The end of the year is fast approaching, and 2020 has certainly been a wild ride. Staying motivated has been rough.
I think I only made it halfway to my 2020 writing goals, which is weird in a year absolutely nothing happened in my life.
This blog is about writing fantasy fiction, playing roleplaying games, and mapping for these games. Invariably “politics” creep in, mostly in my Twitter-postings. The current climate makes it impossible to not get political, and by politics, I usually mean human rights (which should say something).
I know I am spreading myself thin. A “better” focus may not help me at all. For me, writing, games, and maps are related (or perhaps an excuse).
I will not meet my goal of 100 000 new fiction words, which is a huge letdown. I have not put a number on my 2021 writing goals yet, and I’m not sure I should.
The state of my fiction is debatable. I recall swearing at the tail-end of 2018 that “next year, I’ll publish fiction.” Well, that did not happen. Nor did it happen in 2020. I’m currently sitting on a 200K word dark high fantasy mess. The first problem is that I have sworn to enjoy this. The second problem is that I do all this other stuff. But I am content, mostly.
I’ve written 40000-ish new words in 2020, which is far less than what the write-a-novel-in-a-month-writers set out to do.
The upside is equally significant as I believe my writing has improved, and I have written something every day. I actually like some of the stuff I have written. I’ve done lots of editing, and my improvements are noticeable.
Some people say the first draft’s whole point is to get it done, and I firmly believe that is true. Printing the damned thing and beginning to see all the tiny, easy improvements is so satisfying.
I’ve cleaned up the whole fiction manuscript while importing everything into Scrivener, which was a longer process than I imagined.
The outline keeps growing, and I have no idea how long this thing will become if ever finished, but now everything in the manuscript reads like fiction, with no writer’s notes in the text.
The next step is to revise and strengthen the villains. They need to be more visible and hit harder. The weakest point of my games is probably the villains, and perhaps it should not be a surprise to realize that applies to my fiction.
The good news is that this is actionable. So that is good. I am pleased about that.
Games and Maps
I’ve finished only half of the maps I set out to do, which is somewhat due to not playing fantasy at the moment.
The maps are related to the blog, where I actually met my goal of monthly postings.
My favorite post of 2020 was the Five One Page City Adventures, which I think is perfect for my gaming style and is easy to share with others as my games progress.
I now have a proper pipeline of creating “complete” adventures, including maps for a pdf and virtual tabletops.
The 2021 Writing Goals: Stuff I Really Want to (and Can) Finish
Perhaps this should be my goal: keep writing something I like at my own pace and not beat myself up about it.
That said, here’s some stuff I really want to finish in 2021:
- Revise all my “world-building” posts and finish an accompanying series of posts, creating a new world as an example.
- Finish a half-finished Zombies-in-a-swamp adventure, begun in January 2020, a companion piece to The Goblins of Duskwood, and updating the latter with VTT maps.
- Create a monthly one-page-dungeon with VTT maps.
How about you? You got any plans for next year? Any projects? Any coping mechanisms you believe in? Please share below.