Reflections In Hindsight

Grace in the Rearview Mirror…it's closer than it appears

  • Ephesians 4:29

    Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (NIV)

    **MATERIAL ON THIS SITE IS COPYRIGHT PROTECTED. For permission on reprints or reusing this material, please contact the individual authors. For sharing the actual post, please use the share buttons.

  • Blog Archives

  • Blog Stats

    • 90,003 hits
  • RSS April’s Blog: A Writer’s Journey

    • Evil Parents and Rotten Kids
      A-ZE is for Evil Parents and Rotten KidsI present you Jimmy Kimmel's annual "I Told My Kids I Ate All Their Halloween Candy" video montage. It's an artful mixture of cruelty, humor, and ghastly awe. My favorite is Drawer Boy. Now there's an ax murderer in the making.Which is your favorite?
      noreply@blogger.com (April Gardner)
  • RSS Barn Door Book Loft

    • A Warm Welcome to Experienced Horseman and Author Les Graham
      Les, it's so nice to welcome you to the Barn Door Book Loft, and especially interesting to me because my husband trained and worked with the Belgian breed and I love horses!  Tell us please . . .Is there a story behind your book Jude’s Gentle Giants? I Came from a NON Christian home as a child. After asking the Lord Jesus Christ into my heart in 1993, I […]
    • Jude's Gentle Giants by Les Graham
      Back Cover Blurb:Everyone has a dream and that is true of Jude Bonner, a young man growing up on a farm in Belgrade, Minnesota in 2005. Jude gets his wish to have and train a team of Percheron draft horses, Pete and Joe. As is often the case with dreams, the reality turns out to be a little more challenging than he expects. Jude finds himself learning and gr […]
    • Veiled at Midnight by Christine Lindsay
      VEILED AT MIDNIGHT—Book 3 of the series Twilight of the British RajAs the British Empire comes to an end, millions flee to the roads. Caught up in the turbulent wake is Captain Cam Fraser, his sister Miriam, and the beautiful Indian Dassah. Cam has never been able to put Dassah from his mind, ever since the days when he played with the orphans at the mission […]
  • RSS Clash of the Titles

    • The Winner of the February 2015 Clash of the Titles
      A big thank you to all four authors for sharing news of their wonderful new releases! One voter sums it up"All of these books sound so good. I would really like to take a vacation where I could just read, read, eat, read, eat, and did I mention read some more? Well, all of your books sound amazing like you! May God bless each of you as you endeavor to d […]
    • January New Releases Clash
      Hostess: Gail PallottaJanuary 2015, brought us many great fiction books. Contemporary, historical, young adult futuristic and a suspense novel round out this month’s Clash. Which of these will you put at the top of your to-be-read list?***During the 1960s, Henry Youngblood feels the call to plant a new church. Meanwhile, his wife wonders how to pay the bills […]
    • Featured Novel: "This Redeemer"--Not All Prisons Have Bars.
      “An exhilarating ride full of suspense and hope...” “…hits the ground running and never lets up…” “A riveting story with great characters…”About This Redeemer:Not all prisons have bars.Charlotte Davis should know—she’s lived in one for years. She can handle getting slapped around by her boyfriend, Tommy, and even being forced to do things she would never cho […]
  • RSS Little Bits Blog

    • Chloe's Decision 
      As I stated last week, November is NANOWRIMO. I'm working on the next Stones Creek novel. It's the story of Chloe, Noah Preston's sister. She comes to Stones Creek with her two children. If you would like to read her pre-story simply subscribe to Sophie's Special Emails. No more than twice a month will you receive an email with special co […]
    • Remembering Fudgsicles
      It is November and thus NANOWRIMO, National Novel Writing Month. The challenge is to begin a novel and write 50,000 words during the month. Since this occupies most of my focus for these four weeks I will be reposting previous articles each week this month. Fudgsicles, how long has it been since I’ve had a fudgsicle? I’m not sure, but they came to mind when […]
    • Are You Teachable?
      What? You think you know everything? I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but no one knows everything. Oh, there is one, Hashem. He's omniscient. But no one else is. Even Yeshua (Jesus) isn't. He doesn't know the hour or day he will come again. Some people rejoice in learning something new. I tend to be one of those people. I read about […]
  • RSS Living Our Faith Out Loud

