Sunday, 1 January 2012
12 for '12
At the start of every year, David Bishop (former Tharg, tie-in novel writer and now budding screenwriter) sets himself professional targets and then reports on his progress at the end of the year.
Inspired by his latest report card (as he calls it), this year I'm going to do something I usually don't do. I'm going to set myself twelve targets for my writing work in the form of New Year's resolutions . Some will be on going, some will be one-offs I want to achieve over the next few months, and in the best tradition of New Year's resolutions, some will be nigh-on unachievable! (But you never know.)
And what's even worse is I'm going to let the whole world know about the challenges I've set myself! So without further ado, in no particular order, here are my 12 New Year's resolutions for 2012.
1) Read more books
I know this might sound strange for a writer, but since going freelance full-time, I've read fewer and fewer books each year. This is in part due to an increased workload and in part down to how much time I spend promoting myself on social media. When I should be turning in for the night and reading a couple of chapters, you'll often find me on Facebook or updating my blog.
2) Buy fewer books
This probably sounds even stranger than No. 1, particularly as part of the point of this blog is - let's be honest - to get people to buy more of my books! But times are hard, money's too tight to mention, and besides, I don't have a 'To Read' shelf anymore, I have 'To Read' bookcases - plural!
3) Complete 12 projects
This was going to be 'Write 12 short stories' (in part inspired by a conversation I had with Lavie Tidhar at the BFS Open Night) but I thought it might be a better idea to make it 12 writing projects (whether that be novels, magazine articles or whatever), seeing as I have a fair number of commissions to fulfil this year already.
4) Write another gamebook App
Plans are already afoot for this one, but it's too early to say anymore about it...
5) Get another Hammer & Bolter commission
Of course it would help if I got round to writing up that Warhammer proposal I've had in mind for some time now, and then there's that really cool 40K Space Marine story I want to write... Best get on and do it then!
6) Get a comics commission
Again, like No. 5, if I want to achieve this I need to write up some proposals and send them off to the relevant publications. There's at least two I now have contacts for - I just need to follow them up. (Famous last words!)
7) Work up a new YA project
I've got the ideas, I know of publishers who've said they'll take a look at anything I send them... I just need to find the time (in other words make the time) to work one of them up into a saleable submission.
8) Reach 100 followers on this blog
As of writing this, the total stands at 75. 25 new followers in a year? Surely that one's achievable. (Psst! Tell all your friends!)
9) Try to get an agent
Again! I've tried this a couple of times but without success (obviously) but to make it happen, I first need to have something to sell... (See No. 7 above.)
10, 11 & 12) Use social media less (Facebook, Blogger and Twitter)
Yes, you heard me right. I don't need to be on Facebook all day, I don't need to update my blog several times a day, I don't need to spend half an hour reading every post on Twitter, and while I'm at it, I don't need to check my email every five minutes. This one will be tougher than it sounds, so don't be surprised if I go dark (or rather, go cold turkey) not far into the New Year.
And that's your lot! At the end of the year, I'll yet you know how I've got on. So fingers crossed and wish me luck!
Until next time...