Needing A Break

Monday has come again. This past weekend went by pretty fast. Last Thursday I had made a to-do list for myself for the weekend. I got a decent amount of it done but certainly not all of it.

This was not the blog post I had planned to write for today. I simple had no motivation to write the one I had originally decided to write about. I’ve been in a slump with a lot of things recently.

I’ve been busy – on and off the Internet.

Last night I was overwhelmed by all the work I needed to do. One of the tasks was writing today’s blog post because I somehow have gotten behind with them. Instead of writing the post I logged off the computer and took a bath for an hour.

It was refreshing. (Despite Chip coming in and out of the bathroom looking for attention. She’s not a fan of baths so I also think she was concerned that I was willingly sitting in the tub.)

I wrote in my journal for the hour I was soaking and it was nice. It was quiet – aside from Chip’s low-toned barks here and there.

This isn’t the typical blog post I normally write. Every once in a while I’ll talk about general life and my well-being. I don’t know why I don’t do it more. I don’t even know if you guys like these kinds of blog posts.

Honestly, I’m partially writing this because I don’t like to skip a day of blogging. I like to keep in touch with you guys no matter the content of the post. I love what I do, but I especially love getting to know all of you guys. I’m pleased you guys care about what I have to say each day.

I’m not going to take a break from blogging or anything like that. I think I just needed a post that didn’t require as much work and thought as the rest.

Baths and journaling always seem to help. And if there’s anything I’ve learned tonight, it’s that I need to get a doggy-door for my bathroom.

What do you do to unwind for a bit? Do you ever get in blogging slumps like this? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.comPatreon | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double JumpSign up for Rachel Poli's Newsletter and get a FREE 14-page Writing Tracker! | Writing | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

Advertisements

A Million Dreams [Life]

I have a problem. And the problem is that I want to do too many things. When I say too many things, I mean I want to do all of the things.

By things, I mean I want to continue blogging on here and on Double Jump. I also have three other ideas for blogs. If they all come to be that’d be a whopping total of five blogs (maybe more).

I want to keep writing and reading. I want to write for magazines and other blogs. I want to write and publish my own novels. I want to continue writing book reviews and beta read for others among other freelance type work. I would like to, one day, create an online literary magazine and share the work of others, especially new writers trying to get their voices heard.

I want to start a YouTube channel for both this blog and my gaming blog. I want to continue talking and reviewing books and video games as well as convey fun and entertaining information about the two topics to everyone.

There are so many other things I want to do. I want to create comics (with Kris because Lord knows I can’t draw), I want to create a video game, and there’s so much more that I can’t even really talk about. (Mostly because it’s ridiculous. Like, I want to create music and I don’t know the first thing about that.)

I don’t know where all of this came from. I don’t know where I got these ideas. I don’t know why my brain aches to be so creative. One would think writing a couple books and running two blogs would be enough, but no. I want to do more.

I want to teach myself to film and edit videos. I want to teach myself how to create a video game and see what makes my favorite games tick. I want to share my learnings with all of you, my blogger, gaming, and writing friends who have been in touch with me for years now.

But… it’s hard. No one said it would be easy, I knew it was going to be hard. Still, I honestly didn’t think I’d be at this point in my life.

It’s one thing to have almost 5,000 followers on this blog (seriously, thank you guys!) but it’s another thing to sit down at my desk one night – last night – and create a massive to-do list on things I have to get done with what I have now as well as what I need to do in order to start new projects.

It’s a lot and I’m excited. I can’t wait to get started on any new projects or to continue old ones. I actually have a publication timeline (as long as I can get certain things in order on time, things should go according to plan).

The downside of it all is money. I quit my job almost a year ago to pursue these many passions. I’m lucky to still be living with my parents who are supportive and encouraging enough to allow me to try this. I had freelance writing and babysitting to fall back on, but babysitting hasn’t been as consistent (their dad got a new job and they don’t need me as often) and the freelance writing… well, that hasn’t been consistent either. Most of the gigs I do are for free to gain experience and while there’s nothing wrong with that and I’m grateful for the opportunities, I still have bills to pay and I feel kind of stuck. The few gigs I have had that are paid haven’t been consistent either.

