Plans for 2019

Since more than a week of February has already passed by, I’m a little late with 2019 planning. Nevertheless, I persist because I’m a planning sort of woman. Without a plan – regardless of how often I actually look at it – my life feels scattered and without purpose. Pity my poor husband!

The problem this year is settling on priorities as you can see from the diagram above. (I put it in diagram form for easier understanding.)

On the writing front, in 2018, I completely rewrote The Admiral’s Wife – also referred to as the Hong Kong novel. I’ve also worked with Jenny Quinlan to edit Paris in Ruins (written in 2017) and should I choose to self-publish that novel (my agent was unsuccessful finding a publisher), Jenny has also given me some ideas for a cover.

And my mind is bubbling with a new story – in fact, I have three new story ideas, but one has to work on one at a time! Or, at least, I do!

Beyond writing novels, there’s the blog beast to feed (you don’t win awards without putting in the effort!), the historical fiction and author community to support (love my fellow authors and bloggers) and the dreaded marketing and promotion arena to revitalize. I did almost no marketing in 2018 and my sales suffered mightily.

So friends, a little more thinking is required in order to make the best use of my time. All suggestions and comments are welcome!


M.K. Tod writes historical fiction. Her latest novel, TIME AND REGRET was published by Lake Union. Mary’s other novels, LIES TOLD IN SILENCE and UNRAVELLED are available from Amazon, NookKoboGoogle Play and iTunes. She can be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads or on her website


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14 Responses

  1. That is some list, Mary! Recently I have been following Dan Blank, via newsletter and Facebook, who helps authors hone down what is truly important. Fiction writing, blogging, and marketing — it’s all so time-consuming. My hat is off to you.

    1. Good suggestion, Elinor. I’ll have a look at what Dan Blank is advising – could be some good insights. Marketing is where I’m falling down. I know what sorts of things to do, but have no passion for doing them.

  2. Planners Unite! Interesting seeing your diagram above, Mary.

    Feel free to use me for bouncing off cover ideas (or use my Book Cover Reviews group on Goodreads).

    And do change your thinking about Marketing; it can be very creative. 😉

  3. Mary, you’re a star. I know you will succeed at whatever you set your mind to. Thank you so much for all you do for the authors and their books. You keep us buouyed.



  4. Hi Mary, I am struggling to recall the exact words of a lovely quote from my working days about planning being an unnatural activity. It being better to just let things happen when they will often be a wonderful surprise. In early 2019 when I have reached three score and ten and five is the time for me when many urgent things I should have done instead of writing since 2010 have finally caught up with me. However, as Arnold S said “I will be back!” encouraged by the imagination of Stephen King displayed in the film of his book The Green Mile which I watched for the first time this week. Like many of King’s books far too long but a great story with the stars being a small old mouse and a very large man. A good story told badly is better than a poor story told well. Incidentally, I did have a good writing year in 2018 driven by a simple word target system.

  5. Hi Mary, It’s so helpful to see this all laid out in such a straightforward manner and to know that you struggle with these issues, too. If we who blog, write novels, and produce newsletters think about how much we’ve taken on–let alone the marketing piece–the broad scope of our activities is quite daunting. In the “old days” writers had the luxury of just writing. Now, we must be our own marketing departments and social media gurus. Where to place the focus is the big question we all face, and that question looms larger the older we get. I don’t have the energy I had when I was fifty, or even sixty, for that matter. I need to step back and figure out my own “balance sheet,” for that is, indeed, what you’ve given us. Thank you.

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