Annie On Writing

August 9, 2012

Deviations and Redirections – An update on my Goals

In February I outlined my plans for making one of my writing goals for 2012 a reality. In a flurry of organisation, I devised a schedule for each step. By April, it completely fell in a heap. My focus was redirected, my goals deviated by the ‘flow.’  I’m not too distressed about it; though it highlights my weakness to help others, rather than to do things for myself.

The universe is pretty specific on some things; delivering what you have actually said, not what you meant or intimated upon.  One of my goals was to ‘publish an anthology’. To be fair, I have done more than that already – having published two – but they aren’t of my work.

Its been over a year since the disasters hit Japan in the form of a tsunami. Last year, I was part of a editorial team selecting contributions to form a creative Charity Anthology celebrating Japan; rather than focusing on the misery the disaster has caused. I’d been invited to join the team after I had submitted some brushpaintings which went on to form the chapter headings. In January, the Head Editor had a number of personal and health concerns, leaving a near finished first draft of the anthology hanging, destined not to be completed. With her, she took the contact details of all the contributors and no passwords into the sites we had used to judge the submissions.

With a handful of the original editorial team, I rekindled the project and ensured it was completed, publishing it on Kindle in June, with plans to have it in paperback by late October.

Over 60 contributors from around the world have donated their works to New Sun Rising – Stories for Japan, in order to heighten the awareness of the plight of the Japanese people. These works include brushpainting, poetry, songwriting, film, short stories, oil paintings, graphic art and haiku. The detective work needed to track down everyone was painstakingly frustrating, but in the end; we found every successful contributor. Although it may have been prudent to let the project die, I felt strongly in honouring the goodwill contributors had in submitting their work and the editorial and layout work which had already been done.

Our close – knit team were blessed with enthusiasm and gifted with generous offers which included an original song and short film made to help promote the anthology.  Its been a huge learning curve for me in self publishing and editing.

Along the way, I was invited to join the (inter) National Flash Fiction Day  celebrating the form of super short fiction. Encouraged to run a competition and publish winning contributions, I hosted the first Twisted Tales Anthology. I published the electronic version on Smashwords in late May as well as being invited to publish these with Ether Books , who run an awesome app for reading flash fiction on the iphone.

Once again, the learning curve to undertake these was steep, but rewarding.

Other achievements for this year have left me humbled and a little shy. I have been invited to Singapore  later this year, to speak as part of a team focusing on self development and relationships. This was an ‘out of the blue’ invitation after the organisers had found articles and information about me on my very first ‘published’ book – Reclaim – a survival guide for couples to rediscover  romance after birth. I have also been asked to be part of a panel for a writers festival later this year.

Early July held a shock for me as it saw me awarded with a beautiful trophy. Ether Books held its first Award Ceremony for their writers in London and it was only through the live twitter feed of the celebrations that I found out I’d won it. I was thrilled and extremely humbled to have been named alongside respected short story writers.

Although I have deviated from my original plans, I am glad the universe has redirected my passions. It has strengthened my resolve to continue to write from the heart and to make decisions based on these feelings. I do hold a hope in returning to my plan to publish an anthology of MY work later this year; but will see what the winds hold for me.

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