Wednesday, December 7, 2016

As Long as the World Keeps Turning, I'll Keep Writing #IWSG | Bookworm News

The Insecure Writer's Support Group was created by Alex J. Cavanaugh. December's co-hosts are Jennifer Hawes, Jen Chandler, Nick Wilford, Juneta Key, JH Moncrieff, Diane Burton, and MJ Fifield. Please visit the other blogs!
December's question: In terms of your writing career, where do you see yourself five years from now, and what's your plan to get there?

Since the election, I must admit it's hard to imagine what the world will look like in five years, much less my writing career. The status quo is gone, but the world keeps on spinning, and I'll keep on writing. After all, writing is good for my equilibrium and gives me a way to make sense of the world and the people in it.

I do hope to keep publishing too.

Within five years, I'd like to have two author names established (Cherie Reich for YA+ Speculative Fiction and a pen name for adult urban fantasy). I'd like to increase my productivity so I can write at least 6+ novels a year (three books per author name per year). Since I've been writing every day since July 2015, I've been on track to writing 4+ novels a year, so writing more seems doable. I'm also reading books to help with outlining/plotting/character development and increasing my writing productivity (spreadsheets/timer/etc.).

For example, it's my hope to start publishing the rest of The Fate Challenges (Cherie Reich) in 2017 and start publishing Soul Reaper (Pen Name) in 2018. Before the end of 2018, I want to start publishing Cherie Reich's next series (most likely Folding the Future, set in my Paperist world). In 2019, I would publish Pen Name's next series and Cherie's next series, and so on and so forth.

The biggest obstacles to this plan are time and money.

I've done well with making the time for writing, but editing has fallen to the wayside more times than I care to admit. This coming year I hope to change that. Whether it means having a set amount of words/pages to edit a day/week or some other way to keep track, I need to edit my work if I hope to ever publish it.

The biggest costs to publishing I have are cover art and marketing (buying ads). Money, in some ways, is hard to come by even with a full-time job, but I've been putting some money aside to make an investment in my career and business in the coming year. I'll do what I can because I'll need to make money back on my books if I hope to continue publishing them, and the best ways to do those things are to have great covers, to write great books, and to keep publishing.

What are your insecurities this month?

I can't believe it's December already. Where has this year gone?

Last month I wrote nearly 15,000 words in outlines for books 2-5 in my Soul Reaper series. I finished writing A Soul to Reap (#1), which came in at a little over 79,000 words, and am on Chapter 5 of 38 in A Soul to Keep (#2). I continued to help my friend with editing her novella series, but I failed again to get any work done on The Fate Challenges.

My goals for December include:
- Writing at least an hour a day in A Soul to Keep (Soul Reaper #2).
- Editing, formatting, and proofreading my friend's novella series (#4-#6).
- Reading through and making notes on Reborn. To save time, I'm not going to read through and write notes on The Fate Challenges series in its entirety before editing said series. I'll do it as I edit.

What are your goals for December?

2016 Stats: 332,302 words written and 2,109 pages edited

I'm in the process of reading five books. Unfortunately, I haven't finished reading any of them since last Bookworm News, so I have no reviews at this time.

Fallen Ashes by T.F. Walsh
A Measure of Gloom by Nicole Zoltack
Mend by Elana Johnson
Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill
X Dare and the Keys to Nin by PK Hrezo
Deceived by Magic by Jasmine Walt
San Francisco Wolf Pack Box Set by Kristin Miller
Drakon’s Promise by N.J. Walters
Shade Chaser by Clara Coulson

I've turned off comments now since I will be offline from December 21-January 2. I hope everyone has a good holiday. Happy New Year! I'll be back on IWSG day (January 4), and I also have a special post on the Parallels' blog coming up on December 28.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You have the productivity down pat. Get the editing in line and you'll easily publish that many books.

Bob/Sally said...

I hadn't thought of it in that way, but I guess my 5 year plan involves two established author names as well. My dark/erotic horror pen name had a good year, but I really want to get my own name out there.

Leandra Wallace said...

You amaze me w/your word counts! That's seriously awesome, and I hope you achieve all your goals you've set.

Chrys Fey said...

The first sentence of your post...yup. It is hard to imagine. I hope for the best, though. It sounds like you got a lot of writing and outlining in. Good for you! Keep it up!

Michelle Wallace said...

You are highly productive...that's half the battle won.
Your stats are awesome. Always!
Happy IWSG Day!

emaginette said...

I have no doubt that you have the determination to meet your goals. You've already got a great start.

Anna from elements of emaginette

Tamara Narayan said...

I'm editing now and it's slow going. I think I'm dragging my feet because the next step would be to query. Bleh.

Christine Rains said...

You absolutely amaze me. You set great goals. High ones, but based on your dedication, I know you can do it! I can't believe December is here already, and I worry about what next year will bring, but I'll keep on writing too. :)

M.J. Fifield said...

I am so impressed with your five-year plan AND your December goals. If I just finish one book in the next five years, I think I'll be doing well.

Best of luck to you! Wishing you much success!

Julie Flanders said...

The election really threw me off balance too but you're right, writing is great for getting the equilibrium back.
You are such a rock star with your word counts that I have no doubt you'll get the editing done too and meet your publishing goals. Sounds like you have some exciting years lined up! :)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Cover art, editing, marketing - those are the biggies. Your cover art is so gorgeous, I know you pay good money for it.

