Looking Back on 2018/Word of the Year and Goals for 2019

It’s that time again. The one day a year I look back on my goals and laugh. Here’s what I planned to do this year, with commentary on how it turned out:

  1. Get Mistress of Legend done and published. I accomplished this goal. It came out in September. I’m very happy with the way it turned out and it needed the extra time.
  2. Continue on the Rose Ferron biography, which I’m hoping to have done by late summer. I did get a fair amount of work done on this, but it got put on the back burner after that conference got canceled in June, which also canceled my archival trip. I’ll pick this back up again eventually, but I don’t know when.
  3. Research and start writing two WWII books that I’d like to get traditionally published. I tried to start on this after Mistress of Legend came out but my brain wasn’t having it. It wanted me to work on another project, which I’ve since made great strides on.
  4. Research the feminism book I’d love to have out by August 2019 (I doubt it will be ready by then). This project changed scope. It was originally the history of feminism in the U.S. book (which I do still want to do), but it morphed into a book on the suffrage movement that I’m still hoping to have out by August 2020 (the centennial of women getting the right to vote in the U.S.)

2019 Word of the Year and Goals
I was originally going to keep my word from last year (Leap), but I realized it doesn’t really fit anymore. It didn’t end up working out the way I thought it would, but it was still an appropriate word for 2018.

For 2019, I’ve chosen Prosper. I’ve had a heck of a 2018, especially toward the end, so I’m hoping this word will keep the good things coming and build on what 2018 started. I also think it is fitting because I’ve put in years of hard work (since 2008 with writing and since August 2015 with publishing) and it’s time to see them pay off.

That doesn’t mean, however, that I will take it easy in 2019. No-siree-bob. I don’t know how to take it easy. Writing-wise, this seems like it will be a non-fiction year for me, but you never know what may crop up.

  1. Finish the proposal for, successfully pitch and sell a book I’m co-writing with another author. This is the non-fiction on the suffrage movement I mentioned above.
  2. Finish the proposal for, successfully pitch and sell another book on the suffrage movement (different angle from above) I’m working on.
  3. Write both of these books by their deadlines (I’m hoping both will be traditionally published by August 2020).
  4. Finish the biography I’m working on (not Rose, someone else) and sell it.
  5. Attend three conferences and have successful speaking engagements at the ones I’m booked at.
  6. Possibly work on either Isolde or the gothic fiction book I’m planning.
  7. Keep up to date on the progress of Madame Presidentess as it makes its way toward becoming a TV show or movie.

I’ll release details on all the books mentioned above when I can. The two suffrage books and the biography will also help shape a book on St. Louis’ role in the suffrage movement that I have planned for the future. I may be suffraged and non-fictioned out by the end of 2019, but I LOVE research so this will be a fun year.

Reflections on 2017 Goals and my 2018 Reading Goal

My book case of TBR books (the short one is research books).

So it’s the day after Christmas and the first real day of my vacation, so I thought I’d get my brain thinking about writing my looking back at my goals for this past year. Considering I didn’t know The Once and Future Queen was going to happen when I wrote these, this ought to be good.

  1. Write and publish at least two books. Yeah, so that didn’t happen. But I wrote one, so I get 50% credit, right?
  2. Write Isolde and Morgan’s stories for 2018 publication. Nope. But I have thought about both and did some planning for Isolde’s story. And then Sobian decided she wanted her own book…
  3. Continue to attend conferences and speak. This one I did and in spades! 2017 was quite a busy year for travel. The highlight had to be the Historical Novel Society (HNS) conference in Portland. Those are totally my people! Getting to sit on a panel with Patricia Bracewell and Mary Sharrat was such an honor and I am soooooo glad I got to meet Leanna Renee Hieber, my sister in all things feminism. The RWA conference was pretty awesome, too, but I don’t fit in as well there because I don’t write typical romance.
  4. Turn some of my blog posts/presentations into online classes. This is almost done. As soon as my voice is back to normal, I’m going to record these and get them live. Look for more information on or near January 1.
  5. Continue to learn about marketing and indie publishing. I’ve done this. Being Self-Publishing liaison for my RWA chapter helped because it makes me more attuned.
  6. Break even on expenses incurred in 2016 and 2017 by the end of the year. HAHAHAHAHAHAAA!!! Um, not so much. I wish I would have made this one. But I am doing better than last year.
  7. Lose 30 lbs by my 20-year high school reunion in September, which means exercising regularly and eating right. Not so much. I actually gained more weight this year.
  8. Reignite my social life. Yeah not really. But I don’t really care anymore. I love my writing and that is my life outside of my day job.

I’ve already started on my goals for 2018, which I’ll share closer to the first of the year. But there is one I can share now:

Read only books I already own. (This doesn’t include research, library books or those I review for HNS.)

Having been to so many conferences over the last two years (and having a serious weakness for book sales), I own at least 200 print books and probably another hundred ebooks that I haven’t read. So my goal is only read those; no purchasing of new books other than those already on pre-order. *smirks* we’ll see how long that lasts!

Plus, I plan to set my Goodreads goal to 100, since I’ve surpassed that the last two years.

Now I’m off to talk with Guinevere about Mistress of Legend!