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New Year's Resolutions — 2013 Updates

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on January 8, 2013 in Freelance Writing Business
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I know I'm a bit slow to return from my winter vacation time this year, but welcome back! I feel well-rested (after being exhausted by the holidays), and I'm excited to get back to work. I hope you all are as well.

Back in November I shared my 2013 writing resolutions with you. Normally I try to evaluate them each quarter, but I knew I might have to make some adjustments this January. That's because several things had to be bumped back in December while I dealt with a family issue.

Basically, we found out just before Thanksgiving that my husband's position, along with several others in his company, was being eliminated. He was asked to stay until the end of the year to finish an existing project. So I took some time away from my own work to help him in his job hunt -- updating his LinkedIn profile, helping him review ads, helping him start up his own business which he's pursuing on a part-time basis, and overhauling his resume. It pushed some of my own projects, but I'm happy to say it paid off. He chose two companies to interview with, received competitive offers from both, and he starts his new job today with much better pay and a much better title than he had previously. It was tough news when we received it (especially after I'd just walked away from a big long-time client), but it was the right move in the end.

Now that that's settled, I've had some time to review my plans, and there will have to be a few changes as expected. Here are my updates to my goals for 2013:

  • The freelance and Web publishing goals should remain the same, at least until my quarterly review.
  • I will not get to the third Murder Scripts novel draft in 2013. Instead, the first was pushed, and I hope to finish it by March. So this year I'll finish drafting the first two, and the third will wait.
  • I will also probably not get to the second Murder Scripts game this year (ancillary products to the novel series when it's released). I want one ready around the time the first novel is edited and ready for publication. The second will come out the following year when the second book is published.
  • I have more work to do on the Query-Free Freelancer book than I thought. That's because I decided to somewhat change the target market -- from freelance writers to freelancers in general. It's a larger market, and almost everything in the manuscript applies to freelancers beyond just writing. So that adds to the number of interviews I need to do for sidebar stories, and I'll need to tweak the language and focus a bit through existing chapters. That will also slightly slow down the e-book releases because they'll also be edited to reflect that (the two I wanted to launch in December will probably come out in February, with the marketing boot camp e-book being re-released in the new branding later this month before the new ones come out).

So basically the big change is that my 3-year publishing plan had to be adjusted a bit for books and e-books. The novels are being adjusted by being bumped back 3 months each, and the e-books are on a shorter delay. That's partly to do with the edits to the target market and partly to do with the new design taking longer than expected (as I'm doing it in new software, and there's a learning curve involved). However, I don't expect future e-books t0 be affected -- just the first two.

What about you? Do you already see some challenges in your goals for 2013? Have you added any or changed your mind on some of them? Tell me about them in the comments.

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Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, freelance business writer, and indie author. She began writing for clients in 1999 and started her first blog in 2004.

She owns 3 Beat Media - a publishing and client services company which operates All Indie Writers as well as several other websites and blogs including The Busy Author's Guide and BizAmmo. Jenn comes from a background in online PR and social media consulting, having owned a small PR firm for several years before choosing to pursue a full-time writing and publishing career.

Jenn also writes fiction under multiple pen names in the areas of children's fiction, mysteries, and horror fiction. Jenn is an active member of the Horror Writers Association (HWA) and currently serves as the organization's Assistant Coordinator of Promotions and Social Media.


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9 Comments

  1. Rebecca Garland January 9, 2013 Reply

    Congrats to your hubby! What a relief and happy holiday gift for both of you to be worry free again on the job front. I always admire your goals – so best of luck with those as well.
    Rebecca Garland recently posted…2013: The Year of Eventual ProgressMy Profile

  2. Amandah January 9, 2013 Reply

    Wow… Your husband found a job FAST. Some people go for months or years looking for another job. Kudos to him!

    I see a few challenges. Challenge number one is cutting back my time on social media and reading blogs. This may sound counter-intuitive, but I spend way too much time on social media websites. I’m trying to limit myself to 15 minutes per day.

    Challenge number two is gathering a group of people to read my half-hour sitcom. When I was living in Arizona, I had one of my writer’s groups read my teleplay. I’m now in the Midwest where writers groups aren’t plentiful. I have to rely on my family to read the script, but everyone has different schedules. And, I don’t think teenagers want to spend their time reading a 25+ page script.

    Marketing is a challenge. I’m trying to think of different strategies and stick to a schedule. So far, I haven’t stuck to my schedule because I’m dealing with other issues. Luckily, it’s only January 9. I can get back on track.
    Amandah recently posted…One Simple Lesson Will Boost Your Non-Profit Organization’s Donations and SupportMy Profile

    • Jennifer Mattern January 10, 2013 Reply

      Yeah, things worked out really well. And now he’s being bombarded with contract work requests for his part-time business too. :)

      I used to be in a similar position with social media and blog reading. I’ve cut way back over the last year, and it’s been nothing but positive.

      Good luck with the sitcom reading and new marketing efforts. You definitely have time to get things back on track, so no worries. :)

  3. Paula H January 9, 2013 Reply

    I’m sure your husband would have landed a great job on his own, but his experience underscores how helpful a great résumé and LinkedIn page can be in generating immediate positive feedback. His new employer is no doubt thrilled to have him on board.

    My big challenge of the year involves dumping the chronic late payer and finding several new clients to replace it. This is my first real work week of the year and I already have three potential new clients lined up.
    Paula H recently posted…New Look for a New YearMy Profile

    • Jennifer Mattern January 10, 2013 Reply

      It does sound like they’re as happy to have him as he is to have the new job — positive all around. :)

      Congrats on the new clients! I hope they put you well on your way toward replacing that dud. :)

  4. Joel January 11, 2013 Reply

    Your husband’s experience illustrates the fact that when one door closes, another one opens up–especially if you stay engaged in the process.
    Joel recently posted…New Year’s Resolutions and the Zen of CoffeeMy Profile

    • Jennifer Mattern January 14, 2013 Reply

      Absolutely. Now he’s tapping his existing network and picking up more interest in contract work, which is awesome. My only fear now is that it’s working too well. I don’t want him to burn out. :)

  5. LoriWidmer January 18, 2013 Reply

    Love that he got the job so quickly. :)

    My goals are month by month usually, but I do set in my head some longer-term ones. Right now, I’m seeing book edits dissipate before my eyes. Can’t get to them for the next few months, but I think instead of writing them off, I’m going to work them in as smaller chunks of my week.

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