Well, tsk. Despite being the sort of person who enjoys measuring and tracking things, I haven’t done a writing-progress-update sort of post on here for a while. Not since February, I believe. I’ve hivered and hovered on what to blog about for a few days now, and having rejected various topics as ‘not quite the right time’ or ‘don’t feel like it’, this is the one I’ve decided it’s time to write.
So why the hiatus? I think it’s because earlier this year writing leapt from being ‘that hobby I really enjoy and wish I could do more of’ to ‘big serious MAIN FOCUS’. Suddenly the small, achievable goals I had set myself got swallowed up by the leviathan of ‘make a living as a writer’. Eek!
I’m not there yet; I didn’t think I would be, seeing as I left my job in July. But that’s what savings are for. And while I didn’t set myself rigid goals on my leaving date, I have been writing pretty much full-time, which in itself is a major adjustment. I’ve kept my usual story spreadsheet updated, and last week I took a deep breath, screwed myself to the sticking-point, and reviewed my progress since July. And once I’d got over the initial ‘aaaargh this is going to be terrible’ moment, it was OK.
In no particular order, here are some of the things I did:
- I updated my LinkedIn profile and got business cards
- I joined a freelancing platform and completed my first job
- I wrote myself a social media plan
- I wrote 40 short stories, and even got paid for some of them (many are still lurking in Submittable, waiting for their turn)
- I entered competitions and sent lots of stories out into the big wide world
- I carried on editing the hot potato, and finally got past the fearsome Chapter 25 (it is now three chapters. That’ll teach it!)
Most of those are fairly predictable. Here are some other things that happened:
- I started running again
- I met up with a pack of FlashDogs in Birmingham and had a marvellous time
- I went to a flash fiction workshop; the first creative writing training I’ve had since school
- A idea for a linked-short-story project ambushed me, and today it hit 10,000 words
- A photo on Facebook gave me an idea for a kids’ story in rhyme, which I’m now working on as well
- Most of all, I HAD FUN!
I’ll aim to do my next writing review post a little more promptly; tune in for the next exciting instalment in January 2016!