goals / writing

Writing Wednesday: My 2019 Report, and Plans for 2020

Happy New Year!!!

Last week’s goals:

Made my three blog postings, and commented more than usual (and more than quota) on the blogs of others.

I’ve started reading Brandon Sanderson’s The Way of Kings (I was pleased with his completion of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, so thought I would give one of his own works a go. I confess that I tried to start this book a few months ago, but I couldn’t get into it; it wasn’t the narrators – Kate Reading and Michael Kramer were the narrators for The Wheel of Time. It can be hard to get into a new universe, which is what you have almost always with Sci-fi/Fantasy.

Stories have continued to circulate out to market in a timely manner.

“Cat’s Paw” has crossed 3300 words, and between it, the rewrite of “Humours Rendered”, and a quick flash piece, I logged 1348 words for the last week of the year – not as pitiful as it’s been lately, but nothing to brag about, either.


The 2019 Wrap-up (where I report on my wins and failures for the past year, and try not to give myself too many excuses):

1) Write 3,000 words of fiction each week

This is the same goal I have used every year since I started, and I’ve never made it over the course of a year. Last year’s weekly average was 1352, which puts 2019 in 5th place out of nine years. It may be that I should have given myself credit for more words during the final revisions of Swordsmaster, but I could have done much better.

2) Five new stories written and out the door by end of year

I only managed four (“Installment Plan”, “Calling Down Lightning”, “Humours Rendered”, and “A Background Poorly Written”.) I’d like to say it was just because Swordsmaster took more time than I anticipated, but it wasn’t that. For the last four months of the year, I couldn’t get any sort of consistent rhythm going on my writing – maybe it was the switch back to short fiction, or the disruption of our home repairs – whatever it was, I had plenty of time to make my quota – I just didn’t press forward hard enough.

3) 7-day turn-around (or ASAP) on getting rejections back into rotation

This was fine, although I was having problems coming up with open markets for the few pieces I still had in circulation.

4) Indie publish SOMETHING every 8 weeks (keep to exact schedule), with a 3-week preorder and promotion campaign for any eBook priced over 99-cents.

I had to alter the cadence on this toward the end of the year since my inventory of stories was diminished due to focusing on Swordsmaster (I seem to be blaming a lot on my first novel, don’t I?); it will take me some time to build up some fresh inventory.

5) Blog each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday

This was achieved.

6) Be more active online aside from my own postings (comment on 3 blogs per week)

This was a 50-50 proposition. I need to make a point of doing this throughout the week instead of letting it slide until the weekend. I also need to not be so picky about my comments (my INFERNAL EDITOR even intrudes on something as uncritical as blog comments…)

7) Finish Swordsmaster


8) Create Swordsmaster cover

Also done! (I think this was on the list because I wanted to make sure I got credit for SOMETHING if I didn’t finish Swordsmaster, so it wasn’t necessary.)

9) Read 8 speculative fiction novels

Done – they were: the last three books of Jordan(& Sanderson’s) The Wheel of Time, plus New Spring (the prequel) Anne Leckie’s The Raven Tower, Terry Goodkind’s Wizard’s First Rule, and Pratchett’s Men at Arms & Feet of Clay,

Writing Milestones Made (I didn’t even realize I had made a milestone):

4) Finish a novel

YEP! I did it!!!!


Goals and Milestones for 2020 (where I proclaim – for all the world to see – what I’m going to attempt to accomplish in the new year, and what I will be reporting progress on each Writing Wednesday):

2020 Goals:

1) Write 3,000 words of fiction each week

Because it IS a reachable goal, and gives me something to shoot for. Even if I don’t make it, my observation is that it forced some extra productivity out of me.

2) Eight new stories written and out the door by end of year

That total is half of what I’ve done in my best year, but I plan to start another novel.

3) 7-day turn-around (or ASAP) on getting rejections back into rotation

Just keep operating as usual – get those stories out there.

4) Indie publish SOMETHING every 10 weeks (keep to exact schedule), with a 3-week preorder and promotion campaign for any eBook priced over 99-cents.

Changing to a slower cadence because my inventory is so low.

5) Blog each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday

I enjoy blogging (otherwise I wouldn’t do it), but it is first and foremost to bring readers to my stories. Sounds self-serving, I know, but that’s part of life.

6) Be more active online aside from my own postings (comment on 4 blogs per week)

Something I need to be better about

7) Read 8 speculative fiction novels (by different authors)

The purpose of this has been to learn from the writing of others, as well as to be more exposed to what’s out there in speculative fiction. As much as I’ve enjoyed reading series, it limits that exposure.

8)Complete first draft of a new novel

Not sure what that will be yet – maybe a sequel to Swordsmaster, or perhaps another idea I’ve been kicking around.

Writing Milestones:

1) Sell a story to a traditional publisher

2) $150 total royalties for my short fiction writing

I’m dangerously close to this milestone and should make it this year.

3) An individual story earns 5-cents/word through indie channels

This would be as though I had sold that story to a traditional publisher – a justification (in my mind, at least) for bothering with indie-publishing myself. “Quiet!” is the leader of the pack in this milestone, having made 11.7% of its value (for those of you keeping track at home, it took seven years to reach that 11.7%, so assuming it keeps on that trajectory, it’ll make this milestone in… 56 years years, and I’ll be… well, one of you young’uns be a help and etch something on my headstone when it happens, won’t you?

So, what are your goals and milestones for this year? How do you keep yourself writing? Feel free to post in the comments here. Just saying…


I’m participating in the Smashwords End of Year Sale. Through today (January 1st), all my books that are normally priced above 99-cents (that would be Swordsmaster and my story collections for the most part) are for sale on Samashwords at 25%-off (with coupon on the individual eBook’s page.) Check out my books here:



Swordsmaster – my first novel (which only took me forty-some years to write) is readySwordsmaster4 for reading.

Fate is neither something to run away from, nor something to run towards.

The first bright-eye to be seen on the mountain in living memory, Sandrik didn’t want anyone to think of him as they did the ominous Aurae of legend, so he had worked hard to keep his special abilities hidden. But there was more to Sandrik than even he knew. Now that it was time for him to enter the ancient ruins of Taernfeld and be declared a man, what other changes might he be forced into?

Swordsmaster is available at several online retailers, including, but not limited to:

Smashwords (with a coupon for 25%-off now as part of the Smashwords End of Year Sale!) : https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/954501

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07WNK79FM

(there is also a paperback on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/dp/1691904910


CatsOfWar_IIa_CoverWilliam Mangieri’s writing (including Cats of War II, his latest collection of Herc Tom, Champion of the Empire tales) can be found in many places, including, but not limited to:
• Smashwords:  https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/NoTimeToThink
• His Amazon Author page:  http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B008O8CBDY
• Barnes & Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/william-mangieri?store=book&keyword=william+mangieri

• His site on WordPress:  https://williammangieri.wordpress.com
• “William Mangieri’s Writing Page” on Facebook at:  http://www.facebook.com/NoTimeToThink
• His Goodreads author page:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6893616.William_Mangieri
• Or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s