Saturday, January 31, 2004

Reflections on the windshield

I've decided to start doing a look how well I'm doing on goals and work at the end of each month. At least, I'll try to remember to do this each month, but there's no guarantee. My mind doesn't really work well on those sort of 'date' things.

But anyway....

The State of the Writer Report, January 2004

My focus this year has changed, of course. I have new things to take care of, new duties and new worries. But I'm happy to say that the changes have not been as drastic or troubling as I feared they would be.

Forward Motion is moving along very well. We've gained about 1500 new members since NaNo, and many of them are finding their way into the crit pages, asking questions, joining in at chat, etc. This has been an extremely good group who are obviously interested in writing and not trolling for trouble. In fact, there have been fewer problems in the last few months then I ever remember. The moderators have been wonderful in helping to revise some of the forgotten boards. I think the site is doing very well, and it's great feeling.

The two year novel class is going well, too. We're about to move into character development and planning. I'm looking forward to seeing how some of the others usually create characters and see if what I offer helps anyone. We have divided up into genre groups now, and I can see that there is going to be a lot of help given from one to another. It's a great group.

Back to School for Busy Writers is giving me a little trouble right now. I need to get it better scheduled and have people turn in the work well ahead of time so that I know it's ready to go. Prior to this I've just trusted both them and their computers to cooperate. A disaster has left me with an open spot in February that I'm working on filling right now. Lucky for me that I had an idea for a strange class already in my head and got most of it mapped out yesterday. It's going to be a lot of writing that I hadn't planned on, though.

Vision is giving me problems because of a technical glitch with the checks. Honestly, I don't know why we keep having trouble with that part. It's not like I haven't run a business before and had business checks. I think it's just a curse. I'll have to sacrifice some dust bunnies or something.

I am almost caught up on all the Double Dragon Press work. Deron has asked me to look over a submission, and I've been reading it the last two days. At the moment the submissions are closed, and that's good. I need a little break to get caught up on other work.


Well... it's been odd. I've been purposely going slower than usual this year because I gave myself a goal of half a million words -- half of what I've written in the last two years. I want to get a lot of the material I've stacked up edited and submitted. In that respect I've done very well. I have edited, at least a little, every single day this month. That's a record for me. I'm working on Muse, and I'm about ready to put together the submission package. I haven't done this in a while, at least not for a print novel submission.

I have been so caught up in working on Muse that I've pretty much dropped everything else in new writing for the moment. I am determined to get the new material written for Muse, and everything edited. I am going to do a submission package and get it out before the first week of March.

Farstep Station keeps calling to me, but I'm holding off on jumping back into it. I hope to do some more short story writing as well soon. But first I have to get Muse done. I am making myself stay focused on it, which is good... but difficult for someone who is used to working on multiple projects. The only thing that saves me is that I have a lot of nonfiction writing to do at the same time -- Back to School material as well as the two year novel course. I have about 63 pages of material on the novel stuff, and a publisher who might be interested in a finished project, so it is definitely getting counted in new words now. (grin)

I've had two story acceptances this month and one poetry rejection (held over from a submission last year). I did get my two submissions out for the month, but it wasn't easy. I need to start working sooner on that for next month. Of course, if I do this right, one of those submissions will be Muse.

Total new words for this month will be slightly over 45,000. Edited page count is slightly over 100. I need to get the second number up higher, but I'm still doing pretty well. Two submissions, one with an acceptance already. So, goal wise, I'm hitting pretty much right on line.

Of course, January is always the easy month. Let's see how I'm doing around May...

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