Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Looking Ahead to 2015

It’s been forever since I’ve posted on this blog. Actually, an entire year if you don’t count the posts for other authors. Clearly, I’ve been slacking. Well, with the blog. Not so much in other areas. Let’s recap 2014 and see how I’ve done with those 2013 resolutions!

Books Published
2014 saw the publication of two new books: A Single Swim and Damsel Not. A Single Swim was the hardest book I’ve ever written, as it is a nonfiction and because it deals with not only a personal matter of losing a family member to a brain-eating amoeba, but also scientific data, which I’m not good with. But I am proud of the finished result and continue to help raise awareness.

Damsel Not is my first romance. It was born from a trip to Medieval Times with some of my best author friends. If you like knights, cynical romance, and steamy scenes, then this one is for you :).

Books Started
Oh, so many! I’ve started the sequel to Fragile Creatures, two standalone novels, and my first horror series (more on that in a bit). I’m also in the beginning stages of a new adult fantasy series. 2015 will probably only see two new books, but 2016 will be THE year :).

Here's a little preview to that fantasy series.....

Big News
In August of 2014 I landed my first publishing contract with Permuted Press for a 5-book horror series. These will be released starting November 2016 and each consecutive month after, into 2017. But the books have to be done before then, so I’ve been writing like crazy! Book 1 is done and book 2 is in progress. This series is based around ghost stories and legends in Savannah, along with demon possession (literally my biggest fear). More to come on this as more news develops!

In February I will also be part of an anthology where authors take a “fade to black” sex scene from one of their YA novels and expand it. 20-something sexy stories just in time for Valentine’s Day :). Promos are coming soon.

More things are in the works, so I’ll update when I have more details.

Lots of Travels!
I traveled more in 2014 than ever before, and had an absolute blast. Atlanta, Myrtle Beach, Savannah, Nashville, Orlando, Daytona Beach, and even Augusta, Maine. I met so many amazing authors who are now great friends, made business connections, and just grew as a person. I can’t wait to see everyone again in 2015 and travel to new places.

So, how about those resolutions? Let’s build off last year’s:

1) Exercise more. Not to lose weight, but to gain a little more muscle mass, actually have some strength to me.

Well, let’s just say I didn’t do all that hot. I did start eating better, which was good, but as for exercise, I conveniently forgot that part. However, later in the year I bought a dip rack (NOT for chips, as so many people seem to think :)). Dips were my favorite exercise back in high school and I can do a few different exercises for my arms, legs, and stomach all from the rack. I’ve been using it almost every day for a couple months and I think I can see a difference.  

So, for 2015, I want to continue using the dip rack combined with healthier eating.

2) Be successful with my books and editing services.

Success is hard to measure. Do I think I’m successful? No. I think I’m on the path to getting there. But I don’t really know what I’d have to do to consider myself successful, so it’s a bit of a conundrum. I don’t consider success to be a best seller or make a lot of money, because that’s not why I write. Writing is the art of storytelling, and I think my personal success will come when I feel I’ve told the perfect story.

3) Be happy with what successes I do earn. I have high expectations for myself and often set unrealistic goals, so it can be hard for me to be happy where I am.

I’ve been better about this. I’ve let myself be happy with my accomplishments, even as I think beyond them. For 2015, I want to continue building on the successes of 2014 and see where I can grow from there. I consider this past year to be a building year – traveling, meeting new people, setting up the foundation for future projects. 2015 is where I do something about it all.

4) Get better at writing things down. My memory is shit unless it's a book I'm writing/editing. In 2014, I shall become The Rememberer of Things.

Um. I don’t think this happened. I wrote more stuff down, but I’m just as spacey as before. I think this one is a lost cause, haha. 

5) Take more time for myself. All I do is work and it's getting to be too much.

I did do some of this. My husband and I took a trip to Savannah, we went to Pennsylvania for Christmas, and I just took nights off to watch movies and veg. And I needed it. I feel refreshed and ready to take on 2015. Next year I plan to continue this so I don’t get burned out.

New Resolutions!

1) Be more social at book events. I think I did well, all things considered, this past year, but I can do better. Now that I know more people and am more comfortable, I think I’ll be able to open up more at each event. Those who have known me for a long time will probably agree that all the travels in 2014 have helped me grow as a person, for the better. I don’t want to go backwards, so I have to keep pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I’m coming to realize I actually enjoy it.

2) Be more focused. I love to write, and have to write every day or I go crazy. But I have so many ideas zooming around my head combined with my other jobs that it’s hard to focus on any one thing, which leads to burnout. So I need to get better at forcing myself to only work on one or two projects at a time, and actually finish them. I foresee a vision board being created soon.

3) Organize the house. I have a lot of stuff, and it needs to be figured out. Maybe a garage sale. Maybe we build shelves. SOMETHING needs to be done, that’s for sure. I am in stuff overload.

4) Go to Megacon and meet Stephen Amell (Arrow) and Norman Reedus (Daryl Dixon). I am not a fan girl, but ... I can't promise I'll react like a sane person when I see them in person. 

So, there are my goals. I can’t wait to see what 2015 has to offer! For now, enjoy a picture of kitten #1, Lord Finnegin the Fierce.

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