I by no means am complaining about any of this, even though it seems like it. It’s confusing and a learning curve. I am the definition of a struggling artist and it’s honestly kind of cool to give myself that title as frustrating as it may seem. It’s not easy to teach yourself all these things, let alone doing everything yourself.

I don’t want to say quitting my job was a mistake because I wouldn’t have made it as far as I have this past year if I was still working full time plus babysitting. Nine hours have been added to my day and it’s been wonderful. I can actually have a life too and hang out with my friends once in a while.

I don’t have a lot of bills and the bills I do have aren’t much, which is great. But when I made my list of things to do the other night, I bummed myself out.

I need to find an editor, I need to find a book cover artist. I need to buy certain equipment for a YouTube channel (I can start now and plan to soon, but in the near future I’m going to need some other stuff). I want to have the ability to host giveaways for you guys among other things.

I apologize for this post being too rambly or woe-is-me. I don’t mean to come off like that, if I am, and I don’t mean to complain. I feel like I know most of you well enough and you, hopefully, know me well enough, that I feel comfortable explaining this to you as I try to gather my thoughts.

I think money in general – having enough to get started, because let’s face it, you need to put in money in order to make money, and also getting compensated for all your hard work – is a common problem amongst us writers; amongst artists and creators in general.

When you have the discipline like me to work from home for 12 hours a day creating blog posts, graphics, creative writing, filming, etc., you want to be compensated for your hard work. We put our hearts and souls into these creative projects.

People like it too. I’m grateful for the number of followers I have. I have a good amount of daily views who read, like, and comment on my posts. I have a pretty good relationship with most of my readers and I’ve made a lot of friends.

There are a few people out there who enjoy my Wattpad stories, who have told me they’re looking forward to my YouTube channel whenever I start it (fall 2018, just so you know). There have been plenty of people who have told me they can’t wait for my mystery series to come out. (I’m not revealing my publishing plans yet just in case something happens, but it’s coming.)

This is why I started a Patreon page. I’ll admit I feel a bit odd asking for donations. When I think of donations I think of charity organizations for something more serious than me creating a novel or video series for YouTube. Still, there’s nothing wrong with asking for commissions for your hard, creative work. The rest of the world doesn’t really see it as such and creators need to make a living too, right?

I swear this post wasn’t a ploy to ask for people to donate to my Patreon page. I’ve been holding these thoughts and feelings in a for a while and decided I should share them with all of you. I hope most of you understand where I’m coming from. Still, if you want to at least check out the page, please feel free to do so. It’d make me happy.

Like I said, I’m grateful and I can’t believe I’ve come so far in less than a year. No, I’m not “there” yet and there’s a lot that’s slow due to budgeting, but I can’t complain.

Thank you guys, for everything. Especially for making it this far in this post.

Have you ever felt like this before? Whether it’s money or the fact you want to do so much and don’t have enough time or resources to get it all done? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.comPatreon | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double JumpSign up for Rachel Poli's Newsletter and get a FREE 14-page Writing Tracker! | Writing | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

My Trip To Canada [Life]

If any of you follow me on Twitter, I’m sure you saw a couple of tweets from me at the beginning of the month about me being away. My blog was still running as scheduled, but I wasn’t reading or commenting on anyone else’s blogs. I wasn’t answering comments on this blog and I was barely on social media.

I was in Canada for EGLX – Enthusiast Gaming Live Expo – for my other blog, Double Jump, and also for myself.

My sister Kris and I have been wanting to go to a gaming convention or expo for a really long time now. Pretty much all of the YouTube gamers we watch was going to be there. They ran a couple of panels and put on a show. This was an opportunity we knew we couldn’t pass up.

I don’t do anything spontaneous. I’m an organized person, I have slight OCD, and I need to have a plan for the day, the week, the future, everything. I know plans change and things come up and I’m a pretty flexible person, but I’ll admit there have been a few situations where I’ve been agitated or upset because something didn’t go as I planned.

Being spontaneous is a good thing, shaking things up is a good thing. But sometimes my brain doesn’t think so.

I haven’t been on an airplane since I was 3. I don’t remember it and just tell people I’ve never flown before. So many things have changed since then anyway. I also have never been out of the country. I’ve never taken a trip without my parents. Yes, I’m 24, but I still need my mom and dad.

