2014 Year in Review!

42704-blackorchid-kindleAs with 2013, I started 2014 with some specific goals in mind for my life, my family, my job, and, of course, my writing. I thought it might be fun to review some of the writing-related goals and look at how close (or how far) I got. When I dragged out the blog post that I wrote last year, I was happy to realize I’d achieved most, if not all, of my goals! Hooray!

First, a quick snapshot of where I was this time last year so that you get an idea of why I set the goals I did… I had self-published 3 books and 1 short story by the end of 2014 – Blue Violet (2012), Hyacinth (Feb 2013), Hannah’s Fate (July 2013) Crimson Dahlia (Aug 2013). I had completed the first draft of Andromeda’s Fall and was still doing the first draft of Black Orchid. I’d sold maybe about 3500 copies of all my books total. And I had wonderful readers who I enjoyed interacting with.

With that starting point in mind, here’s what I had hopes for in 2014 and what I actually accomplished. (WARNING – I’m a lister. It’s part of my personality. So this is a long, detailed list. I hope it’s as interesting to you as it is to me. LOL.)

AndromedasFall_w9277_750 (1)Writing/Publishing Goals

  • Edit, publish Andromeda’s Fall in February – ACCOMPLISHED
  • Write, edit, publish Black Orchid in May – ACCOMPLISHED
  • Write, edit, publish Shadowcat Nation Book #2 by October – ACCOMPLISHED*
  • More author collaborations – loved that last year!!! – ACCOMPLISHED (Reaching Out)
  • Improve writing – attend at least one conference/seminar, continue to utilize my critique group – ACCOMPLISHED
  • Start attempts to find a literary agent with absolutely no expectations that I will – ACCOMPLISHED*
  • Start attempts to publish my books through independent and traditional presses – no expectations again – ACCOMPLISHED!!!!
  • Submit my books to a few more contests – no expectations here either – ACCOMPLISHED (Blue Violet won 2014 eLit Bronze Best Fantasy)
  • ADDITIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT – Contracted the Shadowcat Nation Series with The Wild Rose Press
  • ADDITIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT – Wrote Saving the Sheriff
  • ADDITIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT – Wrote Falling for Kate

11316-reachingoutcover500A few notes about the above. Andromeda’s Fall was published in February and then unpublished in June because it was contracted by The Wild Rose Press!!!! Sarai’s Fortune (Shadowcat Nation #2) was complete by October but won’t be published this year as it is at The Wild Rose Press now. I did start submitting to agents – and got past the query letter a few times, but not signed yet. Have an open opportunity going into 2015 – so fingers crossed.

Under improving my writing, I joined RWA and several chapters (local and online) and attended many great workshops. I found a critique partner who’s been great and have made some wonderful new author friends who are so supportive. Awesome year in the improving and networking spaces!

Marketing/Reader Reach Goals

  • Continue to find fun things to do with readers via social media – ACCOMPLISHED
  • Increase email disti list to 200 (2x) – MISSED – Am at ~120 (darn)
  • 3 blog tours (one per book release) – ACCOMPLISHED
  • Blog 2x/week – ACCOMPLISHED (avg’d closer to 3x/week)
  • ADDITIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT – New website & logo
  • ADDITIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENT – Redesigned the Svatura book covers

Sales Goals

  • Break even on costs/incoming sales – ACCOMPLISHED (*I’m sort of dancing the line. Back and forth.)
  • Sell 5000 books (not including free promos/giveaways) – ACCOMPLISHED (over 6500 without releasing the 3rd expected book for 2014)
I am very proud of what I was able to do this past year. Although it’s easy when you’re doing something you absolutely love and have such great readers and supporters! I am crossing my fingers for another productive and satisfying year in 2015. In case you’re interested, here are some of my goals for the upcoming year.

new-logo-art-deco-medium-reverse.fw2015 GOALS

Writing/Publishing

  • Edit, query, and publish Falling for Kate
  • Edit, query, and publish Saving the Sherrif (The Hills of Texas #1)
  • Edit, publish Sarai’s Fortune (Shadowcat Nation #2) with TWRP
  • Write, edit, publish Imogen’s Fury (Shadowcat Nation #3) wtih TWRP
  • Write and submit Untitled Shadowcat Nation #4 to TWRP
  • Write, edit, and submit Resisting the Rancher (The Hills of Texas #2)
  • Write, edit, and submit one more of some kind (undetermined – I have several ideas, just depends on timing and interest)
  • More author collaborations – loved that last year!!!
  • Improve writing – 3-4 workshops and attend local RWA chapter monthly

Marketing/Reader Reach

  • Continue to find fun things to do with readers via social media
  • Increase email disti list to 200
  • 4 blog tours (one per book release – fingers crossed on that many releases)
  • Blog 2x/week

Other

  • RWA Contemporary Chapter (Online) 2015 VP of Communications – collaborate with the team on this!
  • Continue agent queries as books are completed
  • attend RWA Annual Conference in NYC
  • Do my best to provide good feedback for Critique Partner(s) and Groups

A HUGE thank you to my incredible, awesome, inspiring readers. You are the reason I had such an amazing year! I love hearing from y’all and hope you’ve had as much fun as I have this year!!! Here’s to another great year in 2015!

 

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