Wednesday, May 1, 2019

May Update: Writing Quarter Take 1

I forgot how much querying a novel can suck the creativity out of a person. It's been a rough month for that. Although I will say that it hasn't been entirely in vain. I sent out 35 queries and have gotten 11 rejections and 1 full manuscript request in the last 30 days.

I've had to limit myself to checking query tracker once a day so I don't drive myself nuts wondering if/when I'll hear and what the response will be. It can really make a person crazy and keep one from being productive.

I did eventually get productive, though. I took my sweet time getting in to writing, managing about 1200 words the first couple days, although a third of that was brainstorming, then nothing for almost two weeks. But as per usual, the last two weeks I kicked into gear and managed to get all but the last scene written for SP 2.2. I finished that up this morning, so I'm calling it a win. And not counting the words I wrote this morning, I hit my 15k words (almost exactly) for April. Kicking off my writing quarter was a success.

I also did some brainstorming for Druid Wars book 2 and tweaked my 10-year writing plan. Which is basically a self-pub plan. Eventually I will need to revisit the idea of self-publishing, especially if the next few novels I query don't get me an agent or a book deal. I'm hitting snooze on making plans for that, but right now, I'm looking at aiming for 2026 to start publishing on my own (which will be when I hit 45, five years after my "get published by 40" goal passes me by).

I also reread and did a little poking at Dante Novels book 1, since the big news this month is that Tor is opening a horror imprint. Might be next up on the list starting next year, once I get Online Dating for Demons off my plate later this year.

But first, this month and next, I need to focus on finishing up Chain Letter Choice. I'd like to write another 30k-40k on it, and I have two months to do it. Yikes. I will say, though, once I got my SP adventure finished up, I started reading where I left off, and I'm exited to dive back into that world. Hang out with those characters. I'm even going to try the NaNo goal tracker, just to see how it works and if I like it better than myWriteClub and my own tracking spreadsheets.

I also finished Neil Gaiman Masterclass and have started on the James Patterson one. It's an interesting contrast as far as creativity versus craft. Gaiman was good for getting ideas brewing. Patterson has some interesting suggestions on the more mundane things like building plot and characters. Who knows, I might start outlining the next novel or two to see how that goes. If I ever want to be as prolific as him--and let's be honest, if I follow my self-pub plan, I'll have to be--that might be the best way to "manufacture" books for maximum income.

Which, by 45, is what I will probably be aiming for. Sad to say. But I should have quite the body of work to draw from, so I think it's sustainable for at least ten years. Which should be enough to keep me set to retire and have enough to get by until KPERs and Social Security kick in.

Anyway. The last thing of note is that all plans are made for Murdercon in August. Convention fees are paid. Hotel is reserved. Flights are booked. It's a lot of money to go to a con for a genre I've never really considered writing in before, but I think it'll be a good experience. I've never been to such a big con before, and I think even not writing thrillers/mysteries, I stand to learn a lot. I'll have to do a second post that month to tell all about it!