End of year 2017


Hello, faithful reader (who am I kidding?) As you may know, if you’ve ever been near this blog before, at the end of the year I analyse what I’ve done, writing-wise, during the year. And I use last year’s writing goals as the yardstick by which I measure my success over the year.
So, without further ado, let’s look at how I measured up.

1) Write one short story a week for the Bradbury Challenge 2017. I can definitely do this. I have far too many ideas for me to stop writing them now.
Okay. Let’s start with this. FAIL! To be fair, there wasn’t actually an ‘official’ Bradbury Challenge 2017. We thought about it, talked about it, but it never actually got off the ground. I’ve written a number of c. 500-word stories during the year. But no Bradbury Challenge. No story per week, although there are about eighteen or so pieces of flash fiction. So they can be smartened up, polished until they’re as bright as a new pin, and packaged into … something.

2) Complete the 100kwords100days challenge.
FAIL! Hahahaha! To be fair, I got to 77,000, which was about 5k behind at that time, but then I seemed to stop. Yeah. Sounds about right. But the two cozy novellas I was writing when I started got completed, so that’s good! I had a bash at the July one, too, and only got to 26k.

3) Novels. (i.e. write some)
FAIL! Not doing very well, am I? Another year where stories have been started, and not finished. Which, to be honest, is becoming a bit of a habit for me.
Let’s be clear about this. I don’t feel bad about not achieving my goals. Maybe that’s the problem. Maybe I need to feel bad about it, to give me more impetus into achieving them. Maybe if I was starving, I’d be more inclined to write, complete and publish.

One area of success this year has been publishing – I have managed to self-publish three short non-fiction writer support books. One was a short guide to Scrivener, the writing software I use, and two were books about NaNoWriMo – how to complete the challenge, and how to self-publish your novel when you’d completed it. So 2017 was an unqualified success! Haha!
Seriously, I enjoyed publishing again, and the Scrivener and NaNoWriMo books were ones I’d wanted to write for some time. Generally, they were well-received.

We did also keep the Literary Roadhouse podcast going. Logistical difficulties, arranging four people to be on the end of a viable internet connection, in four different time zones, is not the easiest thing. Also, the time needed to edit and prepare the audio for podcast takes a toll, and I’m hoping that when things settle down a little after the Christmas break, I’ll be able to help out a bit on that score.

And I did finish NaNoWriMo 2017, for my 13th ‘win’. As is becoming a habit for me, I tried something different for 2017, and that was to write a short-ish story which blends the romance and crime genres. It was a challenge, and my writing always tends towards the dark, so trying to keep at least half of the focus on a romance story was challenging. It won’t be until I look at it again early in 2018 that I’ll be able to tell if it works.


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