Year-end Writing Wrap-Up and Some Geneva Photos

Here we go with the 2020 writing wrap-up!

Some new photos below, to reward you after the wall of text!

January to April

I revised the character faces for every story group
I need to add a few, including Alexandre from The Byzantine Time (see NaNoWriMo below):

I need an intern, revisited

I reposted an old post about classic authors such as Somerset Maugham

I participated in a blog tour hosted by Jemi Fraser!

I participated in the February writing exercise on dialogue, the March exercise on scene setting and the April one on real characters, all on thelitforum

Christopher Tolkien passed away (I haven’t collated all the other RiP posts from this year)

May to August

I consolidated all my social network links!

I participated in the May writing exercise, writing a 500-word story

I collated all my hodge-podge posts, including when I finally blogged about my favourite word, hiraeth

I participated in the June writing exercise, Dancing in the Dark, with two scenes!

I participated in a blog hop hosted by Chrys Fey!

I blogged about "in my writing I always/never" and shared my revamped family tree (that’s already out of date...)

I also blogged about my revamped writing schedule
At the time, here's what life looked like (bearing in mind that I am not the primary caregiver until dinnertime, but am in the same room as everyone else):

7-9 a.m. kids wake up, breakfast, I check work emails
9-11 a.m. work, clear emails
11 a.m. work meeting online
12 p.m. kids eat lunch, I work
1 p.m. toddler's naptime (I help him go to sleep), a bit of reading
c. 1.30-3 p.m. toddler naps, going-into-second-grader plays or reads, I work
c. 2-4 p.m. kids run around or go to the park, I work
4 p.m. kids' cartoon time, my reading time
5-8 p.m. dinner, bath, bed
8-10 p.m. should be writing or editing time but generally becomes read, check, check my gmail and yahoo, or shop online time.
The 4 p.m. gap (which often gets eaten by work) could be editing time instead of reading time. There's also 6 a.m., which is when I tend to wake up (and most days the toddler sleeps till 7).
Knowing that nothing is going to work and that I will procrastinate no matter what, I'm going to pick up an idea that Monica Byrne and author others use: Morning Pages.
This means that the minute I wake up, I write. No matter what. I may delete some apps on my phone to help me stick to this. In fact, I'm going to do this right now. Desperate times and drastic measures, and all that.

I did that! And the morning pages were really useful during NaNoWriMo.
But now that I'm no longer drafting a new story... It's tricky. The main things that are different, compared with that schedule, are that school is open (for now!) and that the toddler doesn't nap regularly anymore. Also, I've gone back to reading during the 4 p.m. hour, which is nice (relaxing and fills the well). And I easily deleted some apps. I need to either edit something on paper, or get back into the habit of editing on-screen on the phone.

Finally, I participated in the August writing exercise on raising the stakes

September to December

I submitted some short stories and had no luck... I also participated in WRiTE Club and didn’t get too far in the bouts...

I participated in the December writing exercise on editing

The start of the Ask Me Anything writers' houseparty (and a baking post I didn’t include in last week’s wrap-up)! I also mentioned the Canada and impressionism exhibit in that post; here are more photos of some of the paintings

I shared a snip from the AMA HP! Plus I organized my Agatha Christie collection! 

Another snip from the AMA HP, for which I wrote over 10,000 words!
I participated in the October writing exercise on anger management and in our fight scene clinic

I graduated with my Master’s degree! I also attended the Surrey International Writers’ Conference for the first time!

Writing wrap-up by decade, part 2

I consolidated all my birthday posts! Plus shared a snip from the unfinished 1930s story!

I finished The Byzantine Time during NaNoWriMo! Plus new horror stories by Ryan Bevan!

I participated in the December writing exercise on editing

Summer Fire publication anniversary! Plus a Summer Blaze snip!

I also blogged about lots of new releases, shared lots of travel photos (from 2019, needless to say), including of Tolkien exhibits in Oxford and Paris, and shared IWSG Day posts each month, including when I co-hosted during the ninth IWSG anniversary!

Overall, I did some substantial editing of Captive of the Sea, and at the end of the year sent it out to a few betas, and I did some beta reading of others’ short pieces.

I also participated in A Round of Words in 80 Days! But I haven't really collated my goal posts...

Finally, I've updated my story playlists on YouTube and added two new ones:
The Byzantine Time
September 2020 Ask Me Anything writers' houseparty

Something I mentioned in last year’s recap was:
"The idea of concentrating on reading all the books we already own. I seem to have a rotating 50 (counted generously) and probably 150 (counting even those books that I never mean to read) in the house at all times. I'd like to move them all onto one shelf, maybe.
I do have one dedicated shelf for this at the office, and I’ve slowly begun to work through them.”

This remains valid. I’m working on it, but slowly. One of the best examples is that I’ve finally read The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins!

Overall goals for 2021:

Keep up with blogging and the forum (plus the reading, knitting, baking, etc.!)

