Hi everyone, we’re back! Welcome to this week’s installment of Utopia2016 Resolutions! Ashley from Book Junkie: Not-So-Anonymous and I had such a good time bringing you resolutions for 2015 that we are back for 2016. Every Tuesday from now until the conference, we are taking turns hosting a Utopia2016 attendee, be it an author, blogger, publicist, editor, fan, etc. This week, I am happy to feature author Susan Burdorf with an update to her earlier resolutions.
Susan Burdorf, Author and fan of many in attendance
Will be her 5th time at UTOPiA
How has Utopia changed you? (OR how do you HOPE it will change you?)
Original resolution answer: I am now more confident about how to publish, and to write, my stories in a way that will please my readers and myself. I find that every year I attend I learn a new kernel of information that I never knew I lacked, but that helps me in my author journey. I am not sure that I ever would have published my novel without Utopia and its many guests encouraging me.
Update: So, I wanted to share some updates to my previous post. I want to add that in the few months since I sent this back to you all to post a lot has changed. I have made more connections within the writing world and will be publishing a series of Middle Grade books by the end of 2016 featuring the child of a friend on the cover, with the design of the cover a collaboration between us. I am excited about this project because I am getting to work with a stellar photographer/book cover artist, and I get to try my hand at something fun and original. These are all things that would not have happened had I not found my courage at Utopia, and without Utopia I would not have met this amazing lady.
What steps are you going to take to help you reach your goals?
Original resolution answer: I constantly change my goals, so every time I learn something new, I re-evaluate and adjust my goals accordingly.
Update: As for goals, I am more realistic about them. I am a butterfly sometimes – I float all over the place getting nothing done. I am now more careful about what I commit to and find the best people to help me accomplish them instead of selecting the flavor of the month. I am finding that while I appreciate the talents of some people, I do not appreciate their work ethics. I listen to what other people have success or failures with when it comes to reaching their goals, connections I would not have made on my own without Utopia, and then reach out to those who can help me be successful.
If you attend Utopia in more roles than one, how do your goals differ in each of those roles?
Original resolution answer: I attended the first two UtopYA’s (as they were known through the first four years) as a volunteer coordinator with the event and I never thought I would ever attend as an author who had published a book, but in year three I decided to make that dream a reality. And in year four I accomplished that goal by publishing my first book.
Update: Not much to add here except that I have not stopped writing and will publish my second book, a YA Contemporary called “Breaking Fences” through a publisher, Anchor Group Publishing, on May 17th, 2016 and have several others due out this year.
Susan Burdorf, Author of A Cygnet’s Tale and Utopia 2016 Resolutions
I resolve to use Utopia 2016, the fifth year of this great event, as a step forward in my writing journey. I have come so far since the first UtopYA in 2012 that looking back boggles my mind. I will do the following by the time of Utopia 2016:
- I will mentor other authors on their journey by providing a blog that is informative and fun. Blog will be up and running by September 2016.
- I will stretch my writing muscles and produce at least four books by the time Utopia 2016 rolls around. Okay, I have one coming out in May 2016 and in April 2016 I will publish a novella series in a group of four books. The series will be ebook only for now and is called, “A Little Midnight Madness” and is a YA Paranormal about a Fairy Tale themed ball put on by a young woman about to celebrate her 16th birthday who unknowingly unravels a curse and invites a demon to the party who forces the guests to act out fairy tales with, sometimes, unhappily ever afters. Every story is a cliffhanger and the reader will not know who lives or dies until the last book.
- I will become better organized financially to allow myself the freedom to attend conferences that will further my author journey. Still working on the financial end of things, but I am carefully selecting my venues in the meantime. I want to optimize my opportunities to meet with readers and minimize my outlay of cash.
- I will choose to attend conferences, workshops, and other author related events without fear of not being good enough. This I have conquered.
- I will schedule time for my writing, and not try to fit it in between other obligations – I shall make writing a priority! Still a work in progress.
- I will learn how to market by watching and learning from the success and failures of my colleagues. This is made easier by the willingness of fellow authors to share their journeys.
These resolutions may change as the year passes as I successfully complete them, but for now – these are the things I will accomplish in the next year.
Thank you for allowing me the time to share my resolutions with you!
About the Utopian
Susan Burdorf is an avid reader, photographer and lover of all things sparkly. Writing is a passion that is only quenched when THE END is written on the last page of a manuscript. Nothing says home to her, though, like the presence of her family. Susan encourages you to correspond with her and is available for public appearances at schools and conferences.