At the close of each year, I like to pause and look back on my business goals and see what I’d planned to do and what I actually accomplished. Here are last year’s projections.
WRITE 5+ NOVELS:
3 Destination Romances I WROTE TWO
1 Christmas novella for the annual Authors of Main Street Box set DONE
The seasons series, my collaboration with Greta Boris DONE
Flesh out the novella The Music of You and Me turn it into a novel and publish DONE
PLUS, I REWROTE THE MUSIC OF YOU AND ME AND PUBLISHED IT IN A BOX SET AS THE INCOGNITO BILLIONAIRE
Rework and republish early mysteries and create pen-name and promotion schedule. If this goes well, create a romance pen name separate from my YA books. I DIDN’T DO THIS, BUT IT’S STILL ON MY TO-DO LIST.
Have a free day once a month and book promos. MOSTLY
Make all books into paperbacks: MOSTLY
Make all series into book bundles: STILL WORKING ON THIS
I DIDN’T DO ANY OF THE FOLLOWING THINGS ON A REGULAR BASIS:
3-4 BLOG POSTS FOR EACH FREEBIE BOOK–TWEET AND PIN
EXCERPT PLUS RECIPE
EXCERPT PLUS RESEARCH
EXCERPT PLUS WRITING CRAFT
EXCERPT PLUS BOOK’S ORIGIN
Take AMS course (January 7th) DONE
Experiment with Facebook ads STILL EXPERIMENTING, BUT MY FACEBOOK FOLLOWERS HAVE GROWN SIGNIFICANTLY. I’VE FOUND THAT BOOSTING POSTS IS LESS EXPENSIVE THAN PLACING ADS, AND WHEN I BOOST A POST I’LL GET NEW FOLLOWERS. LAST MONTH, I HAD A 100 NEW FOLLOWERS.
Foothill Ranch Library (February 5th) DONE, PLUS, I TAUGHT A WEEKLY WORKSHOP FOR THREE MONTHS
Goleta book club (March 5th) DONE
Get more involved in RWA I DIDN’T DO THIS, BUT SINCE RWA BECAME SUCH A HOT MESS, I’M GLAD I’M NOT INVOLVED
Go to two writers’ conferences DONE
Outline all books and create vision boards
2019 was a glorious year with lots of ups and downs. Two grandbabies were born. I helped my son’s family of five move from Boston to nearby Carlsbad, California. My daughter graduated from college, moved home and has fallen in and out of love. Larry and I travel to Egypt, Isreal, Jordan, and Moscow, and it was life-changing. My 98.5 year old father died in October. I was able to spend 10 days with him at the end. (He died the day I left.) I spoke at his funeral.
Some important things I learned:
It’s okay if someone doesn’t like me, but it’s not okay for me to intentionally give them a reason for doing so. Their behavior should never dictate my own.
I’m done with obsessing about how much I weigh or how my clothes fit. But I’m also done with sugar-highs and lows, indigestion, and irritable bowels. I’ll do whatever it takes to maintain vibrant health.
I adore my children and grandchildren, but I need to learn how to not be emotionally involved in their decisions. This is hard.
Writing can, and should be, fun. It’s not fun when I obsess about numbers–sales numbers, pages written, and numbers on my bathroom scale. So, I’m taking a break from writing fast and furious. I will lead and enjoy an active lifestyle–like I used to. I’m returning to the person I really am, even if I can’t recapture my size six body, I can try and recapture my energy.
Book business-wise, I have five main goals:
Write a 350+ page mystery and get feedback from past writing professors and other professionals.
Polish the women’s fiction novel I wrote with Greta Boris and find a publication path for it. Begin working on book two. (Tuesdays)
Write and publish a Better Late Romance novel in a world shared with five other authors. (May. This sounds ambitious, but it’s already half-done.)
Work with a marketing professional on a weekly basis and set up weekly promotions. (Wednesdays) Try outside the box marketing ideas. (Monthly) Publish book bundles. (Monthly.)
Create a mystery marketing cartel and set it in action when I publish my mystery series.
We’ll travel to Spain and Greece in May, and take an extended road trip to Canada this summer. My daughter will graduate from college in April and find a fabulous job.
The books I wrote and published in 2019
My word for 2020 is phenomena. This means that whenever I hear the word, I’ll mentally sing: Phenonema
Do do do do do de do do do do do do do do do
Do doo be-do-do
Do do-do do
Do doo de-do-do de-do-do de-do-do de-do-do-doodle do do do-doo do!
What will you be singing in 2020?