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New Year Resolutions

At this time of year, it’s natural to set goals.

Last year I called this blogpost A Janus Look. Janus was the Roman god of beginnings and endings. He looked both into the future and to the past and that’s what I do at this time of year, look back over the past year, evaluate what I’ve done, and set goals for the year ahead. So, here is my 2018 look back into the past and into the future.

Kyle with proof of Through the Storm.JPG

1. Complete a novella and novel in the Solar Storms Saga. I had planned to release the first book in this series, Through the Storm, in May of 2017. The release ended up being in September. However, as 2018 begins Through the Storm is doing very well and I’m working on a sidequel novella. In Through the Storm Neal Evans encounters Major Franklin in Lebanon, Oregon. Much of what I knew about why Major Franklin was there couldn’t be explained in Through the Storm so, after some urging from readers, I decided to write a Novella going into more depth about why Franklin was there and what he was doing. The working title of this book is Into the Storm.  

I also plan to release the second, full-length novel of the Solar Storms Saga in 2018. You can read more about this and other upcoming novels on the projects page of my website.

2. Complete the third book in the Guardian Knights series. As 2017 began I had completed the first novel in the series Seekers of Earth, a 39,000-word novella that ends in a cliffhanger. I wanted to finish the second book, Recall the Earth, and have both available near the same time. I succeeded in this goal. Seekers of Earth was released in March of 2017, and Recall the Earth was released in April.

However, I had hoped to finish the third book of the series, Return to Earth in 2017. Because the Solar Storm Saga books took up much of my time I didn’t complete Return to Earth. However, I’ve rescheduled the release of that book for late in 2018.

You can read more about this series on the projects page of my website.

3. Write 150,000 words in 2018. In order to complete Recall the Earth and Through the Storm I wrote about 110,000 words last year. As I mentioned above, I’m currently writing a sidequel to the Solar Storm Saga and plan to complete another novel in the series along with Return to Earth from the Guardian Knights series. Those plans require that I up my writing goal to 150,000 words for 2018.

4. Do more book promotions. Each year I try to do more, larger and better-coordinated book marketing. This last year I’ve also sought to find new venues where I can promote my books. Because I’ve been successful with marketers like Bookbub, NoiseTrade, and Book Funnel, readers can expect to see more of my books and at lower prices in 2018.

5. Make shorter blogposts. Two years ago my wife looked at my goals blogpost and said, “People don’t have time to read long blogposts.” In A Janus Look, my 2017 goals blogpost, I resolved to make these and other posts shorter. I’m still working on that goal.


Click on the following links to read my author bio, or read all my goal blogposts.

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A Janus Look

This time of year I like to take a Janus look at my goals.

 Janus, looking backward and forward in time.

Janus, looking backward and forward in time.

Janus was the Roman god of beginnings and endings. He looked into the future and to the past. So, as we end one year and begin another, I like to take a Janus look both back and forward in time.

I write goals every year and, as the year winds to an end, I enjoy looking back at those old goals and seeing how I have done. That look into my past helps me set goals for the coming year. While for us mortals, every look forward in time is seen as if through a dark glass, I still like to imagine what I may achieve in the year ahead?

So, here is my 2017 look back into the past and into the future. These seven points were my goals of 2016.

1. Complete the first book in a new series. As 2016 started this project was so new the novel didn’t have a title and neither did the series. It was planned as a three book series dealing with the issue of electromagnetic pulse. In the first novel, storms on the sun throw off massive Coronal mass ejections (CMEs) that hit Earth over a twenty-four hour period. The resulting electromagnetic pulses set technology across the planet back a hundred years.

I failed on this goal and have only written thirteen chapters of this still unnamed novel. However, as 2017 starts, I’m updating this goal with a plan to finish the first book and release it by May of 2017. You can read more about this upcoming novel on the projects page of my website.

2. Complete the second book in the Guardian Knights series. At the start of 2016, I had completed the first novel in the series Seekers of Earth, a 39,000 word prequel that ends in a cliffhanger. I wanted to finish the second book, Recall the Earth, and have both available near the same time.

I succeeded with this goal. Seekers of Earth will be released in March of 2017, and Recall the Earth is scheduled for release in April. Since I’ve achieved this goal I’m adding a new one, complete the third book in the series, Return to Earth, by December 2017. You can read more about this series on the projects page of my website.

