So that was 2017. What a year. The world continues to try to tear itself apart – insane weather, mass shootings, racism, and sexual assault dominate the news, and avoiding or at least reducing time spent on social media is increasingly becoming a critical coping mechanism for many people. Whatever slice of humanity you align yourself with, it’s hard not to feel that things are getting worse – for whatever definition of getting worse fits for you. At least a world filled with self-driving cars seems to quickly becoming a reality. I like the idea of self-driving cars. Hopefully they’ll make it to Vancouver before the city grinds to a halt under the weight of all the traffic.
All that bleakness makes it hard to write, but despite the turmoil I’ve had a pretty good year. On the writing side, I got down a healthy 256,032 words. That’s a bit less than 2016 (282,441 words) and even further away from the 300,000 words I set as a goal. I’m still happy with that, though. I did a lot of editing which really lowers the daily word count.
I missed some other goals, too. I’d planned to launch eight books but only managed five:
- The Girl in the Machine
- Serial Killer Z: Infection
- Serial Killer Z
- Serial Killer Z: Sanctuary
- Serial Killer Z: Shadows
I didn’t stick to my original release schedule either. Technically that’s a “failure” but I’m very happy with how the books turned out. No idea why I didn’t publish The Bone Boy. It’s pretty much ready to go so I’ll slot that into my 2018 schedule. More on that when I take a look forward to 2018 in a few days.
And while we’re on the failures, I failed to run a marathon let alone one under four hours (thanks injury), and I put on weight rather than losing it (thanks lack of willpower).
BUT… there were plenty of good things.
Those five releases (and the Leah King Trilogy box set) increased my indie publishing income by 2000%. To be clear, my books aren’t exactly setting the world on fire, but they are selling and a lot of people seem to enjoy them. That’s all I can hope for.
Other publishers seem to like my stories as well. Glitch Mitchell and the Island of Terror appeared in The Jurassic Chronicles, Sitala was published in UnCommon Minds, Pod Fifteen and 12 Things You Need to Know About Merfolk both appeared in Canyons of the Damned, and Immersion Therapy was recorded for the Dead Oaks podcast. I got a few rejections as well (and didn’t submit as many stories as I’d planned), but I’ve very happy with those stories, and honoured to appear alongside some fantastic authors.
There was also plenty of travel – two trips to San Francisco, two trips to England, one to Sweden, one to Colorado, and one to Montreal. None of which helped my weight loss plans but all of which were good fun. Lots of flights though. But yay, air miles!
Despite not managing a marathon, I still ran over 900km and did some really fun trail races. I took a bit of a break from running at the end of the year, but I did a run yesterday and really enjoyed it so I’ll be looking at how I can get the most out of my running in 2018.
We also got a new Blade Runner and a new Star Wars, both of which I enjoyed. And there were lots of books but that’s a topic for another post.
So, overall a good year, and I’m optimistic about 2018. I suspect the world will continue to unravel, but humanity will survive, and I’ll continue to write. Hopefully, you’ll continue to read.
Happy New Year.
[Farewell, 2017 by Philip Harris first appeared on Solitary Mindset on 2nd January 2018]