So over the past couple of weeks I’ve had some setbacks in progress with my creative goals. Unfortunately, one of those setbacks involves the possibility of getting that separate personal workspace away from my family. But I am not letting that stop me from achieving my goals. I am still pressing forward with my projects and am still on target to have my novel manuscript self-published by midsummer. It’s a bit of a surreal feeling, being this close to having this particular story out there and available for people (complete strangers as well as friends) to read. But the closer that publishing goal comes to being a reality, the more I feel like it’s less of a big deal than I have made it over the years.
One of the first dreams I can ever remember having as a child was wanting to write a book and get it published. I was always asking my parents and grandparents to buy me notebooks which I would fill with stories and sometimes illustrations too. When we got our first home computer, I would spend hours typing out stories and filling floppy discs. I even spent time writing on my grandmother’s old typewriter (I thought typewriters were cool long before hipsters made them a thing again!). I still have copies of some of the stories I wrote as a child, clipped into tattered binders of notebook paper or printed sheets. Those stories will never see revival even as inspiration for future projects, but sometimes I enjoy looking back at them and seeing where I’ve come from in my storytelling themes.
Of course being this close to finalizing my current project means that I can now start looking forward to my next project. I have several first drafts started, some related to my current novel and others belonging to unrelated series. Deciding which direction I want to go next could be difficult, and ultimately, I’ll probably end up working on multiple projects at the same time. I want to continue writing stories related to this current novel in order to give my readers more of what attracted them to my writing. But I also want to work on my other stories which may attract a different audience to my work.
Regardless of what my next project ends up being, getting my novel out there for other people to read won’t be the end of the work. Marketing will be solely up to me as a self-published author, and there are as many strategies and options as there are writers when it comes to advertising your stories. There is still a lot of work ahead of me, but being this close to achieving my childhood dream makes it feel easy at this point. And even if this first novel doesn’t go far, once I get it completed, the next project will be easier. In a way, I am looking at this project as a practice attempt now, and each new story I write and self-publish will help me improve both my writing craft and my marketing strategies.