I don't do the New Year's resolution thing. I prefer to set new goals (I probably say that every year, but it's true.)
Which is why, almost a week after getting back from vacation and nearly a week into the new year, and I'm stumped.
I'm not sure in which direction to head.
I know I do too many things, and my constantly shifting attention from one project to the next prevents me from working towards some of my biggest goals (like writing more books). But I can't figure out where to pare down and trim some of the fat.
The vanilla writing pays the bills.
The kink writing is fulfilling. And it's starting to pay the bills.
Where does that leave time for the erotica writing I want to do? Or even the vanilla book ideas (with zero sex - crazy I know) floating around in my head?
The big, bad, OMG dream is to be a full-time author (even if it doesn't pay as much as I'd like). But how do I make that happen? At this point, I don't know.
I wrote over 500,000 words last year - just a rough calculation based on estimates, it could be higher. Only 80,000 words were for erotic novellas or stories. (I've set up a system to track my numbers better this year - the goal is 1,000,000 words.)
So here I am, attempting to refocus for the year ahead, and it's not happening.
I have plenty of ideas for things to write about BDSM - and podcast episodes to produce.
I've got more and more work coming in for ghostwriting and byline, featured articles.
I want to re-design the website but John Brownstone's head might explode if I put myself through that again (the current design is a year old, but I'd love something a little cleaner).
I want to write a non-fiction book about being submissive - according to one publisher there's not a lot of that out there. It wouldn't matter if there was - I think every story has a place.
I have two deeply personal vanilla book ideas running rampant through my brain.
To top it off, I have a stack of 8 books sitting next to my reading chair (not to mention the dozens on my Kindle) that I want to read. I also have three books I agreed to review for kinky authors - which doesn't include the books I review for my Heat Diva column for BTS. Oh, and I read at least 98 books last year (I know it's higher but couldn't find a way to figure out a better number) and I want to read more this year.
To top it off, I am a cross-stitcher and I have a big, beautiful fairy decked out in sparkly purple that really needs to get finished (it's one of those mammoth patterns that will take at least 6 months but probably a year to finish) so it can hang on our bedroom wall. (Yes, John Brownstone is okay with a fairy on his bedroom wall and gave his blessing - he's the same man who happily sleeps under a thick purple comforter, too.)
And those are just the big things I really want to do. Let's not even talk about all the writing opportunities I seek on a weekly or monthly basis, the contests I consider entering and then reject because I'm not sure how I can find time to write, the vanilla and kinky clients (whom I adore!) I've acquired - or am seeking to acquire.
I enjoy it all. I don't want it to sound like I don't. But I'm in a weird place where I don't know how to move forward.
Right now, my plan is to find ways to automate as much as possible. The more systems I can set up - blog scheduling, social media scheduling, marketing, etc - the more time I can give myself. At least that's what I tell myself.
But that's not a game plan or a map on how to do the things I want to do. It's not a horrible thing to not have a concrete list of what to do or how to do it, but as someone who spends her life living by a to-do list and working towards very specific goals, it's a strange feeling.
I don't know what the year ahead will bring. I'm hoping it begins to take some sort of shape soon. I need direction - and to know I'm working towards something. In the meantime, I'll just keep chugging forward and keep putting one kinky foot in front of the other.
Baby steps are better than no steps at all.
Welcome to Wicked Wednesday! This week's prompt is "Believe in yourself" with a look at the new year. I believe in myself. I know I can get things done - but it really helps when I have a plan of action which is what I'm lacking.