I have a five-year plan.
Year one (2013-14)- I started half way through the year, so I guess it is a five and a half year plan really):
- Learn to write to deadlines (well, try to at least) and
- to harden myself to rejections.
2013 was the year of the competition entries. Nineteen entries. Lots of rejections. One short-listed. I was happy with that statistic.
An unexpected (but welcome) by-product was discovering I love writing steampunk. My short listed story, An Eye for Detail, was one of my first steampunk short stories. I get to play with history, cool gadgets, feisty heroines and dashing heroes, while indulging my passion for historical costume, research and fantasy. I had already started the first draft of a fantasy novel. It is now in the drawer, waiting for me to complete my current series of planned steampunk books. I also realised I could mold my writing hours around my health issues and, though I was writing longer hours than I had previously worked, I was healthier, and more content,
Year two (2015):
- Continue to keep deadlines (thank you NaNoWriMo)
- Complete and publish my novella and try to complete my first novel. Viola’s first set of adventures is published in Journal #1: Doctor Jack & Other Tales.
- Learn more on the craft of writing. I have two more writing courses left for this year (and maybe more next year)
- To get known (the marketers call it ‘branding’) and start treating writing like a business – a career – and not a hobby. Part of this was to sort out my website and promote my name. Until now I have piggybagged on my old costuming website. Now that is changing.
- Set up an ABN and business name
- and treat this like a real job.
So far I have completed #1 (mostly) and #2. #3 is ongoing. There is always something to learn. #5 is completed. #4 and #6 are ongoing projects.
Today I am making a start on my Year Three list. I have been asked to do a talk on Writing Steampunk and Self-publishing, by local the Science Fiction/Fantasy discussion group, Critical Mass, at the SA Writers Centre 2nd September.
Yes, I am nervous. I am an introvert at heart and now I have to speak – in front of people. Again.
I’ve already started my deep breathing exercises.
Year three (2016):
- Do talks on steampunk, finishing, my second book, The Department of Curiosities, and starting the next installment.
- Make more videos for YouTube, including a book trailer for DOC.
- Write and publish the next journal in Viola Stewart’s adventures.
- start (and perhaps finish?) a second Department of Curiosities book…
Year four and five are currently under review, as I was forced to quit my job a few years earlier than I had expected. A re-evaluation of my future and career has ensued. (Well, these things are supposed to be flexible.)
Time for an announcement, adding to Year 2 #4: Welcome to my new website address:
I have redirected the new URL back to the old website address for now; I am hoping to have everything transferred by 2016. It’s time to update your bookmarks.