So you can imagine my reaction when Kris burst into our office one day and said, “By the way, we’re going to Canada!”

I should also mention I’ve never really planned a vacation either. I mean, I have, but with my parent’s help or my aunt and uncle’s help from the times we’ve gone to Disney with them.

Kris and I had to figure out how to book a flight, get our passports, figure out money and currency exchange, find our way around the airport, decide how to get from the airport to the hotel, the hotel to the convention center, and back again. It’s a lot. I knew it was going to be a lot but it’s one of those things you don’t realize how much work it is until you actually do it yourself.

But I did it. Kris and I did it.

Canada EGLX | Video Games | Gaming | Travel | RachelPoli.com

Why am I explaining all of this even though this trip was mainly for my video game blog? Well, I wanted to explain that we’re capable of doing much more than we think. This trip was a huge eye-opener for me.

I have generalized anxiety disorder. I won’t go into too much detail about it. Maybe someday I will, but for now, I’ll leave you with this: some days I do well, other days it kills me.

Being on an airplane, for example, flares up my anxiety. I know a lot of people get like this with flying, so it’s pretty common.

I’m going to Disney in April where I will have to go on an airplane. The last few times I’ve gone, we’ve driven down there. I’ve been panicking and sometimes dreading going to Disney, the happiest place on earth because I need to go on an airplane.

What if the plane crashes? What if we, for some reason, can’t get home? What if I get claustrophobic? What if I have an anxiety attack in the middle of the flight? What if I have to go to the bathroom or start to feel sick? What if someone else on the plane gets sick?

There’s always that “what if” for everything in life, but now I know what to expect. Now I’m actually excited to go.

I had a great time on the plane. The flight was only an hour and a half and it went by so fast. Yes, I did have an anxiety pill, but I honestly don’t know if I really needed it. I got cookies and apple juice on the flight which was really good. I watched the map and followed where the plane was and where it was going on the way there. On the way back I watched Mrs. Doubtfire and had pretzels and apple juice.

On the way to Canada, I sat in the aisle because I was nervous the window would make me sick. I didn’t want to stare into the abyss to remind me of how high we were. On the way back, I sat by the window and loved watching the plane ascend and descend. I loved seeing the buildings from above. We were also sitting right next to the plane’s wing both ways so that was certainly cool to see as well. I’ve never seen a plane up close before.

I was also nervous about the expo itself. Kris and I were going to be in an unfamiliar place, a large room filled with, what seemed to be, a thousand people. It was crowded. It was loud. There was a lot going on. I don’t do well in those situations.

But I did it. I was fine and I had a good time. Sure, there were some moments I felt claustrophobic, but there were so many things to do and games to play, I was able to keep my mind off it and just focus on the good.

And I did this for three days in a row.

EGLX in Canada | Gaming | Travel | RachelPoli.com

I’ve realized something important about myself while going on that trip. I knew my anxiety was all in my mind, but this proved that it really is just in my mind.

I’ve always wanted to travel but never have because I was afraid to leave my house. I was afraid I’d die on the plane.

It was amazing to see all the art and talent of various people who share a love of video games. It was fantastic to see the YouTubers who have inspired me to do what I do today. (Our hotel room was right next door and across the hall from a couple of them!)

It may seem kind of silly, but even though I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was in elementary school, these YouTubers have changed my life.

A few of them have anxiety and/or depression and talk openly about it which has helped me a lot. Their videos are funny and entertaining that I’ve watched them in the middle of the night a few times when I had too much anxiety and couldn’t sleep. They’re very open, kind, and welcoming to anyone and everyone no matter their race, sexuality, mental health, or anything.

They’re just a group of friends who do what they love for a living and that’s exactly what I’m trying to do – what I am doing.

I can relate to them on so many levels: working from home, doing what I love for a living, my mental health issues, my overall goals for why I do what I do, and more.

I want to inspire people the way they have inspired me. I want to make people laugh. I want to make people feel loved and welcome in this community I’ve been building with my blog (and beyond). I want people to feel safe and comfortable when they read my work or watch my videos (when I get the channel up and running).

I want people to look at me say, “If she can do that, I can do that” just like I’ve done with these YouTubers.

I want to explore the world and before going to Canada I didn’t realize that was a thing I could do. I did it because I wanted to see those YouTubers in person. (And also because Kris was able to pay for me… Thank you, Kris!)

