2013 Goals

It’s time to be ambitious.

  • Finish the Library Series – There are only two books left. Releasing on January 31st is “The Cult of Eternal Darkness (Library Series: Book Three)” and Book Four will release in the Spring. As my very first series, I am very excited to bring it to its completion. As long as I stick to the schedule I’ve used for every book thus far there should be no reason why the story of the Library Series won’t conclude before summer.
  • Continue and conclude The Orin Chronicles – This monthly series just began last month and there are 11 volumes remaining. This goal will bring me through most of the year to the release of Volume 13 in November. It’s a lot of fun and fits well into my schedule so there should be no problems here as well. Doing this will also mark the end of my second series.
  • Release The Academy: Second Volume – I’ve been looking to release one volume of The Academy series per year and December of 2013 looks like a good time to do so. This series will continue to be made available for free and will probably become a bit more eccentric as it continues on.
  • Begin work on Series 3 – While my third series won’t debut until 2014, the time to begin work on it will be in 2013 once the Library Series has concluded. I have many potential projects to pick up and I haven’t decided which one it will be yet. Don’t expect anymore information on this until 2014 itself.
  • Release an additional project – While my schedule is full from the above goals, there should be just enough time for one last “project”. I won’t talk much about it right now, but I’m looking forward to working on it later this year.

So here they are! My 5 goals for 2013. I think it’s fair to say that these are far more ambitious than my 2012 goals although I still feel as if there should be a lot more than 5. A year is a long time, right? Ah, maybe I shouldn’t try to push my schedule to its limits. It’s a lot of work, but I’m confident that I can do it. 2013, here I come (not that I have any choice because of the way physics works)!

2012 Goals Review

Back in January of this year I set several goals for myself this year and now is the time to review each one before setting my 2013 goals tomorrow.

*Release a free version of Academy (Volume 1)

Accomplished back in April. The title changed to The Academy: First Volume, but it was released on time and I was very happy with it. I’m going to reread it before the release of the Second Volume so I’m looking forward to see how my writing has improved.

*Commercial release for Library: Book One

Achieved in July and the very first work I’ve published on Kindle. Originally it was also available on Nook, but after days of 0 sales I took it off Nook so that it could be enrolled in KDP Select where it was then distributed to over 100 readers for free.

*Write the rough draft of Library: Book Two

I met and exceeded this goal! The rough draft was finished in July and the book was released on Kindle in October.

*Name Library: Book One

Done. Library: Book One became The Library Complex. I struggled greatly with choosing a good title for this book and one that could set a pattern for the series. Originally I considered naming it ‘Cara’ and naming each book after another character in the series, but ultimately decided against this. It might be a good idea for a future series, but I think “The Library Complex” and “The Weapon of The Kara” are more exciting names for a Library Series book.

*Release something new for Shards of Book One every month or two

This is the only goal that I dropped. Shards of Book One got a few updates in early 2012, but once I decided that I would publish Book One it seemed like a strange project to continue. I liked the idea of having extra stories in the Library Series though and this is how the Reconstruction section of the Library Series books was created.

2012 was a great year for me. It’s nice to be able to look back on what I accomplished, however I feel like these goals weren’t very ambitious. I had no idea that I would be able to finish the second book in the Library Series, write the rough draft for the third, and start a new series so my goals were all accomplished far before the year even ended. For 2013, I’ll have a lot more goals to accomplish and I look forward to the challenge.

Writing Update: End of 2012 Edition

Reading through the blogs of my favorite authors is really fun. I especially enjoy being able to look at their feelings during the writing process of works that I am very familiar with and see how, despite their own uncertainties, they were able to produce an amazing work. This is similar to my own experiences, but I’m not sure if my works even compare to theirs just yet…

Anyways, 2012 is almost over and it has been a very exciting year for me. On December 30th, I will post a blog comparing my goals for 2012 with what I achieved and reflect upon them. On December 31st, I will outline my goals for 2013 and starting January 1st I will be working extremely hard in order to meet them. My goals for next year are very ambitious and my writing schedule is already packed so much that I’m thinking about the early months of 2014 already.

