Everyone starts with at least one resolution into a new year – even if it’s just the one to not have a resolution…
We asked some of our authors about their writing-related resolutions for 2014 and some even sent a picture of their workspace:
I have watched other writers do the same, and often times, one of two things happens: Either the writer can’t make it work and doesn’t earn enough to make it as a full-time writer, so he or she has to go back to writing part-time, or the writer now feels pressured into writing so many novels each year that all the characters and plots start to look the same.
My biggest goal is to prevent either of these things from happening. I want to keep writing stories that I feel passionate about and that my readers will love for their level of characterization and attention to detail.
My goal is to republish revised versions of my novels Hidden Truths and Conflict of Interest in 2014. I also want to try co-writing a novella about a vampire, and I want to write a new contemporary romance about two characters stuck on a cruise ship that is hit by a rogue wave.
To achieve all of that, I will stick to a regular writing schedule and try to reach my daily word count goal of 2,000 words per day.
Other than that, I’m planning on establishing a better work/life balance, including making the time to read more in 2014.
I have two novels in the works, and I plan on finishing them both in 2014. This is actually a big goal for me, considering that it took two decades to complete my first one. But I think completing that first novel, a novella, and several short stories this year has helped me find my groove. I also plan on writing another novella and a couple more short stories. Of course, that means that one of my resolutions is to be more diligent about focusing when I sit down to write to get more done.
In addition, Andi Marquette and I are putting together another anthology (our first project together was Skulls & Crossbones: Tales of Women Pirates). We expect to get some wonderful stories and release the book in July 2014.
In order to get this all done, I made a resolution to find a better way to balance my life. Part of that is finding a path to inner peace. As lofty as that sounds, I really just mean taking everything as it comes with calm and courage, and not letting anything derail me from my goals.
I’m just hoping that these resolutions don’t turn out like my annual resolution to lose weight and get in shape! (That’s on the agenda, too.)
In the upcoming year, I’m very much looking forward to co-writing a paranormal novella with fellow Ylva author Jae. We’re planning to write the story in English and German at the same time. I’m curious to see how that will go.
In addition, I want to work on my German projects, a novella set in the world of daily soaps and a novel-length western.
My biggest goal for 2014 is to be able to write more regularly.
If you’re interested in learning about upcoming projects, please check out my website from time to time.
2013 ended on a high note for me with the completion of my new novel, In a Heartbeat. I am looking forward with great anticipation to In a Heartbeat’s publication in 2014. After that, I plan to turn my attention to what will be the third novel in the L.A. Metro series. I have already started doing research and character building. I can tell you that I will be introducing two new ER doctors to L.A. Metropolitan hospital with their own love story.
I would like to take a moment to thank the readers who took the time to let me know how much they enjoyed L.A. Metro. Thank you all. Happy Reading!
The next year? Obviously, I’ll be working with Ylva’s chief lector on a translation of “Rich Girl” into German. Then there’s “Shell”, a short story that may be published in the 2nd half of 2014. I am also gathering material for a pirate story and an agent thriller, but am not certain if I can deliver. Definitely not working regularly: when a story grips me, it just flows. If it doesn’t, there’s no way to force it. Call me lazy 🙂
Lois Cloarec Hart:
A statistician somewhere must have done a study of what percentages of New Year’s resolutions are actually kept. I’m terrible at math—my wife, who is not, will vouch for that—but I’m sure scientific inquiry would show that about 99% of January 1st resolutions fade away by January 31st. Still, we keep making resolutions, proving that we are either the most optimistic of species or totally insane, based on Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
But since I am often insanely optimistic, I’m officially making a writing resolution for 2014. A year ago this week I learned that my former publisher was folding shop. I subsequently signed on with Ylva, and the months that followed were the most intensive in terms of writing since I started writing in 1999. Under the auspices of Ylva and their brilliant senior editor, Jae, I revised two earlier novels, Broken Faith and Kicker’s Journey, and had a new novel, Walking the Labyrinth, published. I’m looking forward to the re-release of a revised version of my first novel, Coming Home, this spring.
