Saturday, January 23, 2016

Writing Goals for 2016

As indicated in my previous post, I don’t make resolutions, I only have goals, but that list is extensive and changes frequently. Since I do fiction for major writing and non-fiction for blog writing, I always have projects aplenty.

This year in fiction, I have plans for a second and third historical novel based on one just completed. The finished one, and these two planned stories plus perhaps two more volumes for a total of five stories, I consider one project following one family through time. This has been a long-term project that started in 2000. Hopefully, the follow-up volumes won’t take such a lengthy development.

You might ask, what took so long in the first place? The answer, in a word, is: research. Much information for the 8th century in Europe and about the Franks in particular was mostly in a foreign language, but increasingly translations have become available. Yet still, how did the Franks greet each other? Sounds simple, but certainly not hello, yet the actual wording is unknown. So when I say much, the information lacks that quality. Not only are the Frankish languages (yes two) dead, most documentation has disappeared. In the first volume details about setting, such as social interactions and how things were done, constantly interrupted me. Now that I’ve investigated and determined those things (making some up along the way), writing the next stories, I hope, will be faster. I think, however, the historical record and how my characters play between events might still hinder the stories’ development.

I have about fifteen stories with settings, characters, and beginning plots ready to go, but parts of my imagination on these stories haven’t kicked-in. Until it does, I usually can't force progress. Still, I usually operate better when I have two projects under production. Perhaps because if one stalls out, I can switch to the other. Three are too many, unless the non-fiction writing counts.

Short essays and other factual writings topics interest me and I like to post them on my two blogs, one devoted to gardening and crafts, and this one on my writing and my world. So hopefully, 2016 won’t move as fast as 2015, and I will actually accomplish my goals. If not, they’ll still be in the works.

Please visit the following authors and investigate their writing plans for 2016:

Victoria Chatham
Margaret Fieland
Skye Taylor
Diane Bator
Beverley Bateman
Connie Vines
Bob Rich
Rachael Kosinski
Judith Copek
Kay Sisk
Anne Stenhouse
Hollie Glover
Helena Fairfax
Fiona McGier


  1. Rhobin, I agree with your statement that fiction needs to be based on research. Actually, that's one of the fun bits. I've written about various time periods: 700 BC, the Second World War and following years, 1500 years into the future, and right now. Each time, I've done endless research to get things right.

    If the research is successful, you, and therefore your readers, get transported into that time and place.

    Anyway, I'm glad you are Frank.


  2. Yes, (LOL) I've been accused of that before but not in such a positive way.

  3. Your research sounds fascinating, Rhobin, and what an unusual period in history to choose for your novels. It takes me a year to write just one book - with or without research - and I admire anyone who can write more than one per year.
    Thanks for the great Round Robin topic. Best of luck with your challenges!

  4. 8th century Europe and the Franks is a period I've never even heard about. And researching in a foreign language sounds both interesting and challenging. And you're writing a series. I wish you good luck with both the research and the series.

  5. I love research, in fact sometimes I do too much as none of it reaches my pages but does leave me with ideas. And yes, where did 2015 go?

  6. Rhobin, I admire you SO much for your dedication to research! I've never done anything of the caliber you have (though I did purchase a book at the National Gallery in London to aid me in knowing about Claude Monet's paintings for one of the novels), and it'll pay off so much in the end. Your idea of following one family through the eras is extremely intriguing, I'm impressed!

  7. I love the research part and could spend far longer on it than I do just for the enjoyment. But somewhere along the way, as I take notes and follow new leads my story really starts percolating and my characters start champing at the bit to get into action. I love that feeling of having toiled up the steep slope of research, and reaching the place where it all begins to come together, then plunges over the edge like a roller coaster ride and take you with it.

  8. Wow! You are ambitious Historical research can take forever. I discovered this a few years ago when I sat down to write about 1928 Southern California. Research can be fun, and then there's always the puzzle of what to show and what to hold back. I wish you lots of luck an do keep us posted.

  9. That's quite a project. Good luck with this.