One writer’s resolutions for 2017

I do this every year and yes looking back I don’t always follow all my resolutions.  However, at the beginning of the year it’s not a bad idea to review what you did last year (my last blog) and think of what you might like to change / achieve / try in the coming year.  For me writing them down, whether you call them resolutions or not, makes them more than just a passing thought.  So here are mine for 2017

Finish and implement the Slight Edge.

I mentioned this in my 2016 round-up.  It’s a book by Jeff Olsen which is all about doing to those small things consistently over a long period of time that will make a big difference.  Also not giving up on them.  Obviously there is more to it than that, after all it is a book.  However, I admit that over the holidays I have let it slip.  For me it’s all about my profile as a writer and of course selling more books.  I need to decide which of those “small actions” are the ones that are going to make the difference and then stick to them for long enough to tell if I’m right.  At least if I follow the advice I will be taking positive steps and not just letting things drift.

Improve my grammar and punctuation

I thought I had improved in this area recently.  Maybe I have, a bit.  It’s just that having got back the proof read (and edited) version of my latest book I haven’t improved enough, or maybe not much at all.  Some of it is a real blind spot for me.  I make the same annoying errors, correct myself and then start making them all over again – why?  Anyway, this should not be difficult I just need to be vigilant right?

Work harder at sales.

This on my list every year.  But then I need to work on it every year.  This year I want to be more inventive, spread the net wider, shake more trees and any other appropriate cliché you can think of.  Seriously though I need to try a few different things.  I need to reach the right audience for my books and not just blanket promote.  As to what this will be, as yet I have no idea – all suggestions welcome.

Make my blog work for me

I have started to do this.  I am blogging less often and when I do it’s more related to my work.  I’m not going down the path of “buy my book, buy my book”, however, if you’re reading my blog (which you must be if you’ve got this far) I am trying to get you sufficiently interested in me and my work to take that next step and buy the books.  Yes, I also want my blog to entertain and inform, have value in its own right whether you take that next step or not.  However, the main objective of this site is to promote me and my books.  After all I believe in my work and I think you’ll enjoy them.

The second part of this objective (resolution) is to look for more outlets for my blogs.  I have done this a little in past  However, I’m sure I can do more.  It’s all about improving that profile.

Change my author site

I’ve been blogging now for over three years and I set this site up at the start.  It’s fine, it’s done the job, but I can’t help feel it needs a spruce-up.  And yes I’ve been putting it off.  So time to get on with it.

Write, write and write some more

I guess this should be number one on any writer’s resolutions list.  Practice makes perfect and all that.

Read more and wider

Number two on a resolutions list?  I do read, but I do tend to stick to scifi.  That’s what I write after all so it’s important I see what else is out there.  However, when I have ventured outside my comfort zone I enjoyed the experience (Wolf Hall for example).  Also, in many ways reading outside my own genre teaches me more, opens me up to new styles and ideas that can bring added originality to my own work.

So there we have it those resolutions – print them out, pin them up and remind myself that these are not meant to be empty promises.

As always comments are welcome

Ian Martyn

Author: Ian Martyn

Science Fiction Writer

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