I've been thinking about this post since reading Dean Wesley Smith's post on setting writing goals for 2014. This year got off to a rocky start for me; I had an abnormal EKG a week before Christmas, which was kind of alarming, and I've been dealing with tests and a lot of anxiety since then. Everything is still inconclusive so far, but right now it looks like we're not dealing with anything immediately dangerous; most likely it's nothing serious, or we've caught something more long-term serious in the early stages.
this glimpse of my own mortality had the contradictory effects of
making it hard to make future plans and goals (who can make plans for
the future when they're afraid they're going to drop dead at any
moment?) (seriously, I'm a terrible hypochondriac) and making me really
zero in on what I want to accomplish in my life. The main thing I
realized, besides wondering who would make the Christmas fudge and
homemade dinner rolls at our house if I wasn't around (getting alarming
health news right before Christmas really sucks) is that I would be
extremely bummed out were I to shuffle off the mortal coil before
getting Daughter of the Wildings
out. I've instructed my husband that should something happen to me, DoW
is to be made available however seems best at the time - put up for
sale, or just posted for free, or whatever. The problem is, as it is
right now, still in rough draft, it kind of sucks. It's not terrible,
but there are parts that make me cringe or that are just wrong, and I
really don't want it to go out into the world this way.
with that as my focus, and now that I'm not quite so convinced that I'm
going to drop dead at any moment *knock on wood*, here are my plans and
goals for the coming year.
Although Sarya's Song is the next book scheduled to come out,
I'm going to be spending most of my work hours on the initial revision
of Daughter of the Wildlings. DoW is a huge project, nearly 300,000
words, and if I'm going to get it released on any kind of schedule, it
needs to take priority. This shuffling of priorities will mean that the
release of Sarya's Song may be delayed a bit. I'm hoping for a February release, but it may take until March.
My target for releasing the first DoW book, Beneath the Canyons,
is June, though that may be a bit optimistic. The plan is to get all
six books to where once I start releasing the series, a new book can
come out about every other month.
Once Sarya's Song
is out and DoW is well under way towards being released, there are a
couple of different areas I'm thinking I'll turn my attention to. One is
a couple of partially-written novels set in Estelend, the world of Chosen of Azara.
I also had a reviewer say they wished Chosen was a trilogy instead of
one book, because they wanted more backstory on some of the characters
and events. Rewriting Chosen as a trilogy isn't going to happen - I just
don't feel it that way - but I'd like to do a set of stories giving
some of the backstory the reviewer mentioned they'd like to know more
about. Maybe I'll make this a Camp NaNo project in April or July. And the very first novel I ever wrote, Prince of the Trozdozh,
and its sequel are sitting on my hard drive, calling out to me. I think
they're probably salvageable, so I want to run them through my revision
process and see it they really are something I can release to the
As far as production goals, right now I can't
really set a word count goal. By the end of the year I aim to have
released 5 novels (Sarya's Song and the first four Daughter of the Wildings novels) and at least one short story collection (the Chosen of Azara companion stories). I had five releases in 2013, so six releases in 2014 sounds like a good progression.
And, onward. Happy New Year, everyone! May it be happy and productive and with a minimum of unpleasant surprises.