Checking Up On Those 2018 Writing Goals

Egad! Is it really the end of January already? Apparently time not only flies when you’re having fun, but also when you’re hard at work (which kind of makes that saying a bit pointless, if you ask me). It’s been a crazy busy month. At times has been a tad overwhelming and the old Doubt Monster has crept in more than once, but so far I’m making headway into my creative goals for 2018 even if I’m not meeting all of them just yet.

If you don’t want to slog through the detailed list below here’s a quick summary of the goals I’ve conquered in January…

  • I’ve done a soft relaunch of Books One, Two and Three of the Osteria Chronicles (official relaunch is in February and you’ll hear all about it in a couple weeks).
  • I’ve tested out Amazon Ads during a short experiment
  • I reignited a new mailing list system (and have been begging for subscribers ever since).
  • I completed Draft 3 of The Bonds of Osteria and the end of Draft 4 is in sight!
  • I drafted a short story that was so scary a noise outside made me jump while I was writing it.

(if you missed my Original list of goals, you can catch up here)

And now, the detailed lowdown on all my creative ambitions for 2018…

    1. The mailing list revamp is complete and I even sent out my very first “real” newsletter yesterday that was chock full of the secrets of your local library and a recommendation for a fiction series that mixes humor, mythology, and mystery in a wild romp through the streets of London. I haven’t doubled my number of subscribers yet, but c’mon, it’s only been a couple weeks since the mailing list’s official launch. You can sign up for the newsletter here (hint hint) and get a couple free books for joining!
    2. The website remodel is complete for now and THANK YOU to those of you said you liked the tidier look and easier navigation. I’m considering adding a way for you to buy books directly through me, but that’s a project for much later in the year.
    3. Earn a defined amount from book sales. Um, yeah so even though I thought I was totally low-balling this one, I still fell short and that has fed into the Doubt Monster who keeps shouting, “You’ll never be anything, loser!” But I’m keeping a pair of ear plugs handy and trying to silence him as I push forward.
    4. Run at least one ad a month. I wasn’t going to start this until February, but I thought I’d give Amazon’s ads (AMS Ads for short) a try. The ad was just an experiment to try out the system and I plan to do a “real” ad next month. I’ll let you know the results from both and tell you a little bit about the ads in a post in the near future.
    5. Stay knowledgeable. This has been pretty easy. I’ve been keeping up with podcasts such as the Science Fiction & Fantasy Marketing Podcast, The Creative Penn, the Sell More Books Show, and the Self-Publishing Formula (my treat on the weekend is taking a break from all the book podcasts and listening to StarTalk). I’ve also read two marketing books and one book on the craft of writing (you can see them at the end of this post).
    6. Keep improving. This has been more fun than I thought it would be. Each Friday I’ve been doing one 10-minute writing exercise from The Write-Brain Workbook. The prompts can be challenging, but it’s amazing how the brain can come up with almost two pages of story on the fly. I’ve also drafted a short story that’s sort of Downton Abbey meets Poltergeist. I’ll be tidying up that draft next week.
    7. Continue on with the Osteria Chronicles. Next week’s post is going to go into more details about this, but let’s just say I am thisclose to being done with the hard stuff on Book Four (The Bonds of Osteria)…and it has been hard at times! As mentioned above, the official relaunch of books 1-3 happens next month. Work on the box set is still scheduled to begin in February with an expected release date of late April or early May.
    8. Publish an Osteria-based trilogy. I’ll start work on this in March.
    9. Write a stack of non-Osteria books for 2019 publication. I may have time to start outlining some of these in February, but the real writing won’t start until late spring.
    10. Try out KDP Select. As you may have gathered from last week’s post, I’m really on the fence about this one. The Osteria-based trilogy mentioned above may be a good test subject for a KDPS release, then a wide release once the 90 days are up. Again, I’m still researching/debating this.
    11. Make some passive income. Thanks to my affiliate links (some of which are below, hint hint), I’ve raked in a whopping 12 cents so far!! I just don’t know what I’m going to do with it all! :))
    12. Keep on blogging. Despite the insane writing schedule lately, so far, I’m staying on track  with my blog. However, something has to give so my social media interaction and posting has really fallen off. And I can’t say I’ve missed it!

 

  1. How has 2018 been treating you? Did you have goals you’re now revising? Does the Doubt Monster ever try to devour your ambition? Let me know in a comment below!

    Finn Mc Spool will be back Saturday to show off his latest photo shoot (he actually leaves the kitchen for this one) and i’ll be back next Wednesday to tell you all about my trials and travails with The Bonds of Osteria! See you then.

    ***

    My Writing Reading For January…

     Writing with Emotion, Tension, and Conflict

    Learn Amazon Ads: Use AMS to Find More Readers and Sell More Books

     Your First 1000 Copies

    The Write Brain Workbook

17 thoughts on “Checking Up On Those 2018 Writing Goals

  1. Twelve cents, huh? Sounds like I’m missing out by not being an Amazon Affiliate. 😄 You’ll have to let us know if that starts paying off. Then again, any small amount is more than nothing!

