2015 Goals and Tools

2015 goals 600by600Well, here we go with the required “what I plan to accomplish this year” in writing post.

I thought long and hard about these goals.  I was tempted to be a lot more ambitious, but ultimately decided that I wanted goals that I had a good shot at actually achieving.    The writing goals, along with some of the non-writing variety represent a nice stretch for me.  So let’s break this down:

I have started the second draft of Western Watch and am currently editing Chapter 4.  Most of the early edits are dialogue and description.  I’ve cut the word count of the edited chapters for a tighter read and made some minor plot edits.  I am a little worried about the later chapters because there is some significant plot revision necessary starting at about the 1/2 mark (approximately chapter 16).

I’m not sure what the third draft will entail.  I’ve made this a goal assuming that most of the heavy lifting will have been done in the second.  I have a vague idea that the third draft will be polish.    At that point, the manuscript should be ready for at least a copy editor, and possibly <shudder> a structural editor.

I don’t make very good use of social media and every successful author I’ve read about on the web (OK – almost every successful author) says you need to tend to your author platform, a big part of which is social media.  I’m on FaceBook, but I really don’t like it with the increasing restrictions, all driven it seems to squeeze every last dollar they can out of people.  I’m on Twitter as well, and I am going to focus more on that.

I have already found my first tool — Buffer — a neat little application that allows you to schedule tweets.  I know that tweet scheduling is included in a lot different management suites, but I don’t have the time to fuss with the likes of Tweetdeck or Hootsuite.  In time I may revisit that decision, but for now, I am going with Buffer.   Check it out, It provides a browser add-in, scheduling, analytics and automatic link shortening.  Best of all it’s free.

BufferI haven’t decided yet on the second social media tool, but Canva is a possibility.  It’s an only line graphic creation tool designed for social media users.  I used it to make the goals graphic at the top of the post.  It too is free.  Worth checking out.

Blogging is where I tend to fall down.  I was horrible a regular tweeting in 2014 and blogging was even worse.  I just couldn’t get up the enthusiasm to write posts.    A little analysis uncovered three reasons for this:

  1. I had really no idea what to write about.
  2. The feeling that no one would want to read what I had to say because hell, I’m unpublished and hence unsuccessful, so to speak.
  3. Lack of time — shouldn’t I, you know, actually be writing my novel?

I have a little better idea now of what interests me, which is what you should really be writing/blogging about.  If you are not interested in the subject, why write about it?  Duh.  Fairly obvious but i took me a while to come up with that.

So here is what interests me and what I will blog about (in no particular order):

  • Writing — my experiences, plus links to useful information I have stumbled across
  • Book trailer and related technologies — animation, graphics, audio applications, etc
  • Lady Merreth (of course) 🙂
  • Working with artists, voice-over talent, and other professionals who can help promote your book

Seems like a broad list, but it’s way better have a list, however far-reaching, rather than now list at all.

The final goal — four tweets a week, should be doable, particularly with the Buffer application to help out.

So…there you have it.  Onward to 2015!

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