Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Year-end Review, ROW80 Goals, IWSG, a Tammy Interview!, and Harry Potter

Goal time!

A new round of A Round of Words in 80 Days has begun (not to mention a new year).

My goals in January 2013 were to:

Finish editing Druid's Moon and share with betas
Done and done! Well, sort of (see 2014 goal below).

Continue querying Out of the Water
Done, a few times. No joy. Unfortunately, even this story needs more editing.

Start typing up Captive of the Sea
Started and finished! Now to print and edit...

Finish editing Rome, Rhymes and Risk
Hmm, I never got around to this.

Get some of my short stories fixed up
Done, and how! One of my stories was shortlisted for the Surrey International Writers' Conference Storyteller's Award.

Introduce some new tabs on the blog, linking to snips that I've posted and events I've hosted
Done! Lots of one-off snips there, including for our Stream of Consciousness exercises on the Forum and Twitter.

Scale back on Facebook
Done! I only check about once a week now.

Keep up with knitting projects Done, except I keep forgetting to blog about them.

Read some of the books I already own instead of buying more (ahem, especially the ones off the list of 180 books down the left-hand side of this blog)
Not going so well. I've got a year left to tackles that list of 180!

Tidy up the garage (full of boxes of books) and the library
Begun! I'm very excited about this. Give me another month or so, and the house should really look proper.

I like these sorts of lists because, looking back after a year, it's nice to see that I accomplished something, at least, even if I feel like I haven't gotten as far ahead as I like.

Which brings me to my Insecure Writer's Support Group suggestion: a brilliant idea from Terry Lynn Johnson:

The Good Things Jar
Isn't that a wonderful idea?

I'm going to start two, one for daily life, and the other for writing.

As for my current ROW80 and 2014 goals, I'm going to keep things simple for now: edit Druid's Moon further. It needs about 20,000 words added to it, some more tension in the character interaction, and a tighter ending. (I could add more about editing short stories, blogging about Tolkien, sorting photos, editing and querying other novels... But I won't).

Something coming up on Monday:

Yes! I was interviewed by Tammy and I survived!

Despite our snowball fight (you'll see!) I had a great time; if you haven't gone through a Tammy interview, you should definitely sign up!

Meanwhile, I've been rereading all the Harry Potter books, again.

J. K. Rowling recently gave an interview on the 15th anniversary of the books:


I was catching up on the latest news on her website (wish I had time to play in the Pottermore world!) and realised she's also a very good non-fiction writer. Read Rowling's essays on her foundation Lumos, on her mother and MS, and on her views of government and benefits in the UK, they're worth it.

Have you set goals for the new year?
Which books do you reread?


Carrie-Anne said...

I don't make resolutions or set goals, since I prefer to do things naturally, organically, as they unfold. I'd feel under too much stress and pressure if I knew I had to write a certain amount of words or meet a certain goal in a certain amount of time.

This year, I would like to indie publish my first Russian historical, and finish my WIP, my third Russian/North American historical. I'm thinking perhaps six more months. Depending on the final length, I may eventually publish it in four volumes instead of one supersized book. I've got a much-shorter editing/rewriting project after my WIP is done.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I saw Terry's jar - it's a great idea.
Looking forward to your interview with Tammy! Those are always funny.

Diane Burton said...

Very impressive list of projects. Love Terry's jar. Best wishes for a great year.

Zan Marie said...

Impressive results, Deniz! I'm still amazed at all you do. Energy is for the young, though. ;-)

Lara Lacombe said...

Great set of goals--best of luck! :)

Donna Hole said...

Awesome you made such good progress. I don't set to many longterm goals as I have a hard time meeting them. No follow-through here!

I often read books more than once. If its a good story, I'll read it several times. I have some fantasy and thriller novels on my shelves I've read at least 10 times.


S.P. Bowers said...

Very productive year! I'm looking forward to your interview with Tammy. Those are always crazy.

Jack said...

That is a lot of planned editing. I hope it all works out really well for you! Sometimes - at least for me - editing can be a bit of a pain.

I need to finish the Harry Potter series...maybe it will make it to my summer reading.

Deniz Bevan said...

Thanks everyone!
I'm hoping keeping things simple will help me stay on track - need motivation to edit!

S.K. Anthony said...

Oooh I have to check out the interview, thanks for the link!

