And I am still doing a monthly magazine that requires a novel per month and four or so short stories plus a serial of some sort. (Issues 26, 27, and 28 will be out in the next four or five weeks as the schedule finally gets caught up. And #29, the February issue won’t be far behind.)
Now this last year I wrote 1.2 million words or so. Decent year. Nothing to sneeze at. Not my best by a long, long ways, but decent. The fiction and nonfiction of that was just over 710,000 words. Also very decent, but not what I wanted it to be.
Also, I have been really working to ramp this web site around and over the next month or so I will finally have it in place with lists and links to my books. Won’t that be a shock? (grin)
So here are the new changes and challenges for 2016.
— I will start the newsletter, and with each newsletter I will sometimes give the subscribers something special for free to read. But every month, just for newsletter subscribers, I will give out a free short story to read.
— I have almost finished putting together a basic writer app. For those who go through the app to get to this web site, or just download the app for fun, I will give out a free short story every week, as well as other nifty things as time goes on. Apps are great fun. (That’s right, four different short stories a month.)
— I will be selling signed novels and collections both on the app and here on this web site.
— Patreon supporters will continue getting Smith’s Monthly at certain levels of support, as well as other nifty new stuff, including things like Heinlein’s Rules book when it is finished. WMG will also be pushing on a subscription drive for Smith’s Monthly.
— I will be doing a YouTube channel where I will just do a topic of the night with some videos and put up a free video from one of the lectures or workshops another, to let people know what those workshops and lectures are like. I will link each new video here and through the app as they go up.
— WMG Publishing will finally relaunch Poker Boy with all the new covers and a new web site and everything. A bunch of that will also go through the app and Poker Boy will have his own whacked-out newsletter later in the year. I also hope to write a few more Poker Boy novels at some point shortly.
— I will be starting a brand new series of ten-story collections. Patreon supporters will get those every month at a certain level as well.
— I will start up the short story of the week again here on this web site.
(So for those of you counting, you can get six of my short stories every month for free just for following here, the newsletter, and the new app when that launches. That’s a bunch of free reading. All of that should be up and going by February 1st.)
Now to the big writing challenge.
THE YEAR OF SHORT FICTION
I had so much fun writing those 32 stories in July (Stories from July now out in electronic and soon paper), I started instantly looking around for a way to do it again. Drove my friends nuts as I tried to work out a way to not make the idea of writing a lot of short stories every month something that made sense.
So finally, working with Allyson at WMG Publishing, and talking with Kris, I came up with the idea of THE YEAR OF SHORT FICTION (A twelve volume series).
Here is the challenge in overall summary, then I will break it down to how it will work.
I want to write 250 new and original short stories in 2016. Not flash fiction, but regular short stories of varied lengths. And I hope to write them in all my various series as well and come up with new series as well.
I will do what I did in July. I will start from a title and on the blog I’ll explain where the title came from and how the writing went, as I do below with the first story.
If you do math, you know I need to write about 22-23 stories per month to hit 250 stories in a year. Some months I will do more, others not so many. Nature of life and writing.
But 250 original short stories is more stories than most writers write in entire careers. So this should be interesting to watch over the year, to say the least.
I will also write a dozen novels over the year while doing this and a few more nonfiction books.
Yes, I have done the math. If I manage to write 250 stories at an average of 4,000 words each, that’s 1,000,000 words. And twelve novels will add in another 600,000 words of original fiction. Not counting non-fiction and blogs and all that.
So that’s an elephant. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
So here are my bites.
I will continue to get out Smith’s Monthly every month. That will be a focus.
I will write on a short story every night that I can. I will just focus on the night and the story and not look much at the overall picture as I go. I will just enjoy the process of writing a short story.
I will then, after the end of the month, put the monthly short stories in a volume for the month. A minimum of 15 stories to a maximum of 25 stories. The first volume, January, will come out at the end of March, and then monthly after that.
If by the time the first comes out, this is working (I’ll have three in the pipeline at that point), WMG Publishing will take subscriptions for the full twelve volumes. But we won’t offer the subscriptions until I see by the end of March if this is going to work or not.
So that’s my new year coming up. If nothing else, it should be entertaining to watch me struggle with some of this.
Thanks for all the support. Onward into a new year.