    • New Book in the Sweet Briar series by Carol Heilman
      Summer's steamy haze coats North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains, but feisty Agnes Marie Hopper discovers the heat isn't the only thing causing her blood to boil. After a kitchen fire destroys her home, Agnes moves in with her daughter, Betty Jo. Three months later they come to an understanding: neither can tolerate living with the other. So o […]
    • Book Review - Remember Me by Lara Van Hulzen
      Remember Me, by Lara Van HulzenOctober 2014Book one in the Men of Honor seriesISBN: 1502450062Ebook $3.99Print: $9.99Inspirational romantic suspenseAmazon BNFrom the Publisher: Detective Ben Russo is in trouble.He just can’t remember why.When a car accident lands Ben in the hospital, he can’t recall anything about his life. What he does know is he’s enchante […]
    • How Checking E-mail Leads to House Fires
      Distracted Cooking and Other Catastrophes I recently wrote a guest post on a day in the life of a writer. It was filled with really cool and important things I'd done that particularly attractive day for the romantic illusion of a working writer.But having just experienced another one of those smoke-filled burning heavy-duty aluminum moments reminding m […]
  • RSS Nearly Brilliant

    • Book Review: Georgiana Darcy's Diary: Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice Continued by Anna Elliot and Laura Masselos
      I'm a big Austen fan and I love Pride and Prejudice so my fear was this would be a feeble attempt at sequel. I was pleasantly surprised. Georgiana Darcey, Mr. Darcey's younger sister, is now 18 years old and in love with her co-guardian Colonel Fitzwilliams. Elliot and Masselos do a great job fleshing out some of the peripheral characters from the […]
    • Book Review: Standing Stones by Beth Camp
      This first book in a promising series, takes place in 19th century Scotland in the Orkney islands at the time of the Clearances. It was a time when wealthy landowners were changing their mode of land management and ruthlessly throwing tenants off the land.When Lord McDonald takes over the estate of Westland and its holdings, he's determined to make impr […]
    • Book Review: Caught in the Middle by Regina Jennings
      Anne Tillerton is similar to Annie Oakley. She's a dead shot  with a gun and for the past few years has made her living as a buffalo hunter. But when Nick Lovelace comes to the aid of a passenger on a train during a hold up, Anne ends up saving Nick's life.Anne's sordid history includes killing her husband. We learn later it was a kill or be k […]
  • BLOG NEWS

    Thank you for your encouragement and support for the past three years. We've had fun connecting with you and hope you've found useful material here on Reflections. And here's the but... Reflections In Hindsight is closing on December 21, 2012. Elaine and Sophie and I can be found over at http://authorculture.blogspot.com; April can be found at Clash of the Titles, http://www.clashofthetitles, http://www.aprilgardner.com and watch for news for more novels from her!; Janet is ever-present on the Internet with her very special words of wisdom and grace at http://www.janetperezeckles.com, and Luther--who knows where he'll show up next, but I'd watch my back if I were you... Book Reviews are always important, so I, Lisa, will continue to offer them through my blog, as well as those promotions for your new books or book launches, or your news.
  • Second Monday: Sophie Dawson

  • Tuesdays – Promotion in Motion

  • Wednesdays: Life of a Writer – April & Positivity – Lisa Lickel

  • Thursdays – Luther’s on board

  • Fridays – Revolutionary Faith, Devotions by Elaine

  • Saturdays – Janet Perez Eckles

  • Sunday – Reflections Book Reviews

  • Blog Authors

  • The Barn Door

  • The Barn Door Book Loft. Free Books! Book Giveaways.

  • John 3:16 Marketing Network widget and many other great free widgets at Widgetbox! Not seeing a widget? (More info)>

New Year’s Resolutions

Posted by Ben Erlichman on January 5, 2012

Well, it’s that time of the year again–the beginning. By this time a lot of people have already made and forsaken their New Year’s Resolutions. As for me? I’m just getting started.

I learned this nifty trick from Randy Ingermanson, a titan of fiction writing and teaching, and an all-around nice guy, too. It’s not so much a trick as it is a strategy to make sure you’re on task with your New Year’s Resolutions, especially if you’re a writer: create a writing business plan.

Randy talked about this in one of his past e-zines and I decided it would be a helpful tool for me. You can visit his website (just click on his name above) to search for the actual article yourself if you want all the details he included, or you can just read my summarized version in this post.

