From the Archives: “Here’s to 2015, The Year You Publish a Book”

Welcome back to our Tuesday segment, where we’ll be revisiting some of our most popular posts from the last few years.  What’s stayed the same?  And what’s changed?  We’ll be updating you on the facts, and taking a new (and hopefully refreshing) angle on a few timeless classics of Self Publishing Advisor.

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[ Originally posted: January 5th, 2015 ]

If you are like many writers, publishing a book is probably on your 2015 to-do list. You’re probably feeling inspired, excited, maybe a little scared or overwhelmed, and you’re hoping your dream won’t become another failed resolution that gets pushed to the back burner after the thrill of the new year wears off.

Well, I’m here to help. Each week in January I will offer you tips and tricks to help you accomplish your goal of publishing a book this year, and I encourage you to continue reading my posts every week throughout the year for inspiration, advice, and news that will help you become a successful author.

So let’s get started.

The first thing you must do if you want to accomplish your goal is break it down into smaller, more manageable and measurable tasks. This will keep you from feeling overwhelmed, getting side tracked, and losing inspiration.

I find it helpful to have a calendar in front of me when I complete this task to help with setting deadlines and factoring in events that may impact my writing goals.

Now ask yourself these questions:

1) How much time do I need to dedicate to writing each day, week, or month?

2) When do I want to complete my first draft?

3) How much time do I need to edit my first draft?

4) What tasks besides writing (i.e., researching, marketing, etc.) will I need to complete?

5) When do I want to start the publishing process?

6) How will I fund my project?

7) What will help me be successful?

Using your answers to these questions, write down small, measurable goals for your project and put them some place you will see them often. Be sure to periodically check your progress and adjust your goals as needed.

I’d love to know, what are your 2015 writing goals?

– by Jodee Thayer

There’s a lot we can learn from the past, both the personal past and the grand historical narrative. Like, for example, it’s not a good idea to put your hand on an open flame. The historical lessons are easy to call to mind, too: Hitler, slavery, segregation, overdoing the electric shock therapy.

But there’s a lot we can’t know about the future, right? That’s just how time works. We don’t know what’s just over the event horizon; if we could, we’d all be rich. (Among other things.)

Well yes … and no.

Yes, there’s a lot we can’t know. But there’s also a great deal we can predict about the future based on our past habits. And Jodee, in her prelude to 2015, lay out the groundwork for a highly predictable future–a future that would meet with both her highest expectations for success and, understandably, with the challenges she had the foresight to see coming a long way off. How is this possible? Well, she took a good long look at what challenges she’d faced in the past, and the good habits she’d pulled together to combat them, and then she extrapolated forward, assuming both would prove to be constants in her future, if only she could manage to meet them in full fighting mettle.

Busy-ness is a thing most of us are more than a little familiar with. But I urge you, dear readers, to take a quick look back at Jodee’s recommendations from 2015. They still hold true. First, to break each task “down into smaller, more manageable and measurable tasks.” Then to pull out a calendar and plot all of the deadlines you know you’ll need to meet, such as awards submissions deadlines, and any upcoming personal distractions you know you’ll need to plan around–weddings, vacations and traveling, holidays, surgeries, turning in grades, etc–so that they become a feature of, rather than a source of anxiety within, your upcoming year. And start sketching out answers to her seven questions, listed above. I’ll be revisiting mine next week, and I hope you will too.

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Thanks for reading.  If you have any other ideas, I’d love to hear them.  Drop me a line in the comments section below and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.  ♠


Kelly

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com.

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