The day to day work in my business can be very mixed. Filling online orders is regular, but after that I could be designing dolls, or painting new artworks, or business planning, or keeping up with emails and social media, or laying out new art books, or so many other things. I always have a few larger projects on the go at any one time as well, hopping between them.
Mid 2014, I was looking at the state of my projects, and one in particular- the Memory’s Wake trilogy. It was already 6 months after I had wanted the final book finished, and I knew there was probably another 6 months of work still to go to get it done. “But I have to get my online store updated, and there’s that new doll design I want to do, and I’ve got enough artworks together to do another Art Collection book” my brain kept saying.
I had to get my third novel finished, but there was just so much other stuff to do.
So I had to make a tough decision.
I put everything on hold until the book was done. EVERYTHING. I did not paint, I did not make dolls, I did not update sites or even GLANCE at my to-do lists. I kept up with orders and emails, but after that there was only one job for me. Finish. That. Book.
And I did.
Here’s a video I made for my novel release party talking about finishing the trilogy-
Now here I am, with that project finished and a whole world of to-do list possibilities opened up to me again! It feels like I’m starting fresh in so many ways. And in a lot of ways it’s a bit scary.
Another video from my release party, talking about some of the things I might do next!
What’s Next for my Art?
While I did do a fair bit of painting to get the illustrations for Providence Unveiled done, they are in a slightly different style to the majority of my art. I feel as though I haven’t really painted in forever. And I look at my body of work and to be honest, I don’t know if I like it. It’s as though there is some conflict between the kind of art I like, and the kind of art that naturally comes out when I create. I’m having an inner conflict about what my “style” is or if I even have one. I want to re-examine my art style and work harder to improve the look of my paintings, take it in a direction towards a look I really like. I have already started experimenting with different looks and mediums (oil paints, yikes!), and I think experimenting is the best thing to do in this situation, so expect to see a lot of that happening.
I’m also working on getting a new online store together as part of this site here, focusing just on my original paintings and auctions of my smaller works I’ve been creating.
What’s Next for my fiction?
I want to finish the Empath Chronicles story, that’s a priority for me. I have two more short novellas planned to tie it up, and that will be that series done. I’ve roughly mapped in to try and get the next one released around August.
I have a few other story ideas I’m really keen to write as well as I mentioned in the video above. Those probably won’t get a look in until 2016 at this point though. I really have to focus more on my art again for a while than my writing, but I’m trying to work out a schedule for myself where I get at least a couple of hours every week for writing.
What about other books and projects?
There are LOTS of those. Here’s a short list of what you can expect for 2015-
- More Art Collection books (fingers crossed there will be a new one by April!)
- The Memory’s Wake hardcover Omnibus
- The Memory’s Wake audio books and the Memory’s Wake illustrated guidebook.
- More colouring books!
- A “how to” art book with art tips
- A “how to” book about art business
- I’ve even got half a children’s book planned out that popped into my head while falling asleep (as all the best ideas do!)
As usual, I think I’ve planned out far more for myself than I will actually be able to fit into the year (especially considering I’m still only working part time, 3 days a week, until my daughter is in school!).
What do you think I should be working on next? What project are you waiting on for me to finish?