This was meant to be a delightful post I wrote several days ago about my accomplishments this year. I’ve not had time to go over it, given the NSW fire issues but wanted to post it anyway because despite everything it doesn’t take away my accomplishments of this year.
I wrote a story in this blogpost to help relay what its been like. You have to find ways to remember all you’ve done even during the stressful times…
TEN BOOKS TOO
My face is still melting over how I started this and got it done, particularly because I never planned to write ten books.
I planned to release the next novella and book in my fantasy series the Last Prophecy but due to budget constraints it all had to be put on hold for one simple fact; I couldn’t afford an editor.
If you are self publishing you had to pay for your own and I’d never thought about querying my epic 21 book/novella steam flavoured fantasy series.
So when I had to stop a writing journey five years in the making I was furious, mostly with myself.
With this fury I wrote a book in 25 days, Behind the Veil. Hart, a friend and someone who became a valued beta reader read the first chapter and said to me; “Oh, I think you’ve got more than a short story here…”
It set me off, and when I finished I polished it as best I could and pitched it to Pitmad, where Sharon from Literary Wanderlust subsequently offered me a contract for the book and I accepted.
Over the year I worked on many projects but it wasn’t until October did I realise in the lead up to the end of the year that if I worked my ass off (more like how much time I spent at my desk), I could write ten books.
Let me outline them for you so you know I’m not just crowing about them, I did work on them all year;
Behind the Veil – 75k words written in 25 days Gothic Noir
You can find more about that story here, but this was just the beginning of freedom for me to work on anything and I diligently applied myself to working on as much as I could.
An Absent Tale – 70k words written over the year Gothic Noir
It was meant to be a secondary story to Behind the Veil of a similar nature with a gothic noir feel, but after the plot walked off course and I finished it to find out where it would end up but I was disappointed with it overall.
Queen of Spades Trilogy – 240k in 3 books over the year scifi action romance
This trilogy was originally written in first person which made me very uncomfortable and it showed, so I went back this year and rewrote all three books from scratch, only using parts of what I’d done before but mostly rewriting the entire trilogy. I’ll be looking to self publish this in 2020 and that’s really exciting to have that for next year.
Echo of the Evercry – 80k written in 23 days Fantasy/mental health
Echo was written after being inspired by a poem and it turned into a quest but carried a huge undercurrent of mental health issues and the effects of bullying past high school. It was an odd thing to put into a fantasy story but I felt it worked. I pitched this for PitchWars and got a full request, but didn’t get in. Now I’m querying this manuscript, but I also won a free developmental edit from Meg Trast and I am looking forward to finding an agent for this script in 2020.
One with Rage – 70k written in 21 days magical realism/cyberpunk romance
Rage was written purely for fun, it has an angry and vengeful kick ass heroine surrounded by charming arrogant men who don’t deter her from her quest. The completed novel was generously edited by Lorney Tunes and is on Wattpad. I loved this world and its characters, it has a few holes but I wrote it purely for me, because it will be a while before I see my published work come out and I wanted to have something out there so people could understand what my writing style was like.
The Book Binder – 80k written in 28 days (or so) contemporary paranormal romance
I wrote this book over October waiting for the PitchWars results to come out and the idea of a librarian on the run from the library she used to work was just too irresistible not to work on. Not sure what will happen with the script but I’m looking forward to querying it next year.
I wrote two books during this period and I kept an active Twitter thread of when I was working and how much I did so people could see it was being done, but also to kick them in to doing it too. I have the benefit of no kids, an easy job, and a loving spouse to help me though, and I never hold back on that information or fail to use that gift well.
Read Well the Dark – 79k written in 13 days gothic fantasy romance
I wanted to write a vampire book but one where it wasn’t scary and it wasn’t a once and for all, it has a HFN ending that I wasn’t sure I wanted to build upon but I couldn’t resist the idea of vampires, gypsies and tarot readers and its dark themes and practical approach to life was fun and earthy to write.
Atlantis Abyss – 65k written in 17 days Frankenstein f/f climate change retelling
I wrote this in response to my editor Lorney Tunes giving me a series of random prompts and how I got to this story I don’t know but it was set about 150 years in the future when water levels have risen but all the bigotry and climate change denial is still rampant. Two happily married women try to bring order back into the world of their small Australian country town, but the town’s leaders only want to control the limited resources left.
TEN BOOKS WRITTEN FOR 2019!
And do you know what my first thought was after I’d done it?
I’m going to do it again, and you can too.
I’ve never taken much stock in the 2k a day writing advice by Stephen King but I realised that over the course of the year I’d written some 679k words in first drafts and then added yet more words (Echo of the Evercry ended up topping out at 109k words) when I went back over it and filled in my very narrow endings.
And I’d done it in the space of about five months when I realised I only needed to amp up how much I was doing every day and be sure I wrote two books in Nanowrimo.
So if you take an average size of a novel at 70,000 words, and you times that by ten its 700,000 words.
If you write 2k a day for 365 days of the year you get 730,000.
If you wrote 2k a week for 52 weeks of the year you get 104,000.
There is a middle ground it doesn’t have to be all or nothing, you can go back and rewrite stuff, but you’ll never know what you are capable of until you try.
I never knew I was capable of this.
And this year, to show for all my hard work, here is what I got;
- TEN BOOKS
- A publishing contract
- Several NY agent full requests
- Invaluable experience from the agents & editors I worked with
- Amazing support and encouragement from the Writing Community
- A year without regrets because I didn’t stop trying and I didn’t give up
I plan to write ten books for 2020 and if you want to hold me accountable hold onto your panties because I already have seven lined up;
Queen of Hearts Trilogy – This will follow a different character to Ayla from the Queen of Spades, and instead focus on an as yet unnamed character as the Queen of Hearts who can see the deepest darkest desires of the heart.
An Absent Tale – I need to untangle this book and I think the only way to do it is to rewrite it from scratch which I hate doing but its not worth the time to pull apart and rebuild in its current structure, and I want it to be as good a book as Behind the Veil.
One with Hate – If you’ve read One with Rage you’ll know there are a few character that have potential and I intend to focus on the hate fuelled apathy of Giselle and the only person who can read her thoughts and not be afraid, Saul. (For anyone waiting for Ayre and Meyrick to get there moment, too bad, cause Ayre’s not about to open herself to Meyrick only to be left behind).
Butterfly’s Kiss – A fantasy story about the deception of good and evil and all the shades of grey in between.
A Girl of Gremlins and Gargoyles – Honestly if you’re still reading and having figured out my muse is a little bitch this is your clue because I have no idea what this book is about except the title, and a girl who’s ugly without and beautiful within.
This leaves me with three books open for the year, and I like to work on books that inspire me on a moment to moment basis, and I found that though they take a fair amount of polishing they are much better off for the story being fast paced and exciting, full of twists and turns and moments of delight. But that’s just my sadistic side torturing the characters.
If you’ve come with me this far thank you.
Whether it was reading this post, following me all year, or just being one of the many I will never be able to thank enough for your support.
I did interviews, book tours, and reviews of trad and indie books all year.
Next year I plan to keep doing that, but also have a mailing list and a Patreon site to help with the editing fees, and maybe, one day, go back to the story that called to me as a writer.
May 2019 have its silver lining, and 2020 be a rainbow infused sunset of delight and hope.