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    1. Yep, you are SO missing the gravy train by not joining Amazon Affiliates! I mean, there’s probably a third world country out there where those 12 cents would buy a whole day’s worth of meals. Time to get out the travel guides! :)))

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  2. You have a lot going on! Congratulations on making some serious headway. I’ve only read a few books this month for my blog, but I’ve been very busy doing other things, including helping my dad with his manuscript and submitting it for publication, setting up his website and posting for him on FB and Twitter. So I can relate to some of what you are doing, but I’m a complete novice. You have some really great ideas!

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    1. Wow! That’s so impressive that you’ve gotten your dad rolling on the Author Express. I was surprised to tally up my reading list for the month to see I somehow managed to read nine books. Three were audio and one was really short, but I’ve been reading as a reward for a day of hard work, so that might explain the numbers. Thanks for popping by and best of luck with your dad’s work!

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  3. I’m impressed! You’ve got all this done already, and it’s only just February?! I really enjoyed the last newsletter actually… And I think my local library is going to be my new obsession for 2018, so thanks for that! On a more serious note, I hope Finn isn’t the Doubt Monster you were talking about in this post. He was sent over with strict instructions to buoy up your spirits with his goofy smile and mischievous shenanigans, and if he’s doing anything else, I’m going to have to have words with him! Keep up the good work, Tammie… And don’t spend all your fat Amazon paycheck in one shop, ok? 😆

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    1. No, Finn is most definitely not the Doubt Monster, although I do wish he’d put down that book and get a sword to fight off his evil brethren and protect my ego’s honor! As for my Amazon earnings, I did some testing with their ad system and one of the “clicks” cost me 15 cents, so technically I only had to pay 3 cents for my experiment. Kaching!! Move over Rockefeller, there’s a new financial genius in town. And yes, use that library for all it’s worth…although many of your local attractions are already free, so the library offering you free passes to them might be a bit suspect. :))

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      1. Hahaha! Now you mention it, I was leaving some flyers for my knitting classes, and I did happen upon a carousel of 10% off vouchers for some of the “pay in” attractions around town. I’ll take a closer look next time I’m in… Might be useful for your trip! Although I have to say that I think the free attractions are better for the most part… I mean, why would you pay to see around the Leprechaun Museum (yes, it exists 😥) when there are actual real history museums that you can walk into for nothing?
        Congratulations on your financial win there, by the way! You know, I really shouldn’t be looking for discounts for you, when you will clearly soon be wealthy beyond measure!

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      2. What!? The leprechaun museum was Sight Number One on my list for Dublin. And sadly, I do know it exists (oh, trusty guidebook, why have you failed me). I’m looking forward to checking out some of the national museum’s gold horde. If they just let me “borrow” a couple pieces I’m sure I can give this marketing budget a big surge forward!

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  4. Don’t you listen to that doubt monster – you are doing amazingly! I don’t know where you find all the imagination to come up all these extra things outside of Osteria. Super impressive discipline. Haunted Downton? I’m in! I enjoyed the last newsletter and definitely want to check out that series recommendation – I’ve never heard of or seen those books. I hope the benefits of all your hard work begin to become apparent in the next few months. As for me, according to my records my wine consumption is down by 30% this month sooooo…. success?

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    1. In a few days this draft I’m working on will be done and my wine consumption is going to skyrocket!! I’ll be sure to tell the Doubt Monster you don’t approve of his antics. As for imagination, I wish I could turn that portion of my brain off for a while. I have so many ideas for books/stories but this stupid marketing thing gobbles up so much time (hmmm…I wonder if the Marketing Monster and the Doubt Monster hang out and conspire against me). Glad you liked the newsletter…actually, I’m just glad to know it went through since I don’t quite get this new system yet. :))

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      1. Ugh, after I bragged about my wine-success, I managed to consume a whole month’s worth in one night and no longer feel so smug from my 2 days of ‘consequences’. Mmmmm I hate when the business side of things eats into the creative side of things! But that Marketing Monster is a necessary one to feed, as you’ve discovered, so keep on trying to appease him (as long as your work doesn’t suffer for it)! As for the Doubt Monster, I’ll soon distract him back over to London with my flailing insecurities so you can get back to work 🙂

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      2. Oh I’m so glad to hear there’s only one Doubt Monster who spreads his “magic” across the globe wherever needed. I was worried there was one lurking in every creative closet. I didn’t exactly stick to my own Dry January, but I am glad I never had any of those pesky consequence days you mention. Hate those (no matter how much I love inducing them!) 😉

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      3. Yeah, he’s kinda like the Santa of doubt! Ohhh jealous of your lack of consequences! Probably that high quality vino you make yourself without all the bad things other people put into grocery store wine to poison us! I really felt like Eury on Saturday… minus, you know, the lascivious bedsport and impending trip up the steps to see Hera.

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      4. Ah yes, Eury’s hangover climb to see his boss. I think we can all relate! There’s always a little fear when I go to drink my wine since I have to assume I have no idea what I’m doing and could give myself some sort of food poisoning with every bottle. Livin’ on the edge!

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