Category 1 - new for 2014
Now I have officially given up on astronomical researching and writing I have a gaping chasm in my weekly timetable which I am going to fill by returning to the safe familiarity of postal history.
I have a number of possible collecting and then displaying projects in mind, a couple of which have just started going through the "Is there enough material to purchase at an affordable price?" process.
I might, or indeed might not, consider creating a "Stamp Collecting from A to Z" blog and/or book. I have yet to convince myself that I have the motivation to do the job properly but I would rather not even start work if I thought that only something second rate would emerge.
Category 2 - continuing projects
Images from my grave-hunting blog (http://www.grave-mistakes.blogspot.co.uk/) will continue to appear on the plethora of cemetery related Facebook groups. There are over 30 of these groups but many are barely viable with few readers and even fewer posters.
The Social History Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/609806292391471/) I created has over 1600 members but most don't appear to read, comment or contribute and so any quoted membership figure creates something of a false impression.
By definition ghost writers have to remain anonymous. One book I ghost wrote appeared in 2014 and it has sold much better than even my most optimistic predictions. I have had two other formal proposals and I have promised those concerned that I would make a definite decision by January 1st 2015.
Category 3 - officially kicked into the long grass
Although I have been approached to write a couple more books on amateur astronomy - one on variable stars and another on astronomical data mining - I have decided not to accept the commission. The books I published in 2014 received good reviews but the total sales have been disappointing despite me engaging in a sustained marketing campaign on the relevant Facebook groups. If the two proposals had included an element of "money up front" it might have been different but I wasn't tempted by yet another "jam tomorrow" scenario.