Sunday, 1 January 2017

Happy New Year & Reflections on 2016

With my new quiver I have the whole the whole badass archer thing down pat.

Time for me to look back and sum up my thoughts after four years of writing.

Work wise, it has been a complex year for me, what with starting the day job.  Two days a week, may not sound like much, but I run a clinic at a major London NHS Trust, and the work demands a lot of me.  Regardless, it's something I thought I'd never do again after my illness, and at the end of January I will have been working for a year.  And there's archery... a sport, come hobby, come martial art I've taken up, with the aim being to get me out of the flat and doing more exercise, which is good but takes time.  However, all good, all things considered.

Other things that have consumed time this year, besides getting a new camera–that took several weeks to get used to using–was having to change my internet service provider and buying a new computer.  Both of these took up more valuable spare time that I could have been using for writing.  So much for my excuses.

Less good was having my first novel turned down, and now I have to decide what to do next?

Realistically, given I don't have an agent, sending it out around the publishing houses is a waste of time, and given that good agents are as rare as rocking horse pooh I think I shall avoid going down that path.  I have a plan, but you'll need to be a little bit patient with me as I put things into place before announcing what I intend to do next.  I need to get several other things in place.

One of those things is my second novel, which is stuck in the editing and polishing stage, with minor re-writes of stuff and additional scenes being worked on.  That may actually add a lot of words to the novel, as in twenty thousand or so, depending on what I decide to do.  At this moment  Strike Dog is currently running at 101,724 words, so we shall see how this goes, but whatever happens it means it's going to take me longer to finish than I expected it to.

My third novel Ghost Dog, running at 97,475 words, is also still being worked on after my Alpha reader pointed out I had planted a sub-plot at the beginning of the story and singularly failed to capitalize upon it.  Doh!  Tracking my words written this year is therefore a bit difficult, but I guess it ranges from 199,000 to 398,000 words edited, given I've done two drafts of each novel.

But then there is the writing for the blogs: nine pieces for Galactic Journey that came to 8,230 words, 51 pieces on here that came to 18,155 words, and 52 pieces for my other blog adding 12,682 words, plus a few odds and ends.  This comes a total of 39,067 words.

Adding everything up I make this a minimum of 238,266 words up to 437,465 words written.

This is way down on last years totals, but there again I had the day job, which only goes to show how much time that actually takes.  Still, it sounds like excuses to me and I'm not one who likes excuses.

Reading wise, the number of books read this year felt low, but after compiling my list I see I managed to read 21 novels, which is only five less than last year.  I've also read five non-fiction books, which when again rather surprised me as I hadn't thought I'd read that much either.  So I seem, despite what I felt, to have made good on intentions and managed to almost equal last years total of books read with less spare time.

This only goes to show that feelings are not facts.  Useful to hold onto when things feel like they're getting on top of one.

NB: Told by my beloved that I should show the groups I was getting.

My group of three top centre, Susan's bottom centre.


  1. Replies
    1. So they were worth showing off then. ;-) Cheers for the comment John, and of course a happy new year to you too.



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