I think it is absolutely time to state some broad writing goals for this year. I’ve been in a bit of a slump writing-wise since before the holidays, but am slowly coming out of it.
Part of coming out of the slump is thanks to taking Jeremy C. Shipp’s Yard Gnome Army Fiction Writing Boot Camp (Winter session). Jeremy is a fun writer to read, and an even more fun writer to work with. He’s been encouraging to even the slowest-writing students (read: ME), and his feedback has definitely improved the story “Thumbsucker” already. I’m interested to see his feedback on the second draft, and am hopefully that a third pass through the material will have it ready to start being submitted.
The story-submission horse is one I definitely need to get back on. My goal, in the first half of this year, is to revisit all of my existing unpublished short stories and do polishes on them with the intent of getting them back in the world.
The other big assignment for Jeremy’s class is the first chapter of a novel. I’m plugging away slowly at that. It’s due soon, and I think I have something. We’ll see just what it is.
Check out the link to Jeremy’s own website in the Links section to see his work and learn a bit more about him.
The other large motivating factor, today, was Jay Lake’s post on his blog about his writing goals for the coming year. I read it, and I realized: I need to do that. I know there’s a school of thought that insists sharing goals with the greater public actually works against accomplishing them. In this case, I disagree. I need to get these goals in front of me, and this space is one good place to do that (the other being the bulletin board above my desk).
So, the 2011 writing goals are:
Ongoing: rework the unpublished short stories and get them on the rounds again.
March 2011: finish the first draft of Ambergrin Hall, the mystery-thriller set on the Croton College campus. The whole manuscript needs tightening, but that can only happen when the first draft is finished.
April 2011: finish the first draft of Christmas Ghosts. Not as much to do to finish this one, but I’m sure a second pass will bring plot holes and inconsistencies to light.
June 2011: Plot out and begin Tarasque, the swords-and-planets novel in the vein of John Carter Mars, Carson of Venus, and Adam Strange.
I’ve also, on the non-fiction side, embarked on writing book reviews for ICARUS magazine, which is published by Lethe Press. Paying book review gigs are always a good thing.
So, as Jay said in his post: there are my upcoming goals. What are your plans?