It’s 2018! Holy moly, how did that happen? But happen it has, and having been away for the past month, I’m raring to tackle the year and try to stay sane during the process. Will I succeed? Only time will tell. Here’s my goals for the coming 12 months in lesbian fiction…
10. Go audiobook crazy!
Last year saw the publication of my first audiobook – Nothing To Lose – and it was a runaway success! This year, as well as producing Twice In A Lifetime in collaboration with a new narrator, my entire London Romance series is also being produced by Audible – so you can expect at least five new audiobooks from me this year. Whoop!
9. Be kinder to myself
When you work on your own, it’s easy to set goals, achieve them, and not celebrate them. I’m pretty good about celebrating my book launches, but I need to give myself a few more pats on the back for the small wins in life. So this year, I’m going to make a concerted effort to wink at myself more in the mirror and give myself a hug. It might look odd to strangers, but I’ll know it comes from a place of love!
If you join my VIP Readers’ Group, you’ll receive my novella It Had To Be You for free – a book my wife says is her favourite thing I’ve ever written. And she should know. You also get a heads-up on my new releases, on sales I’m running, plus I do a twice-monthly update on what I’m writing, reading and doing in my life. The updates were new at the end of last year and seem to be going down well – I plan to continue them throughout the year and hopefully get more people to enjoy them! If you’re not already a member, you can sign up here. And to grow my group, I might have to sit through my Facebook ads course finally, eh?
7. Public speaking & networking
I’m an introvert, so networking isn’t easy for me. Put me on a stage to sing karaoke or give a talk, and I’m all in; but put me in a room full of strangers and I run for the hills. This year, I’m going to a self-publishing conference in February and hope to take a deep breath and talk to some people I’ve never met before. Fingers crossed it works. I’m also speaking for LGBT History Month at Transport For London in February, and hope to do more throughout the year.
The London Of Us is being written RIGHT NOW. However, the launch will be held up to coincide with the launch of the audiobook, so my promise to get it to you quickly last year was a bit of a lie. Sorry. On the plus side, I promise it’ll be worth the wait! Later in the year, my plan is to publish another standalone novel. I have a couple of ideas fighting for dominance, and I should know soon which one will win out.
5. Continue podcasting
I love podcasting – both listening and producing – and my plan is to carry on doing The Lesbian Book Club throughout 2018. So expect more interviews, more news, more of me blathering on. Yay!
4. Write some non-fiction books
I’m putting it out there as a plan, so let’s hope this one comes to fruition! Back in 2008 I had a publishing contract to write two non-fiction books on the LGBT experience. I wrote them, but then the financial crisis hit and my publisher went out of business, and bang went my contract. I forgot about the books and went back to work. However, last year I got them off my old computer, re-read them, and you know what? They’re not bad. So this year, my plan is to brush them off, tune them up and send them into the world.
3. Try a collaborative book
This is going to be a major challenge this year, because I’m a control freak and I’ve never written a book with anyone else. But I have a collaborator in place, and we have a book worked out, now we just need to write it. Watch this space to see if it happens or if we implode.
2. Get healthy, get lean
I failed on this one last year. This year I’m serious, because my body needs to be looked after if I want to carry on my career as a writer. So in 2018, I will get reacquainted with my gym habit, I’ll eat healthier, and my main goal: get some definition back in my arms. Guns of steel by the end of the year!
1. Read a book from a new genre every month
Last year, I read a slew of fabulous romances – straight, gay & lesbian – along with some wonderful literary fiction, poetry, and craft & productivity books. This year, I want to widen my reading world and read a book in a genre I’ve never read before every month. For January, I’m starting with a thriller. I might be reading it through my fingers.