Promises to Myself (with giveaway)

GIVEAWAY WINNER IS: PEPPER PHILLIPS! Congratulations, Pepper, the random comment picker plugin picked you! I’ll be in touch to get your address.

Last year was a big one for me. My debut historical, IN A TREACHEROUS COURT, came out with Simon & Schuster, and I got inducted into the life of a published author. It was fun, it was scary, and it was wild. And what I found was that I spent a long time getting to grips with the non-writing side of it all. I definitely did not write at the same level of output as I usually do last year. This year, I plan to change that. I’ve set my minimum page count for the day, and I intend to stick with it. I might even make myself report to Edie and Liz just to make sure I do it. :)

Not only that, but my next book, KEEPER OF THE KING’S SECRETS, is due out on April 3rd this year, and my editor has given me the go ahead to let you all have a sneak peek at the cover. Isn’t it GORGEOUS? Truly? I thought Lisa Latwick had done an amazing job with the cover of IN A TREACHEROUS COURT. I didn’t really see how she could do better than that, and then she did!

And today, I’m happy to say, I think I might finally be typing THE END on a book I’ve been working on for most of 2011. It’s a story I thought up over five years ago, and part of my problem with this book has been that I have seen it in my head in such rich technicolour for so long, nothing but achieving that same vividness would do when writing the book. I’ve rewritten, and reworked and polished and polished. It will feel great to start the new year with a new project, and with the satisfaction that I did my best with the one I’ve just finished.

My new project is already raring to go, and I’ve thought about it for almost as long as the one I just finished. The perfect scenario.

So as you face the year ahead, is there a new project you plan to tackle? Or a good habit (like my minimum writing output) that you plan to go back to, or a bad one you’re determined to kick to the curb?

I’d love to hear what you want to accomplish in 2012, and want to say I hope that 2012 is a wonderful, wonderful year for all our MM readers.

(To celebrate the KEEPER cover goodness, I have an ARC of KEEPER to give away to one commenter, with the hope that if they like it, they’ll spread the word by reviewing it in the reviewing venue of their choice. Will do the draw on Friday.)

About Michelle Diener

Michelle Diener writes historical fiction and fantasy. To find out more about her and her novels, you can visit her website.
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33 Responses to Promises to Myself (with giveaway)

  1. Liz Kreger says:

    OMG, Michelle. That cover is absolutely gorgeous. I think its even nicer than the first … if that’s possible. Good going on setting goals for yourself and stickin’ with ‘em. I wish I could and am going to make a very real effort to do that. Please, please, please send me what you’ve got. I’ve been feelin’ better and can get back into the criticing routine. In fact, I may have three chapters ready for you and Edie to read on my UF. Still very excited about that book … despite the length of time its taking me to crawl through it.

  2. Thanks, Liz! I agree. Hard though it is to believe, I think Lisa managed to out-do herself with the cover of KEEPER. Can’t take my eyes off it!

    And no worries, gear yourself up for a full novel headed your way by the 6 Jan :))) And I’m looking forward to your next chapters.

  3. Edie Ramer says:

    I love the cover, and I love your Tudor books. I’m so eager to read your next one! Some commenter today will be very lucky.

    I made a goal to write 1000 words a day, starting Jan. 2nd (when I thought my husband was going back to work, but found out that was still a vacation day). Despite that, I made my 1000 words – only to realize yesterday that my beginning is all wrong and I need to start over. Ack! I like the idea of reporting to each other. :)

    • Edie, let’s do it. I think reporting to each other will be a good thing!

      • Liz Kreger says:

        Good going on getting your 1,000 words in, Edie, despite having hubby around … and despite the unfortunate realization the beginning is all wrong. Sorta depressing, IMO.

        I agree … I want to start being accountable for my output. Its the only way I’ll be able to give myself that kick in the butt to get the work done. Can’t guaranty 1,000 a day, but I can probably commit to 250 to 500.

  4. You’re right. Your cover artist outdid herself with this cover. Absolutely gorgeous!

    I don’t know if this will be a goal as much as it will be an experiment, but I want to focus on shorter stories. My books tend to be more than 80K words, which is fine. But if I want to get more stories out, that means pushing my word count down a tad. Of course, if the story calls for 80K words, then so be it. I won’t sacrfice quality for quantity.

