BTS012, I’m Sharing My Business and Writing Goals for 2019 with You
As I look back over the last few years, I’ve noticed I have a bit of a problem. And, that problem has to do with focus. Yep, my inner creative wants to do everything all at once. I have all of these writing ideas that I seriously want to pursue. But I can’t do it all; I need to focus. My ideas are all in the form of multiple series and are in four different genres. These genres are medieval fantasy, crime thriller, archaeological thriller, and cozy-mystery. I’m serious when I say that I want to write these four different series.
Changing My Focus
However, focusing on four different series from the start is going to be difficult. It will mean success in these genres will take a long time because I’m starting multiple things at once. The readers have nothing else to read after these first-in-series novels. In the spirit of looking back and learning, I’ve decided that in 2019 I’m going to focus on my James Lalonde series first and then if I have the time, the archaeological thriller series.
Notice how I said, “if I have the time.”
That reiteration is for my benefit, but take it on board if like me you have too many plates spinning at once. In light of my newfound wisdom, I’m going to share my business and writing goals for 2019 with you.
So, How is This Goal Sharing Going to Work?
I’m going to share with you my goals or intentions for 2019 now, in January; and a mid-year update around June or July. There will be a final review at the beginning of 2020 where I will look back at 2019 and hopefully have good news to share with you. In the tradition of the Podcast Diary episodes, I will give you regular updates; however, these updates won’t be as formal as the planned update episodes.
What Did I Achieve in 2018?
Before we dive into my plans for 2019, it’s worth mentioning what I achieved or in my case what I failed to accomplish in 2018. I have a confession to make. I didn’t achieve most of my business and writing goals in 2018. But, you saw that coming. There were a whole host of unforeseen life experiences, and obstacles that distracted me from my writing and business goals.
Or, So I thought.
Just a side note, my lack of goal achieving success had a lot to do with the outcome style of goal I was setting, unexpected obstacles, and not keeping focused on my goals.
As I look back over the year, I realised there were mini-successes along the way that are worth celebrating. So, what did I achieve in 2018?
I’ve come up with a short list of mini-successes instead of rehashing my 2018 goals and explaining in detail what I achieved and did not, and why. There’s a part of me that doesn’t feel ready to talk about a few of the unexpected and not so great life events from 2018. It’s why I’m attempting to share details, but hold back at the same time.
In no particular order, my mini-successes for 2018 are as follows.
- I’ve figured out what works for me in terms of novel revision
- Started revising Immunity and Silence.
- I’ve finished writing the first draft of Missing and created a plan of action for revision.
- Because I added Missing to the series, I changed the order of the James Lalonde Series by including the prequel novella, Missing and the prequel novel, Silence as a part of the main series.
- I have created a cover style for the James Lalonde Thrillers, so it will be evident that these books are in a series.
- Started to brainstorm and outline the first in a cozy-mystery series which I’ve now put off until 2020 or 2021.
- Brainstormed ideas for an archaeological thriller series.
- Started my Thriller Novel Nerd Instagram account.
- Read 35 Thriller, Mystery, and Suspense, and writing craft books in 2018, that’s 9 more books than 2017.
- Started creating a marketing strategy for Immunity.
- Revised and created a second edition of Smarter Goal Setting.
- Started a series on three-act-structure on this podcast, which will continue in 2019.
- I resolved a podcast recording issue I had after moving to an apartment along a main road. The solution isn’t costing me money or extra time in post-production.
So, I’m considering that list of moments mini-successes because I am able to move forward and achieve my goals in 2019 as a result of these achievements.
What Do I Want to Achieve in 2019?
I want to publish a minimum of five, but ideally seven books in 2019. So, why five to seven and not a specific number. It’s a case of hoping for the best but expecting the worst. In 2019, I want to focus on the James Lalonde Thrillers and if I have time publish one or two books in an unnamed archaeological thriller series.
Yep, I’m back to being my same old ambitious self.
I guess your wondering, How am I going to achieve this?
Goal #1 – Revise, Edit, and Publish Missing, Silence, and Immunity in 2019.
Missing needs further revisions and professional editing and Silence needs a partial rewrite and editing before publishing. The third book in the series, Immunity needs a further round of revisions based on what I’ve learned writing, editing, and publishing the first two books. I know what needs to be rewritten and changed in these three novels, so in theory, all I need to do is the work.
Therefore, the biggest hurdle I will experience along the road to achieving this goal is resistance. Now that I’m aware of this, I will do these revisions first before everything else. In the past, I’ve started the day off with business-related tasks, but in 2019, I need to do writing first. My typical working day will start off with reading over breakfast, followed by revisions, a work out followed by business-related tasks for the remaining part of the day.
So, it goes without saying that this goal is a non-negotiable for me. I’ve grown tired of constantly talking about writing and rewriting these books that I want to move forward to publishing and the new challenges that marketing will bring.
Goal #2 – Write a Prequel Short Story to the James Lalonde Thriller Series to Give Away as an Email Sign up.
There’s an event mentioned in Missing that occurred between James and another character. I want this short story to be an easter egg in Missing. In every one of my James Lalonde Thrillers, there will be some type of clickable link where the reader can receive a free short story, see a case file, or newspaper article related to the story.
Spoiler alert, one of the easter eggs for Missing is going to be a short story.
Therefore, I need to write this short story before I release Missing in 2019. I plan on publishing Missing at the end of March or the beginning of April. But that publishing date depends on how my plans work out.
Goal #3 – Write and Publish Books Four and Five in the James Lalonde Thriller Series.