Great to see the list along with what you you've "done", even I feel accomplished reading it lol

Off to check out the interview with Tammy…that girl is something else :D

S.K. Anthony said...

Okay so the interview is not up yet, I'll keep an eye out ;)

Tammy Theriault said...

The interview is epic!! Just like all the fun stuff going on here!

Michael Di Gesu said...

Congrats on you 2013 accomplishments and ALL THE BEST for 2014!

Where do you find the time to do all you do AND WORK full time? I am impressed!

Off to read your "Tammy" interview. I managed to survive mine, too! LOL.

Skye Callahan said...

Congrats on all of your progress so far. I also love lists, but then I still tend to get off track.
I can't wait to read this interview!
Good luck with the rest of your list.

J.L. Campbell said...

Man, you have lots to keep up with. You always inspire me with your energy for your work.

Milo James Fowler said...

Solid goals there -- I need to query more this year, mos def. My novels are getting antsy while my short stories get all the attention.

readfaced said...

You are going to have a VERY busy year. My goals are to revise two stories and begin querying.

As for books I reread...Pride & Prejudice is always on my bedside table. Plus, I will read To Kill A Mockingbird once a year.

Good Luck with your goals!
Leanne ( )

Deniz Bevan said...

Thanks all! If I can just keep up with the edits, I'll be happy...

