#IWSG Jan 2019: Writing Goals, Questions and Exciting News

Posted January 2, 2019 in Creative Writing / 22 Comments

The Insecure Writer's Support Group badge

It’s time for another Insecure Writer’s Support Group post to boost my confidence and encourage myself to engage with the writing community. The IWSG post on the first Wednesday of every month.

This month’s co-hosts are:  Patricia Lynne, Lisa Buie-Collard, Kim Lajevardi, and Fundy Blue!

Exciting News!

Happy New Year, everyone! I’m starting off 2019 on a high after receiving some great news. My short story ‘Sea of Sorrows’ was selected to be part of the IWSG anthology Masquerade: Oddly Suited! I’m absolutely thrilled and so excited to see my work published (although I am slightly scared about the fact people will now read my work. Eek!)

Signing the contract and sending an author photo and short bio has been a surreal experience! This has given me such a confidence boost as I rarely have the courage to enter competitions. I’m so grateful to the admins and judges for organising the competition and to Dancing Lemur Press for putting together the anthology. I’m also looking forward to getting to know the other authors who will be featured (see the list here). Exciting times ahead!

My Writing Goals for 2019

After that lovely surprise, I now feel spurred on to write more this year. My main goals for 2019 are:

  1. Finish the first draft of my science-fantasy novel.
  2. Start editing my novel.
  3. Enter some more short-story competitions (I’m aiming for 5).
  4. Share more poetry and flash fiction on my blog.
  5. Make some more online friends in the writing community.

What are your favourite and least favourite questions people ask you about your writing?

I don’t get many questions about my writing, mainly because I’m quite private about it offline. I like it when people ask questions about the things that inspire me-mythology, folklore, philosophy, science, psychology and nature. I can talk about those topics for hours!

I also like answering questions about my characters and fictional worlds. I typically spend A LOT of time on the world-building and only a fraction of that work ends up in the finished piece, so I love explaining the complexities of my magic system, the history of a civilisation or the backstory of one of my minor characters.

One of my least favourite questions is “do you make any money from your writing?” I don’t enjoy having to explain that sometimes I make a little, but obviously not enough to live on and it’s unlikely I’m going to become a bestselling author and make a lavish fortune. Money is not at all what motivates me to write, so I kind of squirm at those type of questions.

Being quite the procrastinator, I also dread questions like “when will it be finished?” or “how long will it take?” as usually I have no idea. It’s like asking “how long is a piece of string?” I can give you a rough idea of when I will reach my goal word count. But the story itself will be finished when it’s finished!

What about you?

What are your goals for 2019? What are your favourite and least favourite writing questions?

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22 responses to “#IWSG Jan 2019: Writing Goals, Questions and Exciting News

  1. Congratulations, Anstice! I look forward to working with you on our Anthology. <3
    I can't think of any questions people ask me about my writing–I'm pretty much like you. I don't tout myself very much outside of online. People don't seem to take my writing very seriously but then again, I don't feel comfortable monologing myself onto a soapbox about my writing. Is that wrong?

    I love the art on your heading. Happy New Year to you!

  2. Hey Anstice/Tizzy, congratulations on the anthology! I look forward to reading your story.

    You came up with some classic annoying questions that people ask. I think many people assume we are all raking in the dough as authors. *laughs*

  3. Angela Brown

    Congratulations on being selected for the anthology and Happy New Year. That is great news to start the year off with.

  4. Congratulations!!!!!
    That’s the best way to start the year. I can understand that you feel boosted for the year to come, and I really hope you’ll be able to finish your novel. What do you plan then? Shelf publishing or submitting?

    I totally relate to the kind of questions you don’t like about your writing. Often, it’s not easy to explain why we write to people who don’t, if we know that we are not going to earn any money off it.
    One of my least favourite questons I get (and it’s one that often comes up in interviews) is: where do your stories come from. I never know how to answer that.

    Anyway. Have a fantasitc new year! I espect you will rock it!

    • I’m still not sure about which publishing route to go down but I’m researching both options. It seems there are pros and cons for both.

      I usually turn those kind of questions back round to people and ask “Well do you make any money from your running/gaming/other hobby?”. Oh yes, explaining where my stories come from is very tricky too. I could write an essay on all my influences but it’s hard to answer quickly!

      A very Happy New Year to you too.

  5. Anstice – as a IWSG newbie the help I am hoping to find here is coming in unexpected ways. For instance…..your observation that your online persona is “a writer,” but not so much offline. I saw other comments agreeing with that.

    When I stop to think about it, online…..in my blog and now at IWSG, I am openly an proudly a writer. Offline, though many of my friends and acquaintances know I write, that seems not to impact our everyday interactions. Though I had never thought of it that way it’s a dichotomy that works for me.

    Here’s hoping your 2019 continues as well as it’s started.

    • Thank you, Gil. Yes, offline most of my friends know I write and occasionally ask about it. But many of my work colleagues had no idea until they saw my post about the IWSG anthology on Facebook. I’ve been asked quite a lot about it since then.

  6. I agree, Anstice, that it’s easier (and often more polite) to not mention writing than having to field bizarre questions.
    I’m aiming for 5 short stories this year as well. Good luck with those. And congratulations on your anthology story! Well done!

  7. Congratulations on your story being accepted for the IWSG anthology. What a wonderful way to start the new year.
    I’m also very private about my writing. I don’t encourage conversation on the topic, especially not with non-writers!
    Happy New Year!

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