Normally at the beginning of July, I post my semi-annual review of the books I've read so far this year. This year, I plan to talk about some of my other goals as well.
I'm writing this Sunday morning; as of now, I've read 75 books since January. I plan to finish at least one more book before this post goes live (I have to finish the book, since it's due today.) Although the number is a little lower than I'd like, I have read a couple of long books recently. One of my goals this year is to read at least ten books on writing/marketing fiction. I've read four so far, so I need to step it up a little. The genre breakdown is shown below:
Science Fiction: 13
Other (mostly mystery): 4
Instead of recommending some of these books, I'm going to talk about some of my other goals:
My main writing goal for 2018 is to finish Dryads to Discover, the first book in an urban fantasy trilogy. I'm only about 26,000 words in. It's been slow going, partly because I'm still feeling out the plot and characters and partly because I keep getting distracted by other projects. I'd like to finish the rough draft this year, even if it takes me longer to publish it. I have looked briefly at one of my abandoned stories that I'd like to publish, but I'm not sure yet how I want to revise it. In the meantime, I have ideas for two completely different series in new genres for me. I'll probably develop one in tandem with Dryads and table the other for now. At least I've met my short story goal for the year. I've sent out four short stories to various markets. One was accepted, one rejected, and two are pending.
I'm not sure if I'm going to make my original publishing goals for Dryads to Discover and my abandoned short story, but I'd rather wait until they're ready. Despite paid ads and Instafreebie promotions, my sales (not giveaways) are lower than my goal for the year. Hopefully some of my short stories will help with that, along with a planned Comic-Con appearance at my local library in September.
My crafting has been more successful than I anticipated. I originally planned to crochet ten characters this year, but I easily met that goal in January. They've proven to be popular, and I've also started sewing lanyards. (I plan to bring my crocheted characters and lanyards to the Comic-Con in addition to my books.) I still have to sew the "Santa Jawa" robes for a parade in late November, and I'm making another Jawa robe and hood to replace my current ones, which are getting a little worn. Ideally, I'd like to get my generic Jedi costume approved before Star Wars Celebration in Chicago next April.
You may be wondering where I get the time to do all of this. Trust me, I wonder the same thing. It's a matter of juggling priorities, avoiding time-wasters like TV, Facebook, and games (though I struggle more with the latter two than I do with TV), and letting other things slide. That said, hopefully at some point I'll manage a garage sale this summer. Time to see where I can squeeze that in....