Welcome back to Austen Promises and the Writer’s Journal!
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In my last entry, I reviewed and assessed my progress on my 2018 goals. This time, I’m looking ahead to 2019.
As I’ve said before, in my old job as a special ed teacher at an online school, we took time at the end of the school year to review certain goals and processes to see what worked. At our end-of-year meeting, our lead teachers would put jumbo sticky notes on the wall, and label them “stop,” “start,” and “continue.” As I did last year, I’m going to do that here.
First comes what I plan to stop. It’s a reasonably short list, something which maybe ought to alarm me, especially in relation to the other two lists, but doesn’t. Here’s what I plan to stop:
- Selling books at festivals—this was fun and got me a few sales, though I can’t actually quantify the number of sales. However, it was a lot of work and took more wrangling of help than I’m really willing to deal with. I might try one or two in 2020, but for 2019, I think I’m done.
- Book signings—unless it’s local, I can’t see me doing this. And, nothing like that is ever local to me.
Next comes the list of what I plan to start. That list is a little longer:
- Use Dragon to dictate every day—yes, I started this in October, but then I got sick, and it was one of the things that fell by the wayside. When I got back to writing, I was afraid to interrupt the flow of words by using dictation. I’m going to give it a second chance.
- Increasing word counts—technically, I suppose I already have, since I spent the last three days increasing it incrementally. But what I mean by this goal is writing large amounts every day. Three to four thousand words each day should not be out of the realm of possibility for me.
- Adding a feature to the blog, “Friday’s Race to the Weekend,” that will be a few hundred words of a racing story, to become Book 3 in the Pride & Prejudice & Racecars series.
- Buy my own print ISBN’s—those numbers that identify a book (in case you don’t already know what they are). They’re expensive, but you can buy ten for around $300, which is a great deal, as they’re $125 a piece, purchased singly. The purpose of this is to move my extended distribution to Ingram-Spark so that Amazon does not have 100% control of my print books.
- Improve and grow my mailing list—technically, I have already started this, but I added it here, anyway. I’d like to send one newsletter out each month, so as not to overwhelm my subscribers or myself.
- Videos, possibly live, for Patreon every month—this is a reward for $10 patrons (they can ask me questions and things), but no one has ever taken advantage of it. Now, I want to give it to them without their request. 🙂
Finally, I come to the list of things I want to continue. This list is actually shorter than I thought it was. LOL
- Do a Facebook Live every Friday evening
- Record short stories on audio and upload to YouTube
- Sell signed print copies from my website
- Do more advertising on Amazon and Facebook
- Promote Gumroad
- Continue the three weekly blog posts I currently do
- Improve my presence on Pinterest
- Professional Development
- Creative Penn Podcast
- Ads for Authors course
- SPF Podcast
- 20Booksto50K conference
The one thing that was not easily classified is that I want to publish every two months. I want to publish a well-written and well-edited book every eight weeks. That was sort of my goal for this year, and it fell by the wayside, but I have analyzed the situation and know where I made mistakes. I’m taking steps to alleviate the problem areas.
As I look at these lists, I can think of other things to add here and there, like creating a set of instructions for how to use Gumroad and linking it beside the logo on every book page, investigating a different method of direct ebook sales, and finding some other platform than WordPress for my website. However, these little things are those that can be sort of inserted here and there as I get time. The lists contain bigger items, in my opinion, that take dedicated blocks of time. I have not prioritized the “start” and “continue” lists, but will have to do it as soon as possible.
Anyway, these are my goals for the coming year. I anticipate lots of good things happening! What goals have you set, for yourself, your business, or your writing?
Come back next Wednesday for another peek into my journal! <3