December 30, 2018

What went well, and what didn’t

by Ken Preston in Life, Writing0 Comments

Well, would you look at that?

The final blog post of 2018.

How did we get here so fast?

2018 sure did seem to slip through my fingers pretty quick, like strings of wet spaghetti straight out of the pan.


Or something.

But now that I’ve had a chance to sit down and take a look around, I can see that I am in a vastly different place to where I started from.

Like lots of people in this world, I tend to end the year reflecting on where I have been and where I would like to go next.

Let’s start at the beginning of 2018.

I had two books I needed to finish, another creative writing class to add to my roster of three already in existence, the limited edition hardback set of Joe Coffin Seasons One to Three to publish, a top secret project to unveil and one more thing which I didn’t mention.

Let’s start with that one, shall we?

The thing I did not mention because it was utterly ridiculous and unachievable.

I set myself the challenge of writing 1,000,000 words in 2018.

Stupid, right? Utterly, utterly stupid.

Well, guess what?

Yes, I failed.


So what am I going to do in 2019?

I’m going to set myself the challenge once more of writing 1,000,000 words.

They don’t have to be good words, and they still count even when I delete some of them at a later point, which I will surely do. And this time I am going to count blog posts, and maybe even my newsletter emails.

I’m also going public this year.

As you may have noticed.

I’ll keep you updated on how that’s going.

Anyway, back to 2018 and, seen as how I started at the end of my list, how about I continue in the same style and take it in reverse?


Well, that didn’t happen, either. 2018’s starting to sound like it was a real washout for me, isn’t it? But stick with me, it gets better. So the TOP SECRET PROJECT didn’t happen because, as usual, I tried to fit too much in to the tiny windows of free time that I had. But that’s not to say it won’t happen in 2019.

No, indeed.

The limited edition set of Joe Coffin hardbacks? Yep, I got those out. And damn proud of them I am too. I’m going to be setting up a new sales page for those limited sets in 2019, so keep your ears open and your eyes to the ground.

A fourth creative writing class? Yes that happened too. I now run two after school clubs, I lead a workshop once a month for teens at Kidderminster Library and an adult class at Kingswinford Library.

But the books! What about the books?

As I’m sure you already know, Joe Coffin Season Four was finally published at the end of November, and came out to some rave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. The second book I intended on finishing before 2018 passed into the history books is still a work in progress though.

So, a mixed bag really. Some successes, some failures.

A bit like life in general.

Two particular highlights, and neither of them did I see coming, were being sent to Montova in Italy for a conference on young readers, and finally giving up my job to work full time as an author and creative writing teacher.

It’s pretty amazing what brilliant surprises life can have in store for you when you say yes to opportunities.

So what’s in store for 2019?

Let’s itemise it:

  1. Write 1,000,000 words.
  2. Finish my WIP, Planet of the Dinosaurs Book Two: The Journey North.
  3. Write and publish Joe Coffin Season Five.
  4. Write and publish Caxton Tempest number two.
  5. Finish building a new YA website.

How about you?

What are your goals for 2019?


Ken Preston

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