3. Write 130,000 words in 2016. I planned to complete the EMP book, Recall the Earth, Nightmare in Slow Motion and The Long Way Home. I finish all of them except the EMP book and wrote 107,342 words.

While I’m pleased with what I accomplished, I didn’t make my goal. I’ve updated the projects list with The EMP book and Return to Earth and set my writing goal for 2017 at 110,000 words.

4. Release the Strengthen What Remains omnibus edition. Planned for release in April of 2016, this ebook only edition would include Through Many Fires, A Time to Endure, Braving the Storms, a short story, Nightmare in Slow Motion and a novelette, The Long Way Home. The boxset came out late, in August, but is now available. Click here for more information on the boxset.

5. More book promotions. My only book promotion of 2015 was tied to the release of Braving the Storms. I planned for three book promotions in 2016 with two tied to the Strengthen What Remains series.

The promotions went off close to what I had planned making this fifth goal a success. So, I’m planning five in 2017, three large scale events and two smaller campaigns. The first major event, discounting A Time to Endure to 99 cents, has already been scheduled for January 19th.

6. Update the website cover pictures regularly. This turned out to be a burden and received mixed reviews from website visitors. As with goal number three, I’m pleased with what I did, but need to do better, or in this case, different. I adopted a more landing page style for the website and have been working on other changes that visitors will see over the coming year.

7. Make shorter blogposts. A year ago my wife looked at the goals blogpost and said, “People don’t have time to read long blogposts.”

Yeah, I’m still working on that.


 
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A Look Forward

I like to look forward this time of year.

The first website cover picture of the year was snapped by Paul Itkin. Unfortunately, I know nothing more about him. However, it is with his beautiful picture that I begin my own 2016 journey.

While every look forward is seen through a dark glass, I like to imagine what I’ll get done in the coming months and what my life will be like as the year winds down. I usually write my goals and post them near my desk. This year I thought I’d share some thoughts about the coming year with all of you.

1. Complete the first book in a new series. This project is so new the novel doesn’t have a name and neither does the series. However, right now it is planned as a three book series dealing with the issue of electromagnetic pulse. In the first novel, storms on the sun throw off massive Coronal mass ejections (CMEs) that hit Earth over a twenty-four hour period. The resulting electromagnetic pulses set technology across the planet back a hundred years. You can read more about this upcoming novel on the projects page of the website.

2. Complete the second book in the Guardian Knights series. This may seem strange since the first book doesn’t yet have a release date, but I have good reasons. Seekers of Earth, the first book in this science fiction series, is a 39,000 word prequel that ends in a cliffhanger. I can imagine the angry reader reaction if they read that book and the second novel wasn’t available. So, my plan is to release the second novel, Recall the Earth, at the same time as the first book. That will happen this year, but we don’t yet know when. You can read more about this series on the projects page of the website.

3. Write 130,000 words in 2016. Last year I set a goal of completing four manuscripts and writing 120,000 words. I completed three of the projects and wrote nearly 128,000 words. The Long Walk Home, a short story in the Strengthen What Remains setting, will be completed this year. In addition to The Long Walk Home, I plan to complete the two projects listed above, and finish editing another short story in the Strengthen What Remains series, Nightmare in Slow Motion. I estimate that will entail writing 130,000 words during the next twelve months.

4. Release the Strengthen What Remains omnibus edition. Due for release in April, this ebook will include Through Many Fires, A Time to Endure, Braving the Storms and two short stories, Nightmare in Slow Motion and The Long Walk Home. You can read more about the short stories on the projects page of the website.

5. More book promotions. The only book promotion of 2015 was tied to the release of Braving the Storms. My 2016 goal is to have three book promotions. At least two tied to the Strengthen What Remains series in February/March and September/October. The third one will be tied to the release of the Guardian Knights books. We don’t have a date for the third one but, what this means for you is, more chances to buy my books at a discount.

6. Update the website cover pictures regularly. This is a minor thing, but last year I used five different website cover pictures and changed them at irregular intervals. I have many beautiful pictures available, so this year I want to change them during the first week of each month. Stop by at least every four weeks to  enjoy the new cover image.

My wife looked over this blogpost, as she does with most of my writing, and said, “People don’t have time to read long blogposts.”

Sigh. Perhaps she’s right.

7. Make shorter blogposts.

Find previous cover pictures here.