Sunday, January 5, 2014

What I learned in 2013



 
 
 
1. I learned that writing a sequel is harder than the first book. Everything is shiny and new in the first one, but come the second and you have to find more shiny new things while adhereing to the old things. Does that make any type of sense?  Exactly.

2. I shouldn't procrasitnate while on a deadline. Sh...don't tell my editor any of this.

3. I probably shouldn't publish three novels in one year without a solid plan...and help with promotions.

4. I need to invest dollars in my career, whether I have them or not. Promotions, reviews, conferences all help build a business...me. I won't break the bank, but I have to turn it upside down and shake it to see how much cha-ching falls loose.

5. I learned to shed my fear of people and put up my big girl pants and focus on another facet of my...challenges. Namely, networking.  I suck at talking to people. I admit it. My mind draws a blank, my heart feels like it's going to charge out of my chest--Alien style, and I can't focus. The only thing left to happen is that my blood pressure drops and I crash...on the floor at the feet of some big shot agent, editor, or publisher. Yup...it sucks when you have such a wild imagination with an edge on pending doom. Hey, I write Dark Fantasy...hello...the ideas have to come from somewhere. Anyways...I'm going to the RWA Chicago-North Spring Fling in April! Yay! I even asked for a shot at pitching to an agent/editor. Yeah...let's see how that goes.

6. I learned that writing breaks are needed. I participated in NaNo this year and completed a draft of book 2 of Bloodrose. It felt good to write something new and unchartered. I was surprise at how easily I met the deadline. All I had to do was sit and write whatever popped out. Once it was out, there was magic. I also learned to take a break from writing with no guilt. I wrote nothing the month of December and am excited to tackle writing again. I think I'm going to keep to this type of schedule.

7. I learned that life is prescious. I want to live by how I want to be remembered after I die.

8. I learned that I'm going to keep writing, regardless. My family, my house, my day job will be okay without me being Superwoman. It's okay to do something I enjoy without feeling guilty.

So...my business plan for 2014. (Recommended read: Inide Author Survival Guide by Susan Kaye Quinn)

1. My mission:
  • To write stories that capture the minds and hearts of readers so that they are transported to different places, experience the fantastical, and be free of the mundane. To continue to learn the craft to enhance my storytelling. To continue to network and to be supportive of other writers through social media, workshops, and other relevant outlets. 
2. Core Values
  • I believe writing great stories can be learned.
  • I believe authors should write what they love.
  • I believe you cannot succeed if you do not fail.
  • I believe our success inspires family, friends, and the world.
  • I believe we can make a difference in the world.
  • I believe the self is the worst critic.
  • I believe in the muse--she did it.
  • I believe stories can be found everywhere. We just have to look beyond our senses.
  • I believe strength and courage are driven by the need to vanquish our fears. You have to be afraid first.
  • I believe with hard work anything is possible.
These will be my guiding priniciples during the year.

For work, life, and family.

What are yours for 2014?

5 comments:

  1. You've gotten a lot accomplished this year. You should be so proud! I hope that you achieve all your goals and ideals in 2014! :-)

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  2. Look at all you did in 2013! Sounds like you're ready to dive into 2014 with a focused plan. You'll do great, Liz!

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  3. I totally get your #1! I felt the same way when I wrote my sequel in 2013, although when I was done I was extremely proud of it.

    Writing #3 is killing me, though. Now I have to stick to everything that went into TWO books, and still have something shiny and new. My husband says I felt EXACTLY the way I feel now when I was writing the second book. I think it's worse.

    Only time can tell .. that is ... will I be excited about it when I finish this horrible first draft?

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  4. Best of luck with your goals for 2014. Things have been so crazy for me the past few weeks I haven't even gotten to reflect on the passing of 2013, let alone setting goals for 2014.

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  5. I like your mission statement and core values.

    I actually found it easier to write the sequel and third and fourth books in my (unpublished) supernatural-thriller series. For me, the first one was tougher because that's where you need to build the story line. The other books continue it. But of course that it just me. :)

    And yes, writing breaks are a MUST! ;)

    HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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