Goals for July 2020

It’s been a while since I’ve had monthly goals. Yes, I know we’re already a week into the month. We’re going to roll with this anyway.

Goals for July 2020 | Creative Writing | Blogging | Reading | Business | RachelPoli.com

Creative Writing

It’s Camp NaNoWriMo this month and I have to admit I got a late start this time around. I always begin on day one (as you do) but I actually didn’t begin until the second day. Even then I didn’t meet the daily goal and just added what I wrote on day two to my word count on day three. I never do that, but whatever. It evens out in the end.

There are a lot of creative writing projects I want to work on that don’t necessarily mean writing. I seriously need to catch up with my Short Story Sunday posts. So, my Camp goal this month is 30,000 words instead of the usual 50,000 words. I did this so that I can get back into the swing of writing (roughly 1,000 words a day seems much more doable than 2,000 words a day) and also because I want to focus on my other projects which need more editing rather than writing.

Yes, you can create a Camp project to edit. You can track your progress y pages or hours instead of words, but I like sticking to the word count. It seems to work better for me.

Mostly, I’m trying to gather my thoughts with my creative writing and create a plan for the rest of 2020. I’ve put off my projects for far too long.

Reading

I was in a slump for well over a year in terms of reading and reviewing. I’m back in the swing of things and plan to begin writing reviews again. In fact, I wrote a book review yesterday.

One of the reasons I haven’t posted book reviews in a while is because I got so far behind that I was trying to slowly get back into my reading habit without having the actual reviewing part looming over my head. So, I’ve been reading and now I have a decent backlog to post reviews regularly again while keeping up with the actual reading part.

…I guess this part’s not really a goal, huh? I’ll just say my reading goal for July is to keep reading. Perfect.

Everything else

As ridiculous as this is going to sound, there’s a lot of other stuff I need to do. My goal for July is to play catch-up, get a little bit ahead, and keep up with everything I’ve been doing.

I’ve been getting better at this. 2020 has been a wild ride and even though I already worked from home I felt like I needed to get into a new routine. So, July is going to be me trying to stick with that routine.

We’ll see how it goes.

How’s July treating you so far? What are your goals for the month? Let me know your thoughts on it in the comments below. If you enjoyed this post, please share it around.

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I’m Halfway To My Goodreads Goal

For the past couple of years, I’ve pledged to read 52 books in one year – that’s one book a week. I usually go above and beyond, especially since I tend to read two books a week during the summer. This year was no exception to that goal, but… I’ve been in a reading slump for practically half of the year.

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I’ve gotten into reading slumps in the past but have always managed to reach my Goodreads goal. This is usually because I end up reading middle-grade level books or something of the kind. Not because they’re short and quick, but because I actually enjoy those kinds of books. It just helps out that they happen to be short and quick reads. But if they’re good and I enjoy them, then who cares how long they are and how long it takes me to read them?

I’ve always been the type of person to not rush through books. Reading one book a week is a good pace for me since I can typically read between 50 and 100 pages a day.

And yet, I’ve gone into a hardcore reading slump for the past few months. No matter what I try to do, I just don’t feel like reading. I’ve been going to the library and picking out textbooks for research on various topics so maybe I’ll review those books down the road. It’d be something different, at least. Still, I haven’t been reading the typical novel.

We’re now about a week into October which means there are only three months left in the year. My Goodreads goal still stands at 52 books and, according to my Goodreads, I’ve only read 14 books. This is because I haven’t been updating it at all and haven’t in a few months. Scrolling through the reviews I’ve posted on here this year, I have read and reviewed 26 books.

26 is half of 52, I know that math at least. I’m actually shocked that I reached at least half of my original goal.

Looking at the weeks ahead, I need to read about two books a week with two of those weeks reading three books if I were to reach 52 books this year.

I’m not saying I’m going to do this. I’ve been in a slump for so long that I really don’t want to try to bombard myself with books again all the sake of reaching a virtual goal.

But I’m also not saying this isn’t an impossible thing to do. I want to get back into the habit of reading again. Who knows, if I find a new spark with a certain book or two, I may actually just reach the 52-book goal.

Do you have a Goodreads goal? Have you met it yet? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around!

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Goals [February 2019]

Well, January is already gone. Here are my goals for February 2019.

Goals February 2019 | Creative Writing | Writing Goals | Reading Goals | Blogging Goals | RachelPoli.com

Reading

I’m ahead in reviews due to reading extra before 2018 came to a close, but I’m not necessarily ahead with my reading. I’m on par for that at least. With that said, I’ll be reviewing books I read in January for this month and the books I read this month will be reviewed in March.

