by Anna Bell
Last week, before I put the matchsticks in my eyes to keep myself awake until midnight to see the new year in, I thought about my new year’s resolutions. They were all writing related of course – I wanted to tweet more, to blog every other week and to write a little every day. I’m not even a week into the New Year and I’ve already done a big fat zero of my resolutions.
I seem to have forgotten that just because the calendar on the fridge changed overnight, my situation and personality didn’t. I set myself up for a fall by being too specific with my resolutions. It’s like the writing equivalent of saying I’m going to do exercise every day. I felt like a failure before the year had even started.
Instead of being all doom and gloom about breaking my resolutions, I looked back over the last few new year’s columns I’d written on Novelicious, and I realised that I usually go big with goals. Instead of setting habitual, easy to break, resolutions, I’d opted for big blockbuster things. In 2013, I resolved to get an agent, to get into the Amazon top 100 and to get published – all of which I achieved. Last year I resolved to get into the Amazon top 50, to research a thriller, to do bookish events (talks/signings), and to actually call myself an author. (Ahem – not such a successful year of resolutions.) But, at least I didn’t have to suffer the doom of failing on day one in January like I did this year..
So, I decided to do a take two of my 2015 resolutions. This time, however, I’d give myself the whole year to complete them.1 – To get another publishing deal. The last book on my current contract, Don’t Tell the Brides-to-Be, is released in February and then I’ll officially be out of contract. The nails are already being bitten down …
2 – To increase the footfall to my website. Instead of giving myself fixed targets like a blog post every two weeks or once a month, I’m going to be more realistic and be happier if I can get more people to visit my site by hook or by crook. I’m hoping that a mixture of announcements, blogs and videos might help drive that traffic.
3 – To write for fun every so often. Writing time might be at a premium for me at the moment, but there are times when I’m not working on one of my published works. On those occasions, it would be nice to find time to remember why I started to write in the first place and to experiment with different styles and narrative devices.
4 – To actually do those author events that terrify me. A workshop, a talk or a signing. Having started introducing myself as an author to new people I met last year, and accepting that that is my occupation, I think the next logical step is to do an author event. Despite the fact that it terrifies me – what if nobody turns up or the people that do show up heckle me? – I’m determined to give it a go.
So how did you else get on with your new year’s writing resolutions last year? And what is top of your list this year?