Nicole J. Simms

Reflection 2017 – My Writing Year

Post date: 6th January 2018
Reflection 2017 - My Writing Year

Happy New Year! I can’t believe 2017 is already over. It doesn’t seem that long ago that I sat down and wrote my writing goals for 2017, and now the year has finished. So, how did 2017 go? Well, if you’ve read my other posts, especially the monthly writing goal reviews, then you’ll know that 2017 didn’t go to plan. As always, I was ambitious, and I hoped 2017 would be better than 2016, but it wasn’t a successful year.

2017 was a difficult year for me, for many reasons, and because of this, I lacked the motivation, concentration, and time to complete my writing projects, which I am disappointed about, but I know I did try my best to complete my writing goals.

Even though 2017 wasn’t as successful as I had hoped, I did achieve some or part of my writing goals. So, what were my 2017 writing goals? Well, my 2017 writing goals were:

  • Writing Goal: Finish editing my novel
    Result: I didn’t finish editing my novel. I’m mostly disappointed about not completing this goal because I’ve been working on my novel since 2015, and I hoped I would finally be ready to submit in 2018. I did start my 4th draft, but I potentially have two more drafts to do before I am ready to submit the novel.
  • Writing Goal: Start writing my next novel
    Result: I didn’t start writing my next novel because I’ve been fighting to write my novella for months. Also, I keep changing my mind on which novel I will write next, and a novella series idea has become a novel series idea, so I don’t know whether I should start writing my next standalone or the first in my series – I do hate being indecisive.
  • Writing Goal: Edit my psychological horror novella
    Result: This novella was originally a short story that I had already written, so I foolishly thought I would be able to quickly turn it into a novella and edit it all in one year. It soon became clear that I would need to spend a lot of time considering how the story will work as a novella. I then had to create a new plot, and I’ve even changed how the story will be written. I’m now in the process of writing the novella.
  • Writing Goal: Complete my flash fiction collection
    Result: This is one of the goals that I have partly completed. It was crazy to think I would be able to write and edit a 30,000-word flash fiction collection (I’ve actually written 31,534 words) in one year while working on several of my other projects – I always make things difficult for myself. Now, I haven’t finished the book, but I have written all of the flash fictions that I will include in the book, and I have six finalised stories. I now have the exciting task of editing the other fifty flash fictions. I’m hoping I will soon have my twelve finalised flash fictions, so I can create my free eBook sample, which I will use to help promote the book.
  • Writing Goal: Edit my current short stories
    Result: One of the reasons why I haven’t done very well on my other goals is because my focus shifted to my short stories. I was eager to be published again, and I couldn’t resist those darn story submission calls. Also, I want to build up a fan base (see ‘6 Tips for Building a Fan Base’), so I need more published stories. I have managed to edit and submit many of my short stories, and I’ve even written new ones (not good considering I’m trying to cut down on my unpublished short story list). However, I still have many short stories that still need editing (seriously, I need to stop writing new stories), and sadly, I wasn’t published this year, so I really should have focused on my bigger projects instead, but hey, you live and learn.
  • Writing Goal: Create a fictional village for my novella supernatural comedy series
    Result: This novella series is now a novel series, and I’m calling it a supernatural mystery (I’ll probably change that again this year lol). I’ve not finished creating the village yet, but that has been down to time and motivation. I will complete it because I love the world (village) I’m building.
  • Writing Goal: Edit the first novella of my supernatural comedy series
    Result: As previously mentioned, the novella is now a novel, so I have to spend more time on my planning to make sure I have enough material for a novel, and to know which direction I want to go in. Due to this, I’ve not started writing it yet.
  • Writing Goal: Work on playwriting skills
    Result: At the beginning of 2017, I soon realised that I didn’t have time to do everything, so I decided to drop the playwriting courses. I’m still going to work on my playwriting skills, but not for now.
  • Writing Goal: Keep my writing blog up to date
    Result: Yes, this is one goal that I did complete. I’ve managed to keep my blog regularly updated. Every month I have uploaded between two and four blog posts. I’ve also added new sections to my website, such as the ‘Stories’ section. I’ve also been updating the older posts and adding photos, I have a contact page, and I’ve added new plugins, such as the Hupso Share Buttons for Twitter, Facebook & Google+ and the Get The Image. I still, however, have more work to do on my blog. I have the rest of my older posts to edit, I also want to redesign my blog, and I might create a newsletter.

Now, while 2017 hasn’t been great for my individual writing projects, it’s been a good year for my writing group (Oldbury Writing Group). We published our World War Two anthology titled From Sunrise to Sunset, we started our book tour, our Made in Oldbury creative writing newspaper was published, interviewed on the radio, and we went on some amazing trips. We’ve had a great year, and I can’t wait to see what we will do next year.

I am disappointed about 2017, but I won’t give up on achieving my goals. 2017 didn’t work out the way I wanted it to, but I still moved forward with my writing journey, even if I only took tiny steps forward. My hope is that I will do better in 2018, fingers crossed.

How did you do with your 2017 writing goals? I hope you did well. Feel free to comment below, either way. I’d love to hear how everyone else is doing.

Keep writing, folks!

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