Christmas is almost here

The presents are wrapped,  stockings ready to go up, and my daughter is home from school. I’ve always loved Christmas for this reason. All the family together, opening gifts, and shopping. Then there’s good smells, and hot food. Pretty lights everywhere!

Okay so I had to give up sugar so no tasty sugary treats, but I can live with that. There is still everything else.

Wherever you are  and whatever you celebrate this season, I hope your holidays are wonderful and filed with beautiful and happy moments.

I’ll see you after the holidays!

New Year is Around the Corner

Christmas is tomorrow. The presents are under the tree. Stockings are filled. Lights are up. And everyone is looking forward to a big meal, followed by a long sleep.

And I am considering the last year, the progress I made, and what I want to accomplish next year. (Not waiting for a new years resolution.)

For 2013 I had no real plan except to start working through my old stories, and get as many of them finished and published as possible. Most of them were short stories (20 short, 3 novella) and I am rather pleased with the turn out. 2013 also gave me a huge start on some novels, and other short stories that I want to continue working on.

Sales were … okay, I suppose. I was actually really encouraged by how often I got sales, and while I can’t track my sales daily yet, I am doing so monthly, and that’s a huge step in the right direction for me.

Every sale just encourages me to write another book, and there is nothing wrong with that.

This coming year, 2014, I want to continue writing and publishing stories. I’d like to have at least two, if not three, 60-80k word books out. One is already half finished, so I have a nice jump on that.

I’m also going to work on short stories. Two a month seems like a good plan, because finishing something gives me a good sense of accomplishment, and bolsters my resolve to keep writing. Keep creating. “Make good art.”

I do, however, want to put more emphasis on the longer works this year. I need full novels, not just short stories.

And… sigh… I’m going to have to learn to market and get reviews, even though I hate that part of writing. But, since I’m doing this through the self publishing route, it is even more important for me to figure out the marketing side of this business.

I think once I have a couple of full length novels out I will feel more comfortable pushing the marketing. But only slightly.

So… here is to the new year, and a lot more story telling going on!

Giving for the sake of giving

I have had a lot of Christmas’s where others have been very helpful. When you’re down on your luck, I guess, having someone get your kid a present, a doll, or an MP3 player, can be incredibly uplifting.

My family is at a point now that we’re getting by alright. I don’t have a lot, but we have presents under the tree. But I wanted to give something back this year.

On that note, I found Random Acts of Christmas on Reddit. I didn’t have much to give… I mean, we’re okay but I still can’t go out to eat every week (not that’d I’d want to, it get’s old after a while). But, I did have a bunch of things I made. Stickers, magnets, bookmarks, and some simple jewelry.

So I stuck up an offer to give away some stocking stuffers…

It’s amazing how good it feels just to give away these little things. There not much, but hopefully some little kids will really enjoy them.

Maybe you can’t do much, but even the little things count. And I hope you all have a great Holiday season, whichever Holiday you’re celebrating.