It’s the beginning of a new year, well, seventeen days into it, so I thought I’d share my goals for the year. It’s important to set goals, that’s how you can measure your progress. During the years I’ve taken up writing seriously again, I have finished three screenplays, and now two novels. That is not to say there won’t be rewrites. I’ve grown as a writer over those years and I’ll need to revisit those projects with more experienced eyes. But over a year ago, I decided my strongest property was my steampunk trilogy, so I decided to concentrate on that.
My overall goal is to novelize one screenplay and write one new screenplay each year. With my day job, that’s what I think I can reasonably accomplish. Last year, I wrote my novel, but I didn’t complete my second screenplay. Unexpectedly, my day job started kicking my posterior and I would get home too tired to do anything but eat and crash. So here is a simple outline for my goals this year:
- Finish my second steampunk screenplay. This includes making changes based on the feedback from my critique group. This will still be a vomit draft in the range of 200 pages. I won’t make any big rewrites until after I finish the first draft.
- Edit my first steampunk novel. Again, I’m making some changes as my critique group reads through it, but the really big changes won’t come until they finish it and can give me feedback on it as a whole.
- Get a ProCritique on both in February. This will lead to even more rewrites on both. This will probably overlap with #1 and #2.
- Once I’ve done everything I can with my novel, it’s time to hire a professional editor. I’m hoping sometime between March and June.
- Pitch my first novel to agents at the August Writer’s Conference. I hope to be ready by then. If I do get an agent, then everything could change depending on how much he needs me to work with him, work on my novel from his suggestions, and how much I have to do to promote my novel before publication. The work doesn’t stop once you get an agent.
- Write my second steampunk novel. I’m shooting for approximately 100,000 words. At 3,000 words a week, that should take me about 34 weeks. So if I start in May, I should finish by the end of the year.
- I should add keeping up with my two critique groups, which means reading and critiquing everyone else’s work.
- Read a book a month. I’m really behind in my reading. And one of the best ways to become a good writer is to read good books. Also, there are books you read for education, in my case, learning about Victorian England.
- I also want to keep up on my comic books. I don’t even collect that many.
- And finally, on a personal note, I’d like to try at least one new recipe a month. Cooking is a hobby of mine, and I’ve been doing pretty good so far since the lock-down.
I’ll be revisiting this outline at least once a month, and I’ll make changes as needed. Oh, and donate eight more pints of blood at the American Red Cross. I’m working on gallon 13.
Dennis Amador Cherry
44th article completed.
First Steampunk novel: 71,915 words, First Draft DONE – Chapter 7 – 9 out to critique group.
First Steampunk screenplay: Updated with notes from the novelization.
Second Steampunk screenplay: 114 pages
Second Steampunk novel: 0 words.