thewhitelily: (Lily)
Yes, I know it's April.  I've been a bit... focussed on writing, and unable to really lift my eyes recently, but I've finally got around to filling in my word count spreadsheet since about September last year, and starting a new one for 2017.

Final numbers for 2016 are:
Words written: 142,266
Words posted: 125,089
New posted stories: 41
% posted: 87.9%
Lifetime words written: 803,446
Lifetime words posted: 348,018
Lifetime % posted: 43% (up from 33% at beginning of the year)
Lifetime posted stories: 58 (counting an old drabble series as a single story)

My goals for 2016 were:
1) Write and increase my portfolio, posting at least one work every month, and working on fluency and finishing things rather than half writing and wandering away when the going gets tough. (I'll have to call this one success beyond my dreams!)
2) Read fic, when I read, like a member of a community and not a 'next fic' zombie (success mostly)
3) Read one book per month (fail--I think I managed five in the year--but that's still a massive increase on last year)
4) Finish Futureproof (fail)
5) Finish NaNoWriMo (fail)

All in all, I'm happyish.  I'd have to say, I'm doing great as long as I stay in fanfiction.  As soon as I head off into original, I fall apart, and I need to prioritise my mental health.  I'm pretty pleased with the sheer quantity of new stories I've written.  In the pretty much exactly 18 months since I came back to fandom again, to today, I've written 72% of my lifetime posted work.  But only 31% of my total words written.  It's the result of an incredible concerted effort to follow through, and I'm very proud of myself for acheiving it.  Given my trouble last year with original, and the way it did my mental health in, I'm not as certain anymore that my eventual path is to transition to original fic.  I'd still like to try, but I think I'm happier with the idea that perhaps it's not for me and I'll be okay if that's the case.

My goals for 2017 are:
1) Write and post like the wind as the new season of Sherlock was coming out and increase my fandom visibility.
Very much acheived.  I wrote and posted 16 new stories in January, and I've got a number of new followers as well as a number of new fandom friends.  :)
2) Keep writing for fan_flashworks every challenge
Going well so far.  I've even started properly claiming my badges, which is very satisfying, and I'm (given the mods asked me to only claim three or so at once) two or three challenges off being completely up to date.  Keeping up my challenges-in-a-row streak most motivational for keeping writing, and a couple of times having to pull myself up and write something to post has really saved me from disappearing into an anxious huddle.    (Although given the nature of my deadline-driven motivation and the time offset in Australia, I've woken up in cold sweats quite a few times in the horrified conviction that I've accidentally missed the deadline.)  The streak currently stands at 30.
3) Keep trying out writing different things: female characters, descriptive pieces, different genres, different fandoms.
Doing pretty well, I've got two pieces from female POV so far, and I think they worked well, and a couple of metas.  And I wrote my longest humorous story ever, which was in a bit of a different format breaking the fourth wall, which was absolutely tremendous fun and has been very well received.  Most different of all, I've accepted a position for at most one day per week as a research assistant for my best friend the university lecturer, writing up her papers for her.  We'll have to see how that goes.
4) Try out writing some original short fics, rather than staying all in on fandom all the time, to stretch and build up the original fic muscles without launching straight into a novel and hitting the trigger for a nervous breakdown.
Mmmm, sort of.  I've written two biographical short stories for fan_flashworks, which is a start.  And I have avoided giving myself a nervous breakdown thinking about it.  I've done a bit of research for short story competitions that seem doable.  Deadlines, prompts, etc.   Which made me realise the Vogel awards deadline is at the end of May and--it occurs to me that given I'll turn 35 in October, this is the last year I'm eligible to submit.  I'd always thought I might submit Futureproof for that when I finished it, but... less than two months away.  Hello, nervous breakdown.  I keep thinking... I could try.  But I'm pretty sure at this point I could only fail, and that would be very much not good for me.  I'm also pretty sure that what I write isn't really the right genre, so... let it go.  Let it go.  Focussing on some short stuff is, I think, very much the way to go.
There's a couple of competitions coming up--one I'm thinking of in particular which is for maximum 1500 words on the theme of "light" open only to Australian residents and a first prize of $5000, due in in two weeks.  It seems like an extremely attractive competition and should be well within my capabilities to finish something to submit, and best of all the winning entries available from previous years seem like my style.  I'm going to give it my best shot.
5) Don't obsess and have fun
Yeah, going pretty well!  I've been having anxiety issues touching a couple of other things--but I've been writing mostly freely and without too much obsessing.  Fingers crossed I can keep it that way.

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The White Lily

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