Thursday 23 December 2021

My 5 Writing Goals for 2021 - How Did I Get On?

My 5 Writing Goals for 2021 - How Did I Get On?

At the beginning of 2021, I set myself a few writing goals for the year.

We're now approaching the end of 2021, so how did I get on?

1. Draft Two of Book 13

I wrote the first draft of Book 13 during Nanowrimo 2020 and I absolutely loved working on it again at the beginning of the year. It's a festive story and I'm hoping to share it by Christmas 2022.

2. Draft two of Book 12

The first draft of Cleo's story was written during Lockdown 1 and I worked on it again during early 2021. It was such a fun book to write and I loved returning to Clifton-on-Sea and getting to know Cleo.

3. Publish A Beginner's Guide To Salad paperback

A Beginner's Guide To Salad was my first full-length novel, which I self-published back in 2014 in ebook only. So after figuring out how to create paperbacks for Everything Changes But You and The 12 Christmases of You & Me, I really wanted to do the same for Ruth and her friends.

And since I was publishing the paperback for A Beginner's Guide To Salad, I figured I may as well do the same for Book 2 in the series. So I gave myself a bonus goal of publishing the paperback for A Beginner's Guide To Saying I Do.

I'd always planned to write a third book in the Beginner's Guide series but I'd never got it quite right and kept putting it aside. But working on the paperbacks of the first two books relit the Ruth-shaped fire and I started mulling over what was wrong with all those drafts and how I could tell the story in the right way. I was in between projects by this point as it was still early on in the summer and I wasn't due to start my next book until Nano... so I wrote a whole new draft, which finally became the third book in the series, A Beginner's Guide To Family Life (which I published as both an ebook and paperback).

The Beginner's Guide series

4. Plan Book 14

Book 14 was supposed to written as part of Nanowrimo 2021. But A Beginner's Guide To Family Life became Book 14. And then I accidentally wrote a whole new book over the summer, which is Book 15. So the Book 14 I had in mind while compiling my goals is actually Book 16, which I plotted out prior to Nano.

5. Take part in NanoWriMo 2021

I didn't know whether my local Nano group would be able to meet up in person this year, but I was looking forward to taking part whether it was in-person or online (it turned out to be online again this year). I love the community spirit of Nano and it was the Zoom meetings I was looking forward to more than anything, so I wasn't disappointed when I didn't reach the 50k goal this time.

2021 has been a bit of a weird year for me personally with some big changes (and that's without even thinking about the impact of covid) so I'm majorly impressed with everything I've achieved this year: I finished two books, wrote two more, and compiled a short story collection (The Perfect Winter Weekend). I'm not sure I'll get quite as much done in 2022 and my goals will reflect this, but I am looking forward to returning to the accidental novel I wrote during the summer to work on the next draft.

Tuesday 7 December 2021

A Quick Catch Up


Have you put your tree up yet?

It's December, so of course I have to ask. We put our tree up at the weekend and it looks lovely and festive when it's all lit up and gives me the warm and fuzzy feels. December feels much more relaxed than November did - I was taking part in Nanowrimo, there were appointments for my youngest, and there just didn't seem like there were enough hours in the day. It does help that I've finished my Christmas shopping and I've only got a bit of wrapping left to do!

Here's what else I've been up to over the past few months:

What are you working on?

I'm currently working on Book 16, which I started as part on Nano. I didn't reach the 50k (not even close!) but I've made a start and I'm happy with that.

Book 16

What are you reading?

Confession: my reading has been terrible lately (not the books, I hasten to add, just having the time to sit down with them).

I kicked off my festive reading with Ann Cleeves' latest Vera book, The Darkest Evening, which I really enjoyed. I'm hoping they adapt it for the TV series so I can look clever by working it all out.

The Darkest Evening by Ann Cleeves

I'm currently reading Snowflakes at Mistletoe Cottage by Katie Ginger and although I'm reading so slowly at the moment, I'm really loving it when I do manage to sit down with it.

Snowflakes at Mistletoe Cottage by Katie Ginger

What are you watching?

I've been enjoying this year's Strictly (John and Johannes are my faves) and catching up on crime dramas and panel shows that have filled up my Sky box. I need to make room for all the festive stuff that will be coming very soon!

What have you been Instagramming?

Jennifer Joyce | Instagram grid

Writing, special birthdays, Luna, and it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

You can find me on Instagram here

So that's what I've been up to over the past few months. Do let us know what you've been up to in the comments below - and don't forget to let us know about the tree!

Thursday 2 December 2021

Read My Festive Romantic Comedies For Free


Free Festive Short Stories by Jennifer Joyce

Christmas is a busy time of year. There's always something that needs to be done: shopping, wrapping, decking the halls. But if you have a few minutes to spare, why not treat yourself to a free festive short story?

I have six Christmassy stories to choose from, which you can read by clicking the covers below.
(And if you're in the mood for something non-festive, there are more short stories to read here)

If you enjoy the short stories and want more, I have a collection of uplifting stories available on Amazon for just 99p/99c - or free with Kindle Unlimited.

The Perfect Winter Weekend: A Collection of Uplifting Short Stories | Jennifer Joyce

And if you want more short stories, why not sign up for my newsletter, where I send out free short stories straight to your inbox? Subscribing is quick and easy, plus you'll receive my free ebook quick read, Six Dates, which is only available to subscribers.

More info and sign up here

Free Festive Short Stories: