I’m interrupting the Snow White themed blog posts to bring in my annual year-in-review post! (I thought it was fitting since it is the last day of 2018.) In this post I’ll go over some of the things I did this year (as a writer) and a few of the things I’ve learned. Let’s get started!
This year I tried a lot of new things!
I was a part of the Entwined Tales series with some of my best author pals and I went to my first writing conference in Chicago. (2019 is already sold out, but it was the Sell More Books Show Summit for those of you who are curious.)
I did a bunch more events this year (like the Atypical heroine event with Lindsay Buroker, and my gingerbread house building session on Facebook Live) and have also had a BLAST with the A. M. Sohma crew who have been able to play Lord of the Rings Online with me! 🙂
Since I had both the amazing Rock-Star-Assistant-Meg and Myrrhlynn (my cover designer who has been stepping in as a temporary assistant for this year) helping me out, as a team we decided to host the Summer Reading Event and we also held a Christmas event/celebration as well–which included my very first International Giveaway!
Myrrhlynn helped me launch a Merch store with some seriously cute T-shirts, mugs, stickers, ect, and she helped get the K. M. Shea/A. M. Sohma Discord Channel off the ground, too! She also got me on Pintrest, and she is responsible for all the beautiful quote images you see on my account as well!
Besides all the new things, we still kept up some great fun from previous years!
For starters, in a very surprising twist, Merlin of King Arthurs and Her Knights took first place in the 2018 Hero Poll, shoving Stil of Rumpelstiltskin out of first place for the first time since the poll started! (You can bet he wasn’t happy about that!)
The fanart gallery has exploded with amazing and beautiful contributions from some crazy talented Champions! (Thank you!) And I also got some surprising results from the 2018 Reader Survey which will help me adjust for future events, ect, so a big thank you to everyone who filled it out!
In 2018 I also brought up a ghost from the past, so to speak, by publishing Royal Magic–book 2 of the Elves of Lessa series. It is a suuuuuper old series given that I published Red Rope of Fate in 2013, but I was thrilled with how excited you Champions were about it, so thank you for your support!
Which leads me into the second segment of this post, what I’ve learned…
I learned that while you Champions find things like the Summer Reading Event really fun, two months is perhaps a little too much fun. (Hence why the Christmas event was just a few weeks.)
As a writer I also learned that I need to perhaps be a bit more mindful of how difficult a project is going to be when I begin it. Both The Second Age of Retha and Timeless Fairy Tales have become…bigger than I first expected.
Second Age of Retha has become bigger just because the scope of the battle they are marching into requires A LOT more characters to balance, something I hadn’t quite thought through when I got started. Timeless Fairy Tales, on the other hand, is just huuuuge, and making sure all the threads connect can be taxing considering all the books in the series. (In example, in order to check one fact for Angelique’s first book, I had seven different book files open.)
Neither of these things are inherently bad, it just puts me through the wringer and is a little more challenging to write unlike my fluffier stuff, like Royal Magic. If I want to make it through this in a healthy manner, I need to be more aware of this so I don’t accidentally burn myself out.
In 2018 I continued the struggle of trying to get better at writing romance. I found a few helpful resources so hopefully I am slowly getting better, but it’s honestly a bit hard to judge. (Sometimes I just feel like I can make certain couples click better/more easily, ahahah.)
And I think that just about wraps it all up! 2018 was a really great year–thanks for joining me in this journey! But what about you, Champions! Was there any words of wisdom you learned in 2018 that you’d like to share?