IWSG – New Year New Goals

Photo credit from Pixaby

Happy New Year!!! I hope you had a wonderful holiday. Not only is this a new year, but also a new month so that means it’s time for an IWSG post. I took last month off, but ready to get back on the blogging horse (so to speak).

So, in keeping with tradition, this post will be a revisit of my 2021 goals followed by what I’m hoping to achieve in 2022.

I broke last year’s goals into main and extra. How’d I do?

Create marketing plan: FAILED

I don’t know why I keep thinking I’ll succeed at this. Did I do some marketing? Yes. Did I have a solid plan in place to do so, even with the helps of resources? No. I had every intention, I really did, but at the end of the day as the stress of writing the series got to me, the marketing fell to the wayside like always. *Le sigh*

Publish Madison series with intent: SUCCESS

Last year was the first time I set out to write a *planned* series and publish the books on a schedule. All three books in my Love on Madison Island series were released ON TIME even though I wasn’t sure I’d make it, especially for the last book. While it was a stressful time, I did learn somethings about myself and I can use those lessons in the coming year.

Create box set for Desert Rose series: POSTPONED

I don’t want to call it a failure as this is still the plan, but I got an idea late in the year which meant I put this off for now. I’ve written short scenes as sort of a “where are they now” with two of the books which I’ve included in my newsletter. I want to do the same with the third book and then make all 3 shorts bonus content to include in the box set. The other two shorts are holiday related, so that will me the last one will also be a holiday short, planned for Valentine’s Day.

No need to break these down individually. For my “extra” goals for 2021 I failed to achieve any of them. I’m not sure I want to do a Tee Spring store. Not convinced there are people enough out there that will want merchandise from me to keep up with what was becoming a headache.

After finishing the Madison books I was wiped out! No new words other than newsletter shorts for me since September 2021. I the next series is a sort of postponed like the box set (see 2022 goals). And the money… well hahaha yeah not even freaking close sadly.

Time to look ahead to what I want for 2022.

No break down between main and extra this time. I am still trying to take things easy on myself by setting what I hope are attainable goals.

Even though I haven’t actually written new words since September of 2021, that doesn’t mean I haven’t been thinking about the next story. I have an idea for my next full which I’m actually looking forward to writing and then I’ll be back in the query trenches as I want to submit to publishers again. My goal there is to take some of the financial strain off because 2021 was an expensive year publishing wise.

Learning to make my own covers is also to help alleviate some of the financial stresses. Ebooks I’m pretty comfortable with, but it’s the paperback covers that give me trouble. Attempting to master that is something I’m hoping to do this year.

Even though I want to save funds, that doesn’t mean I want to stop my indie publishing completely. Novellas are cheaper to produce because of the word count. Lower editing costs, that sort of thing. Plus traditional publishing isn’t known for moving fast so while the full is on submission, I need something to do in the interim.

The last two I’m hoping will go hand in hand. I attempted to do the consistent thing in 2021 but I admittedly let that go to the wayside when my focus was on other things. I pay for a social media scheduler so I need to use it. My hope is to set aside one day a week to plan out my social media marketing posts so I can set it and forget it until the next scheduling day. By showing up and promoting my backlist on a more regular basis, I’m manifesting that more sales will come my way. I have 11 books out currently and I’m still making basically pennies. I need to do better! One goal I didn’t add to the graphic is the biggest for me and I hope all the others will get me to it.

END THE YEAR IN THE BLACK!

Being indie can be a money suck, especially since I have way more going out than coming in unfortunately. Hopefully by reducing some of my costs by submitting, writing shorter books, and doing my own covers, the money I do spend on marketing and editing will be less than what I have coming in. And learning how to make my slowly growing backlist work for me.

That’s it for me.

Until next time,

~Meka

The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is a home for writers in all stages; from unpublished to bestsellers. Our goal is to offer assistance and guidance. We want to help writers overcome their insecurities, and by offering encouragement we are creating a community of support.

The awesome co-hosts for the January 5 posting of the IWSG are Erika Beebe, Olga Godim, Sandra Cox, Sarah Foster, and Chemist Ken!

15 thoughts on “IWSG – New Year New Goals

  1. alexjcavanaugh says:

    Hope doing your own covers and such does help with the finances. And I only know a handful of authors who have mastered marketing.
    Thanks again for judging the IWSG Anthology Contest – we have posted the winners today!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Meka James says:

      Thank you. I hope so as well. I don’t know if I’ll ever master marketing, I’ll be happy if I am consistent in doing it. And you’re welcome. I saw the announcement. Congrats to all the winners.

      thanks for stopping by

      Like

  2. Helen Mathey-Horn says:

    Best of luck with your goals. I think you have a good grasp of what you need to do in these areas (unlike me). I will be interested to know how creating your own covers goes. This is something I think I could do for myself…perhaps.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Meka James says:

      Thank you. I have done a lot of trial and error as I work through to find something that will fit my needs and how I operate. The ideas are there, it’s the follow through I struggle with. Creating the covers takes time, but with programs like Canva it helps. I’ve been playing around with it more and more when making my graphics so moving it up to the next level for covers. Hopefully if you give it a try you’ll enjoy it.

      thanks for stopping by

      Like

  3. Julia Quay says:

    Thanks for the honest pros and cons of self-publishing. I am leaning much more towards traditional publishing. (Book covers? Gak!)

    A new year, new goals! Your new ones seem more specific. Wishing you all the time and motivation needed to get there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Meka James says:

      You’re welcome. I try to be transparent in my struggles and wins. Everyone’s mileage will vary, but it’s good to see how things work for others. Good luck when you go out on submission!

      I try to set specific and attainable goals. As seen, I still don’t always hit them, but I keep trying. Best wishes for you in the new year.

      thanks for stopping by

      Like

  4. Vania Margene Rheault says:

    I can help you learn how to do the book covers, especially if you already like Canva. Is writing novellas profitable? They may be cheaper to produce, but do they bring in money? Unless they tell a story between longer books in a series, I’ve never seen them be profitable. If you have data on this, I would love to read it! Writing novellas is a lot easier, that’s for sure! Thanks for sharing your goals, good luck to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Meka James says:

      Thank you. I tried playing around using one of the tutorials on your blog. I still struggled a bit mainly with getting the proper dimensions to work. I’m going to keep playing around with it using the cover on one of my novellas.

      As far as writing novellas go, your mileage may vary, but for me they work. To date, my best selling book is Being Hospitable which is a 25k novella. All the books in that little series are about the same word count. They are standalones and are not connected to any of my fulls. It might be because I found a niche of low angst, f/f steamy romance because the holiday one also sells decently, though admittedly more during the holiday months hahaha The middle one which is the m/f doesn’t sell as well, but I also tend to push the f/f one more.

      In contrast, the novella I’m tinkering around with cover wise hardly ever sells and it’s only $0.99 so go figure. And it is attached to one of my full lengths. For me, I don’t mind putting the energy into a novella, it’s like a brain rest since I keep them simple on plot and super low on angst.

      I hope this helps a bit. I’m not really good at tracking for hard data purposes LOL

      thanks for stopping by

      Liked by 1 person

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