Wednesday Weekly Roundup

And as I enter my tenth year of publishing, I shall do some kind of recap, right? Besides it’s time for those new year’s resolutions for writers… So: wordcount, submissions, publications in that order.

Last week I wrote the story for the anthology workshop (3100 words) and then I was busy with other tasks. I used the long weekend (Jan.6 is a reinstated National Holiday in Italy) to clean up the 45 Italian titles, giving new covers to some of the contemporary stories and adding titles to KU since it seems to work without advertizing.

These are my numbers since I started counting them in 2015 when I bought a new writing computer and stopped doing the first draft longhand:

2015: 400K

2016: 468K

2017: 350K (meh! 17 is bad luck in Italy… πŸ˜‰ )

2018: 535K

2019: 533K

I still plan to write another 500K this year, it seems to be sustainable and it would be the third year in a row. Go me! πŸ™‚ I also hope to write more short stories to submit, which brings us to point #2!

Submissions have increased in spite of a couple of markets folding and one sub ending in the spam folder. Again, here go numbers: 3 in 2013, 6 in 2014, 10 in 2015, 14 in 2016, 15 (+ 6 anthology workshop) in 2017, 19 in 2018 aaaand 29 in 2019!

Two sales in 2019, and 4 submissions are still pending reply (and one was resent in January). And I already submitted 3 stories this year (+ already 6 for the anthology workshop, will probably be 8 in total). So I hope to get to 50 submissions, but it also depends on how much I spend on shorts and how much on longer works! πŸ˜‰ (and how many shorts turn into longer works! πŸ˜€ ) I have accumulated 74 rejection emails, some personalized, some general, but well… I’ll celebrate when I get the 100th because it means I keep trying, LOL!

Publishing: I want to redo most contemporary stories covers in view of a new collection coming out later this year, with a novella and a few unsold shorts. I did my end-of-the-year accounting and even though I spent Zero for covers this year (thanks to those Deposit Photo credits that should last for this year as well), having paid for 3 workships (2 offline and 1 online) and 3 audio books, my expenses are still much higher than my earnings. But looking at that ledger, there are more “in” than “out” and my royalties are rising (although I included also the 2 sales that bumped up the earnings).

So, 2020 goals: write another 500K or more. Write more short stories to be submitted to traditional magazines. Continue writing in the current series (Silvery Earth, Star Minds Universe, Future Earth Chronicles and Vampires Through the Centuries) plus a new one growing out of a batch of shorts. Publish at least 12 books from March. Do the paperbacks I haven’t done last year (erm… still have quite a few, though, don’t I?).

above English titles, below Italian titles and other formats

And then in 2021 I can celebrate the book birth day for Books of the Immortals – Air that will turn 10 years old! It’s not my bestseller (that would be Body Switches that continues to sell a few copies per year since 2014), but it’s my first Book Baby, so I shall celebrate it – next year! πŸ™‚

But the majority of book-babies grow slowly, just like human babies do. Their audience slowly expands, from family and friends and those in the know, to people their parents never met, to people they couldn’t have known as young book-babies, to people they’ve never met, to people they will never meet, to people who will outlive them.

Kris Rusch

Mine are particularly slow-growing, but I’m sure they’ll come of age. I might do book launches for final books in a single-story arc series (Future Earth Chronicles? The first arc is already concluded, though…) or just let them grow naturally like I’ve done until now. It’s an evolving world, like Kristen Lamb explains so well here

Are you all set with your 2020 goals? πŸ˜‰ Here are some tips to be successful… Now hop off to the Infinite Bard for another free story and have a great week! πŸ˜€

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  1. Those are great goals. I hope you make the 50K again this year. Would be great if you could do it three years in a row! Hope you manage to get those paperbacks sorted out soon too. If nothing else, so they’re done, and you can move on. Good luck with the stories you submitted to the magazines as well.

    I’ve been publishing almost eight years now (will be eight years in April) and like you I still spend more than I make on it. Maybe one day our book babies will grow up enough to start earning their own money well enough that we don’t have to keep bailing them out. Can but hope, right?


    • yes, here’s to our book babies earning their keep! πŸ™‚ But we should give them our best (cover, blurb, proofreading), and that might take a little more effort this year…
      Definitely in for the long run, a.k.a. a career, though. Might move to licensing in the future, but for now I want to strive to put out the best book babies I can. I delayed tending the garden for too long, hopefully I can finish during these last couple of months and move on! πŸ™‚


  2. Yeah, gotta give those book babies the best chance we can. πŸ™‚

    I know a couple of my covers aren’t too great, but I’m leaving them alone for sentimental reasons. I mentioned it in a couple of recent interviews I did, and got a lot of positive reactions to my doing so, which is good. Not that I’d have changed them if reactions had been different, since I can’t bring myself to do so. I’ll make sure any using pet photos from now on have better quality shots and look more proffessional though.


    • I’m still debating if I should redo all the Silvery Earth covers, but I probably won’t. Since there are also graphic novels and strip with a comic-book-like cover, it’s probably okay to leave them as they are.
      I already got rid of covers I paid for… enough wasting money! πŸ™‚


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