Hey everyone! I don’t know about you, but I’m sure glad 2020 is over and that we can now get onto the business of making 2021 a better year than the last one. And while I know the light at the end of the tunnel might feel far away right now (and maybe it is, I don’t know), I know I’ve got a lot of goals for this new year and I’m going to try my best to make some meaningful progress in writing and life. In terms of my personal life, I’m thrilled by the prospect of only having another year or so to go in grad school! This spring I’ll be working on a dual thesis requirement, so it’s going to be busy. Fortunately one of those will be wrapping up in April, and after that things should be a bit more free. However, I also have a few big goals I’d like to meet in 2021 and I thought I’d share them with you here. If you read to the last one I bet you’ll be just as excited as I am!
So, without further ado, here are my three big goals for 2021:
#1: Redo My Website
This one is the more procedural to-do, but I’ve known for quite a while that my current WordPress site is in desperate need of an aesthetic upgrade. I slapped it together in a hurry years ago because I wanted to make sure I had an author website, and after that I didn’t really do too much with it except posting blog updates and writing notes every now and then. So at some point before the end of the year, I plan on giving this site the visual and design update it deserves. Stay tuned for a new face for my writing endeavors in 2021!
#2: Better Market The Showstopper
In case you may have missed it, I relaunched my first novel, The Showstopper, in October 2020 after a self-publishing process that took nearly six years and three editions. With some snazzy new cover art, a professionally built and edited interior, and some minor plot fixes, I’m proud to say this novel of mine is ready for the big time! You can get your paperback or ebook copy on Amazon, and if you’re interested in a signed copy, well, I can make that happen too. Just ask!
All that said, my overall sales numbers so far haven’t been where I’d like them to be, so I’m going to make some big moves in 2021 to get the word out about this novel that I’m so very proud of and I want to share with the world! This will include some really cool giveaways I’ve got planned, so make sure you’re following this site and my social media accounts (Kyle Robertson, Novelist on Facebook and @krobnovelist on Twitter and Instagram) for the latest info. Looking forward to seeing what kinds of fun stuff I can come up with for my book baby!
#3: WRITE A NEW BOOK!!!
Yep, that’s right: I put this one in all caps because I’m that pumped and serious about it. You heard it here first, I’ve got another novel coming! I always have a bunch of projects flying around in my brain (so many ideas, so little time!), but since I’m mostly finished with The Showstopper and nearly finished with my creative writing MFA thesis, The Road to Ithaca, I needed some new fun story to occupy my time. I put out a poll on Twitter about which of my most developed story ideas my audience was interested in hearing, and the results were loud and clear: sci-fi/horror or high fantasy were the people’s choices! As much as I love my sci-fi/horror novel idea, I don’t think it’s to a point where I’m comfortable diving into it as of yet, and even though it did score the highest in my audience poll, high fantasy was pretty up there, too. So I think that’s what I’m going to go with! Hopefully no one’s too mad at me for bucking the results a little.
So what is this mysterious new project, you may ask? For now, I’m calling it A Saga of Sinew and Steel. Imagine Lord of the Rings and The Terminator had a baby and it grew up to marry Thor: Ragnarok. Yeah, it’s sort of like that.
The story kind of straddles the line between sci-fi and high fantasy, taking place in a fantasy world called Ixtal. Hundreds of years before the events of the story, Ixtal was a thriving world filled with humans, elves, dwarves, goblins, and all kinds of beings living in a harmonious and advanced society, but the rise of living machines bent on annihilating all the “organics” has turned it into a barren, post-apocalyptic wasteland where the few survivors hide in underground bunkers, scratching out a meager living and conducting futile guerrilla raids against the dominant machines. Told from a number of different perspectives, the story follows the survivors, the machines, and some unaligned with either group as they gradually unravel a conspiracy that’s made puppets out of every one of them, as well as grapple with a mind-altering truth: this world is not all there is.
That’s all I’m prepared to say right now, but I hope this little teaser has grabbed your interest! I’ll be posting about my progress throughout the year, as my modest goal is to have a refined draft ready to submit to beta-readers by the end of 2021. If I can get further than that and actually publish, great! But I’m trying to keep my goals doable this year and I think I’ve succeeded in constructing them that way.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you all are safe and well in these trying times. We’ll get through this together!