Way back in college, when I thought I was going to be a computer programmer, I wrote a program to make the computer type back to me, “Hello, World!” (Okay, it probably typed, “HELLO WORLD”, given its typographic limitations…) I slaved over that program, and the high when I actually got it to type back to me was so great that those two silly words still make me feel bright and cheerful and upbeat.
Plus, “Hello, World!” seems like a great way to ring in the new year. And to ring in a new role for me at Magical Words.
For the past two years, I’ve published here once a month. I have loved our conversations, and I’ve learned many things from all of you. Therefore, I am *thrilled* to announce that I’ll be typing to you more frequently — from here on out, you’ll be hearing from me on approximately three Fridays each month.
So, a brief recap, in case my pixels are new to you: My first fantasy novel, THE GLASSWRIGHTS’ APPRENTICE, was published in 2000. Since then, I’ve published a total of six traditional fantasy novels, seven paranormal chicklit (er, “light paranormal” or “light women’s fiction” or whatever today’s term of art is…), and two category romance novels. Also, as Morgan Keyes, I’ve published DARKBEAST, a traditional fantasy for middle grade readers.
All but one of those books were published by traditional New York publishers (Roc, Red Dress Ink, Mira, Harlequin, and Simon & Schuster). I have also self-published one novella. I expect to see both traditionally-published and self-published novels hit the “shelves” this year.
I’ve been a full-time writer for 5.5 years. Prior to that I spent 11 years as a librarian in law firms (doing reference and managing staff), and before that I spent 7 years an associate in a large law firm (practicing trademark and copyright law).
Whew! So, now you know where I’m coming from as I type to you.
And if you *do* know me already, you know that I believe strongly in treating my writing career as a professional one, applying many (most? all?) of the same business techniques I used while working in law firms. For example, I believe in creating strategic plans, including defining goals, strategies, and actions. I’ve recommended that authors create a personal mission statement. I’ve also posted about how I use calendars to juggle all of my personal and professional obligations. (Each of those links will take you to my Magical Words post on the topic.)
I am sure that all of you have your strategic plans in place for 2013. (You do, don’t you? Please, say yes. Really! Okay, if plans don’t work for you, I guess I understand, but…) Therefore, I won’t rehash old posts. Instead, I’ll give you a glimpse of where we’re going for the next few weeks: Spreadsheets.
Aw, don’t run away from your monitor, screaming like that. Starting next Friday, I’ll fill you in on the handful of spreadsheets I absolutely cannot live without. I’ll give you some tax tips, some organizing tips, and some sanity-preserving tips. I have ideas for lots of other things that I want to write about, but I am always happy to hear from you, with recommendations for topics, questions about any aspect of my career, etc. Sound OK?