So back in the day, like October 2016 back in the day, I used to do a monthly wrap-up post where I talked about what I accomplished that month and what I hoped to do in the next month. I have decided to start doing that again because
a) I think seeing my progress will be good for me (even if it’s a lack of progress sometimes)
b) it’s an easy place to put up book reviews without doing a book review
c) I can talk a bit about things I’ve been doing behind the scenes that are not interesting enough to warrant their own post
I set out to read about 8-9 books this month since my yearly goal is 100 books, and I ended up reading 10 books in January. (The numbers beside the titles are where they are in the series, if there is one)
- Newsletter Ninja by Tammi Labrecque (4 stars- helped a lot with shifting my feelings about my newsletter)
- How to Read a Suit by Lydia Edwards (4 stars- highly interesting if you want to learn more about period specific clothing as well as masculinity)
- Where the Drowned Girls Go (#7) by Seanan McGuire (5 stars- absolutely LOVE this series, YA portal fantasy)
- Heartstopper (#4) by Alice Oseman (5 stars- the focus of this one was heavily on mental health and I loved that love couldn’t solve/magically fix it)
- The Care and Feeding of Waspish Widows (#2) by Olivia Waite (4 stars- this series is f/f historical romance, and this one features a beekeeper and has tons of queer side characters)
- Winter’s Dawn (#3) by Arden Powell (4 stars- every novella in this series has been magical and wonderful)
- The Missing Page (#2) by Cat Sebastian (5 stars- Page and Sommers team up to solve Sommers’ cousin’s disappearance from 20 years ago, fantastic)
- Boys Run the Riot (#4) by Keito Gaku (4 stars- a manga with a trans lead about fashion, mad it’s over)
- The Excalibur Curse (#3) by Kiersten White (4 stars- I am so upset this series is over but it was a fabulous King Arthur retelling filled with queer characters)
- Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel by Hallie Ephron (5 stars- very useful as a I work on The Reanimator’s Heart)
Admin/Behind the Scenes Author Stuff
- Updated the back matter and formatting for the ebook versions of all my books
- Republished said books on Amazon and D2D
- Published all of my books on the Google Play store
- Fixed my website aesthetically to make it pretty again after I wrecked it last year
- Updated every page of my website to be current
- Created, uploaded, and published the second box set in the Ingenious Mechanical Devices series, which contains books 4-6 (Dead Magic, Selkie Cove, and The Wolf Witch)
- Updated the covers/titles for the audiobooks for The Earl of Brass and The Gentleman Devil
- Contacted/contracted a narrator for the audiobook of Kinship and Kindness (which will hopefully be out by summer. PS- my narrator is trans, and I’m super excited to have a trans narrator for a series that has a trans lead in each book)
- Fixed/relaunched my monthly newsletter (You can read January’s here)
- Read some author craft books (Newsletter Ninja and Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel)
- blogged weekly and did weekly marketing
I did a lot of admin stuff this month, but I want to emphasize that I didn’t start teaching until over halfway through the month, so I got a lot of work done while on break. Please don’t judge my productivity against yours if you are working full-time. Due to pandemic mess, I’m teaching less classes and trying to make up for it by [theoretically] boosting my author income. Hence, all the admin stuff.
- How I’m Getting My Shit Together
- On Doing Things Wrong as an Author
- All of My Books are Now Available on Google Play
- Why Authors Need Other Hobbies
- How to Outline as a Pantser
- January 2022 Wrap-Up
If there’s ever anything you want me to write about, feel free to let me know. I will never complain about blog suggestions.
Oh boy. So this is where I find myself cringing because while I look very industrious in all the things I mentioned above, I did not get a whole lot of writing done. This month The Reanimator’s Heart reached about 11,000 words. This was due to multiple reasons. Part of it was that I had to tweak the beginning of my book to make it work, which then created a cascade of tweaking. Most of it was due to stress though. I had bad anxiety at the beginning of the month, which led to a horrible bout of writer resistance. I can’t even pinpoint why, but I was struggling. I also had car issues, a dog with diarrhea, and my classes started up again all within a two week period. As soon as I get stressed out, my ability to write plummets. It’s something I’m working on, but it still throws me. My hope is that, while I probably won’t catch up completely in February, I will make a dent in my word count goal and actually get close to where I hoped to be.
I also figured out that I do significantly better doing 20 minute writing sprints than 15 minute ones, so here’s hoping that I can use that new information to build momentum going forward.
Hopes for February
- Read 8 books
- Write 20k words (stretch goal is 30k to fully catch up)
- finish a syllabus I need to write for a future class
- finish a course proposal for a future class
- blog weekly, February author newsletter
- crochet more because I barely crocheted at all this month
That’s it for this month’s wrap-up. Let me know what goals you hope to achieve in February!
2 thoughts on “January 2022 Wrap-Up”
Am always amazed by fast readers like you. I guess I’ll have to read Newsletter Ninja now since I’ve just started building my own. Anyway, wishing you all the best for February, Kara!
It was very useful! There’s also a second book coming out for Newsletter Ninja this month. I hope you have a good February as well, Stuart!