I want to teach myself new things and I have been. I’ve been teaching myself filmmaking and video editing so I can start a YouTube channel for this blog (and also for Double Jump down the road). I’ve been drawing more. I’m not very good, but maybe I’ll get there in time. I want to publish books. I want to create a literary magazine or something similar. I want to create a video game.

That’s not even the half of it. There’s so much I want to do. I want to do it all. Maybe I will, maybe I won’t. But the possibilities are endless and my creativity can go as far as my imagination, which, I’ve come to realize, is pretty endless itself.

Canada seemed to be the first step for me. It opened a new world for me and I came to realize I can do more than what I think I can do.

Maybe someday Double Jump will have its own panel at a convention. No, I don’t want to be rich or famous, but I’d like to make an impact on people’s lives. (As well as make a living off it because… bills.)

Maybe someday my creative works – no matter what form, video, blog, writing, etc. – will inspire and help others.

Of course, I can’t give all the credit to those YouTubers and to the fact I went to Canada. I went to Canada and I do what I do because of the choices I’ve made and the way I’ve decided to spend my time.

I do what I do because there are so many people who visit my blog on a daily basis and actually care about what I have to say.

Canada's EGLX | Gaming | Travel | RachelPoli.com

This is a long post, probably the longest I’ve ever written on this blog. If you’ve read this far and you’re still reading, I applaud you. Thank you for reading this through.

I didn’t mean for this to be so long and corny, but it’s the truth and I felt it needed to be said. I had this realization through my trip and breaking out of my comfort zone, but there was also something else that happened to make me realize this.

The other thing that made me realize all this isn’t a happy story like Canada. It’s gotten me down for quite a while now. Though that’s a story for another day.

I’ll say this though: I’m happy where I am in life. I’m happy with the things I’m doing and the things I’m trying to do. My anxiety holds me back sometimes, but I figure it out. I have a good head on my shoulders (I think so, anyway). I have a good support system with friends and family who love and encourage me to do what I do. I’m a pretty lucky person.

But I guess I’ve rambled enough. Thank you for reading. Thanks for listening. Thanks for being here and taking this journey with me.

Have you ever taken a risk in life? Done something you didn’t think you could? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

Blog Signature | RachelPoli.comPatreon | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double JumpSign up for Rachel Poli's Newsletter and get a FREE 14-page Writing Tracker! | Writing | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

Give Yourself Some TLC

It was the day after Christmas
and all was now calm.
No one was stirring
not even my Mom.

The holidays are over and so is 2017 for the most part.

I’ve spent 90% of my life on the computer and internet the past couple of months writing, blogging, and lately getting ready for the new year.

Work certainly takes a lot out of you as do the holidays.

So this is a gentle reminder to take care of yourself. The busy days are over. The stress should be gone.

Even if you have more writing and blogging to do, let it go for now. Take this day (or the week) to kick back, relax, and reflect on what a great job you’ve done.

Reach out to some family and friends you haven’t talked to or seen in a while and catch up. Sit on a couch with any new books you received as gifts, make a cup of tea, coffee, or hot chocolate and enjoy. Sit in front of the fire if you have a fireplace. (I do not. Sad day.)

Spend the last week of 2017 recharging. Brainstorm resolutions that you’ll only keep for the first couple of weeks of the new year (as you do). Go out with friends and family.

Remember that you work hard each and every day and it’s okay to take breaks. It’s okay to give yourself a little vacation, even if you’re not going away anywhere fancy.

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a wonderful holiday. Please be well, be kind, and bring in the new year with lots of positivity.

rachel poli sign off

Twitter | Bookstagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double Jump

newsletter-signature

Why December Is Always Easy Yet A Busy Month [Life]

Every month I feel like such a broken record.

“I can’t believe the month is already over.”

“I can’t believe we’re at the end of the year.”

“Time has certainly been flying!”

I mean, it’s all true. I feel like I blink and the month is over or the whole year is over. Well, guess what? The year is almost over. We’re already about a week into December. Life doesn’t slow down for anything.

This whole year, I’ve been doing themed posts on the blog. One month I talked about character development while another month I’ve talked about editing and so on and so forth.

