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Tansy Rayner Roberts

Posts Tagged ‘goals’

Looking Towards 2013

Monday, December 31st, 2012

I’m still getting the hang of what I want my writing/professional goals to be this coming year. I’m pretty sure I need some because 2012 was such a scattered year for me, but I want to keep that flexibility that I had to respond to new projects, and I also don’t want to heap too much pressure on myself instead of enjoying the last year with Jem properly at home – she starts kindergarten three days a week in 2014 and while that isn’t going to make a massive difference to now when she has 2 full daycare days a week, it means a lot psychologically. She will be a SCHOOL GIRL.

So, what does 2013 hold?

At least one novel deadline, which is good. I need to get the revised manuscript of Drowned Vanilla, the second Livia Day novel, to Twelfth Planet Press by May. Have I mentioned how much I adore having deadlines?

I also have one for a solicited short story, which always makes me happy. But apart from that…

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2010: A Year in Reading

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

I read a book today! A whole book, from beginning to end. It was so luxurious, I can’t tell you.

I also proofed more than 70 pages of my own book, bathed the baby, played a towering blocks game with Raeli, was fed delicious fishy things by my honey, wrote several blog entries, and decorated a pavlova.

If how you spend New Year’s Day sets a pattern for the year ahead, I’m doing well!

(apart from the fact that both my girls are currently sobbing, one because she didn’t want to go to bed and the other because of some elaborate Thing involving a Christmas decoration, pleasedon’task)

Never mind all that. BOOKS. I read 120 books in 2010 – and overall tackled much longer, harder and more challenging books than I have since… well, probably since before I was pregnant with Raeli. This is not to say I didn’t also read my share of YA, graphic novels and children’s books, cos I did, but I also read like a grown up. Hooray!

Here is my tiptop list of favourite books I read in 2010:

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The Shape of 2011.

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

I guess I’ve done this enough that it’s a tradition – rather than elaborate or ambitious goals, I’m going to set out a wishlist for the year, mostly things I expect to happen, am looking forward to, or would really like to make happen.

In no particular order.

1. Page proofs and copy edits to be done for Shattered City and Reign of Beasts

2. Write a first draft of Fury, before ROR in September.

3. Send in proposal for Fury to my agent to sell before it’s finished.

4. Volunteer regularly at Raeli’s schol

5. Launch Shattered City in April and do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.

6. Swancon in April!

7. My quartet of stories from Twelfth Planet Press – publishing date is to be announced but I am hoping for this year, and will do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.

8. ROR in September!

9. Launch Reign of Beasts in October (subject to publishing dates staying the same) and do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.

10. Double the number of Galactic Suburbia podcasts we have out there.

11. Make regular time for craft projects and quilting, because it makes me happy.

12. Read for enjoyment and perspective on the field rather than playing a numbers game this year. But having said that…

13. I want to get started on the Read Agatha Christie In Order project! Kathryn, are you still up for joining me? I had a sack of the things delivered from a friend’s collection…

14. Write something that surprises me.

The Shape of 2010 (how it was)

Saturday, January 1st, 2011

So this loosely was my plan for 2010, presented with comments:

