I’ve been thinking a lot about work these past few months.
It’s in the zeitgeist, as we collectively as a society realize we can’t keep hustling at 125% day in and day out while the world goes up in flames around us and we pretend everything’s fine.
It’s on the minds of several of my ghostwriting clients, who are coaching their own clients through burnout and trying to find meaning in their lives.
And it’s been on my mind as I juggle writing thoughtful posts about burnout for said clients — while kickstarting From Big Idea to Book, racing up against deadlines for Nanshe Chronicles books, and launching a productivity course in January.
Oh, all while pretending to be on vacation in Arizona, where I’ve been working in the mornings and spending time with family and “relaxing” in the afternoons.
I’m cheerfully telling people how excited I am for the new year, how I’m going to put creativity first in 2022 — and yet.
I’m torn in a half-dozen directions, as usual, with no finish line in sight.
I’m lucky. Most of this chaos is of my own making: client work I’ve said yes to, books I’m excited to write, projects I initiated. I have what Charlie Gilkey calls “Shiny Object Syndrome,” gleefully jumping at new opportunities and filling my plate to bursting without stopping to think how I’ll manage it all.
That said, I can feel myself circling burnout, and I know I need to start working smarter.
I need to take real time off. To close the computer after dinner. To go on walks with my neighbor in the afternoon without stressing that I need to rush back to my desk.
I have no idea how to do that. I’ll let you know if I figure it out.
What’s coming in 2022
All that said, let’s take a look at what I’ve got in the works for you in 2022!
I know! I’ve been talking about these books for ages, and you’ve yet to see more than my short story in CROOKED V.1. 😉
My original goal had been to launch the first Nanshe Chronicles book, Ghost Pirate Gambit, in March. But a few weeks back I learned that the official launch date of my new nonfiction book (see below) will be March 8.
So in order to not divide my metal capacity and marketing-shouting goodwill, I’m pushing back the launch of the Nanshe Chronicles to May. I’ll be putting out all three of the first books one after another in May, June, and July.
I know, I know. It’s a bit of a wait. But my lucky Patreon subscribers will be getting their copies up to a month earlier than that!
Nanshe Chronicles Audio!
I’ll be working with J.S. Arquin (who narrated the Bulari Saga audiobooks) to produce the first three Nanshe Chronicles books — so if you’re an audio listener, you’re in luck! Those will be coming out at the same time as the print and ebooks.
There will indeed be a CROOKED V.2, as I continue on my quest to make sci-fi crime a Thing. I’ll be putting up a call for submissions in January-ish — if you know of anyone who I should ask to contribute, let me know.
I’m also currently working on a couple of stories for sci-fi crime anthologies other people are editing — one about noir detectives, one about the future of crime.
(I’m revisiting the Bulari Saga for the noir one, giving Detective Timo Cho a chance to do what he does best — ask too many questions.)
(Is this the root of my overwhelm problem?)
I’ve got a book with Starla, Mona, and Luc kicking around in my brain. It would take place after the final Bulari Saga book, but act as an entry point into a new series following those crazy kids on their own series of adventures. (If you read the Epilogue you probably guessed I was laying seeds for this)
I also have a fantasy series I’ve been working on off and on for years. It’s been sitting in the metaphorical trunk for years, partly because I was working on other things, partly because it was missing… something.
But a few weeks back I realized what it was missing was a large dash of Killing Eve, and now I’m on fire to write it. Not to mention I’m coming back from a trip to Arizona, which is the landscape that I modeled this fantasy world off of.
As I mentioned above, From Big Idea to Book, my latest nonfiction book, will be out in March. It’s published through Microcosm Publishing, and I’m super excited for it.
I’m also working on another book for Microcosm, a fast and dirty guide to freelancing. Basically, dumping ~10 years of freelance writing knowledge into book form.
From time to time, I have the conversation with friends about whether they should start freelance writing.
My goal with this book is to give readers enough information that they’ll either be dissuaded from trying to freelance, or they’ll be so sparked to do it that they’ll be off and running.
How about you?
If you’ve made it to the end of this rather long post, tell me: What are you up to in 2022? Do you also have too many creative goals?
If so, maybe you want to join me for the Most Creative Year course, which is launching January 1st.
We’re in this together, friend.
Happy New Year!