Midway of 2024

It’s July 2nd, marking the midway point of the year. Today, let’s take stock of what we have accomplished and the plans for what is to come. Keep in mind that even the smallest of victories is still a victory.

As long as you’re taking steps to improve yourself in some fashion, that’s what really matters. So, don’t ever think that something you accomplished is “too small.” Many successful people started with baby steps.

Take me, for example. I didn’t come out of the gate making a living as a freelance writer. It took me more than a year to work my way into writing full-time.

We all progress at our own pace. Never compare your progress to that of someone else. As long as you’re surpassing your own expectations of yourself, you’re succeeding.

What Have I Done in the First Half of 2024?

So, why share the things I’ve accomplished thus far? Actually, it’s more of an affirmation project for myself than for you.

No, I’m not boasting or trying to promote myself as some kind of awesome influencer. It has more to do with being realistic with myself and taking an objective view of my progress.

Writing out your accomplishments, regardless of size, gives you a chance to really dive into their importance. It can also help boost self-confidence as you highlight the moments that demonstrate how you’re improving yourself.

What milestones did I reach for the first half of the year?

Finished the Reedsy Masterclass

The Reedsy masterclass for How to Write a Novel was an incredible experience. I learned so much from Tom Bromley that I am going to write a “Remastered” version of Kingmaker once the series is complete.

In fact, the way I approach writing has changed in a lot of ways thanks to the course. Tom Bromley brought up elements of crafting a good book that I never had thought of in the past. And I have no doubt that I am a better writer today.

Taking the course was perhaps one of the most pivotal moments in my attempt to become an author.

Never underestimate the value of knowledge. Education of any kind related to your career is always time well spent – even if it’s just watching YouTube videos on how to do something.

Monetized a YouTube Channel – kind of

I finally hit 3,000 hours of watch time for WriterSanctuary’s YouTube channel. That means I can offer channel memberships and receive “tips” on videos and live streams.

I still need to hit 4,000 hours before I can collect ad revenue, but at least it’s a move in the right direction.

One of the biggest reasons why it has taken so long to monetize the channel is that I’m not the most consistent creator. Between having a lack of time and a lack of motivation, I don’t get videos out as often as I probably should.

Nonetheless, the channel has been making headway on YouTube this year. If I can get a few more videos out that perform well, it shouldn’t be long before I can make some of that mad YouTube AdSense money.

Hey, $160 per month can make a world of difference for me right now.

Setting Up More Author Interviews

One of my favorite accomplishments this year has been setting up the author interviews on the channel. I’ve met some incredible authors thus far and we’ve had some great conversations.

I just wish my show was more popular to help them generate a few more book sales.

The author interviews were something I’ve been wanting to do for quite some time. And although I need to promote it more to generate some interest, they’ve been an incredible addition to the channel.

Finished the First Draft of Shadows

One of my biggest accomplishments this year was finishing the first draft of Shadows of Atlantic City.

Before publishing A Freelancer’s Tale, I had a terrible habit of starting a book and never finishing. After holding my first book in my hands in paperback, something clicked. It was a realization that I could make it happen as long as I put in the effort to do so.

Publishing Kingmaker solidified that belief.

Now, all I want to do is write and publish books. It would be nice if I could make a living from writing them, but at the moment, I’m more thrilled about telling the stories than seeing a fat bank account.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to make a few extra dollars in royalties. But it’s not what’s important to me at this point in time.

What is to Come for the Second Half of 2024?

I always have the basic, “break personal records” goal for each year. However, there are a few things that I would love to see happen that go beyond writing a certain number of words.

Although the first half of the year was a bit lackluster due to various personal and professional events, I’m feeling pretty good about the second half.

The trick is to take the steps to make these things happen. And for the most part, it all comes down to motivation and determination to see them through.

In the grand scheme of things, I am in total control of every goal on this list.

Publishing Three Books

Despite having to take quite a bit of downtime during the first half of the year, I’m relatively confident I can still publish three books in 2024. That’s because the three books were already halfway written before the year even started.

Currently, I’m waiting on beta reader feedback for Shadows of Atlantic City, am just a couple of weeks away from finishing the first draft of Fury, and VII will only take about a month or so to finish on Wattpad.

Of course, this will also depend greatly on how much I have to rewrite, revamp, restructure, and edit those books. Not to mention how long it takes to get cover art. Still, I’m going to do what I can to publish those books in the very near future.

Monetizing YouTube with AdSense

According to the spreadsheet (because I’m a dork), the WriterSanctuary YouTube channel should qualify for ad revenue by October. That is unless I can publish a few videos that perform relatively well.

This is where that consistency thing comes into play. Not to mention the difficulty of an educational channel gaining views and watch time.

I have no misconception that I will make a lot of money from YouTube. But, as I said, $160 per month can help me afford a few things that I could really use. For one thing, I’d love an actual camera for the YouTube videos instead of a cheap webcam.

Getting the Blogs Back on Schedule

I’ve been trying to get the blogs back on schedule for quite some time. It seems every time I get close, someone pulls the rug out from under me. Still, I’ll keep trying until I succeed.

That’s because I never give up…never surrender!

This requires a delicate balance as I have a lot of things on my plate at the moment. However, it’s nothing that is outside of my ability. It mostly comes down to not getting sidetracked and focusing on my “work day.”

Figuring Out Some Marketing Methods That Work

While I love writing in any form, I wouldn’t mind making a few bucks from my efforts. I mean, I doubt I’ll generate as much annual income as Stephen King, but selling a few books here and there would be nice.

Truth be told, I don’t spend a lot of time or money marketing my books. That is something I’d love to change for the second half of 2024.

The goal is to share what methods have worked best for me to hopefully help new authors on their paths.

Attend At Least One Writing Event

I wanted to attend more writing events this year, but I haven’t had the chance. Most expos and conferences cost a bit of money, of which I don’t have a lot. That’s part of the reason why I’d love to sell more books and monetize the YouTube channel.

In any case, I want to attend at least one event, even if I go as a patron. While I’d love to have a booth and sign some copies, I’m realistic with who I am. It’s not denigrating to say that I’m not exactly a household name.

Nonetheless, the plan is to attend at least one event before the end of the year. At least it’ll get me out of the house.

I Always Play Better On the Back 9

On the golf course, I tend to warm up during the front nine holes and then play awesomely on the back nine. I’ve also seen myself perform better as a writer during the last half of the year.

The most important element to seeing aspirations come to fruition is motivation. Getting yourself motivated to take action and then sustaining that effort can help all kinds of things manifest.

It all comes down to how seriously you want it and what you’re willing to do to make it happen. Sometimes that involves a major change in your life and sometimes that means taking those baby steps in the right direction.

Either way, you have absolute control over how things unfold in your life. Step out of that comfort zone and see what happens.

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