#FreshStart - Sheryl Lister

January 9, 2019

It’s the beginning of a whole new year; what time could possibly be better to become more motivated and inspired? You have a whole 365 days ahead of you, and now is the time to start making them count, so we're asking authors what they've got planned for the year ahead!

 

Sheryl Lister talks about how her mindset is less focused on setting goals, and more on resolving how to get them done.

 

Is It That Time Already?

 

New year, new you, time for a new start, twelve months to a better you… You’ve probably heard these, and many more, when it comes to making resolutions or setting goals for the coming year. I don’t make resolutions—I applaud everyone who can make them and stick it out the entire year—but I do set goals, now more than ever. Whoa! Had someone told me how challenging this business of being an author was, I might have done something else. Okay, that’s not true. I have to write and I love writing. The business part… Not so much. However, it’s necessary because there are a few things I’d like to achieve in 2019.

 

At the beginning of 2018, my book club chose Year Of Yes by Shonda Rhimes as their selection. Because of my schedule, I’d missed several previous meetings and wanted to at least make this one. Little did I know that book would push me far outside my comfort zone. I don’t like talking in front of audiences and am an introvert by nature. That’s kind of laughable seeing as how conferences and events are a part of this journey, huh?

 

After reading the book, I decided in 2018 that I would step out of my bubble and say “yes” to some things. As a result, I’ve accepted two engagements that will call for me to do the one thing I fear most. You guessed it… Talking in front of an audience. One will be a panel (thank goodness), but the other is a workshop that I’ll be teaching. Am I ready? I will be and I’ve already started planning.

 

I’ve also started organizing the rest of my year and will hit the ground running. It’s common knowledge by now that Harlequin is closing the Kimani line and it will be bittersweet to publish my final series with that line next year. At the same time, I’m hoping that this will encourage them, and other traditional houses in Romancelandia, to integrate African American romance into their existing lines. I see it’s changing some, but there is much more room for improvement. I do hope to continue my partnership with Harlequin in another line, along with maybe expanding to another major publishing house.

 

 

Additionally, the new year will bring an increase in self-publishing for me. I have a couple of projects I hope to release and a few collaborations that will be forthcoming, so stay tuned. I’ve never been great at using a planner—I tend to be all in for the first month or two, then drop off completely and revert to my wall calendar—but it will be a must-do goal for the coming year. Another goal I have is to become more proficient in promoting and marketing my brand. By the end of next year, I’m projected to have eight or nine new releases; traditional and indie. I’m finding that the trick is not setting the goal, it’s resolving to get it done. And that changes everything.

 

What are you looking to accomplish in the new year?

 

Whatever it is, resolve to get it done. Wishing you much success!

 

Sheryl's latest release, His Los Angeles Surprise, is out now.  For more information about her and her writing, check out her website, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

 

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