When December rolled around, I wasn’t sure what theme I wanted to talk about. Then I wrote down a list of posts and assigned them dates. After that, I realized I didn’t have too many dates left for December. There wasn’t much of a point to me doing another themed month.

I tend to do a lot of end of the year and holiday type posts. Mix that with a couple of guest posts and interviews and then the month is over. It’s crazy how fast the dates fill up.

I always take the time for December to kick back, relax, and look back on the year. I’ve accomplished a lot of my writing, a lot of this blog and Double Jump, my career, relationships, and my life in general.

This is why December is the easiest month and the hardest at the same time.

It’s easy to look back and be amazed at all you’ve done and all you’ve accomplished. You think about the good times you had and even look back at old blog posts and see how much you’ve improved.

Then the hard part of December comes along. I was amazed at the end of 2015 when I made some major changes to this blog. I was amazed at the end of 2016 because I beat my 2015 reading goal, I made more changes to this blog, and I started a new blog.

Now, here I am, amazed at the end of 2017 because I surpassed a lot of my goals as well as made even more changes to the blog than before. All of these changes have improved the blog, my writing, and myself as a person in more ways than one.

So, the hard part of December is this: now I have to think of bigger and better ways to improve in 2018.

Okay, so I don’t have to. But I want to. It’s not good to push yourself too hard, but you have to push yourself a little if you want to learn new things, accomplish new goals, and improve.

I have been working so hard on completely revamping the physical look of this blog as well as come up with new features to add to it both on the blog and off the blog. Yes, outside this blog as in these things will be connected to the blog in some way, shape, or form, but it will not be in the form of a blog post on this particular website.

Some of these things will happen in January (hopefully I make the deadlines I’ve created for myself!) and some will be spread out through the year (again, hoping I make the deadlines I’ve created…).

Not to mention my books. I have four novellas planned to come out on Wattpad in 2018 while I work on four other projects that will… I don’t know if I plan on self-publishing or going traditional, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.

It’s all been a lot of planning up until this point and now it’s time that I start putting things into action. Well, November helped a lot with the action too, but December is where most of the magic is happening.

Between the blogging and writing and then of course real life with the holidays and such, I may be a bit frazzled this month. Bare with me.

Do you spend December prepping for the following year? Do you have big plans ahead or do you tend to wing it? Let me know in the comments below and we’ll chat!

A Huge Thank You – Happy Thanksgiving

I don’t normally publish personal posts anymore, but today is Thanksgiving so I felt that this was appropriate.

A lot has happened in the past five and half years since I started blogging. A lot has happened in this past year, in just the past few months alone.

This time last year I had decided that I was going to quit my job. I had no idea what was going to be in store for me, but I just knew I had to try to follow my dreams. There was no other time to do it. It was either now or never.

Thank You

I Am Thankful For…

My Family

I can’t express how grateful I am for my family. I am so lucky to have two wonderful parents who support me no matter what. I’m lucky they allow me to live under their roof rent-free while I quit my job to pursue my passion. Which, as we all know, can be a crapshoot because writing isn’t a sure thing.

There are my two older sisters and brother-in-law who are always encouraging me, asking me how my writing is going, and interested in what I’m doing. Then there are of course my two cousins, my Uncle, and grandparents among the rest of my family.

My Friends

I don’t have many “writer” friends in real life. I do have friends in my writing group and I love each and every one of them and value their thoughts and opinions on my writing and just writing in general. Plus, they’re just a fun bunch to hang out with!

But my non-writer friends, the best ones I have, are super supportive even though they fully understand what I’m trying to do. They just know that I love it and they’re happy for me that I’m trying.

My WordPress/Social Media Friends

I’m not going to name any people because there are way too many and I’m sure you know who you are (you better know who you are). I honestly can’t say enough how thankful I am for my fellow bloggers and writers on this site and across my social media. I’ve learned a lot from each and every one of you and have made a lot of new friends. I feel like I’m part of a super important club and I think we have an amazing community going on.

So many opportunities have risen for me through my blog. I’ve been connected with all sorts of bloggers (writers, readers, gamers) as well as authors (self and traditional) and even publicists. I’ve interviewed people and been interviewed by people. I’ve had guest posts on my blog and wrote a few guest posts myself. I’ve participated in blog tours and done cover reveals. I’ve read and reviewed published books and ARC books. My blog and I have come so far and it baffles me, to be honest.