Another post that I’m considering doing is a financial report of 2012 that includes how many free copies were given away, how many sales in various currencies, etc. but that might be a little bit demotivating for myself when I calculate the final numbers 😀

I’ve begun experimenting a bit with promotion using Google AdWords (if you’re reading this because you clicked on such a link, hello!) and I know that whether that works out or not I’ll have to improve my marketing. I also want to be able to commission beautiful covers for my books but I’m not sure if I have the money to invest in that so I’m doing my best to work on covers that I can make myself.

Now, to update everyone on the progress of The Library Series…

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Writing Update: Social Media Edition

I’ll admit it, I’m practically a failure at updating my progress via social media. Between blog posts, tweets, and Google+ updates, I don’t really generate enough content which causes me to have trouble attracting new fans. Social media is important to reach new fans and customers so I know that I need to invest more time in it. Recently I’ve started a Google+ Communities page to facilitate discussion between fans of my works (well, for when they start existing in the first place…) and I’m vowing to update all these different sites more frequently.

First and foremost, I have always wanted to have readers. I know not everyone will like my books, but that’s why it’s even more important to reach as many people as possible. If there’s a fixed percentage of the population that will like my works then I need as many readers as possible to increase the chance that someone who truly enjoys my work will get a chance to read it. The money and profit from investing all my time in these books can come later. That’s because I’d rather be a failure at making a profit than be a failure at creating something that others find meaningful.

I always sound a little depressed when I bring this topic up, don’t I? There’s no need to worry about me though because writing for my own sake is still fun for now. I hope to be able to write for the sake of others soon, and maybe one day support myself by doing it, but all that is in the future. Right now is the time to focus on the continuation of my beloved Library Series. Book Three will release within the first few months of 2013 and more information will come soon. At the moment I’m working on editing the rough draft, a process that’s about 40% complete.

Hey, maybe I can tweet about my progress with editing! I just hope that I remember to do so… ^_^

Writing Update: End of 2012 Works Edition

Alright, I was expecting “The Weapon of The Kara (Library Series: Book Two)” to be my last work of 2012, but that turned out to not be true when I was inspired to revive The Orin Chronicles as a monthly series. Now, having published two books in the Library Series and two volumes of The Orin Chronicles, I am incredibly satisfied with my work so far and I greatly look forward to the future.

Writing really is one of my favorite activities and while supporting myself with an author career is still a dream, it feels amazing to have a total of five works now available. I desperately want to talk about my plans for 2013, but I’ve decided to save that for a New Year’s Day post after a December 31st post reflecting on 2012 so I must stop myself from talking now.

Really, this post is a memorial to what I’ve done and something that I know I’ll enjoy looking back on. These moments, of absolute inspiration, have become more and more frequent since I started my journey in publishing and it’s impossible to capture that feeling, but the moment can be recorded. I hope that everyone who reads this has the opportunity to explore their passions and feel this same joy. Maybe I’m not skilled enough to convey it in my works right now, but one day I hope people can read my books and feel truly satisfied with their experience and inspired to pursue their own dreams.


Writing Update: Finals End Edition

Could it be… are finals already over? It’s only been 10 days since my last blog post, but quite a lot has happened. In terms of writing, Visitors (Orin Chronicles: Volume 2) has been fully written and is now being edited for release on December 15th.

From Volume 1, the story has the potential to go in many directions and I think Volume 2 will help to define where it’s going. If you’ve read my blog posts then you know The Orin Chronicles features a new adventure every week, but if you’re the average reader then you need the story to tell you that. Volume 2 stays connected to the story while exploring new things and I hope that will be appreciated.

Unlike The Library Series, I don’t really know much about the future of The Orin Chronicles. If you asked me what will happen in Volume 3 I wouldn’t be able to give you an answer that you couldn’t already figure out for yourself. It’s really fun to be able to do something completely new every 15 days while slowly developing the story instead of going all out with the plot (this is why the Library Series books are so short at ~42k words). I think that by the end of these 13 volumes I’ll have a better idea at how to write longer and more complicated stories.

