2020 Annual Wrap-up: Pandemic Edition

What did I manage to accomplish this year? Also… HOW?

It’s time for the last post of the year! Wow, can you believe it? Also… GOOD RIDDANCE.

ANYWAY. Now is the time I like to look back on my goals from the beginning of the year as well as what I managed to accomplish over the last twelve months. And even though I have shifted into being more of a books blog, this post encompasses all my goals – writing, personal, AND reading.

So buckle in. It’s been a wild year.

Recap: What did I even envision last January???

Yeah. I know. I set myself goals and SURPRISE I hit some of them! But also… a lot changes when you fall into something as crazy and unpredictable as 2020. So what had I planned on accomplishing this year?

Finish This Cursed Shadow

And guess what? CHECK! Yup, I managed to come in right at the finish line for this, releasing on December 20. You can still get your copies, ebook or paperback! It’s also available on wide retailers (those who aren’t Amazon).

Publish 4 Seasons of Magic Books

Also CHECK! This year, I published Freeze Thaw (Amazon and wide), All That Glimmers (Amazon and wide), Carnival of Curses (Amazon and wide), and The Patch (Amazon and wide). If you haven’t gotten your copies yet, you can grab your ebooks any time!

Begin a Fox Shifter Urban Fantasy

This one is still on my list, but I have not been working on it. Instead, I’ve been focused on a lot of other things. I also changed gears this year and decided to release a full 6-book Pie-Jinks urban fantasy series starting next year, so the fox shifter will be delayed a little longer.

Land an Agent

Well… like I mentioned in the goal-setting post this year, this is not so much in my control. I still have hopes for Sea of Broken Glass, and I had a request from an editor for the full manuscript just this month, but at this point I may be looking at shelving the project and trying a different story to complete this goal… maybe next year.

Improve my Formatting Skills

Another CHECK! I learned how to add pretty graphics to interior layouts AND how to do paperbacks (which was just this month). Which means now I can make MORE paperbacks and pretty interiors!!!

Learn to Make Book Covers

After much deliberation and discussion with my current cover designer… I decided I just don’t have the time or passion for this right now. It’s still a possibility in the future, but especially considering some of the things that happened this year, it’s just not in my cards.

Personal Achievements: 2020 Edition

So yes. Personal stuff. Well, obviously there wasn’t much I got to do this year. Before the pandemic started, hubs and I did do our annual pilgrimage to Katsucon in February, which was a blast! We also took a couple of our good friends. But after that, plans were mostly canned.

However, there are a couple personal achievements I can still highlight:

  • Had my second anniversary ❤
  • Got a new, much better job and am now a CMC Manager (that’s pharmaceutical industry speak for helping to manufacture and get new medicines approved). And I’m working in visual medical needs, which I think is cool because it’s gene therapy and I have vision problems myself.

Writing Accomplishments: 2020 Edition

This one is actually much better than the personal accomplishments, as the pandemic affected them a little less. Here we go!

  • In addition to the 5 books mentioned above, I also released a prequel for This Curse titled This Cursed Light (Amazon and wide).
  • I got said prequel price-matched everywhere to FREE. Believe me, that took a little work. It was the first time I created a free story. It is also my first real reader magnet.
  • I learned how to do Amazon and Facebook ads.
  • I started focusing on finding my people (the right people who want to read stories like mine).
  • As mentioned above, I learned how to do SO MUCH FORMATTING.
  • I released SIX books (last year I released only 3).
  • I added my first newsletter bonus, a coloring page of Janan’s bottle that I drew myself. You can still get this if you subscribe to the newsletter.
  • I read 90 books this year (I was aiming for 80). I may yet finish 1 or 2 more I’ve been working on. You can see everything I loved most in last week’s post.

Final Thoughts on 2020

For a pretty intense year, both personally and on a global scale, I’d say it’s still managed to come out okay. I hope you can say the same. Sure, I’ve had some not so great things happen in my personal life, including family going through Covid and other family dealing with intense stuff that rippled to the rest of us.

But despite these trials, I’m still here. I’m still talking to you guys. I’m still committed to giving you the best stories I possibly can. So thank you for sticking it out.

My heart has been with all of you these long months, and I hope you are doing well. Let’s welcome in a fresh new year together and hope it stomps 2020 back into the mud of distant memory.

And in these last few days of 2020, I’d love to hear how you’re doing. How are you? Have you done anything you’re particularly proud of? Do you have any special hopes for next year? Let’s chat in the comments.

Talk to you in 2021. 🙂

❤ Selina

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