New Opportunities

Speaking of the above, it’s through this blog that I met Emily Green, a publicist. After reviewing a few books for her, I inquired about her work. It intrigued me and she was so nice to take me under her wing. I was her intern for a few months and now I help her with her projects when she needs it. I’ve learned a lot. She’s a wonderful mentor and an encouraging friend. I’m so grateful she took a chance on me.

I’ve also found other places to write. Kris and I started our own gaming blog and have met so many new friends through that. We contribute to another gaming blog writing occasional reviews for them. It’s through that blog and those friends that we have big things planned.

Speaking of writing, writing is another opportunity. I know I’ve been doing that for a while, but if it weren’t for this blog I wouldn’t be taking nearly as many of the chances I take now. My original writing wouldn’t be on the Internet and I wouldn’t be looking into self-publishing and taking action towards my overall writing career.

Old Opportunities

I was writing for a gaming website called Now Loading. I was almost done with the “academy” part of the site. After that, I would have been able to apply to be a verified creator which would allow me to get paid for my articles. Unfortunately, the website had to close its doors. Still, it was fun while it lasted and I learned a lot.

I’m still coming to terms with myself quitting my job. It was getting to the point where I wasn’t as happy going to work as I used to be. I loved the people I worked with and the kids, of course, but it wasn’t helping my creativity. I felt like I was in a rut. Overall, I think it was a good decision that I left, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss it. Two of the three teachers I worked with moved onto a different school so our team (after three years) would have split up no matter if I left or stayed. It just seemed like the right time. But I still look at the clock and think to myself, “the kids are having their snack right now,” or “I would be outside chasing the kids around right now.”

My co-workers were super supportive of me whether I stayed in education or decided to move on with my writing. I miss them, but I’m sure I’ll see them again soon.

Overall

I really hope I’m not missing anything or anyone. 2017 has been a roller coaster – good things happened and bad things happened, but that’s just life.

I think I’m finally on my way to officially having a writing career. I have big plans for 2018 and I can’t wait to see what the future brings.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

rachel poli sign off

Twitter | Bookstagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double Jump

newsletter-signature

When A Writer Has No Internet

I wish I had gotten this whole thing on video to show you, but you’ll just have to bare with me as I tell this long-winded story.

When A Writer Has No Internet Connection by Rachel Poli

Last Friday, I woke up like any other day. I went downstairs, made myself an iced coffee, and worked my way back upstairs. Kris called me into our bedroom asking me if I was going on my laptop.

“Probably. Why?” I asked peering over her shoulder as she stared at her laptop’s desktop.

“I’m going to shut the modem off.” she explained.

Our bedroom was never very good at catching the wi-fi. It’s always been spotty in there, we have no idea why. But Kris is always able to troubleshoot it and then it comes back to her no problem. Except, this time, it was saying the modem was having issues. Kris thought to reset it assuming that would fix the problem.

I shrugged. “Go for it.” I was going to be home all day. I didn’t have to start writing or blogging right at seven-thirty in the morning.

I’ll skip some of the boring details, but when I went downstairs, Kris was sitting in the porch pouting. She had brought her laptop down there with her, hoping it would give her a better connection.

It didn’t.

I looked over at the modem and frowned upon seeing it glare back at me with a bright red light.

“What’d you do to it?” I asked.

Kris glared at me. “I didn’t do anything to it! It wasn’t working, so I reset it and it still won’t come on.” she stood up from the couch and unplugged the modem. She waited ten seconds before plugging it back in.

The wi-fi symbol turned on, but the earth symbol blinked white.

“It’s trying.” she said.

We watched it in silence willing the blinking to stop. When it finally did, we didn’t sigh in relief.

“Why is it red?!” Kris growled. She leaned back on the couch running her finger along the screen of her smart phone. I laughed. This was ridiculous. She was trying to look up ways to fix it on the Internet, but that was difficult since we had no Internet.

Kris and I panicked a bit. What would we do without Internet?

You don’t realize how much you use the Internet until it’s gone. My first instinct was to live tweet about the situation. Except, I couldn’t get onto Twitter. Nothing on my phone worked except my text messages.