Writing Update: Final Exam Schedule Edition

Here it is: the final two weeks of my first semester at University. A good portion of my time from this point forward will be spent on reviewing for my final exams, but I also have an obligation to work on my books and a desire to have fun by playing WoW and reading some visual novels. So, how will I be balancing all of this?

This is my first time experiencing final exams in this manner, but from what I’ve learned in the past I think I’ll be able to do well by understanding what I need to work on. I’ve taken a look at when all my exams are and I’ve set study goals for each day that allow me to finish review for each exam in a time-appropriate manner. Something that I understand well is that I don’t work well with rigid schedules so these goals are just that: goals. Saying ‘study from 8 AM-10 AM’ isn’t something that will help me, but knowing exactly what I need to study that day will and so that is what I’ve done. For each day, I know exactly the type of progress needed to do well on my exams.

And, it turns out that I have a good amount of time to myself after meeting these goals which means I have time to write and time to relax. While writing is a high priority for me and I’m integrating that with my study schedule. Playing games and reading novels is a lower priority for me during these two weeks and so I’m doing my best to delay doing such things until after I’ve finished my studying for the day, but I think it’s alright to take an hour break amidst the studying to do something else. I’m far from overworked though so if I’m not able to find time for pure fun during any given day I’ll be fine.

In theory, all of this is good but the difficult thing is putting it into practice. I’m 90% charge of my schedule for these next two weeks so it’s up to me to plan and follow through with everything. In order to succeed, you need to make the conscious decision to do what it is that you want to do. Goal-setting is important, but if you don’t choose to follow your goals then you will fail. This is a very simple idea, but when given complete freedom people tend to embrace the ‘idea’ and not the ‘action’.

I very much want to act according to my plans for these next two weeks and I hope that before Orin Chronicles Volume 2 is released I can make a post announcing my success.

Writing Update: Tons of Updates Edition

Currently, I am beginning the writing for The Orin Chronicles Volume 2 while working on the editing for Library Series: Book Three. Originally, I had planned to start working on Orin Chronicles Volume 2 a bit later, but because of various developments I think that it’s best to work on The Orin Chronicles for now. The Library Series already has two books and I want to be careful with how I bring the story to its conclusion so it is likely there will be a bit of a delay in the release of the third book. I know all of the key moments and I’m very happy with how they’ve been written, but there’s a lot more content that I want to improve before release and I think it will be worth the wait (which should be no more than an extra month).

However, for The Orin Chronicles the story has just begun! There are so many things that I want to explore and it is very easy to write installments for this series. Each adventure is more independent of the others than with the Library Series so I’m able to craft something new while slowly building up the mythology. My main goal for The Orin Chronicles is to release “an adventure worth reading” every month whereas my goal with the Library Series is to tell “an epic adventure”.

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Writing Update: A Monthly Series Edition

The Orin Chronicles is advertised as a monthly series, but how long will it last? The current plan is for there to be 13 installments meaning it will start November 15th of this year and end in November of 2013. While that’s the current plan, it’s possible that there will be more ‘series’ in the future. So now, the natural question is why have I chosen 13 installments?

The first reason is that I think it’s a good number based upon 13 episode series TV shows that I’ve seen. For The Orin Chronicles this means 13 distinct adventures and I think that’s certainly enough for characters to develop and for a larger story to be established. The second reason is that I want to write many, many different things. The Library Series will conclude next year and there will be the second volume of The Academy Series. That will most likely happen while I’m writing The Orin Chronicles, so my schedule will be really packed until The Orin Chronicles first 13 installments are completed.

After that, I’d like to be able to write something new. When I think about my goals for this year, written back in December 2011, I could not have imagined I would be where I am now. I also could not have imagined all the amazing ideas that I would have. By the time 2013 is over I’m sure I’ll have gained plenty of new ideas for things that I want to write. I already have an idea of what I might want to do in 2014 and, whatever I end up doing, it will be something new.

I really enjoy The Orin Chronicles but I don’t know what shape it will take yet. Volume 1 is written, but by the time Volume 13 is written, who knows where the series will want to go? If there are more than 13 then there will be more than 13, but for now I’m not planning anything specific.