So, that was 2006, was it? Well, it had its moments, I suppose – some highs and some lows. On a personal level, I got to travel around a bit, seeing both Paris (stunning) and Brussels (err… good beer?), and travelling up and down the UK, mostly for work reasons. Spring and summer were inordinately stressful, for reasons both pathetic and beyond my control, while August and September saw things swing the other was rather dramatically. My motivation, on all sorts of fronts, took a massive upswing in the closing months of the year, and have set me up well for 2007. I have several plans for next year, some worryingly dramatic, and when 2007 closes, life is going to look very different from how it does now.
As far as writing goes, there have been several achievements this year. I finished one novel, and am most of the way through a second. I wrote several short stories, some of which are forthcoming in various publications in 2007 and 2008 (details nearer the time). I sold my novelette Radio Trauma to the Pendragon Press anthology Choices (you have ordered a copy , of course), and I’m currently completing work on a secret project, about which no further details can be disclosed at the moment (trust me though – it’s going to rock your boat like nobody’s business). I self-published my short story collection Dark Terrains as a free ebook and trade paperback, the latter of which deserves its own entry early in the New Year, putting to bed some stories that have been gathering moss since being published in a variety of venues now out of print or difficult to find. It’s been a satisfying year, on the whole, with more to come (for example, I’m in very tentative talks with a publisher about… nah… I’ll have to wait and see whether contracts get signed before I blow that one…).
So what do I want to achieve next year? Here’s my personal outline of things I want to achieve next year.
All of this, as you can see, is concerned more with ramping up my output than anything else. You’ll note that I haven’t included any sales or publishing goals, such as ‘sell twelve stories’, or ‘sell a fat trilogy of novels for a juicy advance’. This is because these are matters out of my hands. All I can do is produce the work, and if it’s good, it will sell. The above four objectives are massively ambitious, but they’re also trackable. I shall, needless to say, keep you updated on how it goes right here, and you may feel free to cheer my successes, or jeer my failures.
Well, here in Glasgow, it’s currently bucketing with rain, threatening snow, and blowing a gale. Hogmanay (a Gaelic word, I believe, which translates as “drink too much, fall over in the road, start fights with inanimate objects, and be sick on a cat”) will by necessity be engaged in from the warmth of this house, though rest assured I shall be as drunk as the next horror author come midnight. Wherever you are, I hope you stay safe, and have a great time. Thanks for sticking with me over 2006, and have a happy new year!