I couldn’t check my blog, Facebook, Twitch, Pinterest, Tumblr, anything.

I worked a lot on writing and blogging last week and was stressing myself out since I have to go back to work soon. So, in a way, this was a good thing. The Internet was trying to tell me something.

“Well, I have to get ready for work. We’ll just have to try again later.” Kris got up from the couch and made her way upstairs.

I remained where I stood dumbfounded. What was I supposed to do all day?

I couldn’t get onto my laptop at all. I supposed I could try to write since Word doesn’t need Internet. I figured I could read since I needed a book review for the following day. I could play video games. I couldn’t watch TV though. I mean, I could have, but the TV I watch is Netflix and YouTube. Both need Internet.

I decided to play video games. I needed to for Double Jump, but as soon as I turned on my game, I needed to look something up. So, I grabbed my phone and tried the Internet completely forgetting that you need Internet to get on the Internet… Yeah.

With our phones and technology right at the end of our fingertips, it’s amazing how many times a day you say, “Let me Google that.”

But I couldn’t because I had no Internet.

I played video games for a bit, I read a book, and that’s about it. Everyone was at work and I was home alone. There’s not much you can do when there’s no Internet and you work online.

I was born in the 90s. I remember sitting on the bulky desktop computer playing Paint, Solitaire, or Pinball, waiting for my mom to get off the phone because you couldn’t talk on the phone and be on the Internet at the same time.

I didn’t grow up attached to my cell phone because I didn’t get one until I was 16. I didn’t need one and there wasn’t much you could do with it to begin with.

I never watched YouTube, I didn’t have Netflix, I didn’t have an iPad that needed Internet for apps.

No, I went outside and I played with my friends. I took walks. I used my imagination.

I mean, I still use my imagination every day, but I don’t run outside acting it out with my sister. I just write it down instead.

What happened on Friday sparked three more post ideas for this blog and one post idea for my other blog. So, I guess everything happens for a reason, huh?

What would you do if the Internet crashed on you? Would it be easy for you to get through the day or would you just sit and twiddle your thumbs?

rachel poli sign off

Twitter | Tumblr | Pinterest | GoodReads | Double Jump

March Wrap-Up

march 2016 wrap up rachel poli

Reading

I ended up in a reading slump this month. The beginning of March was crazy and I barely had any time to sit down with a book. I started reading the first book I planned this month, but it was slow-going for me. So I switched to a different book and read that in one sitting. Now I’m reading another book, bringing me to two books at once. I never do that.

So I was supposed to read five books and only read one. Oops.

With all this being said, I’m going to try to read March’s books and some, if not all, of April’s books.

For an updated list of the books I read and reviewed for March, check out my Reading List.

Writing

I didn’t get much of my writing goals done this month, either. I was supposed to give George Florence a thorough edit. I didn’t. I edited one part of it so that I could send it to my writers group for the end of the month, but that was it.

I also needed to research and outline The Lost Girl for Camp NaNoWriMo, which I did. So that’s good at least.

I didn’t submit to any writing contests only because I didn’t have anything planned and I didn’t really have time to write anything. So that kind of got pushed to the back burner for now.

Blogging

I got most of my April posts done like I was supposed to. I ended up being more blog-focused this month than I was with my writing. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I do have  a schedule to balance the two and I didn’t follow it at all this month.

If you would like to be part of my blog, go check out the Be a Guest Blogger page. I’d love to have you! Also, if you need a book review done or just have a book recommendation for me, check out my Book Review Policy page.

Overall

March wasn’t that busy of a month, though I made it feel that way at times. I had some family things going on, worked a lot, and there were two weeks during the month where I was just so tired that I had no desire to sit down and write.

The other thing about March was that I was more blog-focused, like I said earlier. Camp NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow (yay!) so I’ve been playing catch-up and trying to get ahead.

I wanted to have my April posts done by the end of the month so I could focus mainly on writing Camp in April. Now that I’m running two blogs, my blogging work is cut out for me.

April is going to be all about Camp NaNoWriMo and my novel, The Lost Girl. When that’s over, I’ll get back into a better routine with balancing editing, writing, blogging, reading, video games, work, life, etc. Wow.

