Defining and Re-defining Success

Racines  (across the street from Channel 7 News) is a favorite hang out for Denver “creatives.” The food and drink are fab (writer bait) and the atmosphere is wonderful. A dear writer buddy and I lounged beneath the awning of their patio last night under the “ping ping” of a heavy June rain. The conversation turned to our favorite subject – writing.

We threw around thoughts about Traditional Publishing versus Indie Publishing and decided doing both was the best way to go. Then our ponderings turned to the allusive hunt for success. I know several published and unpublished writers. Each of us have the same set of fantasy goals:

  • Becoming more popular than Stephen King and J.K. Rowling put together
  • Live like Richard Castle (maybe without the bullets flying)
  • Have an entourage follow us about at conferences, carrying boxes of our books and sparkling water chilled to perfection

On the way home, my project manager hat appeared and I gave success a little more thought. In each new project, the folks who commission the project are the ones with the most skin in the game. They have to define the goals of the project and what success means to them.

I pulled out my invisible project charter template and began filling it out:

Q. – What are my goals for this new series, Heart of the Warrior, I’m about to publish?

A. – There are five books in the series. They’ve been sitting in rough draft form for over six years and I want to get them done.

Comment  – Okay. I think I may need to dig a little deeper.

Deeper Answer (aka why am I writing this series?) – I write to encourage and inspire through stories. This epic tale is about great sacrifice and selfless forgiveness after tragedy. It’s about saving a people who spurned you, because of the mixed blood in your veins. Even if it means you will give your life for them.

Here’s a little taste for the Heart of the Warrior Series. This is the back cover blurb from Book One: The Lords of Valdeon:

shutterstock_198439211[Licensed use from]

A new series from Eppie Fantasy Fiction Award winner, C.R. Richards: The epic tale of two men begins. The first – a man of honor trying desperately to turn his country from civil war. The other – a boy struggling to discover his destiny before agents of evil find him first.

Coveted by two ancient enemies of a long forgotten age, the continent of Andara holds the key to victory in an endless struggle for dominance. Eight hundred years have passed since the god-like Jalora struck a bargain with the first King of Valdeon. The Lion Ring, symbol of the covenant and conduit of power, gives its bearer incredible abilities. The ring’s borrowed magic protects the people of Andara from covetous evil, but there is a price. As with most predators, the Lion Ring must feed. Only the blood of the D’Antoiné family line will satisfy its hunger.

A rival for Andara’s treasures, the Sarcion has waited impatiently for its time upon the land. Whispers of treason in the right ear aid its treachery. The King of Valdeon mysteriously disappears, leaving his lands in danger of a civil war by the hand of a murderous usurper. His Lion Ring is lost and the covenant is broken. The Jalora’s power begins to seep away from the land.  Evil’s foot hold grows stronger. Can the Lords of Valdeon, Sacred Guard of the covenant, stop the tides of war? Or will Andara fall into chaos? The future rests in the blood of a boy…



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