Sad news for this girl, I'm not ready to query after all. Sigh.
Hello and welcome to About This Writing Thing, a weekly podcast about living the writing life. I'm your host Sayword B. Eller, writer for women, podcaster, and MFA student.
I'm not one to talk much about my goals. In fact, I rarely set any for myself because I so often fail at reaching them. Same thing for resolutions. Why set something when you'll completely disregard it afterward. I'm not sure why I do this, but I do, so…that's me. This year I've decided to go against myself and set a few achievable goals. Maybe the problem with the goals I've set in the past is that I don't believe I can reach them and, thus, I sabotage myself bringing that self-fulfilling prophecy to fruition. Don't worry, I'm not getting into all that in this episode. I just happen to have realizations while recording and that's one of them. Thanks for helping me figure myself out!
First, I want to give you some updates. You know last week when I was so excited because I was finally finished with my book? Well, turns out I'm not. I'm one of those people that always says, when the story's told, it's told, no need to add words just to fit the market expectations. Unfortunately, agents and publishers don't share that thought- or so I've heard. This leaves me with two choices: 1) Submit it as is at 67k words (14k short of industry standard) and be rejected every single time, thus shattering myself over and over again because there is little hope an agent will pick up a women's fiction book that is so far below the standard of 80k, OR add the words. After much deliberation (and lamentation) I've decided to add the words. This is frustrating for a few reasons; my query timeline is thrown off, I have to put off really beginning my next project, my research trip may be postponed (because why research a topic if I'm not writing about it, right). I'm not dwelling on it. Like any writer worth their salt, I'm focusing on the task at hand. I'm adding the words. The only way I'm going to get this book finished is one word at a time. Eventually they'll add up to 80,000, right?
So that's my sort of sad news. I'm sad (and frustrated) that I'm not finished and can't move forward with querying, but anything that makes the story stronger will be worth it, right? Right? I really hope so. I don't want to be working on this book in March.
Enough about that. Let's talk goals. I don't set goals or resolutions, as I mentioned before I don't set goals for myself often, mainly because the moment a goal is set my brain says, "Nah." This year, though, I've decided to set a few goals that my brain may be happy with.
1) Read more. I don't read as much as I should. We all know the golden rule, right. If you want to be a good writer you need to read a lot and write a lot. I don't do too much of either, so in 2020 my goal is to read more. I'm also planning to expand my horizons. Right now I'm reading Alyssa Cole's Loyal League romance trilogy. Yes, I'm loving it. I'm planning to do a vlog on them when I've finished them all. In 2020 I'm going to try to read a bit more outside my genre. I'll also try to incorporate more male authors. I tend to read books by women. Shocker, right?
2) Write more. I don't write every single day. This is one of the main reasons it takes me a year and a half to write a novel. Some days are very productive. Other days not so much. I'll be working to improve that this year.
3) Less television. I love tv. Movies and shows are my favorite things. I watched a lot of television when I was growing up and I can't fathom breaking up with it altogether. That being said, I've already stopped watching as much as I used to, but that's because of this next goal.
4) Less gaming. Hubby and I are currently addicted to State of Decay 2. So, I've stopped watching as much television because I'm playing more xbox. In order to be more productive I'm going to work on cutting this time way back. Full disclosure, I played the game for an hour before recording this episode. This will definitely take some effort.
5) More industry knowledge. The more I know about the publishing industry, the more I can talk about it with you. It's that simple.
6) More movement. I've never been interested in exercise. I think one summer in 1994 I flirted with being a runner, but that was when my little teenage heart thought I would be a model. My life is sedentary. In 2020 I'm going to make a concerted effort to be more active.
7) More writing & reading vlogs on my YouTube channel. I haven't posted a video in months, but I love the #authortube community, so I'm going to try to get back to it this year. Fingers crossed.
That's it. Simple, right? We'll see.
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Have a great week. Keep writing!