April will be busy, there’s no doubt about that. Come May, I will post an update about my writing. I realize I haven’t talked about George Florence in a while so I think I’m due to let you guys know where I stand on my goals, instead of just a quick outline like this.

Even this post turned out way longer than I expected!

So March was busy, got some stuff done though not what I thought I would get done. April will be even busier with Camp, but I can do it!

Posts to Remember

1. March/April Writing Contests
2. New Chapter
3. Writing Contest Tips
4. Guest: Travel Like a Writer
5. Guest: Mapping Out Your World (World Building Part Three)
6. Guest: Dissing the Queen: The Politics of Editing

Spring Cleaning

Friday: I had work (per usual) which went well. My family and I went out to dinner and then went to Barnes & Noble after. Kris bought me a new book, Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I plan on reading it soon, but I’m in the middle of a book at the moment and have to start another book for school. So… eventually.

Saturday: Kris and I skipped Barnes & Noble because we woke up kind of late. I was going to write from home, but I ended up doing some spring cleaning instead… I did the laundry, cleaned the bathroom, my bedroom, my office, cleaned the storage behind my bed, and also cleaned the fish tank and the turtle tank. For some reason I got the urge to clean all day, but that’s okay because it needed to be done anyway.

Sunday: I went to church in the morning and I discussed what it means to be nice and helpful to others. It was the same lesson I did two weeks ago, but I had different kids this week so… recycling! Also, that’s your lesson for the week: be nice to people.

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

This Week: Spring break is over, so back to homework. Sad day.

In regards to writing, I need to finish outlining for Camp NaNo in about a week. I also need to finish critiquing the pieces from my writing group. That’s it for writing because I’m sure homework is going to get in the way and take up a lot of my time.

How was your weekend?

Babysitting, Birthdays, And Blogging

Friday: I babysat in the early afternoon for a couple of hours. The dad got surgery on his ear so I was needed to keep the peace while the mom was at the hospital with him. I kicked butt in Monopoly, watched the boys play some video games, and watched the oldest dye his hair pink… yeah. In my defense, the parents said it was okay and he’s not my child, so… anyway…

Mom and I went food shopping and then we all went out to dinner. Then to Barnes and Noble. It was a good day with the kids and a good night with the family.

Saturday: Kris and I went to Barnes and Noble in the morning to write (I swear, we should just live there). We got kicked out of our seats because some people reserved the table, but that was okay. We went upstairs and found a table by the writing books and didn’t get much done there. It was way too quiet… we always sit by the cafe and I always claim I can’t work with people talking (I usually listen to instrumental music or nothing at all), but apparently the background noise of the cafe is a nice atmosphere.

Then we went to our sister’s apartment for our brother-in-law’s 30th birthday. We stayed there for a few hours before it started snowing (again!) and we went home. I planned on being productive after getting home, but that didn’t happen.

Sunday: We went to church for the first time in two weeks (because of all the snow storms). The corner of the Sunday school room is leaking and the entire Sunday school closet (with all our books and supplies and such in it) was soaked. Nothing was damaged and there was no “flood,” but the carpet was soaked and part of the ceiling fell through. Plus, there was a huge puddle in the light fixture. I am officially done with snow.

Also, I’m sure many of you have noticed that I’ve stopped commenting on your blogs (or have been extremely slow at it) and that I’ve barely been keeping up with the comments on my own blog. I don’t know why I’ve been slacking in this department. However, I spent the rest of Sunday afternoon on my blog typing out posts and going through the blogs I follow.

You won’t believe how many blogs I follow that don’t even exist anymore. I unfollowed those as well as some blogs that haven’t been updated in months (in some cases, years). I hate unfollowing people. I feel like a jerk. However, it got to the point that I was following more people than I could count and some blogs I didn’t even know what they were until I clicked on their link. It was just something that desperately needed to be cleaned out.

With that being said, I’m going to try to set aside some time each day (or maybe every couple days depending on my schedule) where I can catch up on blog posts. I can give myself some time to read through each post and comment on them like every fellow blogger should.

I have to organize my flash drive, my blog, my writing stuff, everything… it’s kind of crazy. I think that’s why I’ve been so slow lately; I have a lot going on and I don’t know where to start on working through it all. I’m working on it slowly, but surely.

This is yet another reason as to why I can’t wait to be done with school… eight more weeks!

How was your weekend?