Check all "writing to do" and type up all notes on paper and collate all story ideas and ideas from dreams, and all story drafts and research and Save to Scrivener notes in my emails, ideally into my lovely new Kate Davies journal... Organize all Scrivener files

Figure out what to do with the orts, such as the CampNaNoWriMo2015 story The Heathen in the Hold, and others, including items such as this post-apocalyptic story idea I wrote in 2010, based on a dream, the idea mentioned in my 2016 recap, and all other such half-formed notions

I'm going to list my overall goals by story, taking up the list of Works Completed and In Progress from the bottom of this blog that I consolidated during last year's review and adding to it (the last few are all ideas, except for the two completed romances; other ideas and completed short stories and early novels should be added to this list eventually, for the sake of completeness – collating all of this stuff is another ongoing project!):

Find homes for the finished short stories (self-published anthology?)***:
Blackbird's Song
Summer Blaze (sort of a companion piece to Summer Fire)
The Tattoo
Little Upon the Earth, but Exceeding Wise
Where There's Life
He Ain't Heavy
Eyes of the Sky
Late Night, Maudlin Street

Works Completed and In Progress (most of them!):
• Blackbird’s Song (short story, WWII, George and Alice, written 2018)***: submit somewhere
• Summer Blaze (short story, travel romance, Valentina and Justin, written 2018)***re-edit and submit somewhere
• The Tattoo (short story, dystopian, Geneva, Marie-Anne and Michel, written 2017)***
• One to Another (short story, dystopian, Montreal, Aggy and snow, written 2015): This is coming out in the IWSG anthology this year!
• Little Upon the Earth, but Exceeding Wise (short story, murder mystery on board ship, 1493, Rosa and Baha)***
• Where There's Life (short story, magical realism, library card for Alexandria, written 2014)***
• He Ain’t Heavy (short story, 1910s Montreal, Charles and Oliver)***
• Eyes of the Sky (vignette)***
• Late Night, Maudlin Street (vignette, working title)***

• The Byzantine Time (contemporary new adult romance, Alexandre and a murder mystery, written NaNoWriMo 2020): edit on paper
• The Antipodean Time (contemporary new adult romance, Kimberley and Simon, written NaNoWriMo 2019): edit on paper
• A Stitch in Time (contemporary new adult romance, Amelie and Angus, written NaNoWriMo 2018): edit on paper
• The Handful of Time (sequel to The Charm of Time, Christianne and Rory, written NaNoWriMo 2017): finish second round of edits on screen
• The Charm of Time (contemporary romantic mystery/suspense, Christianne and Rory, written NaNoWriMo 2016): re-edit opening and keeping sending queries!
• Mystery at Bertram's Hotel (working title, mystery suspense romance set in WWII Switzerland and France, Phillippe and Milly, written NaNoWriMo 2015): find title! Edit on paper!
• Peter and Penelope (no title yet, romantic suspense, WWII, Gallipoli, written NaNoWriMo 2014): type up! (on backburner)
• Larksong (historical romance, c. 1914 Montreal, Alice and George, written NaNoWriMo2013): keep editing (on backburner)
• Captive of the Sea (historical romance, 1471 England, Magdalena and Santiago, written NaNoWriMo 2012, typed up 2013): review beta notes and submit!
• Druid's Moon (contemporary paranormal, Lyne and Frederick, written summer 2012): collate beta reviews and edit one last time, then submit for an editorial review
• Rome, Rhymes and Risk/Verse, Venice, and Viziers (historical romance, 1493 Mediterranean Sea, Ayten and Devran): keep editing (on backburner)
• Out of the Water (historical romance, 1492 Spain and Constantinople, Rosa and Baha): keep querying (on backburner)
• The Face of A Lion (historical young adult, time travel, Austin and Kedi): keep editing (on backburner)
• An Arnavutkoy Spring (historical romance, 1910 Istanbul, Klara and Sevran): keep editing (on backburner)

• untitled (two new ideas for modern dystopian stories)
• untitled (new adult romance about Spanish couple)
• A Fredericton Story (long-term small town romance set in New Brunswick, plot bunny during NaNoWriMo 2016)
• untitled (another story featuring Brother Arcturus and Austin and Kedi, set c. 1520)
• The Heathen in the Hold (working title, featuring Brother Arcturus and Austin and Kedi, set on board ship c. 1496, CampNaNoWriMo 2015 and 2016)
• Coliseum (working title; sequel to The Face of A Lion)
• Radio Nowhere (working title; new idea for Scholastic's Dear Canada series, 1930s)
• Indexing Outlander series (volunteer project started by members of OutlanderGathering Yahoo group)
• Bizim Anadolu (travel column and book reviews)
• The Trickster in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings (journal article)
• Don't Stand So Close To Me (screenplay)
• A Short Album About Love (screenplay)
• Crash! Boom! Bang! (romance, completed)
• Never Is A Long Time (romance, completed)

And now, to break up all the text, here are some old photos that I don't think I ever shared:
Geneva in the springtime!

For the first round of A Round of Words in 80 Days for this year, then, I'll try to work on paper edits for The Handful of Time and on-screen edits for At Bertram’s Hotel (I really must find a proper title!), keep participating in the writing exercises on the forum, and submit more short stories to various places.

What are your goals, short-term or long-term?


You also had a story accepted in the IWSG anthology.
sage said…
You have some amazing accomplishments. The photos of Geneva are nice-it's one of the few cities that's on my short list of places to see.
Deniz Bevan said…
I did, I did, Alex! But I stayed quiet about that in 2020 :p I can talk about it a lot now, though!
Hope you can visit sooner rather than later, Sage!
Hi Deniz - gosh you've done so much ... and kept track of it all. I bet you're looking forward to Spring ... I know I am over here. Congratulations on all your efforts ... so pleased for you - stay safe - Hilary
Deniz Bevan said…
Thanks so much, Hilary!