Last week, we had a round-up of 2020’s achievements, both for the group as a whole and for some of the individual members. This week, we stop looking over our shoulder and look forwards instead to what is planned for 2021. Once again, we’ll start with the group and then move on to individuals.
Chudleigh Writers’ Circle
Given the uncertainty that persists at the moment, it won’t be surprising to hear that CWC has not made any plans for a Literary Festival, a Literary Supper, or any other physical activity this year. We’re not even planning to meet face to face until the spring at the earliest. But we have a full programme of activities planned for our monthly Zoom meetings, starting next month with a workshop on character development with script writer and novelist, Ian Pike, whose recent commissions include Have I Got News For You. And we are looking forward to beginning a third Joint Arts Project with local artists and photographers.
Objective 1: Write and produce 1 musical play.
Objective 2: Give proper consideration to marketing. Accept that Amateur Musical Theatre Societies are simply not interested in doing pieces by an unknown writer. Explore at least 1 other route.
Objective 3: Get professional musical theatre feedback for at least one show.
Objective 4: Enter at least one musical theatre competition.
Objective 5: Give further consideration to text and sub-text in dialogue.
Objective 6: Join an existing or create a SW Musical Theatre Writers’ Group for mutual critical feedback.
Brenda (Bea) Hutchings
Last week I mentioned I’d been busy during 2020 writing a romantic comedy called A Voice Full of Pebbles, and editing The Blood Runner, a crime thriller. I’d like to start the New Year by saying that I aim to publish both of these books in 2021.
The day job took up a lot of my time in 2020 but I did finish the last illustration for my Kip & Kat book and I reduced the text considerably. My hope for 2021 is to nab an agent (already on it) and to do another book (Ronnie the Racehorse) AND illustrate all the poems I’ve written.
I have a lot of objectives because I managed to bring a number of things to fruition in 2020, including doing a course in social media – which I need to use before it all recedes back into a fog of half-remembered information.
Objective 1: Finally publish The Disappeared, a thriller I’ve been working on for five years. Just before Christmas, I received some brilliantly-useful feedback from a writer friend, such that I now feel it is ready.
Objective 2: Get my YA thriller, Takeover, published. I believe it is also at the right level as a publisher indicated an interest in March 2020 – and then stopped publishing YA ‘for economic reasons,’ courtesy of Covid 19. That was extremely disappointing.
Objective 3: Enter both books into different ‘First novel’ competitions – 17th January and 28th February respectively.
Objective 4: Self-publish both books by April if I have no successful submissions.
Objective 5: In each case, start a second novel in the series.
Objective 6: Revamp the novel I wrote during 2020, in the hope of making it a better piece of work.
Objective 7: Develop the website!!
I intend to publish the third and final Cassie Hardman novel, Legal Privilege in the spring. After that, I would like to write a book based on my family, but I’m unsure about my ability to do that as it seems very personal. I have started researching my family history in preparation and I will be planning how to write the story.
For me, 2021 is all about picking up where I left off twelve months ago, which was, to look for exposure. We all know what happened to that idea!
Another year of writing has only added to the stock so now, after four years of fairly intensive writing, I’ve four books, including a first novel, and a short, radio play behind me. I’ve another two books, a second novel and a set of monologues, going through their final edit. It’s time to get out there and promote. Who knows, I might even pluck up courage and TRY (note the emphasis) to obtain an agent. I’ve heard they do exist; it’s just finding one.
Objective 1: Co-author the rewrite of a pharmaceutical textbook I wrote twenty years ago. We have a contract with a traditional publisher and a clear deadline, so this has to take top priority.
Objective 2: Finish editing Murder at Mountjoy Manor and publish it late spring or early summer.
Objective 3: With more than 200 pieces of fiction and non-fiction in my files awaiting homes, I’m going to work on, and begin publishing a series of short story collections; and a series of humorous travel shorts.
Objective 4: In line with other members of CWC, and the writing community, I find writing much easier than marketing. I’m always sold more paperbacks than ebooks, but for obvious reasons, face to face selling opportunities are few and far between at present. So this is the year I finally get to grips with online marketing.
Objective 5: In my second year as Director of the Exeter Literary Festival, I’m hoping we actually get some events programmed and presented during 2021. This year’s festival is scheduled for 5th to 7th November.