Looking back on 2011, I realize so much happened in my career. In fact, I've referred to it more than once as the year of crazy. I re-released a series, got contracts with a publisher I've long admired and have finally settled in to this "author" thing.
So what did I learn?
First: Never give up. I had a book that was rejected numerous times that ended up being my top seller of the year. I'd lost sight of how subjective this industry is, so I'm thankful to have an open-minded perspective again. Not only was I shocked at how well the book was received, but I gained contract offers for future works because of it. Not bad for a story I was this close to shelving.
Second: I can't please the world. If I can't do something, it's okay to politely decline. Most people understand that I have a life and won't damn me to hell for being busy.
Third: As an author, I have to prioritize my time and writing schedule. For the better part of two years I've focused on a series that is the most heavily pirated of all my books. In an effort to please fans, I devoted most of my writing time to the series despite the fact it takes me the longest to finish and I'm not breaking even financially. That is about to change. I have other options and can support my family writing different material. Sometimes difficult decisions have to be made but publishing is business, not pleasure.
Which brings me to my next lesson.
Fourth: I write for the love of it. I publish to make a living. These are very different things, and that's okay. This lesson was probably the most important one for me this year.
And last but not least...
Fifth: I'm still learning. Writing is a craft that continues to evolve. This is a good thing. After all, once you know everything what's the point?
Now to the fun stuff!
My Favorite Movie of 2011: Insidious
My Favorite Album of 2011: Adele 21
My Favorite TV Show of 2011: Game of Thrones
My Favorite Book(s) of 2011: I can't pick just one, but I will name a few from the top of my head.
Vampire Instinct by Joey W. Hill.
Lost Wages of Sin by Rosalie Stanton.
Go The Fuck To Sleep by Adam Mansbach, Samuel L. Jackson (Narrator).
My goals for 2012: To wrap up my contracted works, finalize getting requested works into a print format, finish the new urban fantasy I've been working on and take a small break. With five books contracted (and possibly releasing) next year, my plate is pretty full. I have new ideas for future stories that I've jotted down and will get to them as soon as I can. However, I want to spend some time with my family, so I'm thinking next year I'll take a small break during the summer and Christmas.
Now that I've shared my favorites why don't you do the same. What did you learn this year? What are your plans for 2012?