B&N Week 159: What Are Your 2014 Goals?

| January 7, 2014


It’s 2014! New year, new goals, and something of a new format for Bolts & Nuts!

What’s changing? Just a couple of things. This year, I’m going to try not to be as wordy, so these will be somewhat shorter than we’re used to. [Notice the word try. It’s important.]

The second thing that’s changing this year is the fact that I’m not going to give straight advice. This year will be the year of the question! Sometimes, the benefit of the question is in the asking, and not the answering.

So I’m going to ask questions this year. While the questions will only have my answers, my answers are meant to act as a starting point. They aren’t meant to be definitive. Like the Socratic method, they’re meant to make you think, stretch, and come up with something that works for you. Again, the benefit is in the asking.

That’s what’s going on this year with Bolts & Nuts. I hope you like it.

I guess that brings us to this year’s first question. It’s simple, too. What are your goals this year?

I know, I know. Lots of people insist on making resolutions. I’ll let you in on a secret: most resolutions fail, because people don’t make a goal out of what they want. Generally, resolutions are nebulous things. A true goal should be concrete, actionable, and quantifiable.

What are your goals pertaining to comics this year?

My goals are thus: I want to attend five conventions; I want to publish four stories; I want to publish five ebooks; I want to write fifty-two columns; I want to be more active on Twitter; I want to write a short post a day.

That’s six different things I want to accomplish this year. Let’s look at them one at a time.

Five conventions: Phoenix Con, Las Vegas Con, SDCC, NYCC, and Baltimore Con. That’s what I want to do, but already, I’m whittling them down to just two or three. The two that I can see myself skipping are Baltimore and San Diego. While I absolutely love the San Diego con, it isn’t something that I absolutely must do. I’d be going as a professional, but not having anything to sell. Those tables are expensive, and there are other, better ways for myself and ComixTribe to spend money.

The other one I can skip is Baltimore. While that’s Tyler’s backyard, it becomes more a matter of time and money for me than for ComixTribe. I’ve just gotten my job back, and I have to build up my vacation and compensation time in order to attend, so that’s something that I have to take into consideration.

We’re going to try to have a presence in Las Vegas, and since Vegas is a short flight from Arizona, I’m going to try to be there. And Phoenix? That’s a 45 min drive from me, so I have no excuse to miss that except for work.

No, the big one I’m going to try like hell to make is NYCC. New York is my former stomping grounds, and the only thing I really have to do is book a flight and feed myself. I already have a place to stay, so that’s taken care of.

What have I done to see me reach this goal? First, I’ve already gotten the dates of the conventions and compared it to my work schedule. [I have every other weekend off.] Most of the conventions happen on weekends I have to work, so I have to either put in for vacation, comp time, or trade for days, if not a combination of all of them. I’ve already begun laying plans, so now, it’s just a matter of saving money and working the days to get the time.

Next, I want to publish four stories. One of my stories is nearing completion of the line art, so there’s one. I have an artist working on another story, so that’s two. Another artist just asked me to come up with an idea for a pinup he did, and the plan is to produce a few short stories per year for that, so there’s three. I’m also batting around a couple of stories that I want to do, seeing which one strikes me the best, and that’s four. That also doesn’t take into account the short story I have coming out in an anthology, as well as the odd story I may be commissioned for from time to time. With that anthology story, I’m already ahead of the game.

For the five ebooks, I already have one that is under review, and should be out by the end of the month. I have three more in mind already, which brings that total to four, which means I have to push to come up with a fifth. There are some added things I want to do, as well. Some freebies. People love free.

Writing fifty-two columns. Yes, I know, this is almost a given. Bolts & Nuts has been going strong for three years now, and I want to continue that trend. A good portion of this year, though, as been written by the seat of my pants, with very little forethought. I want to change that this year, so what I’ve done is I’ve already written the topics/questions I wanted to explore this year, and have them in a place where I can constantly [and quickly] refer to them. That was the hard part. Now, it’s just the writing.

Being more active on Twitter is a challenge for me. Even though I’m something of a wordy bastard, I feel like I don’t have much to say in general, so I don’t post very often. Added to that, I don’t look at everyone whom I follow. Sometimes, good conversation can be had, but I don’t want to feel like I’m butting in where I’m not wanted. That’s on me, and I need to get better at it, so this year, I’ll be making a greater effort at it. I’m @stevedforbes, if you feel a hankering to keep me honest this year.

And finally, writing a short post a day. I had this idea of another new column of daily posts. Nothing too deep, nothing wordy. Five hundred words or less. Just a complete thought, and leave it there. It’s a goal, and I have the idea as to what I want to do and say with it, so it’s going to be a matter of getting it out there. There’s nothing for it but to do it, so that’s what I’ll be doing. Look for it by the end of the week.

And those are my goals for the year. This post was a bit longer than I wanted it to be, but I wanted to explain what it was that I wanted to do. Stating my goals in public means that I’m now beholden to you to reach them as best I can. I’m going to check in on this twice: once at the halfway point, and once at the end of the year.

Those are my goals. What are yours?

Click here to discuss it at the ComixTribe forum at Digital Webbing!

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Category: Bolts & Nuts, Columns

About the Author ()

Steven is an editor/writer with such credits as Fallen Justice, the award nominated The Standard, and Bullet Time under his belt, as well as work published by DC Comics. Between he and his wife, there are 10 kids (!), so there is a lot of creativity all around him. Steven is also the editor in chief and co-creator of ComixTribe, whose mission statement is Creators Helping Creators Make Better Comics. If you're looking for editing, contact him at stevedforbes@gmail.com for rate inquiries.

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