The working titles for books four and five are Abscess and Vertigo. To be honest, I can’t wait to start writing Vertigo because it’s set in the small city of Poitiers in France during the Christmas period. Due to the time period of the story, I need to publish Vertigo in December. Or, I may need to change the dates of the story if I can’t meet the publishing deadline. But, I don’t want to do that, so I’ve created a looming deadline for myself. In light of all of that, I would still be quite happy if I reached the end of the year with Abscess and Vertigo written, but not published.
Goal #4 – Research, Brainstorm, and Outline the Next Two Books in the James Lalonde Thriller Series.
The reason this goal has made it onto my list for 2019 is, I want to be a few books ahead of my publishing schedule, because, I want to start a family. All things considered, I need to plan ahead for maternity leave since I don’t want to slow down my publishing schedule. Ideally, by the time I have my first child, I’ll probably have people waiting to read the next book in the series. But, baby proofing my career is a discussion for a future podcast diary episode.
To be honest, I have no idea about the plot for these next two books. I do have a scrivener bible for the James Lalonde series where I’ve recorded more than a few ideas for subsequent books, but no concrete plans. However, book six does have a working title and a super vague story idea. It’s more of a one-liner pitch with a few notes. As I’ve just pointed out, it’s super vague. I’m hoping by the end of 2019, I will have two revised outlines for books six and seven.
Goal #5 – Stay on Track With My Release Schedule for The Authorpreneur Podcast.
As you probably know, The Authorpreneur Podcast contains two different shows; the Behind the Scenes Podcast Diary, which you’re listening to right now, and a show that focuses on writing and publishing. Due to many different reasons, I fell behind my release schedule in 2018.
Now that I’ve found solutions to a few of the things that were holding me back and getting in my way, I want to stay on top of this in 2019. I’ve already created a content publishing calendar for 2019, and I’m currently two episodes ahead of schedule. Check out Behind the Scenes podcast episode ten if you’re curious about my reasons for falling behind and the solution that I accidentally discovered.
Goal #6 – Read 40 Books in 2019.
Ironically, this is one of the goals I achieved in 2018. I originally first made an official reading goal last year because I wanted to make a conscious effort to read more thriller novels. As a writer, I’ll read anything, but all of the books I do read have undertones of crime, thriller, and suspense. Over the years, I want to increase the number of books that I read, but I want to do this slowly. In 2016, I read 14 books. The following year I read 27 books, and last year I read 35 books.
Goal #7 – Start a Podcast Around My Thriller Novel Nerd Blog and Instagram Account.
Yes, I want to start another podcast. I’ve titled this podcast Thriller Novel Nerd. The podcast will be a discussion around the books that I’m reading, and the episodes will be released twice a month. It’s almost like a virtual book club. Thriller Novel Nerd will be light and not need as much research as The Authorpreneur Podcast because it will be me in front of a microphone talking about the books I’m reading, with minimal audio editing. It’s designed to be a low-maintenance podcast.
And, now, for my bonus goal.
Goal #8 – Write and Publish the First Two Books in My Archaeological Thriller Series.
This goal is the only intention in this list that’s included in case I have time to write these stories. The first book has a tie-in with my novella, Missing, and the second occurs several years later. I’m avoiding sharing the title of the first novel in the archaeological series because it’s a bit of a spoiler for Missing. As much as I love talking about the stories I’m writing, I need to keep somethings a mystery.
How Am I Going to Achieve All of This?
First of all, I define success as achieving seventy-five percent of my writing and publishing goals as well as achieving all three business and personal goals. To make achieving my goals a little easier, I’ve broken the annual goals down into a quarterly and monthly to-do list.
In order to keep myself focused, I endeavour to read my goals every day instead of setting and forgetting. Ideally, writing comes first, and that will be my main focus. This goal means getting religious about my writing time and adopting strict working hours, and scheduling this in my calendar. To assist my focus, I will batch-produce all podcast and blog content.
I Screwed Up
Now that I’ve said this out loud, this is all great, but if something happens and I fall behind on my podcast release schedule, I will have to give that priority over my writing. And, surprise, surprise; I’ve done this already. What happened is— I don’t know what happened.
I uploaded the episodes to Blubrry, which is where I host my podcast episodes, and nothing happened. On top of this, I noticed it too late. Perhaps, I uploaded the episode and saved it but did not publish it. The week this episode is published, you would’ve noticed that you received a writing tips episode before this one. I ended up moving the episode around and released an episode on Tuesday, and this one was released on Thursday.
The beauty of screwing up or falling behind is I got an extra chance to make minor changes to this episode. So, I went back and recorded a new version of this episode. And I changed my mind about a few of my goals, how I wanted to word them, and how I defined success because that’s a critical element of goal setting and achieving. Right from the start, you need to define success.
So, at the end of the year, what will make you happy as you look back over the last twelve months?
Like me, do you have a lot of ideas for stories and try to work on them at once? How are you going to focus yourself on one thing in order to get more done in 2019? I want to hear from you. Share your plan of action in the comments section below.
Thank you for listening, and happy reading and writing, everybody.
I’m Amelia. When I’m not hosting the Authorpreneur Podcast™️ and the Book Nerd Podcasts, I write Mystery Novels under the pen name A. D. Hay. And, I’m the author of Suspicion, the Lawn, and the Candidate.
On this blog, I help new writers to finish their first draft, prepare their manuscripts for professional editing, and when they get stuck in the first draft phase or are confused about the revision process.
Right now, I’m editing and preparing my soon to be published mystery novels, Suspicion, Duplicity, 24 Hours, and Immunity for publication.