I haven’t written a post in a while. So, here I am, first day of 2017, thinking about the last year in reading and writing while watching When Harry Met Sally.
Side note: I miss Carrie Fisher already.
2016 was an up and down year, but was a mostly good year in reading and writing. I set a challenge to read thirty books in 2016, and I ended up reading 32. I wanted to read less YA this year, but failed miserably at that. I think I read more than 32 books with my rereads, but just didn’t track them. (I reread books a lot. A lot.)
My favourite reads of 2016 were: Emmy & Oliver, Graffiti Moon, Station Eleven and Fans of the Impossible Life.
My least favourite reads were: Love Letters to the Dead, A Little Folly, I’m Glad About You and The Love that Split the World.
I reread a few, like Anna and the French Kiss and Landline.
So, that’s reading. On to writing.
I finished the zero draft of THE NEW ROMANTICS at the end of 2015. So, I spent most of this year revising and editing that book. I’m on Draft Seven now. I’ve tentatively started querying it, and I’ve received one request, but mostly rejections. I think the first pages still need work, so I’m concentrating on that. Still, I’d like to seriously query TNR early in 2017.
I spent a lot of time bouncing between writing projects this year, so I was drafting on several projects at the same time. That didn’t work for me and I got very little done on any one project. Then, November came along and I decided to do NaNoWriMo. And I won!
I did NaNo using a book I was already about 13K words into, so, all-in-all, I came out of #NaNoWriMo2016 with a 63K zero draft of ALL OF THIS EVERYTHING. (You can look on My Projects page to see what it’s about.) I’ve barely looked at the draft since I wrote it. I’m pretty convinced it’s terrible and not at all what I actually wanted to write, but I think that about all my zero drafts.
What’s next? I’ve read over IT GIVES A LOVELY LIGHT a lot these last few months and made a lot of notes. I might be ready to give that one another go. Today I’ve been drafting A SOFT PLACE TO LAND, code name The Rugby Story, and am enjoying that one a lot.
For 2017, I’m making goals for things I can control, as much as I’d like it to be the year I get an agent or a book deal. So, here goes.
Reading-wise, I joined the 2017 Reading Challenge to read 35 books.
Writing-wise, I have two:
- I’d like to get another book written. A zero draft of either a new IT GIVES A LOVELY LIGHT or A SOFT PLACE TO LAND. Right now, I’m liking the latter better, but the former is still pulling at my mind strings.
- Once THE NEW ROMANTICS is ready, I’d like to send out ten queries a month. I may modify this one, as I’m not sure how well that’ll work, but I’m going to try it.
So, that’s it! That’s 2016. I wish everyone a 2017 where they receive all the amazing things they deserve. Happy New Year! ❤
I felt like updating this blog today. I don’t have much specifically to say. I’ve had some requests from folks to update and put up some fresh writing. Unfortunately, I don’t have any of that for you. I haven’t had much time to write, which I will tell you all about. Thankfully, I’ve been getting a steady stream of visitors to the blog even with my absence, but honestly, it has much more to do with the Taylor Mali poem I posted back in April than my fans demanding updates.
On the writing front, I’ve started a writer’s collective here in Ottawa. As of this writing, it has 113 members and it’s eating all my time. I created the group during a “lonely writer moment” and it exploded. I thought there may be 20 people with only a fraction of active members. Instead, I have over 100 and the participation and enthusiasm of this group has floored me. It’s a great problem to have so, it’s hard to complain about it. Unfortunately, between this and working full time, I’ve had very little time to actually do my own writing. This is where my time has primarily been but, as we pass the three month mark, I’m getting a lot more people from the membership to volunteer to help me. This has been a tremendous help and I only expect it to get better. I keep waiting for this thing to lose its steam, but it’s going strong so far. I’ve met some great people through this (the ultimate goal) and everyone is being so, so kind. It’s a little overwhelming but in the best possible way.
Otherwise, my life has not changed significantly. My work is all consuming as ever. I already feel like Christmas is over, but I’m looking forward to the five days I’ll be off over the holidays. I really need the rest. I’ve officially enrolled in my first Masters course at Griffith University. I’ll be completing my Masters of Aviation Management online for the next two years (at least). (If you’re feeling your stress levels increase just reading this, imagine how I feel!)
I hope to maybe start doing writing prompts or something similar here again soon, if only to get my pen to paper again. If always had great response and support from this blog, far more than I ever expected, and I want to keep up my end of the bargain better than I have been.
No promises, though.