    • Marcia, thank you!

      I tend to write shorter books (70K), myself, but they take me just as long as the ones that were 90K took me, so I don’t know if shorter is actually quicker. :) But great attitude. The book will be what the book will be. No compromise.

  5. Maria Geraci says:

    Michelle, what a gorgeous cover!

    My writing goals for 2012 are to make small, attainable goals for myself each month and to keep focused. I tend to scatter my attention like the wind and a result get little done, then cram a bunch of work near deadline. No more!

  6. I agree, the cover is gorgeous. I love lush historicals and this one looks fantastic!
    Pepper Phillips`s last blog was …The Devil Has Dimples is out!

  7. Dale Mayer says:

    Hi Michelle,

    Love, love that cover! I KNOW you’re going to have a wonderful 2012 career-wise.

    I do know where I’m going this year and feel like I have a slightly firmer footing as I walk forward. I’m open to the unexpected but for the most part I’ll be getting my backlog of books up and trying to write steady on something new.

    As for length…my books come in two length YAs are 50-60Kish with book 2 in a series being the longer and my RS come in 85-90K. I write the story, the length just seems to settle in naturally her.
    Dale Mayer`s last blog was …Hide’n Go Seek receives an AWESOME rating!

    • Thanks, Dale.

      And I’m the same with story length. Mine usually come in around 70K to 80K almost every time. The longest one was 95K, and that took me by surprise.

  8. beth watson says:

    Wow, lots of congrats Michelle! Congrats on the new cover. It is absolutely gorgeous! Congrats on such a great writing year in 2011. And major congrats on typing The End on your latest book. Woohoo! That is an awesome feeling.

    My big project for 2012 is writing a new YA book. The good habit I want to get back into is reading. I didn’t read much at all in 2011. So I am going to get in the habit of reading 1 book per week, which will be a lot more than last year. I may even do a reading week, which I did this year once. I focus on reading, not writing, and read 7 books in a week.

    Hope 2012 is as successful for you as 2011!

    • Beth, I can’t actually think of anything better than a reading week. Wow. Sign me up!

      Thanks for the compliments on the KEEPER cover, and likewise, all the best for 2012.

  9. Vicki Price says:

    I’m so glad I saw Maria’s post about this as I absolutely love historical fiction and can’t wait to read In a Treacherous Court! The covers of both books are stunning, and I look forward to having them as part of my home library.

  10. Jill James says:

    Michelle, that cover is awesomeness. I loved Treacherous Court, can’t wait for the new one. I’m hoping for more output this year. I know I can write a lot more than I do now. Nose to grindstone; my motto for this year.
    Jill James`s last blog was …Blog The Writer – Calisa Rhose

  11. Michelle, as I told you before, that is one of, if not the most gorgeous covers I have ever seen.

  12. Cynthia Eden says:

    That is such a beautiful cover!!! Congratulations!
    Cynthia Eden`s last blog was …BOUND IN SIN–Free until 1/13/2012

  13. Chris Bails says:

    Wow, what a great cover. Love her dress. Love that style, want one of my own. This book looks good and would love to win and read. You are a new author for me and always looking for new stuff to check out. Thanks for the chance to win.

  14. OMG Michelle, that cover is to die for. It’s absolutely gorgeous! Congratulations on a stunning cover and on finishing your new book!

  15. omg! that cover is seriously gorgeous! Love it!

  16. I agree with everyone – congrats on the good cover karma! May it last the whole series.

  17. Misty Evans says:

    Oh, Michelle! That cover is gorgeous! And a good cover can totally make me buy a book.

    This year, I’m drawing back from the madness of social marketing I jumped into last year. Yes, marketing has it’s place and I can see the results of my endless tweeting and FBing and guest blogging, but I’ll admit, I’m tired! I want to immerse myself in writing again and stop the promotion madness for awhile. LOL.

    Good luck with your goals and your writing. I hope 2012 is a wonderful year for you!

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