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NaNo: Day the Tenth

Not much going on today. I wrote nice and early and may write more later. I'm getting closer and closer to that halfway point (43%!), which is very exciting.

If you're looking for some writerly encouragement and advice on goals, make sure you stop by First Edition. Kelly Krystal is going to be hitting her 50k today! That's 50k in ten days people! Wowsa.

Also up for your consideration is an article called "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Authors." The article offers some great advice, some of which can be used towards NaNo (see habits one and two,) but it's really geared towards developing a successful writing career in general, and seeing how NaNo does end (tell me it really does) focusing on the larger picture is always better.

The fifth habit, "Have a Plan," was a particular eye-blinker for me, one of those oh yea! moments. While I don't have an agent, publisher, or personal publicist yet, ahem, I'm largely lacking in the career-plan department. So, how does one do this, this "plan" thing? What does it entail?

I. Have. No. Idea.

Though I think it boils down to having goals and sticking with them. I do have goals, er, a few.

So tell me, do you have a career plan for your writing career? What does that entail (if you don't mind sharing.) Maybe we should put our heads together and come up with some general ideas for a writer-specific career plan.


Stephanie J said...

I don't have set plan but the idea is to be done with my novel by February so I can revise and start submitting to agents. Beyond that, I don't have much of a plan. I suppose we just need to ad the details into that "I want to be published" bit. :)

Sheri Perl-Oshins said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sheri Perl-Oshins said...

Forget it! I am left in your dust. You are a writing maniac. Go Casey, Go!!!

My Plan, ahem... finish book... Revise several times... Get agent... Sell book... Say yes when they ask to make it into a movie... Go on Oprah... Be the first book for her book club for kids... Make loads of money... Rinse... Repeat...

Seriously, while that would be nice, a girl can dream, can't she. Here is my more realistic plan... finish book... revise several times... Find an agent... Wait to sell my book... Work on next book... Wait to see one of my books make it to the bookshleves of Borders etc...

Honestly, that would be enough for me.

Anonymous said...

Hi, Casey,

I'm an aspiring YA author who writes character-driven stories with a stock car racing backdrop. My target audience is kids who'd read Chris Crutcher or Will Hobbs.

Do I have a plan? Yeah, you might say that.

1. Wait for the agents who have had the full manuscript of my novel In the Blood for 5 and 7 months (and the one who's had a partial for 2 months) to get back to me with a definitive answer.

2. If none of them are savvy enough to offer me representation, send out a mass-mailing to every agent I've collected in my "other agents to query" file.

3. If none of them take a bite, research well-known editors and publishing houses and send my manuscript to those who accept un-agented material.

4.If none of them are interested, send it to all the small publishing houses. (Obviously this plan is going to take a looong time to carry out if it goes this far.)

5. In the mean time, work on building my brand and platform by blogging, creating a website, teaching classes and otherwise getting my name out there.

6. Likewise, use the knowledge and skills I've developed over the past three years to earn money by helping other writers get started, stay focused, and promote themselves. (And break myself of the habit of doing all that for free.)

7. Over this winter, re-write my 3rd manuscript, Driven to reflect changes to two characters that I think would enhance the story.

8. Also over the winter, complete the outlines for books 4 (Redline) and 5 (Running Wide Open) so I can be sure that the character growth I've envisioned to span the series pans out correctly.

9. If I've got time left over before spring, go through my second manuscript, Getting Sideways once more. (I'm a landscaper, so I have my winters free but come March all my hours are spoken for.)

BTW, completely by chance one of the characters in my book shares your full name, however she spells her first name with a "K".

Casey Something said...

Thank you for sharing your plans with me everyone!

My loosely thought out plan is similar to yours, Sheri, minus the Oprah bit. : P

I think what I've decided to do is to set myself up a timeline. I'm going to give myself various deadlines for finishing my novel, revising it, beta-ing it, and re-revising, etc. Once I get to that point, I'll worry about creating a submission plan.

Doing NaNo has really helped me see the benefit in writing every single day. I think by giving myself a deadline and imposing a daily word count, I've really found the forward motion I was missing before.

Hopefully I'll be able to stick with it after NaNo ends. It all comes down to that pesky self-motivation I blogged about last week.

Lisanowak: Hello! I love it when new people visit and comment on my blog. It sounds like you definitely have a plan and are well on your way to becoming published. I wish you the best in your submission process! I notice you already have your sights on marketing yourself. That's certainly an aspect of the business that makes me nervous, but I've read it can be really helpful and even crucial to succeeding. Kudos to you for having such a great plan for yourself!

Thanks for stopping by! I'll add you to my blog roll so I can follow your progress.

: )

PJ Hoover said...

I love goals and have gotten away from writing my longer term ones down and making a plan. It's on the list for after the next couple crazy weeks are over!
Thanks so much for the reminder, and I love the idea of brainstorming!