Thank goodness it's 2017! I thought 2016 would never end, and with the number of celebrity deaths that came in during the last week, I was beginning to panic that it might hold on for dear life. Phew! But here we are. Another new year and another declaration from me on how this year will go.
2015 was The Year I Say No.
2016 was The Year I Give No Fucks.
2017 will be The Year I Have Fun. Because now that I've learned to say no to the things that waste my time, and I've learned to not give a fuck over the things that I can't control, it's finally time to start REALLY having fun with this shindig. Really. The last two years, as the market has shifted around me, have been very frustrating. I've watched good friends stop writing and publishing altogether. I've seen people scammed and robbed of their earnings. I've witnessed what happens when I make my own bad decisions, too. And now that I've been at this three years, I think I have a good idea of what I can keep doing to stay afloat and still do what I love.
This gives me room to breathe, to run, to HAVE FUN. There were far too many times this past year when I wasn't having fun, when I was depressed, when I was failing. Sometime in November, after the election, I woke up and said, “Life is too short for this nonsense. I should be having fun!” And indeed, I should. This is now my forever career, what I want to do until I die. I should be enjoying it.
I WILL ENJOY IT. I will enjoy every new idea I have. I will have fun with every new plot I create, with every new character I dream up. I will revel in all the little bits that make this hobby into a career. There's so much here to have fun with! From reading to learning to creating, every piece of the puzzle is worth smiling about.
So that's where my head is at going into 2017. I'm going to make this year fun, and hopefully you'll enjoy it with me. I'm sure there'll be ups and downs, but in the end, I want to be happy about this choice I made, to really be a writer again, to be an author. It's my choice, and I choose to make the most of it.
Now, here are my goals for the year…
Books And Writing
I WILL PUBLISH FOUR BOOKS THIS YEAR. My plan is to publish two Miso Cozy Mysteries and two of my new scifi series.
I WILL WRITE ALL YEAR LONG. This is not a new kind of goal, as I've tried to do this in the past. BUT, 2016 was the year that I learned how to write on two projects at once. I want to have a first draft going at all times, whether it's one that I work on at 500 words per day because I'm working heavily on some edits on another project, or whether I'm concentrating solely on it during NaNoWriMo. Regardless, I want to create more content, and I can't do that if I'm not writing.
I WILL START UP A PEN NAME BEFORE THE END OF THE YEAR. This is an experiment for me. I want to see how hard or easy it is in today's market to launch something brand new. I came into this scene in mid-2013, before Kindle Unlimited, before newsletter services like Instafreebie. I can give advice based on what I see other people do, but I haven't done it myself. It's time to see how it works in 2017. This pen name will be a scifi endeavor, and I WILL let you all know about it once I've established it, at either the 6-month mark or the 1-year mark. This is one reason I want to be constantly writing this year. I just need to be careful about burn-out.
I WILL MAKE SOME BOX SETS THIS YEAR. Mostly of the Nogiku Series, but also of the Miso Cozy Mysteries once the 4th one is out.
Marketing, Promotions, Advertising, and Social Media
I WILL SPEND MONEY THIS YEAR. I got better about putting down the money to advertise this past year, and I'll continue to ramp this up. I'm experimenting more with ads and making headway finally.
I WILL INCREASE MY MAILING LIST TO 10,000 SUBSCRIBERS. I want to double my list size before the end of 2017. My newsletter is my favorite way to talk to my audience, and I want to see it grow. I'm careful to keep it fresh and relevant, and I need to continue that this year.
MY SOCIAL MEDIA WILL NOT CHANGE. My Facebook personal profile is a place for me to be personal. I will continue to talk to people via my Facebook Page. Twitter is where I put stuff I'm interested in. Other than that, I will share my work to Google Plus and LinkedIn. My Tumblr is still doing well, and I will continue to post to Instagram every day.
I WILL WALK 1000 MILES THIS YEAR. Yep, this is the big one. I've been gearing up to make this goal happen, and I'm ready to tackle it in 2017. Barring any physical injuries or sickness, this is something I have a good possibility of accomplishing. it's approximately 84 miles of walking per month. Right now, I walk about 65-70 miles per month, so I'll have to step it up and take it seriously. And with my treadmill desk and dictation, I feel I can do this! If you want to be crazy and join in, please say so in the comments.
I WILL PARTICIPATE IN THE AUDIOBOOK CHALLENGE. I'm going for the Stenographer (can listen while multi-tasking), 10-15 audiobooks in 2017. I plan to wrap up each month by tallying both this and the walking goals. Sign-ups are still open on the Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
I WILL KNIT MORE. Lol. This is a yearly goal. It's almost old now!
I WILL USE MY INSTAPOT AT LEAST ONCE A WEEK. Hopefully this will get me to try some new recipes.