In 2018, I got a lot of work done! I joined writing communities on social media and Discord, queried my writing, worked with editors on completing drafts of my book, got a whole lot of editing and revision complete which I learned lessons from, wrote some short stories, got commended in a writing competition (which I haven’t actually mentioned anywhere…), and beta read some fantastic books for my fellow authors. I also read some great fantasy this year, five of which you can read about here. One of the biggest highlights of my year was attending the Sarah J Maas fan event for Kingdom of Ash. What a great end to a great series!
But, there’s no rest for the wicked as I plan to be even busier in 2019 with more reading and more writing. Here are my five New Year’s Resolutions for 2019:
Publish Sand Dancer
I’ve been working on my book Sand Dancer for a few years now. It’s the book of my heart, a tale of one young girl’s quest for vengeance. Despite writing it, re-writing it, editing it to oblivion and back, and listening to beta feedback so I could forge this story into something I’m proud of, I have yet to grow bored of the world or its characters.
In 2019, big things will be happening with Sand Dancer that I can’t really talk about yet, so watch this space!
Write Something New
With Sand Dancer completed, I will naturally be working on the sequel (TBC!) which will be my main focus of 2019. Though Sand Dancer can exist as a standalone, I leave the ending open with the promise of a new world. Well, that world is bathed in more blood and fire and death as the main character is plunged into a war she never wanted. The first book ended with our heroine beginning to use her fire magic. The sequel will explore that, and introduce some new characters including Sandair’s friendly northern neighbours, the Hartnords. I’ve already begun writing it and can’t wait for the world to see it.
As well as Sand Dancer’s sequel, I also want to write some new young adult fantasy adventures. I have plenty of ideas and concepts up my sleeves, its just a question of choosing one…
Complete My GoodReads Challenge
In 2017, I had a rather ambitious GoodReads reading challenge that I inevitably failed. In 2018, I dialled it back a bit to something more realistically attainable and still failed. Shame on me. For the whole year of 2018, I managed to read 17 books (that I remember!) which sadly doesn’t include the full books I beta read for friends, or short stories, or reading my own damn book for the umpteenth time. Well, 17 books isn’t bad, right? That’s more than one a month… okay, yeah, that’s pretty poor.
For 2019, I am determined to meet my GoodReads challenge and shall be attempting at least two books a month (lets be realistic shall we). I throw down the gauntlet and challenge myself to read 30 books. No short stories. No cheating.
If you’re attempting the GoodReads challenge, please add me as a friend!
Read More Indie
As part of my GoodReads challenge, and because I love the indie writing community and want to show more support for indie authors, I also want to buy and read more indie fantasy. Becoming an author isn’t easy regardless of what path you choose; traditional publishing or self-publish, but for indie authors, they need to source everything themselves. It can be a lot harder for them to advertise their work as they lack the clout and support of big publishers and their marketing magic.
There is a fantastic indie community on Twitter and also Facebook if you’re also looking to read more indie. I’m hoping to discover and share some great indie fantasy books in 2019, and hope you will too.
Writing an entire book has made me realise I need to leave the house more. I’ve taken part in a few writing conventions in the past, but I’d love to attend some book conventions! My dream is to visit America and some of the amazing conventions over there, such as BookCon, but for now I’ll stay closer to home and try to get to some UK-based conventions like YALC as part of London’s Film & Comic Con.
I’m quite interested in supporting and attending Edinburgh’s CYMERA, a new con based on fantasy, sci-fi and horror which will have YA writers taking part. If you guys know of any great book conventions happening in the UK in 2019, I’d love to hear about them.
What plans do you have for 2019? More reading, more writing? Share your own New Year’s Resolutions with me!