2012: A Step Forward

I tried to think of a word to describe 2012, but it can’t be summarized too easily. It was a year of disappointments and victories, but I can’t see it as anything other than a large step forward.

First, the good things:

  • I received my first handful of customer, non-blogger reviews. Most are positive, with a minority of 2-stars and 3-stars. Regardless of the average rating, I’m happy that people are responding to my novels and stories.
  • In terms of units, my sales increased exponentially with each quarter. In terms of money made, the difference is even greater. 2012 was 10 times more profitable than 2011, when all retailers and the new audiobook formats are taken into account.
  • Most importantly, I wrote more this year than I ever had before. I finished 130,000 words of new fiction, and that doesn’t include short stories. I finished 2 novels (Fell Winter and High Queen) and the first two acts of a longer novel (currently titled Empire).

Things I learned.

  • Never trust a “good faith promise.” Don’t trust the character of someone you don’t know very well. Don’t rejoice about something until it’s written in ink, and – perhaps – not until you hold the book in your hand. This warning coincides with a recent disappointment. I won’t mention specifics – I’ll let things run their natural course, and hopefully in the path of justice. Either way, I’m over it.
  • Don’t accept excuses. I wrote 1,000 words a day even while working a grueling 40 hour a week job. I’ll be durned if I let college get in the way of that schedule.

And finally, my goals:

  • Write 1,000 words a day, 5 days a week, and take 2 days off for the weekend.
  • When I write short stories, send it off and continue sending until it’s rejected by all top markets. This, for me, takes a tremendous amount of bravery because a rejection instantly fills me with self-doubt. Trust the professionals that there really isn’t a blacklist for bad stories.

2012 was a huge step forward. I look forward to what 2013 brings. I know it will involve a lot of writing. I’m not where I want to be yet, but I am working hard at my goals.

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