The last couple of years I’ve taken to reflecting on my writing and reading productivity for the year. This year, it didn’t take much reflecting to know that as far as my writing output is concerned, I sucked. Last year I made excuses, I made some plans, etc, to do better this year, but instead it got worse. In a nutshell I wrote about 24,000 words on a new draft of MURDER BOY, and I wrote about 1000 words on two different beginnings to a cozy book I thought might be fun to write. I didn’t write a single short story. Not even a flash piece. There really is only one excuse for this and its laziness. Well, laziness and distractions. A lot of times I would have all the energy and desire to write, which would quickly evaporate into a cloud of Facebook and Twitter posts and random trips down the Internet’s vast network of rabbit holes. But mostly it was just laziness and lack of discipline. The nice thing about that is it’s an easy fix. Write more. Screw around less. Ok, maybe not an easy fix, but doable.
My reading was right about in line with what it was last year and I suppose I’ll just have to deal with the fact that I don’t have as much time to read as I used to. Right now my lunch breaks are where I do most of my reading, with the occasional long Saturday read or wait for an oil change or some such thing. I’ll be interested to see how owning a Kindle affects this, if at all. I still got the bulk of my books from the library, and I don’t see this changing in the coming year. Even at my diminished purchasing capacity, I still bought more hardcover books than the average American, and I bought almost all of them from independent booksellers.
One area that is going on hold is my whole ebook thing. Sure, I’ll still read them because I have the new doodad, and I’ll follow the conversation at large as much as is needed to stay up on the big issues, but I lost too much time and energy this year trying to format my own stuff, and contribute in any substantial way to the discussion. So I’m out on that front. Just going to keep my head down and get the words on the page then make ’em so that don’t stink so bad. I also suspect I’ll blog more. It will probably be more quite blogging for myself, no announcements of new posts on Twitter or such, but I have seen a modest link between regular blogging here and my own writing productivity. I also suspect I’ll blog very little about publishing, maybe even wriing. Who knows.
But mostly I want to write prose fiction. I want to finish MURDER BOY, however many drafts that may take. After I finish the draft I’m working on I want to write at least two, maybe three short stories and possibly a novella. I’d also like to get a rough draft done of that cozy book I mentioned. No, really.
I have no idea what I’ll publish this year, but that’s what I want to write. And in the end, that’s all I really have control over. Have a Happy New Year.