This time last year I discussed successes & failures from 2009, and began to create goals for 2010. Met some of them, didn’t meet others. As I begin to create a strategic plan for 2011, it’s time to complete on my plan from 2010, to see what worked and what didn’t, to acknowledge what I’ve accomplished and create a new one for next year.
- What I said I’d do: “I’d like to continue my existence/time management structures. The goal is to have my time measured every day, without gaps. Realistically, I will get upset with myself some day for not doing something I was supposed to do, will make myself wrong, and won’t do it. But I will be back on track within a week, because I have enough people holding me to account for doing it. If I can go the entire year having missed, 30 days, I get a bronze star, 20 days a silver star, and 10 days a gold star.”
What I did: I actually went quite a bit further with this, and began to train myself in Mission Control, a well known time-management system. As soon as I implemented it I got super-productive, so then I took on more to do, and immediately got confronted again by how much I had to do. Ratfarts. Anyway, I am now pretty reliable for tracking billable hours and scheduling my time.
- What I said I’d do: “Finish the novel I’m working on with my dad, a short story/novella I started right before my dad’s and my scheduled start date, and Charisma.”
What I did: I did finish that short story, although we ended up quitting on the novel pretty quickly because it wasn’t very good. And I still haven’t finished Charisma – Barely worked on it last year. I have, however, been working on some other projects, and I just finished the bible and first three episodes for a Web series, which I’m going to begin shopping around.
- What I said I’d do: “Exceed this year’s 64 blog posts and 407 4th-quarter visits, without being one of those annoying people who posts what color shoes they’re wearing every day.”
What I did: 55 blog posts, which was a little bit less but still respectable. But my big win, I blasted through my 4th quarter visits goal with over 1,000 4th-quarter visits.
- What I said I’d do: Attend, in some capacity, the 2010 Writer’s League of Texas Agent’s Conference, the Austin Film Festival, San Diego Comic-Con, two comic book conventions closer to home, and two more authors/publishers conferences/conventions.
What I did: Attended WLT Agent’s Conference and AFF, but not the others. AFF in particular proved to be extremely valuable for me this year.
- What I said I’d do: Continue reading every day and log every book I finish.
What I did: Don’t think I read every day, but I did log the books I finished, ending the year at 21. Perhaps not a lot for a professional writer, but I’m continuing to develop the habit.
- What I said I’d do: Come up with a marketing plan for Ups & Downs that gets the two stacks of books out of my office as a result of sales.
What I did: Um. No.
Other accomplishments not reflected in the above:
- Closed my first ghostwriting contract, developed my website in such a way that it’s proactively driving customers to me, started leading workshops on how to write a nonfiction book, and performed stand-up comedy–doing very well at it.
Goals for 2011
- 55 blog posts and average 500 visits a month for the 4th quarter.
- Finish three screenplays, one in time to submit to AFF, Nicholl, and several other screenplay competitions.
- Attend San Diego Comic-Con, Austin Film Festival, WLT Agents’ Conference, the Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference, and the WLT Summer Writing Retreat, as time allows (some of those my be on conflicting dates).
- Start acting again. And get paid for it. God I miss acting. And getting paid for it.
- Edit 12 books.
- Close sales on two more ghost writing projects.
- I want to produce $25,000 in revenue in the month of January. This will require, rather than just surviving at the game of being a professional writer, growing a pair of balls and creating something completely new. It’ll mean finding clients who really recognize what good content is worth, and who recognize that I can provide it.
Here’s to 2011.