Once that project is complete, my new novel will be based on a short story I wrote several years ago, Coming Attractions. It will be set in Atlanta—my southern home—during the height of the Civil Rights Era in the late fifties and early sixties. My characters have been talking to me in the last few weeks, which is always my sign that a concept has come to fruition and the story is ready to be written. So—drum roll, please—my resolution is to finish at least the first draft of the new novel by the fall. Since fall doesn’t officially end until December no matter what the weather is, that should allow me to wrap up 2014’s resolution in the nick of time to create a new one for 2015. Happy New Year, everyone!
For the past 20 or 30 years (when you get to my age, what’s a decade more or less?) my New Year’s resolutions have looked much the same: finish such-and-such a book, find a publisher for such-and-such a book, more yoga, less food. Last year I didn’t make any resolutions because I was newly retired, settling in to a small town after 36 years in NYC, and providing round-the-clock care for an elderly, blind, and infirm dog.
This year, I’m as settled as I’m going to be. I have a new pup, and I’m changing “resolutions” to “intentions.” Resolutions can be broken. Intentions are elastic, kinder and gentler, can guide us and be more easily sustained with less self-hatred because they don’t set us up to fail to adhere to rigid schedules and impossible goals.
And, no, I do not believe that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Intentions, yes, but not good ones. When my good intentions have resulted in a less than good outcome, my motives or expectations have been less than pure, less than selfless. But that’s another blog entirely.
My intentions this year: write more, read more, give my dog a good life, benefit others when and how I can, grow in insight and compassion, cultivate a more peaceful mind, more yoga, less food.
For 2014, I’m resolving to change the way I prioritize my writing. Until recently, I thought of writing as something I could do when my other responsibilities were taken care of, which of course meant it hardly ever happened. Now I’m going to make it one of those responsibilities. The only way I can write regularly is if I make it my job. So…now it is.
My workspace is practically an Apple advertisement. A Macbook Air, a Cinema Display (over nine years old but still looking and working great), and an iPad give me a wraparound wall of pure geek. Multiple screens are so great for editing work, or doing research on one screen and writing on the other. As for the iPad, at the moment it’s showing a game of Catan, which I use to rest my brain. When my eyes are crossing from staring at words too long, I need to recharge with something visual and decidedly non-linguistic. Catan is perfect (and yes, I’m an addict).
Of course, no writer’s workspace would be complete without the requisite cup of tea, the reading glasses, and the open edition of the Chicago Manual of Style. In my case, I add a huge map of Oregon, my home state, above the desk.
Should I mention that out the window is a view of the Atlantic Ocean? I have seen many, many sunsets while sitting at this desk.
2013 was the year I became more structured as a writer, and I resolve to continue this into 2014. The most important resolution for me will be to continue to get up at a God-awful time to get an hour of writing in each morning.
I am currently close to publishing a short story of two lovers from the 1940s called Imperial Hotel, as well as a candy-store-themed story, Sweet Girl. I am also elbow-deep in rewriting a full length novel that was published in 2002. The new version of How Still My Love is more robust and will be released in early 2014. I am also hoping to write some new work for upcoming Ylva anthologies.
With a writing space like this, it’s any wonder I get any work done instead of gazing out of my huge windows.
This year will mark a significant turn of events as far as my writing goes. I will publish my first 20K plus novella with Ylva, and it will become a series. The ladies in Sigil Fire are a part of my every waking moment, and I am always twisting a plot in my head to see what new adventures they have lined up for me. The past year has been a bit of a writer boot camp, but for me it has been a joyous one. Being a writer is a dream that has been there every day of my life, and I am thrilled and blessed to be able to live that dream. I have had over a dozen short works of fiction published or contracted for future publication, and it has been worth it. Every step. Even the edits that humbled me to the core. You learn and you grow and you become a better writer for it.
I will be releasing my first Choose Your Own Adventure book with the Silk Words website, and there are some erotic horror shorts coming soon from Hazardous Press. Ladylit will feature some lesbian mini stories as well.
This spring it will be my honor to be a part of the romance anthology from Ylva. My story “Black and Blue” is one that is close to my heart in many ways. Under my real name, I am also working on several longer works, including two young adult novels and some fairy tales. My job as a music reviewer and bookstore manager keeps me hopping when I am not chasing my pack of puppies or crocheting something spicy. No sleep for me! Lol.
Happy New Year to you all and many blessings on you and yours!
Are there any intentions and/or resolutions you would like to share?
The Ylva team