On the business end of things…

I realized I needed a business plan yesterday, so I’m blogging about it today because, well, I needed to blog and keeping it here is a good faith effort toward my ideals of transparency and accountability.

The major reason I realized I needed a plan was because I realized I was burning out faster than a stray meteor and when I crashed, there would likely be nothing left.

I’d written 10k words in the last 5 days. Not too shabby, no, and in fact arguably pretty great for my track record. It took me years to work up to being able to put out 1000 words a day reliably without feeling like my brain was mush at the end of the day. And I do mean 1000 a day — this would be after writhing and gasping in front of the computer for a full eight hours.

Yes, yes, I might have gotten more done without the writhing and gasping, but it’s part of the process, okay? Don’t judge!

However, I realized I was going crazy wondering if an average of 2k a day was enough, if 2k wasn’t laughable when I spent at least 12 hours in front of the computer every day and if 2k a day was going to be enough to put out books fast enough. I couldn’t even unwind after I left the laptop because I was going insane thinking about all the numbers.

So. Plans. The gods should feel free to laugh at them, as they often do, but at least I have something down that is more or less concrete.

My demented day job ends in May 2015. I’m really hoping, praying, working toward being able to be a full-time non-starving writer at that point. Note, the important part is non-starving. Preferably not homeless either, since I’m spoiled.

To that goal, I want to have Phoenix Chosen, Phoenix Awoken and Phoenix Arisen (tentative title) out by that point. Those would be the first three books in my series. I also want to have Ashes to Stars out by then, as that is Estyria’s triplet sister’s story and there’s about 15k written already.

I would like to have Goddess in Waiting edited and out by then as well. It’s done, so that’s about maybe 1 month to work it over while I’m working on other things.

That would be five novels, which I think is a decent start.

I also have some short stories that I am thinking about editing and expanding/finishing: the cyborg & sex pollen & cyborg revolution story; the little mermaid re-telling; and the queen and cavalier story. I also have some notion of writing more in the urban wuxia fantasy world because I have a plot outline for that as well.

Assuming the following:

Phoenix Awoken – about 75k (Phoenix Chosen is around that length) with 17k already written

Phoenix Arisen – about 75k

Ashes to Stars – about 75 k with 15k already written

Goddess in Waiting — 31k right now, but expected to be around 50k when it’s edited

I have until May 2015, with about a month in Taiwan for family in between, so about seven months, so assuming that’s about 210 days, base, with 56 days taken off for weekends, so let’s round up to 60 because I’m going to get sick in there somewhere, I’m not even counting jet lag and packing for trip and general ill health back pain bull shit life drama, so that’s about 150 work days.

I expect about 212k in new words, not counting edits. So that boils down to about 1413 words a day, average, for the next seven months.

Unfortunately, I should probably take off about 10 days each for edits in which I will do nothing but freak out over edits. Gonna give Goddess in Waiting 5 days because that has a simpler world with no continuity to worry about. So that’s 35 days gone. Poof.

So that’s about 1844 words per day.

Okay. Not terrible. Not much room for error, but …not terrible either.

I will also have to budget and work things out at some point.

The person who does my cover design and formatting is a gem and wonderful, but I’m going to have to take a good hard look at numbers if I’m going to be putting out that many books in that time frame.

Onwards and upwards!

Now that I know what my wordcount should be, I think I might be able to relax. :)

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