My business plan includes some key elements that you may want to put into yours. What follows is a list of what those are and a short description for each one.

Introduction: I used this section to articulate my major career goals as a writer. I listed five of them, the last of which is “To fully financially sustain myself and my family through writing-related revenues.”

Section 1 — Significant Achievements of 2010: This one is self-explanatory. I have yet to update it to 2011, but you get the idea. In this section I detailed the novels I wrote, connections I made with agents,  publishers, and other authors, achievements for my writing (in 2010 I was an ACFW Genesis contest finalist), the conferences I attended, blogging, short story-writing, stuff I did to work on my brand, and other stuff too.

I also took the time to list out every book I plan to write in a table by title. I included details like genre, production status (where I was in the process of writing these books), and whether or not it’s part of an intended series.

Here's a list of everything I'm working on right now...some more than others, of course.

Section 2 — Business Details: I didn’t write much in this section as most of my business isn’t happening since there’s not a lot of money coming in or going out at this point. I anticipate that it will grow as time passes, as will the amount of money I bring in. In 2010, I made a few bucks from selling my first ever short story, and then I made a few more in 2011 from selling a couple more short stories.

You can also put the amount of money you spent on your writing career in this section, and perhaps some spending you anticipate for the upcoming year. It’s important to remember that the money you spend is an investment in your writing career (it should be helping you make progress in your writing–if it’s not, then don’t spend the money on it next year).

Section 3 — Major Projects to Complete: This is for the upcoming year, of course. These are practical, achievable steps you can take towards fulfilling the goals you might list in the introduction. For me, I said that by the end of 2011 I wanted to have three publishable novels ready to present to publishers (meaning they were written and edited). To date, I have three novels and one novella (it would have been four, but one of them ended up kind of short).

At the end of 2012 or the beginning of 2013 you can look back at these projects and assess  your progress on them and whether or not it’s a huge failure on your part that you didn’t accomplish or finish them. It’s also important to note that things like brand development and marketing projects can fall under this section too.

Section 4 — Continuing Education: In this spot I detailed the books on writing that I wanted to read and the ones that I read the previous year. I also mentioned critique groups/partners that I had and conferences I planned to attend in 2011. Then, of course, there were fiction books I wanted to read as well, so I started keeping track of those.

Section 5 — Conclusion: I wrapped the document up by making a statement of what I will look like by the end of 2011–it’s kind of another goal, if you think about it. I said I would be much closer to realizing my overall goal of becoming a published novelist in the action/adventure genre. I also promised to revisit it in 2012 and create an updated version.

I encourage all of my author friends to create something like this if they’re trying to make a career out of writing. It has really helped to focus my attention on what parts of my life and career I should be developing, and it provides a guide to follow for the course of the year. It provides self-accountability, which is huge when you’re a writer since it can be such a solitary endeavor. Will you be writing a business plan for your writing this year?

-Ben

3 Responses to “New Year’s Resolutions”

  1. Thanks Ben for insight into your new year’s resolutions. This is so completely detailed that it would derail my creativity – just who I am.

    My goals (not resolutions) for this year (subject to change): lose weight, enter the Genesis, enter unspecified number of other contests, finish current WIP, start another, send current MS to agents, send you a short story I wrote especially for Splickety Magazine (that’s an added one, ‘cuz it’s just sitting in my file folder waiting for me to remember to send it). LOL

    I hope you accomplish ALL you’ve set out to do. :)

    • Ben Erlichman said

      Hi Ginger,

      You’re not the first person who has told me that! It’s freeing to me to put it all on paper, and then I can try to stick to it as best as I can. Of course there’s room for freedom and tweaking, and having a mid-course correction in June or July is necessary as well, but it’s really just a guide. Ultimately it’s still all up to the author to make the most of the year, business plan or no business plan.

      Thanks for commenting, and good luck with your goals this year.

      -Ben

  2. Excellent. Hate the business plan, but it’s a gotta.
    And please don’t try to do tons when the baby is new – just enjoy getting to know that little person and have lots of patience when you’re exhausted and running on empty, cuz, really, take your turn getting up at night, it’s worth it. Just don’t turn on the lights and play.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,247 other followers

%d bloggers like this: