Brave New 2014

I hate to say goodbye to 2013.

It was a year of personal triumphs, paternal pride, and the year my Shig Sato Mystery series was launched. I accomplished many of my goals. As this year ticks into history, I am satisfied.

So what do I do for an encore?free-food-clipart-4

Very helpful people have been sharing excellent advice. I’ve been deep into “Write. Publish. Repeat.” Joanna Penn at The Creative Penn is nothing but a treasure trove of information. Rachel Thompson at BadRedheadMedia has the snark and common sense patter down — I always try to follow her advice.

My writing group is just the best. Nikki and Steve and Lizzy and Angel and Robby and past  members all helped me to keep putting one foot in front of another, stay the course, and continue on my writing journey. I received valuable assistance from Dianne, Ellen and Beth. Ann is always there for me.

Getting closer, going further: the closer I get to my reaching my writing goals and living the writing life, the further I go into this wild adventure.

I am so ready for 2014.

Who’s with me?

2013 and the Start of Something Big

With the holidays over, the big writing push is on. I want to finish the second book in a detective series before summer. In the meantime I’m trying to find an agent or a publisher for the first book. Depending on how that goes, I’ll have to decide by summer what to do with the project: keep flogging or go independent.

I’ve spent the last eight months learning about social media and marketing, independent publishing and e-books, forcing my mind to make the transition from “unpublished writer” to “unpublished writer welcoming the idea of having to sell one’s own books” to “unpublished writer on the verge of becoming an entrepreneur.” The concept didn’t frighten me so much as, with most things, it forced me to wrestle with the fear of the unknown, always a poor starting point.

One thing I know for certain: There are more options than ever for writers who want to get published.  Which may be why Vantage Press is no longer with us. I know nothing of the company and its situation, other than when I was 14 years old and had the beginning of the writing bug I still have today, I sent for information about the company and found it it was a vanity press. In a an episode of the television series “The Waltons,” John-Boy, the fledgling writer, chooses to publish with such a company, to find out that what he got in the bargain is a box of books and not much else. This steered me away from the whole idea of self-publishing for many years.

But of course things are different now, and the demise of Vantage may prove it. With the new year, I can see hard choices coming my way. My being 14 was some time ago. My desire to be published hasn’t abated. But the core of that desire has always been writing. Some will argue that a person isn’t a writer until they are published. I don’t know that that is necessarily true. But I understand the  point. There’s a certain satisfaction in seeing your words in print that cannot be found elsewhere.

So much too look forward to in 2013!

Happy New Year — what are you looking forward to?