Friday, December 27, 2013

Goals for 2014

It's been a while since I posted here. More than a while actually - probably a couple of years. I tried, at one point or another, to start a new blog, but that didn't grab my attention, so I decided to come back to this one.

So - Goals for 2014. This will be a big year for me - last year of university, first year I won't actually have to work to support myself and pay my rent (scholorship ftw. Finally). I'll also be on placement a lot more, so that means more time in the back of the ambulance, more experiances, more life. More death, probably.

I'm currently halfway through a contemporary fantasy, so I want to finish that within the next month or so. My first drafts are almost always fast, because I am, at heart, a Pantser (ie, I make shit up as I go along), so that shouldn't be too difficult. I also think the thing will be fixable, which is a marked improvement on previous attempts at novelling.

I know enough about structure now that I won't be literally re-creating the story from scratch in the second draft.

All these factors combine to mean two things: I will have spare time on my hands for the first time in ages, and I will have to use it wisely. I need to find an actual job at the end of this year - not a supermarket one, but I'll have to be presentable as a paramedic. That makes me wary. I'm 22, I'll be 23 when I start applying for work - older than some of my cohort, but young in the scheme of things. Age matters for something, I think, in professions like this, so I'll have to show experiance through experiances rather than just time spent on this planet.

That equals voluteering, hopefully in something related to healthcare. My scholorship is tied up in tutoring for the university, so that will keep me busy too.

This year I also want to have an actual go at starting a writing career instead of just writing. I've been just writing since I was 13. I've completed 7 books, not counting total revisions. I think I need to actually start looking at what to do with all this.

To that end, I've devised a plan, of sorts. Whether it'll hold is another matter entirely, but here it is:

The first draft of a book, and a readable, "as good as I can make it" version of the same book every four months. So two months for the first draft, two months for the "ignore it till you forget it" bit and the general revision and editing.

Two short stories a month. Find a beta, a permanant beta, and make these as good as I can. Create a list of magazines, and send the lovelies out on a roster. If I have 24 stories in circulation by the end of 2014, one of two things will happen - either I'll be published, or I'll have learnt enough to be published the year after. Either is a win.

Beta someone's story now, with the goal of having them beta my own novel later in the year. I have time now, being on summer break, so I should build up brownie points rather than trying to cram beta-ing into semester time.

So, in summation, at the end of the year I want: A job, in my actually profession. At least one story published. Two novel length stories finished and ready for shopping.

This list is quite wishful, and I'm not sure if it'll get done, but worst comes to worst, I'll just disappoint myself. And I get over disappointment quite quickly, so I don't see any harm in it.

Happy New Year all.  :)

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