Goals · how to · Pay It Forward · Tips · Writing

2018 Goals = The Result

Now that 2018 is almost over, I’m taking a look back at my Goals for this year and how I managed to fare. I decided to defer my paperback list in October, so that I could focus on getting my Netgalley list up and on the move. I also made 2018 my year of finishing things that I’d started – my Netgalley list, books I’d started, publishing the last books in certain series.

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Writing Goals

✎ I want to finish at least 5 books that are already halfway to the finish line.

✅ Lose Myself (previously known as No. 1 With A Bullet) – underwent serious rewrites.

✅ A Royal Legacy: Part One – this was actually already complete, but I just didn’t know it. I had to rewrite the ending to make it a cliffhanger, remove the first short story of the six included to be used on Wattpad instead, and limit the word count. It was mostly editing and rearranging done.

✅ Never Let Me Go – I had to do MAJOR rewrites to this one. Completely rearranging chapters, adding new chapters, deleting old chapters. Then editing it, once the rewrites were complete. Although it was completed before 2018, I’m including it in this list, too, because of the time consuming nature of doing such huge rewrites. I basically started the book with a fresh mindset.

✅ The Bright Side Brigade – for the same reason I included Never Let Me Go, I’m including this one here. Although the book was “finished” before 2018, I did my “final” edit in November and found that there were some big issues. I had to reorganise the order of the stories, add chapters to some of the stories, and do some big tweaks to the overall book.

RESULT = Just one book away from reaching my goal isn’t bad at all.

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✎ I want to write at least 5 books from scratch, based on the plot notes I prepared when I first came up with the idea.

 Collide – written for an anthology, working from only a half page of notes and ending with a 15k short story.

 The Light of A Thousand Stars – a short, about a new character, to be included in A Royal Legacy: Part Two

✅ Hunting Renaii – I managed to write half of this in less than one month, then took a month away from it, due to mental burn out, and came back to finish the second half in less than 3 weeks. This is book 5 in my Surviving Vihaan series (previously known as Creatures of the Night) and means I now only have one left before the series is complete.

✅ Ascension of an Eamwulf – this began as a solo novel, that I then placed into the Tephy Brezal series. I shocked myself by being able to write the entire book – 100k – in just eight days.

 The Boys Who Didn’t Love Me – this had been an idea, barely formed, for less than 6 months when I finally came to write it. The inspiration came out of nowhere, just in time for the start of October, when all the Halloween stuff started getting advertised. Everything seemed to come together in perfect harmony, and I managed to write the entire thing in two weeks.

RESULT = Well, I’d say I knocked this one out the park. It’s the only one on my list that I matched and completed to goal, but it’s one of the most important for my future career, so that was probably for the best.

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✎ I also want to get a good 10 books edited for publication, because it’s time to think about what I’ll be releasing in 2019, getting them into shape and submitted.

Decadent: The Reunion – this (and The Short Story Special) will complete the Decadent series and will be published in 2018. I edited and did minor rewrites to it early in the year.

✅ Decadent: The Short Story Special – I hadn’t expected to add this one to this list, because the book was completed and ready for publication halfway through the year. But, in Sept/Oct I did a “final” edit of the book and discovered HUGE issues with plotting, flow, and the order of the short stories included. So, in the end, I did major rewrites to at least 3 of the 4 stories, so I thought it belonged in this list, regardless of how long it took.

✅ Never Let Me Go – I had to do MAJOR rewrites to this one. Completely rearranging chapters, adding new chapters, deleting old chapters. Then editing it, once the rewrites were complete.

 Surviving Vihaan 1-4 – I managed to whiz through reading and editing these first four books in my shifter series, so that I could start writing books 5 and 6, which would complete the series. This barely took any time at all, as they were in surprisingly good shape; despite having been edited a good half dozen times already, I was sure they would be worse than they were.

✅ The Bright Side Brigade – I initially thought that this would need major rewrites, but once I sat down to read through it, mark off good teaser quotes, and do a last-edit, it actually proved to be so much better than I expected. I actually didn’t have to do anything other than minor grammar/spelling edits. Then, three months later, I had to do a huge overall, as mentioned above. Unfortunately, that’s just how things work out – one minute the book looks perfect, the next it’s a mess.

✅ Ascension of an Eamwulf – considering how quickly I wrote this book, I expected it to need much more editing than it did. Other than adding in a few minor details, some clearer attention to detail and such, then it barely needed much work at all. That was a bigger shock than writing it in a single sprint.

✅ The Boys Who Didn’t Love Me – again, considering how quickly I wrote it, I thought it would need a lot of work. It actually only needed intense editing (spelling/grammar) which all books need for a first-edit. I have plans for two shorts, but they’re going to need a bit of work before they work out.

RESULT = Though I didn’t reach the 10 goal, I did a little more than half that, and I focused more on writing new material this year, so I figure that’s a decent compromise.

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Reading Goals

📚 I want to read at least 20 Agatha Christie paperbacks. I have them all, so it’s about time I actually sat down and read them in order.

 2 – This clearly didn’t work out, but I don’t mind so much. I really wanted to focus on my review books, and writing, this year, so this was more of a ‘hope’ than a real ‘goal’.

 21 paperbacks that are NOT Agatha Christie

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📚 I also want to read at least 100 Netgalley books, though I’d love to double that number. However, I’ll maintain a reasonable 100, since that’s achievable.

  48

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📚 I plan to cut back on my Divine review list, only so that I can get more Netgalley books off my list, so I’ll keep this list to 50.

✅ 51

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📚 Then, if I have time (which is a big if) I wouldn’t mind getting about 30 books off my TBR list. These are books that I paid good money to buy, but have never had time to sit down and read.

 125

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Total = 200 – which is less than the 250 I read in 2017, so perfectly achievable.

RESULT = I clearly outdid myself on my TBR list, but that’s because I had a major Black Butler and comic book addiction this year. They were so easy to fit into a short space of time, and really great for when I was sick or as a cleanse between writing sprints.

I wish my Netgalley list would have been bigger, but due to the extreme heat of the summer, having 3 writing sprints that lasted nearly a month each, and personal issues at home, I can’t be too upset.

As for my Divine list; there were many opportunities to read more books for this list, but the books on offer just didn’t interest me as much. However, you could count a good 20-30 books from my TBR to this list, because I read a lot of series books this year, some of which had books previously published which I re-read beforehand. If you include them – which I, technically, only read because I wanted to refresh my mind before reading the next in the series – then I met my target and then some.

And I’m not at all disappointed with my paperback listing. This was a goal for a reason; because I wanted to read more of the paperbacks I own, but I also did a complete redesign of my bedroom this year, which meant that all of my paperbacks were unreachable for about 4 months, due to serious furniture overhauls and reorganising. When I count that upheaval, and my progress with my writing, I’m not disappointed at all.

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