Since I started this site a few years back, I’ve posted my goals for the new year and gone back through to update people on my progress as the year progresses. Here are my goals and updates for 2020 and 2021.
I hope this provides the aspiring writer just starting out or trying to find their way a bit of a roadmap and inspiration to design their careers. It also bears noting that I am a full-time writer with no other job but writing and editing!
2022 Intention: Level up my craft and work on writing my next books
Last Update 01/06
- Write and edit my horror novella
- I’ve started researching and plotting in my head already. Hopefully by the end of the month I’ll have a rough outline that I can start fleshing out more in Feburary. My plan is to do the first rough draft in a week during March and spending a few more months editing.
- Put my horror novella out on submission
- If all goes according to plan, I’ll have my novella finished by the end of the summer and ready for submitting out during the fall.
- Keep querying my novel Out of the Machine until July at the latest
- I’ve gotten a few positive rejections and crickets from some editors and agents, but I’ve only sent it to 10 agents, at most, which is nothing. Based on my projections of the agents I have queued up to query, I’ll be done with them by July. At that point, if I have no takers, I’ll start submitting my manuscript to publishers directly.
- Apply to writing programs (Clarion West, Odyssey, Futurescapes, etc.)
- So far, I’ve applied to Clarion West and Futurescapes.
- I got into Futurescapes
- Gain a third column
- I currently have two monthly columns (Into the Night and my reviews for Lightspeed Magazine) but I’d like to add a third into the mix. I’ve got some feelers out, but I haven’t heard anything yet. I’m pretty contfident that I’ll land this one by the end of the year.
- Edit and submit the last few stories in my bank
- I have 13 stories I want to polish up and submit to professional publications. I’ve just started on the first one.
- Pitch pieces to top paying markets
- This one is pretty self-explanatory.
- Start my third rewrite of my fantasy epic
- Since I started writing professionally, I’ve had been working on a fantasy novel that it’s taken me a while to get to the level in my craft where I can successfully pull off what I envision. This summer and fall, I’m going to try a third time to write it and see if I’m up to conquering the beast of a story
- Compile my second short story collection
- Besides the 13 stories I’m working on to submit to publications, I have a handful of other stories around a theme of absence that I’ll be putting into a collection and submitting to publishers at the end of the year. So far, I have a few of the stories together and know I need to write probably 5-10 more depending on length. There’s also a chance I’ll combine the horror novella and the short story collection like I did with Plagued Company.
- Gain more traction with my courses
- I have a couple hundred students in my courses, but I want to enter a steady flow of selling and teaching my courses. Toward reaching this goal, I have a few free virtual teaching events coming up over the next few months and am gonna start appearing as a guest on a few writing and editing podcasts. More news on this in the coming months!
- Study voice and syntax
- My aim is to study these subjects and learn them to a point where I can manipulate them in a more advanced way. I don’t want to just write intuitively, but I want to be deliberate, too. I’ve got a few books, exercises, and practice stories planned for learning syntax over the next four months. Then I’ll switch over to doing a deep study of voice for four months before combining the two for the last four months of the year.
- Compile and edit two writing craft books
- With over 150 writing craft articles, I’ve decided to compile them into a collection, edit them, add more information, and publish them as books. I have four books currently compiled around fiction writing, dialogue, scenes, and a general writing book. In 2022, I’ll work on my fiction and general writing book, which I plan to self-publish in 2023.