I wasn’t sure how to title this post. As of late, I’ve been considering possible paths on what I want to be doing in the future. I’m still undecided, but I like to ramble from time to time on this blog because it helps me process the thoughts that are cycling through my mind. Yeah, I’ve tried to privately journal my thoughts, but it just doesn’t work as well for me. I’m not sure why. It just is what it is. This particular method of writing things down work best for me.
Okay, so the particular question that’s been going through my mind over the past year and a half is this: when will it be time to walk away from writing? Deep inside, I can feel that there will be a time when I walk away from it. I don’t know if that will be a break or if it’ll be permanent. But I can feel it welling up inside of me. I love to write, but I’ve been writing nonstop for the past 12 years. My average is producing six novels a year. (In romance, 50K is a full-length novel.)
I ran the numbers tonight, and the total romances (including a couple of novellas I’ve done) is 79. That number does include the novels I will publish later this year. I finished The Wedding Pact, Fairest of Them All, Nelly’s Mail Order Husband, and Forever Yours. If I total the amount of books I’ve done in other genres, the total comes to 92. (A few of those are novellas.) I’ve done six short stories. That’s all within 12 years.
I’ve enjoyed it immensely. Don’t get me wrong. I consider myself extremely blessed to have been able to live at a time when it was possible for me to publish my books regardless of content or length. I didn’t have to have a publisher telling me what I could and couldn’t do. I called the shots. It really is a marvelous time to be a writer.
That all being said, I am considering when I’ll “close shop” (so to speak). I would keep the books I’ve done up for sale as long as the retailers will let me. But I have been asking myself, “What do you want to do when the kids are all out of high school?” My youngest is now going into the 8th grade. That gives me five years to make a plan for the future. And one of the things I’m considering is hanging up the writing hat and doing something else. It might be time to transition to a new chapter in my life.
Anyway, at the moment, I have a goal of completing 100 romances. One of the dreams I had back in the Fall 2007 when I started writing romances was that I would publish 100 books before I died. Back then, I wasn’t thinking of whether they would be romances or include other genres. All I knew was that I wanted to have 100 books out. These weren’t short stories. These would be 100 paperbacks I wrote that I could put in my bookshelf and say, “That was a goal I accomplished in the course of my lifetime.” It was the #1 item in my bucket list. Being able to self-publish my books made that dream possible.
I thrive off of goals. I need something to shoot for. So tonight I sat down and realized I only need 21 more romances to reach a goal of 100 romances. That’s pretty exciting. My average is 6 novels a year. So if I work at that pace, I can reach that goal in 3.5 years. That puts me well in time for my goal to figure out what the next chapter of my life will look like once the kids are all graduated from high school.
Like I said, I don’t know what I’m going to end up doing. I’m just rambling so I can better organize my thoughts. 😀