Here we are again. This is starting to become a pattern. I show up at the beginning of the year with all kinds of grandiose plans, and they…
…well, I won't say that they don't end up happening, but usually they wind up being very different from what I had first intended. I'm not even going to bother looking back at the post I wrote in January 2019, because I'm sure it will be incredibly embarrassing. Naturally, I'm sure that my website will helpfully link to it at the bottom of this post so that you can use it to judge me. WORDPRESS, YOU TRAITOR.
Anyway, we are about to move into the delightfully symmetrical and futuristic-sounding year of 2020. Just seeing that number makes you think “flying cars,” doesn't it? Ah, well. I've recently celebrated the first of many 29th birthdays–I'm not turning 30 until I'm good and ready, thank you very much. It's taken me all these years to realize the laws of time are mine…AND THEY WILL OBEY ME.
*ahem* Sorry. Got carried away there. My point is, I've been doing a lot of hard thinking, planning, decision-making, etc. for the future in recent weeks, as I gear up for a new year. Some of the decisions have been slightly difficult, but still very necessary. So I want to be very sensible and transparent about my intentions for this coming year's accomplishments.
That sounds a lot worse than it actually is; I promise. None of the projects I've announced in the recent past have been cancelled. A few of them may not fit into my schedule this year, but the most important and highly-anticipated ones will take first priority. I'm only pruning and postponing things that aren't nearly as vital.
As such, let's start with the important stuff. Here are the writing projects I'm looking to get published in 2020:
The Geppetto Codex, Book 5 of Beaumont and Beasley. This one is DEFINITELY coming in January 2020 and will be available for pre-order soon. It's almost ready; just needs a few more little tweaks.
The Hare and the Hatter, Beaumont and Beasley #6.
The Curse of Charybdis, Beaumont and Beasley #7.
Schism, Beaumont and Beasley #8.
Westenra, Crockett and Crane #3.
The Dark Excalibur, Blackfire #1.
These six books are going to be at the top of my list of priorities this year. I intend to work through them in the other I've just outlined. I'm not entirely sure whether I can realistically get six books out in one year, but I'm going to try–the majority of them are at least partially finished anyway, so it's not quite as crazy as it sounds.
I'm also going to be releasing more audiobooks in 2020. I will be working with voice actor Kieran Flitton on an adaptation of Deadwood, Book 2 of Crockett and Crane, within the next month as a follow up to his incredible work on Horseman, the first book in the series. The finished audiobook should be released before spring of 2020. Joel Daffurn, the narrator for The Beast of Talesend (Beaumont and Beasley #1), will be returning to perform The Tomb of the Sea Witch, Book 2 in the series. That audiobook will most likely be out by early summer at the latest. I'll probably be releasing at least one more audiobook before the end of 2020, but I'm not quite ready to announce anything beyond these two projects yet–stay tuned for more news.
I also intend to keep up a fairly regular blogging schedule in 2020. I'm going to be reviewing all the episodes of Doctor Who Series 12 over the next couple of months, and then continuing on with more posts over the rest of the year, related to various topics my followers will (hopefully) find interesting. I'll also be blogging regularly on the Phoenix Fiction Writers website, and appearing on both the PFW podcast and other shows. (I really enjoy doing podcasts and YouTube interviews, so if you have a show you'd like to invite me on, feel free to get in touch.)
The Blackfire Circle newsletter has been fairly quiet lately, but it will be returning to its regular monthly schedule after the holidays. I may scale it down a bit so that it's not as lengthy and easier for me to produce, but it will still feature plenty of Malcolm being dragonish to keep you satisfied.
That's the stuff that is (most likely) happening next year. Now let's move on to the stuff that isn't.
I don't talk a lot about my personal life online, and in many ways, there's nothing particularly unusual about it. Like everyone else, I don't have unlimited time. That's the main issue. As many of my followers probably know already, my day job involves taking care of my special-needs brother, which doesn't always leave me with a lot of time and energy to get a ton of writing or editing done on an average day. I will also be taking on some additional work in 2020 to help improve my financial situation. Thus, prioritizing is going to be vital for me this coming year.
As I've said before, I don't make New Year's resolutions. But my goal for 2020 is, in short, “Talk less, write more.”
By that, I mean I'm going to concentrate on producing and releasing books at the expense of things that aren't as important, like social media. I do intend to maintain some activity on social media, but not so much that it interferes with my writing schedule. My Chironicles webcomic has been getting me the best returns on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram recently, as opposed to more random content I may post on those platforms, so I'll be focusing a little more heavily on that to keep up my social media presence. Aside from Chironicles (which has its own dedicated accounts), my social media posts will largely revolve around book news and updates, as well as sharing my blog posts. I may be absent from Facebook and Twitter for fairly-long stretches at a time, but rest assured that this doesn't mean I've had a crisis or fallen off the map for any other reason. If there's something important you don't think I've heard about, or a question you need answered quickly, you know how to contact me–you can use my email at firstname.lastname@example.org or direct-message me on any social media platform.
I will still be active on my reader Facebook group, but I intend to not post there unless I have something really worthwhile to share, like concrete news about a book release or a discussion thread for a recently-released book. I'm still planning to start a Discord server for Afterverse fans, but I'm going to hold off on that until I have a couple more new books out, so that there's more for everyone to actually talk about.
My nonfiction platform is on hold for the time being. I want to expand it eventually and re-vamp the newsletter freebie I've been using for it, but I simply don't have the time right now. My goal is to heavily revise The 10,000-Word Secret and make a few small updates to Not Write Now before 2021, but I'm not making any promises about that just yet.
I will also be leaving my Patreon account for the Afterverse on the back burner for the foreseeable future. I have set up a new Patreon centered around Chironicles, so that's the best place to go if you want to support my work. I'm able to deliver rewards to my patrons more easily through this account than I was with the original Patreon.
High time for a TL;DR, I think. In short: I have six books and two audiobooks planned for 2020, and those are going to be my main priorities at the expense of everything else. All the other projects I've discussed for the future are still coming, I just can't give you a ballpark estimate of when they're coming at the moment. If there's something you're curious about that I haven't addressed, by all means ask me in the comments (or by private message, if you prefer). At the very, very least, I'm definitely going to get Beaumont and Beasley Books 5-8 released before 2021, because it's been far too long since my last new book in that series. Hopefully, I can make the other two books on my list happen in 2020 as well.
As always, thank you for your patience and understanding as you wait for me to get the books published already. I intend for 2020 to be the year in which I finally deliver on a lot of the promises I've made to my readers.