writing (or learning how to split the difference,
anyways). 

And of course there’s
that whole bookkeeping fiasco I just can’t seem to get a handle on. But I
need to, and I will. Somehow, someway. It simply has to happen.

Overall
though, it was a good, productive year – I published 12 new titles of
varying lengths under my three names, and released several audiobooks as
well (with two more in production). I also picked up my crochet hobby
again, learned how to knit, and rediscovered the joy of getting away
from the screen in the evenings/on weekends and doing something with my
hands. Yes, sales were down this year, and that might have been because I
was less visible online, but it could have been a zillion other things
as well. No way to know, and no sense worrying about it now. 

Tomorrow,
the 2014 list, a discussion on comparisons, and some links that I think
you’ll find interesting and/or helpful as you go about setting up your
own goals for the new year.

In the meantime, feel free to share how your 2013 went…I’d love to hear about it!


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2 comments on “2013 Year in Review

  1. Carol

    9 out of 16 isn’t bad. 🙂

    I’m actually glad you don’t tailor your stories to be a specific length, I think they work better that way.

    And while your impromptu projects may have sidetracked you a bit, kudos to you for taking the chance on something different!

    Hope 2014 goes even better for you. 😀

  2. Ardee Eichelmann

    I know that your impromptu project gave you “fits” at times but I loved reading the stories although I am now waiting for the rest of Melanie’s story.

    I am with Carol. I am glad you don’t try to make your stories fit “cookie cutter” word counts. If they are short, so be it and if they are long, even better.

    I hope you don’t decide to not serialize as you write. I may whine about the cliffhangers but I love the serials and if you serialize AFTER the story is finished you know I will be pestering you to let me see the whole story, then you will have to unfriend me on Facebook and it will make 2014 a sad, sad, sad year.(Did that convince you?)

    I think you have had an awesome year. You have taken time out for yourself. You have written some great stories and you have continued to inspire me along the way.

    Hugs,

    Ardee-ann