The last day of 2016. The prevailing feeling online is “good riddance” to this year. No doubt about it, 2016 has been a challenging year in many ways. Right now, I’m in a strange place because of the election. Back in June, I wrote about the election in terms of my work on the future world in the Perceval series. Now the election results have brought America maybe one step closer to the America I envisioned for 2048. Let’s hope not. It’s challenging me as a writer, thinking about protesting against the actions of the Trump administration through my writing, and realizing that I probably will not be alone in this. A friend recently asked me if I were prepared to be arrested. Wow. I never thought anyone would ask me that in America because I’m a writer.
My last writing update was in June of 2016. Time for another:
No new reviews at Amazon for Perceval’s Secret since June. I continue to search out book reviewers. Sales continue to be slow at Amazon, and none at Barnes & Noble or Kobo. If you have not yet bought your copy (only $2.99!), please do, and give it a read. The reviews continue to be good to excellent! I’d love to hear from readers through reviews at Amazon and B&N, or at Goodreads.
As for the other novels in the series, last spring I pulled out all my files for Perceval’s Shadow, the second novel in the series. My plan was to revise it during the summer, then move on to finish the first draft of Perceval in Love, the third book (I have half the first draft done already). I did not accomplish this goal because I became caught up in the part-time job and a job search for a fulltime job, and I didn’t sit down and figure out when I’d be working on the novels. I hope to do better in 2017. I know that I feel much better physically and psychologically when I’m putting words on paper.
I continue to work as hard as time allows on marketing and promo for Perceval’s Secret. I continue also to research free marketing and promo, especially online. I need to talk more about the novel and hand out the postcards for it far more than I do. Still need to utilize the marketing/advertising tools at GoodReads, LinkedIn and Publishers Marketplace. Time has not been kind to me. I continue to promote the novel on Twitter and Facebook. I’ve been writing more posts at the Perceval Novels Facebook page, too. Please go and like it, and visit often for updates on the novels.
New Novel Project:
As a result of reading a couple of gothic romance novels this year, I’ve hatched an idea to transform a screenplay I’ve written, Over the Rainbow, into a novel. I love the story, the main character, and the potential of it, so I’ll be doing some foundation work on it in 2017.
Indiegogo Project now GoFundMe Project:
The one change I made in this area was the website I’d use for this project. I’ve had experience with GoFundMe, and I like the option to have ongoing fundraising rather than a deadline. All the rest is the same: I continue to pay off the credit card debt I’d been carrying from production, publication, and marketing expenses that I incurred to publish Perceval’s Secret as an e-book. I’m now paying off the principal rather than having the interest eat into my payments, and I continue to pay more than the minimum each month. I hate asking for financial help through crowd-source funding, but I don’t have the resources to deal with this all by myself.
I completed a short story, Into the Woods, taken from some of my early work on Perceval’s Secret, and submitted it to a contest. I continue work on the science fiction short story, Light the Way. For 2017, I plan to work more on short stories to get more of my writing out there for people to read. Short stories do not take quite as much time as novels to write.
I continue to write posts at the Eyes on Life blog (as Gina Hunter) and here at Anatomy of Perceval. My focus at the Gina Hunter blog has become a bit fluid: I continue to write “The Successful Patient” posts, but in addition I’m writing about the experience of being one of the Working Poor, so it’ll be about economics, money, working, etc. I think., and more about politics and how it affects the Working Poor. I hadn’t planned on getting into politics, but it looks like I’ll need the outlet for my outrage.
I’ve written essays about my personal experiences with classical music for ClassicalMPR.org this year and I continue to pitch ideas to them. I’m presently working on an interview with a young composer for them. I continue to search for other places that will pay me to write about subjects that interest me (or that will pay for fiction).
Yager Editing Services:
After dealing with the scammers last spring, I decreased my marketing and promo activity for this small online business. As a result of my Publishers Marketplace page, however, I received an inquiry for editing a novel last month. This put me face-to-face with something I hadn’t thought about before: the need to be 100% in support of the book in order to spend so much time editing it and in order to be fair and objective. The inquiry involved a book I could not be 100% behind, so I declined to work on it. I need to write something at this website that will clarify my position on what interests me and my need to be 100% behind the book in order to be an effective editor of it.
The Successful Patient:
Nothing has changed on this project — still on the back burner.
I continued to work part-time at the customer service job and the receptionist position. A raise in July was most welcome but wasn’t enough to offset my expenses. A good friend stepped up and offered a no-interest loan to pay my rent so I wouldn’t get evicted, and I accepted. I began looking for a fulltime front desk receptionist position and have had several interviews but still haven’t clinched the job for me. Since my financial situation is so precarious, I’ll be working harder at selling my possessions as well as promoting my writing, and my editing services.
I met my 2016 Reading Challenge at GoodReads! Not yet certain if I’ll sign up for another in 2017. It has been helpful in giving me incentive to read more than I was. But I want my primary focus in 2017 to be writing fiction. I’ll continue to read, but perhaps not as much as I return to journal writing, for example, and work on fiction in the evenings.
Autoimmune fatigue continues to challenge my schedule every day. My very slow taper off prednisone continues, and the lower the dose, the more I experience joint pain with occasional tiny flares of my other autoimmune issues. So far, I’ve been able to control it all. I’m also working on getting off some other medications. Dealing with my medical insurance company takes more time than I’d like, and I have to say that they definitely do not make it easy for their customers. I’ve begun my favorite stair exercise (to music) and plan to move my body more through walking, yoga, and Falun gong practice in 2017. Since writing is such a sedentary activity, it’s important to get up and move on a regular basis.