A pen name could be fun.

Sandra Cox said...

Hi Cherie,
I'm with you on the ads being salty!
Have you tried fiverr for your cover art? I use pixelstudio and I'm very pleased with them. You can't beat the price;)

The Cynical Sailor said...

It would be so interesting to write under a pen name and the thought that would go into choosing just the right name. I've always wondered how people come up with their pen names. It will be interesting to see what you come up with.

Olga Godim said...

Your statistics are amazing. Great plan!

cleemckenzie said...

Time and money are always the biggest factors in any undertaking. Good luck in finding enough of both.

I'm on the hunt for another good book. I've started about six and couldn't finish any of them. I'm beginning to think something wrong with me. I never used to have this problem.

Anonymous said...

You are crazy productive and I have no doubt you'll be able to achieve your writing goals.

Natalie Aguirre said...

Yes, I have no doubt you'll be writing and being productive in 5 years. Hard to imagine our world for me too, but I hope I'll still have my writing job that I love.

Cathrina Constantine said...

I've said this before and I'll say it again, you amaze me Cherie!!

Money and time is always hard to come by. Everything I make I put into marketing and then some.

You have a goal and that means a lot.

M Pax said...

I'm cheering you on, always. If you have the product, you can find a way for the rest.

I hit my editing goal and have another on the horizen.

I'm writing, too. Writing, good. :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Way to go, Cherie!!! I know I say it every month, but Huzzah! Cheers! Awesomeness! You inspire me every month!
I have been tinkering with pseudonym ideas, too . . .

Cathy Keaton said...

I can't wait until I can get the editing phase of writing. I love editing. What I hate is the raw writing of something that doesn't already exist. I know editing is usually the least favorite thing for authors, so you're totally normal. I'm just weird!

Good luck with your plans. They seem like they're on-point to me.

erica and christy said...

Wow! Well, it seems you do very well with goals, so now that you've added editing, you'll get there! I'm glad you added the reading portion. I totally forgot about that, and that's what I never have time for. I can either write OR read, so I usually end up going on a week-long reading binge a couple of times a year, but this is the first year that I'm publishing, so it may be harder with my schedule! Christy

Pat Garcia said...

Cherie, I need to get my schedule tighten up like yours. Love the way you have your constructive five-year plan mapped out.
All the best.
Shalom aleichem,
Pat G

Chemist Ken said...

6+ books a year sounds absolutely awesome. Heck, even the 4 books a year you're doing now is pretty darn good. I'd kill for that kind of productivity.

Setting aside money now for marketing later seems like a pretty good idea. Good luck!

Nicola said...

Love your work ethic, Cherie. Keep up the good work!

alexia said...

Those are great goals!! My month end I will have written 3 books plus a novelette this year, and that's with a full time job... 6 is definitely intense if you work a regular job, too! But you do really well with planning so I'm sure you can do it. FYI as far as publishing costs, my cover guy is $80 for ebook covers, and does an amazing job. Let me know if you want his info. I tried spending money on ads before and got insubstantial results, so I hardly ever pay for those anymore.

Diane Burton said...

With determination, you'll fulfill your goals. I have faith in you. Love the title of your post. Hang in there and keep writing.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and your family.

DMS said...

You have inspired me and impressed me with your writing determination. I love that you have been sure to write daily and that you have stuck with your goal. Bravo! I think 4 books a year is very impressive!

Wishing you all the best with your 5 year plan. :)

Juneta key said...

Great goals. You've accomplished a lot. Inspiring.

Happy Holidays.
Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

Cher Green said...

Cherie, You are amazing with all this goals and the drive to achieve them. I have no doubt you'll hit your five year goal.

As you know end of the year (Christmas) is a no-go on any venture for me, but I'm striving to take care of the little things and hope to gear up for a writing year in 2017. In five years, I hope/plan to be writing at a regular interval and publishing. The height of my vision would be a book a year, with a splattering of short works in between. The idea of 6 books a year is wonderful, but that goal would be out of my reach, at least as life is now. One never knows where the world will take them, so I won't say 'never', but it's out of sights at the moment.

Good luck in reaching your end of the year goals and reaching far beyond your dreams.

Nasreen said...

Cheri, I like that you have definite goals. All the best!

Denise Covey said...

I love the way you write every day. I don't, but close to it these days. You have good forward planning. Go for it. I hope you achieve your goals as they appear achievable.

Heather R. Holden said...

Writing six books in a single year would be beyond impressive. And you're already able to write four in that same time frame?! Wow. Wish I could be that prolific!

Also, congrats on finishing A Soul to Reap! That's awesome. Best of luck with all your goals for December!

Tara Tyler said...

I can't believe how many books are releasing this month alone! wow, congrats!
and look at you, 4-6 books a year? that's incredible - and always the same prohibitors of time and money, aint it the truth!
keep up the great work!

wanted to stop by and thank you for visitin my Cradle Rock release tour!
merry christmas!

Mark said...

I suppose my biggest insecurity is just making sure I write something good and get it in front of people. Writing something and sticking it in a drawer doesn't appeal to me. So long as I dont' do that, I'm peachy. Happy holidays!

Sandra Cox said...

How's a Soul to Keep coming?
I'm taking a hiatus till the first of the year. The season is overwhelming the writing:)

Sandra Cox said...

Happy Holidays.