2017 Year in Review

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WE DID IT, Y’ALL!  WE MADE IT THROUGH 2017!

This year fucking sucked, huh? It was a gross year. Just surviving this year means everyone gets a gold medal. Here you go:

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This here is my 2017 retrospective post. I like doing this to remember all the things I managed to do, even when it feels like I didn’t actually do much at all.

Writing

I was way more productive this year than I expected to be. I didn’t feel very productive at any given moment.

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Published

Novels

  • Resistance – re-released with The Kraken Collective, July 2017
  • Extraction, book 1 in A Tale of Rebellion – released with The Kraken Collective, November 2017

Novellas/Novelettes

Short Fiction

Interactive Fiction

Other Writerly Stuff

  • Did some heavy duty editing on the third book in the Tale of Rebellion series, The King and His Makers
  • Started poking around in a ~brand new universe~ I’m tentatively calling the Soulbroker universe. We’ll see where that goes.
  • Attended Sirens 2017 this year! It was great, and I loved it!!

Reading

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  • Read 27 books this year (fewer than last year)
  • Reviewed 5 books this year (waaaaayyyy fewer than last year)

Overall, my writing productivity went up, but it took a toll on my reading/reviewing. I’d like to find a balance between the two next year, because I like reading and reviewing, and because I feel like I am a better writer when I’m reading more regularly. Reviewing also makes me a sharper, better reader–and a better, sharper editor of my own work.

Recs

Ok, but from what I did manage to read, these were my favorites!!

Personal Life

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  • I bought a house this year!!
  • I started a new job with a much better work/life balance, which is probably why I was able to get so much more writing done.
  • So far this year, I haven’t had a major depressive episode. Anxiety is still a damn mess, but my coping strategies are working, so that’s good. Migraines are still chronic. Seasonal Affective Disorder this year is of a grumbly and restless variety instead of last year’s hibernatory type.
  • I somehow managed to pay down the balance of one of my credit cards. The extra monthly income from writing really helped with that, so thank you, friends!!

In Conclusion

I’m still not great at balance, but you know, that’s what life’s about, right? Learning and growing? So maybe next year I’ll stop pushing myself to produce so much and read more. I’ll reinvest in reviewing, because it’s something I genuinely like doing, and it’s a way to give back to the book community. I like analytically engaging with art, figuring out just why I respond to things and why I don’t.

I was super-productive this year! I want to find a way to keep the momentum going without working myself to the bone. I have definite workaholic tendencies that need to be kept in check. There’s time enough to work.

Stay tuned tomorrow: I’ll post some writing and reading goals for 2018.

 

2015: Year in Review (Thoughts & Such)

All things considered, I had a pretty good year writing-wise. Here are some highlights:

Ariah got published.
This was my book, you know? I’d worked on it forever, subbed it forever, and then it was out there.

I learned so much about book marketing on the fly with Ariah. I sent so many review requests. I did at least twenty guest spots on far-flung blogs (anywhere that would have me). I ran a ton of giveaways. Ultimately, I think, it’s mostly about getting a book in the hands of the right reviewer at the right time.

Really, for indie books (and I think even for traditionally published books) the strongest marketing tool is word of mouth. Patience has been my biggest obstacle, honestly, but I’m slowly gaining a readership.

I broke out of my shell as a writer and made some lovely writer friends.
I started using Twitter in earnest this year, and it was a great decision for me. Twitter, plus blogging, means a ton of connection to other writers. And I went to my very first con this year–Sirens was awesome! I got to meet some writer friends in the flesh, which was so cool!

I tend to write in isolation, but I still need a community. I love to talk about process and books and technique and what I’m writing and why I’m writing it. My partners quickly get fatigued on my subjects, so twitter is an excellent outlet for this.

I got vocal about diversity in publishing.
It was inevitable. I’ve always been passionate about social justice, so the intersection between writing and social justice was bound to pop up at some point. I think about this stuff a lot, in both my own writing and in others, and doing the disrupting publishing roundups every week or so has been eye-opening and informative.

This year I’ve also been explicitly reading and reviewing books with an eye towards diversity (you can see notes on diversity in the book reviews here and a call for diverse books in my review policy here). This, too, has been eye-opening and informative. I’ve spent a lot of time this past year thinking about what I can do, as a person with multiple privileges and marginalizations, to make publishing more diverse from within. What is it ethical for me to be writing about? When should I step back and simply promote voices? When am I taking up space inadvertently? Heavy, important questions.