Friday, December 31, 2010

Rain for the new year

Here we are careening into 2011. This year flew by with frightening speed.

Last year I made a huge list of resolutions that I didn't keep and don't even want to look at. I did learn a lot in 2010, though. I learned that if you stop writing short stories, you stop selling them (funny how that works out). I learned that I have a huge capacity to read other people's books, especially if it means I don't have to work on mine. And I've learned that I like writing novellas and can even sell them occasionally.

So this year I wrote one novel and two novellas--technically two novels and a novella, but the romance book is so short I'm counting it as a novella (and I still have 5k to add to it, today I hope). I wrote zero short stories. Coincidentally, I sold one novel and two novellas this year, and zero short stories.

Next year, hm. Frankly, I'm tired of being in a holding pattern at this stage of my career. I'm going to see if I can kick things into gear by going completely commercial. I've already started that with my ignoble experiment of the romance book--still untitled; if I can sell it to Harlequin, that's a good, solid sale to mention to agents when I query. Maybe it's not what I ordinarily write, but it'll prove that my writing is at a professional level. I also hope to finish the MG book I started this year, Christopher Kaplan, since MG sells pretty well and I might be able to find a good home for it (or interest an agent). And I also want to finish the mystery novel I started at the end of November. I'm reading a lot of mysteries lately and the genre is pretty hot. I was going to give my mystery book fantasy elements, but I dropped that in favor of pure, unadulterated commercialism.

Yes, I'm a sell-out. Or trying to be, anyway.

My two-week vacation is almost over, but it's been really good for me. I feel less stressed than I have in a long, long time. In 2011 I'm going to have to make some hard decisions about my day job. For various reasons I won't bore you with, I'm very frustrated with it and I'm wondering if it's time to move on. Of course it's a terrible time to try to change jobs, but I've got a weirdly specific skillset now and if the right opening pops up, I'll probably apply. Or maybe not--there's a possibility that things may change at work for the better since we have a new branch campus opening this fall (hopefully) and I'm the logical person to move up into the new position that will have to be created for it.

Anyway, so, I guess my resolutions for 2011 are:

lose weight and get in shape (that one's always on the list)
join a fencing group
write at least one novel and one novella
write a few short stories, because I really like selling them
stop carrying stress from work into my off-hours, because it's not worth it and makes me sound whiny on my blog
Keep up better with my online friends
Sell out, yo

That's fairly reasonable, I hope. Happy new year!


Cate Gardner said...

Happy New Year, Kate. I'm determined 2011 is going to be great for us all.

K.C. Shaw said...

I think so!

Fox Lee said...

It's hard out there for a pimp. Not sure that relates directly to writing, but some days it feels pretty close ; )

K.C. Shaw said...

I feel the sudden need to go cruising around in a gold car.

Amanda C. Davis said...

Man, I'm totally with you. I'd sell out in a minute if anyone was buying.