1. Finish Cabaret of Monsters (book 2) and Saturnalia (book 3) and submit them on deadline.
They’re now called Shattered City and Reign of Beasts, and the deadlines ended up being extended a time or two, but done and done.
2. Complete a first draft of one other novel
This I didn’t manage, thanks to more editing and a lot less writing time than I was hoping for.
3. Decide on what project I want to work on after Creature Court and put a proposal together.
I haven’t finished the proposal for my publishers yet, but I wrote early chapters and a synopsis for Fury when I applied for my grants, WHICH I GOT.
4. Get Raeli through her first year of full time school. To this end, institute earlier tea & earlier bedtime for Raeli (starting the bedtime process at 8pm results in a good night going to sleep at 9pm, it’s not good enough)
This worked out really well. While part of me thinks it’s a bad idea to dumb down Raeli’s food and getting into the habit of a kids meal and an adult meal… yeah. I can’t have a family meal on the table by 6pm, but I can manage a nursery tea. Also it’s nice to not be fighting with Raeli about food. She eats vegetables, even if only under certain circumstances, and she even went through a few adventurous phases with her food this year. It’s summer so we’ve let the bedtime blow out again but come school time, I’ll be going back to this habit.
5. Get Jem into her own room and reorganise study at other end of house.
Done marvellously. What I wasn’t expecting was that instead of a study I would build myself a library! Complete with queen sized bed… I love that I got the best of both worlds, a spare room for guests and a room that is MINE where my books live. Sure, I don’t have a desk, but this is me, let’s face it, a desk would just be somewhere to pile up papers and all kinds of crap. Not having a desk forces me to file things occasionally. I’ve finally got my armchair, and I continue to work from my laptop on the dining table. I may need a small desk in the library eventually but for right now, I’m happy, and get an extra thrill of happiness whenever I refer to my Library Bed. Which currently is covered with page proofs for Shattered City…
6. Complete two quilts (you know who you are)
I really have to be more specific! The first must have been the Felix Rupert Bear quilt, which I was being discreet about because I was keeping it secret from Isabel. I had to check back for the second which was of course Kaia’s Comfort Fruit quilt, for her 30th birthday.
7. Launch Power and Majesty in June, and do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.
Done! With publicity you always feel like you should have done more, but I think I managed my time effectively. Time to start gearing up for Book 2…
8. Aussiecon in September!
Done! It wasn’t easy taking the family to the convention, but my honey worked hard to free up as much time as possible for me to do my convention thing, and I loved getting to hang out with friends and sharing both my worlds. Also, live Boxcutters!
9. Launch Cabaret of Monsters in December (subject to publishing dates staying the same) and do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.
Heh well the publishing dates didn’t stay the same, so this one can be rolled over to 2011.
10. Read 120 books throughout 2010.
Hooray, I scraped under the wire with this one! Separate reading overview to follow.

EDIT: A couple of projects/challenges I forgot about: to podcast Siren Beat, and to read all of Joanna Russ’s published books.
Heh well I completely didn’t podcast Siren Beat, but I did start the CreatureCourtCast to read some sample chapters of Power and Majesty, and should do something similar with Book 2. And I didn’t get to all of the Russ, but I read quite a few of them and consider myself a hell of a lot more educated in the ways of Joanna Russ than at this time last year. So I’ll count that as a win.

Of course the most interesting thing about looking back is what I didn’t expect or prepare for: like winning the WSFA small press award for Siren Beat, and getting to vicariously enjoy Alisa’s voyage to Washington and beyond. Also, when the year turned, I had no idea that we were going to start Galactic Suburbia this year, a podcast that has given me great pleasure and joy. I didn’t know that Raeli being at school would lead to a whole new social group for me, or that my biggest regret of the year was not the lack of working time, but not volunteering enough at Raeli’s school. It’s also been lovely seeing so many of my friends succeeding with their work, getting new books out into the world, more rungs on the publishing journey. In particular, seeing Trent finally get his debut novel out there after so many years of hard work towards that goal, and seeing Rowena get another series out there after a hiatus almost as long as my own, filled me with pride and gladness.

It’s been a year of hard work, rewarding feedback, loving friends and family. I really have very little to complain about. Here’s hoping 2011 is a good one, for all of us!

The Shape of 2010

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010

I don’t do resolutions in the traditional sense. I’m a big fan of small achievable goals, and they never sound all that impressive when you lay them out. Managing to achieve so many of last year’s ‘wishlist’ though makes me keen to do it again.

This then, speaking from the very biased position of 2 January, is a list of things I expect or want to have happen in 2010. I think it’s going to be a pretty good year.

1. Finish Cabaret of Monsters (book 2) and Saturnalia (book 3) and submit them on deadline.
2. Complete a first draft of one other novel
3. Decide on what project I want to work on after Creature Court and put a proposal together.
4. Get Raeli through her first year of full time school. To this end, institute earlier tea & earlier bedtime for Raeli (starting the bedtime process at 8pm results in a good night going to sleep at 9pm, it’s not good enough)
5. Get Jem into her own room and reorganise study at other end of house.
6. Complete two quilts (you know who you are)
7. Launch Power and Majesty in June, and do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.
8. Aussiecon in September!
9. Launch Cabaret of Monsters in December (subject to publishing dates staying the same) and do my best to contribute to & support the publicity for the book.
10. Read 120 books throughout 2010.

