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2019 goals

written by Betsy Flak on 2019-01-14

"I'm not falling behind or running late

I'm not standing still, I am lying in wait"

From "Wait For It" in Hamilton

If I had to title my 2018 year-in-review, I would call it something like: "2018: Lying in wait." 2018 was a lot of preparation. I wrote and edited the most I ever have and I further refined my limited-budget marketing strategies. If you want more details about those, you can check out 2018's broad accomplishments and 2018's detailed goal results.

But now it's time to act. Now it's time for 2019!

Like previous years, I'll separate my goals into two categories: writing-related goals and business-related goals.

A Quick Aside...

Before we start this, a quick aside regarding timing and prediction. For my 2018 goals, I was spot-on for the anticipated delivery of A Brush with Vampires (The Clan-Vampire Clash: Book One) to its advance readers. For A Brush with Betrayal (Book Two), I delivered it to its advance readers a little under week later than anticipated (for its target goal anyway, I was faaaaar off its stretch goal). For Book Three (title TBA), I am currently multiple months behind where I thought I would be at the beginning of 2018.

My takeaway is that I need to add more buffer time the farther away a book is from publication. At the end of 2017, A Brush with Vampires had one editing pass left, A Brush with Betrayal had three editing passes left, and Book Three had four editing passes left (and ended up getting a bonus pass too). Given that each successive editing pass takes less time than the previous one, it makes sense that I might need more buffer time the farther a book is from publication (and the more editing is in front of it). Plus, a delay on one editing pass makes the next one start later, which makes the next one down the line start even later and so on.

Anyway, in my ongoing quest to define the perfect yearly goals, I'm adding 25% buffer time to each book's writing and editing timeline. Given that I already write and edit slower than I would like, I'm not a huge fan of this. But my life motto is pretty much "Hope for the best, prepare for the worst," so I'll make some realistic goals (with buffer), along with stretch and super-stretch goals and see what happens.

Aside over. Let's dive into those writing goals!

2019 Writing Goals

  1. Book Three: Finish final draft by July 15th, 2019. Stretch goal: Finish by April 22nd, 2019. Super-stretch goal: Finish by April 5th, 2019.
  2. Book Four: Complete outline, writing, and developmental editing by the end of the year. Get close to halfway through line editing. Stretch goal: Deliver to beta readers by the end of the year. Super-stretch goal: Finish final draft by October 26th to set up publishing for late 2019.
  3. Sam's story, season two: Publish the last installment to The Troupe by September 17th, 2019. Stretch goal: Do this by July 16th. Super-stretch goal: by March 19th.
  4. Sam's story, season three: Outline and start in on the rough draft by the end of the year. Stretch goal: Start publishing new installments by November 5th. Super-stretch goal: Start publishing new installments by July 2nd and publish the full version (seasons one through three) by the end of the year.
  5. Book Five: Stretch goal: Finalize the outline by the end of the year. Super-stretch goal: Finalize the outline and write the rough draft by the end of the year.
  6. Between installments of Sam's story, write and publish flash fiction and/or short stories to my blog and/or The Troupe.

Okay, I feel reasonably confident I can hit the regular goals set out here. I mean, don't me wrong. I kind of hate how slow and plodding they are. But that's the reality of where I'm at. And besides, that's what the stretch goals are for!

2019 Business Goals

  1. Publish Book Three of The Clan-Vampire Clash series by September 3rd, 2019. Stretch goal: Publish by June 11th. Super-stretch goal: Publish by May 21st.
  2. With the anticipated gap between publications this year, master the use of Amazon ads to find new readers. Stretch goal: Master the use of Bookbub ads too. Super-stretch goal: And Facebook ads too!
  3. Continue mix of cross promotions, Prolific Works, giveaways, and other promotions to find readers.
  4. Continue refining launch strategy such that the Book Three launch is the best yet.
  5. Super-stretch goals: Publish all or a subset of: Book Four of The Clan-Vampire Clash series; Sam's story in its entirety; a boxed set of Books One through Three of The Clan-Vampire Clash young adult paranormal fantasy series; and a boxed set of the prequels of The Clan-Vampire Clash series by the end of the year.
  6. As a result of the above items, grow gross revenue by at least 50% with a similar ROI as 2018's. Increase readers group by at least 15% in terms of active subscribers (2300 currently) and the record-high number of readers who opened a particular email (1500 currently).

And there we go, 2019 goals that are hopefully more realistic than 2018's. I'm excited to see what I can do in my second full year of being a published author. I hope I hit some of those stretch goals! :)


If you want to see 2018's somewhat-too-aggressive goals, you can find the 2018 goals here.

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