Books I'm Reading and Finished Books

  • A Woman in Arabia: The Writings of the Queen of the Desert by Gertrude Bell
  • A Winter Wedding by Brenda Novak
  • ***Reading At Intervals***
  • Spun by Catherine McKenzie
  • Sauron Defeated - Book 9 in the History of Middle Earth series by Christopher Tolkien and J R R Tolkien (reread)
  • Lonely Planet guide to Switzerland
  • 12 Anne and Avonlea books by L. M. Montgomery (skimming/reread (this was free on Kindle!))
  • Journal of Inklings Studies
  • Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford
  • 11 Doctors 11 Stories by various authors (including Neil Gaiman)
  • Creed or Chaos? by Dorothy Sayers
  • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien manuscripts edited by J. D. Rateliff
  • Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  • The Jerusalem Bible
  • ***Finished Books***
  • Le livre des Baltimore by Joel Dicker
  • Paddington Bear All Day by Michael Bond
  • Beowulf and Sellic Spell by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Mrs Whippy by Cecelia Ahern
  • The Story of Kullervo by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Going Back by T. L. Watson
  • The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper (abridged, darn it)
  • Emily's House
  • The Hockey Song
  • The End of All Things by John Scalzi
  • A Christmas Story by Richard Burton
  • Histoire de Founex by Josiane Ferrari-Clément (skimmed)
  • Rabbit's Nap: A Lift-the-flap Book by Julia Donaldson
  • Each Peach Pear Plum by Allan Ahlberg and Janet Ahlberg
  • La Verite sur l'affair Harry Quebert by Joel Dicker (loving this!)
  • How To Be A Man (and other illusions) by Duff McKagan
  • The War of the Ring - Book 8 in the History of Middle Earth series by Christopher Tolkien and J R R Tolkien (reread)
  • Pop-up Peekaboo: Farm (DK publishing) (board book) (duh)
  • Paddington Bear Goes to Market by Michael Bond (board book)
  • Emily's Balloon by Komako Sakai
  • Bible stories and puzzles (in French) (board book)
  • The Last Chance Ball (a Word Wenches christmas anthology featuring Jo Bourne, Jo Beverley, etc.)
  • Farmer Giles of Ham by J. R. R. Tolkien (reread but new edition)
  • CassaFire by Alex Cavanaugh
  • First and Second Things by C. S. Lewis
  • Smith of Wootton Major by J. R. R. Tolkien (reread but new edition)
  • So Anyway... by John Cleese
  • The Magic Finger by Roald Dahl
  • Slowly, silently now the moon by Walter de la Mare (poem)
  • I can't work like this by Neil Gaiman (poem)
  • CassaStar by Alex Cavanaugh
  • Death of A Century: A Novel of the Lost Generation by Daniel Robinson
  • The Fly by William Blake (poem, reread)
  • Tyger, Tyger by William Blake (poem, reread)
  • The Christie Notebooks by John Curran
  • The Perfect Son by Barbara Claypole White
  • What to Expect in Baby's First Year
  • Baby's First Year for Dummies
  • secret beta 2!
  • The Secret Sister by Brenda Novak
  • Chu's Day at the Beach by Neil Gaiman (reread, many times)
  • Sacred Inwardness by Marilynne Robinson (essay)
  • New Statesman issue guest edited by Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman (I don't usually include magazines in this list but I read this one cover to cover)
  • The North Star is Nearer by Evelyn Eaton
  • Nightmares and Dreamscapes by Stephen King (loved My Pretty Pony)
  • Every Month Was May by Evelyn Eaton
  • Occasional Soulmates by Kevin Brennan
  • secret beta!
  • Smoke by Catherine McKenzie
  • In Two Aeroplanes Over the Sea by Amanda Palmer (poem)
  • Jim at the Corner by Eleanor Farjeon
  • Finding Fraser by kc dyer
  • Mother Tongue -- The Story of the English Language by Bill Bryson
  • The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan
  • The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
  • Absent in the Spring by Mary Westmacott (Agatha Christie)
  • Come, Tell Me How You Live by Agatha Christie
  • The Lord Fish by Walter de la Mare
  • The Going To Bed Book by S Boynton
  • The Nursery Rhyme Book by Andrew Lang
  • In Dubious Battle by John Steinbeck
  • Subterranean Scalzi Super featuring To Sue the World (an original, very short Redshirts story available nowhere else) Muse of Fire Mallet of Loving Correction Lock In, Lost Chapters (available nowhere else) How I Proposed To My Wife: An Alien Sex Story An Election Judge Sn Goes Golfing Questions for a Soldier The Sagan Diary The Tale of the Wicked The God Engines You’re Not Fooling Anyone When You Take Your Laptop to a Coffee Shop by John Scalzi
  • Emily Goes to Market by William Mayne
  • Many Moons by James Thurber, illustrated by Louis Slobodkin
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (reread)
  • Colours Are Nice (Little Golden Book)
  • Corduroy by Don Freeman
  • The One in the Middle is the Green Kangaroo by Judy Blume
  • The Wars by Timothy Findley (reread)
  • The Captive Diary of Catherine Logan by Mary Pope Osborne (Dear America)
  • The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter (reread)
  • Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson (reread)
  • The Poky Puppy (Little Golden Book) (abridged)
  • The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf (reread)
  • Heidi by Johanna Spyri
  • secret beta read 2
  • Pre-Fix: A Ciel Halligan Short Story by Linda Grimes
  • Hidden by Catherine Mackenzie
  • The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  • Moo, Baa, La La La by Sandra Boynton
  • But Not the Hippopotamus by Sandra Boynton
  • Oh, Whistle, And I'll Come To You, My Lad by M. R. James (short story) (1904)
  • Chu's Day by Neil Gaiman (reread)
  • My Uncle Oswald by Roald Dahl
  • Usborne board books
  • Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell
  • Lila by Marilynne Robinson (so lovely)
  • Flowers for Mrs Harris by Paul Gallico
  • secret beta read!
  • The Woman Who Went to Bed for a Year by Sue Townsend
  • HELP! Food Allergies Coming To Dinner by Kait Nolan
  • This Heart of Mine by Brenda Novak
  • The Owl Service by Alan Garner
  • Two Caravans by Monica Lewycka
  • Aunt Sass by P. L. Travers
  • An Imperial Affliction by Peter Van Houten (actually a few pages of the story, written by John Green for the film of his novel The Fault In Our Stars)
  • January Brings the Snow by Sara Coleridge (poem)
  • Kissing song by Neil Gaiman (poem)
  • The Mother by Nettie Palmer (poem)
  • William Tell Told Again by P. G. Wodehouse
  • Her Ladyship's Companion by Joanna Bourne
  • The Long Way Home by Louise Penny
  • How the Light Gets In by Louise Penny
  • Mes P'tits Contes, legends of Swiss cantons
  • see the 2014 list and statistics at
  • see the 2013 list and statistics at
  • see the 2012 list and statistics here
  • see the 2011 statistics on
  • see the 2011 list at
  • see the 2010 list at
  • see the 2009 list at
  • also in 2009 at
  • see the 2008 list at
  • also in 2008 at
  • also in 2008 at