EDIT: A couple of projects/challenges I forgot about: to podcast Siren Beat, and to read all of Joanna Russ’s published books.

2009: A Year in Reading

Friday, January 1st, 2010

I was going to spend NYE footling around on the computer, as we never go out for it (hate crowds, hate expectation of having fun, all potential babysitters have more active social life than we do) but it was too damn hot (38 degrees, insane for Hobart let alone anywhere else, and it didn’t start coming down below 30 until an hour before midnight) and we had thunder and lightning which meant we unplugged all the computers and just watched TV. Dinner was icecream and dessert was champagne. The most entertaining part was watching Raeli trying to decide whether thunder and lightning was scary or AWESOME – she changed her mind several times. Dealing with Jem was less fun, as I spent most of the day and night anxious about her hydration levels, and breastfeeding is not fun when two bodies touching raises both temperatures.

Anyway, today is nicer, and tomorrow we are being invaded by Flintharts and welcoming GJ back for her last stay before she jets home. So time for a little summing up of my reading in 2009.

I read 115 books, which fell just shy of my target of 10 a month. I can live with it. I could possibly have squeezed in another 5 if I had talked to GJ less during her visit, but what would be the point of that?

I genuinely loved roughly half of what I read, which goes to show how well I’m doing at selecting for my current tastes and interests – I filter what I read pretty highly, and my limited reading time adds another filter which is my short attention span for books I’m not completely into. I’ve talked about most of the books I liked best throughout the year, but here they are again. I’m including spec fic YA under the SF and Fantasy categories, so the YA category itself is a general one.

As with the previous year, the majority of what I’m reading is YA, and the majority of the spec fic I read is fantasy. I read more non fic this year, largely chosen because of favourite blogs. I enjoyed it a lot and plan to read more in 2010. Other than that I have no particular reading goals for next year – but I would like to crack 120.

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2009: Done and Dusted

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

I’m not doing anything to commemorate the end of the decade because I can barely contemplate the concept and short of a meme to tell me how to organise said thoughts, I’m ignoring it for now (cough okay while I was putting this together people came up with a meme, I’ll get to it eventually). The year is another matter.

Here with commentary is the wishlist I set out for 2009 a year ago:

*get my driver’s licence
Achieved in March, after great suffering and stress (and failing in January and February). My honey was a rock through this utterly torturous process and I broke at least one more driving instructor in the process. I am particularly grateful to [info] godiyeva who helped me bridge the gap between Raeli starting school & me finally getting my license by “carpooling” with me for the school run, and letting me practice at the same time. Nine months on, I still love my car and the independence of driving, and still do not take it for granted. Driving out last week to pick [info] girliejones from the airport made me feel ridiculously grown up.

*go to my first Aurealis Awards ceremony
This was just the most fun ever. I was nearly three months pregnant when I left and I knew that this (and ROR, two months later) would be one of my only chances to do the pro writer abroad thing without consideration of baby baby baby. I got to play the grown up again, picking myself up from the airport, catching a train to the city to meet my Pulp Fiction Press editor Diane and go to high tea, and then again catching a taxi out to the apartments where [info] girliejones and I were staying. It was a lovely weekend of talking and thinking like a writer, meeting new friends and connecting with old ones.

*start logging the books I read in a spreadsheet again
It might not seem like much, but while the time I took off from logging my reading worked to take some of the Must Read pressure off, I did miss the record. I read 115 books this year, and I doubt that’s going to change between now and midnight. I really wanted to make 120 but – not a bad tally, considering.

*see my daughter start kindergarten
This was a big one. Watching Raeli blossom at school has completely justified all the work it took to get her through the early entry process. She has enjoyed her two days of school a week so much that she became quite snobbish about going to daycare on the other days. She particularly loves music class. Seeing her become more confident on the play equipment, make friends, and advance from knowing her alphabet to being able to read has been beyond awesome.
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