Another year is almost over. Really, once we hit November… well, everything’s a blur after that. This post is an early attempt at reviewing my progress of the past year, but it’s not at all comprehensive, because the next two months will probably be my busiest yet. Anyhow, forgive me if this entire post seems scattershot.
How did I do this year? I’d say, at least to this point, I’d probably get a B – or B. Mixed results when it comes to my writing (including this blog) and reading goals, but I do have a new story coming out at the end of this month in Rise of the Europan. I’ve wanted to collaborate with others for a long time, it’s always been one of my personal goals, and I’m happy to achieve that. I got to work on a fun project with a talented group of authors, building a collection of stories set in the same universe and focused around a common event. This is the kind of amazing experience that I’ve always imagined I could have as a writer.
It’s fucking great–I really don’t know how else to say it without using a bunch of boring superlatives. No matter how many things I did or did not check off my to-do list, working on RotE officially made this my most successful year to date. It marks the second time I’m being published this year, which means I doubled my output from the previous year. It’s a small step in the long-term, but I’m taking a moment to appreciate it. I know there’s a long path for me to travel, and that in some ways it gets more difficult as I strive to improve on my craft. However, I’ve gained more experience in the past (almost) two years than I did in the ten prior to those.
In terms of volume, sheer amount of words written, I wanted to do more this year. I understand why it didn’t happen, and I know it’s something I can build on over time. That being said, I still have two months left in 2015, and I intend to write as much as possible before they’re through. My goal for this month is to write at least two rough drafts, one of which I’m chipping away at already and another that I’ll jump into as soon as the first is finished.
I’ve currently got about 3,300 words down for “Blooded,” which is a story I’m writing for Dryden Nightmares. So far, I’m having a great time writing it. Some of what’s in the story: a dark god trapped in space, a blood priest’s quest to achieve a high rank, bizarre landscapes filled with all manner of nasty, and a series of dream-visions.
Once I’ve completed that draft, then I’ll need to make a decision about which one to attempt next. I have no shortage of options, since my writer-brain refuses to stop coming up with more ideas and just let me finish the projects I already have! That’s actually a good “problem” to have. Right now, I’m leaning toward a story I started writing a few months ago and never finished; but I’m not going to say anything else on that subject, because I’ll be starting a new feature on this blog tomorrow, and in it I’ll be talking about that exact story.
I considered trying NaNoWriMo again this year, especially since I didn’t succeed in finishing the novel I began last November, but I’ve decided to set some goals that are more realistic for me at the moment, considering how much I’ll be working during the day for the rest of the year. My daily writing goal this November is to write at least 750 words a day (not including anything I write for the blog), and a really good day is when I exceed 1,000 words. It’s only a few days into the month, but I’ve been able to meet that goal to this point. For me, it’s not about writing a ton every day. I chose 750 words because its very manageable and I am positive that I’ll make the goal most days. Consistency is an important step in producing more, because it provides the conditions for success. If I push myself to write every day, eventually those words will add up to something substantial.
Until then, it’s like training myself to walk, strengthening those muscles. Except it’s one word in front of the other, no feet required.