Reviews this month:

  • Warriors: The Apprentice’s Quest (A Vision of Shadows 1) by Erin Hunter
  • Death By Coffee by Alex Erickson
  • Warriors: Thunder and Shadow (A Vision of Shadows 2) by Erin Hunter
  • 10 Steps to Hero by Sacha Black

Books I’m reading this month:

  • Warriors: Shattered Sky (A Vision of Shadows 3) by Erin Hunter
  • Death By Tea by Alex Erickson
  • Warriors: Darkest Night (A Vision of Shadows 4) by Erin Hunter
  • Mann Cakes by Mysti Parker
  • Warriors: River of Fire (A Vision of Shadows 5) by Erin Hunter

Remember, my Book Review Policy is only open to requests for another two months before I close it for the summer.

Writing

February is going to be that kind of month. As usual, I’ll be working on multiple projects.

Sunday Morning (Vol. 1)

I’m planning on publishing this by the end of the month… or, the beginning of March depending on how my marketing timeline works out. I also have to leave some room for error because… well, I’ve never done this before.

Write Project A

I brainstormed some ideas and thoughts for this one in January. Now I want to try to get the first draft done by the end of the writing period of the 85K90 Writing Challenge.

George Florence & The Perfect Alibi (Book 1)

I’ll also be rewriting this as well. I need to get my edits down into another draft so I can do it all over again… yay!

Submissions

My goal was to submit my writing to at least two places each month. I submitted only one thing in January and didn’t hear back (I was supposed to hear back on February 1st if I won), but that’s okay. February is a new month and I’m aiming on at least two submissions… or maybe three to make up for last month!

Blogging

Why I chose the shortest month of the year to get ahead with all my blogging, I’ll never know. But, I ran out of time in January to get certain things done, and I made a timeline for myself in February for it. I’ll be getting the posts done for the month in advance as well as some series posts that will occur throughout the year. Wish me luck!

Overall

February is going to be busy but, unless the unexpected happens, February is wide open so I can try to get as much done as I can. We’ll see how it goes.

What are your goals and plans for February? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Goals [January 2019]

New year, new month, new goals. Even though we’re already a week into the month, here are my goals for January.

Goals January 2019 | Creative Writing | Blogging | Reading | RachelPoli.com

Reading

I’ll be posting four book reviews this month, each on a Saturday, as always. I read more towards the end of 2018 so these reviews are mostly from books I read before the new year. I still plan on reading a book a week though so that I stay ahead of my reviews and I can make headway on my 2019 Goodreads Reading Challenge, which is to read 52 books this year. Three out of the four reviews this month are books I read in December. I’m hoping I won’t get into as bad of a reading slump this year like I did last year!

Books I’ll be reviewing this month are:

  • Wagging Through The Snow by Laurien Berenson
  • Warriors Omen of the Stars: The Forgotten Warrior by Erin Hunter
  • Warriors Omen of the Stars: The Last Hope by Erin Hunter
  • Thomas Wildus and the Book of Sorrows by J.M. Bergen

Books I’ll be reading this month are:

  • Thomas Wildus and the Book of Sorrows by J.M. Bergen
  • Warriors Vision of Shadows: The Apprentice’s Quest by Erin Hunter
  • Death by Vanilla Latte by Alex Erickson
  • Warriors Vision of Shadows: Thunder and Shadow by Erin Hunter

Writing

Where do I begin with this? January is going to be a crazy busy month for my writing. I’m working on so many different projects and am participating in the 85K90 Writing Challenge.

Sunday Morning (Vol. 1)

This is in the final stages! I’ll be announcing the official release date soon as well as cover reveal for the book. While I work on final editing stuff and publishing/marketing things, I’m running a special promotion on my Patreon for the book. You can find out more by checking out my Patreon page. The deadline for that is January 20, 2019, so hurry if you want the promo-box!

George Florence & The Perfect Alibi (Book 1)

I’m going to go through another round of edits since I’m giving this to my local writers group. I’m going to go over their notes from what they’ve seen so far and figure out the rest of the novel from there. I’m also going to get a good timeline going for the book, make a checklist from editing, marketing, publishing, and so on for it along with deadlines.

Short Stories & Submissions

I’ll be working on some of my short stories and writing new ones to submit to magazines and contests. My goal is to submit at least two this month.

Other

There’s another writing project I’ll be working on but I’m not ready to share what that is quite yet. I’ll be outlining and prepping it for writing this month.

Blogging

Aside from writing January’s posts, a huge project I’ll be working on this month is getting certain posts done for the whole year along with graphics. I normally try to get ahead in my blog posts, but I want to spend time creating graphics in bulk since that can take up quite a bit of time. There are also some posts – Short Story Sunday, Time To Write, etc. – that can all be written in advance. I want to create all those graphics and then create drafts for all those blog posts. This goes for Mental Health Monday and Healthy Writer as well. I have ideas for all those posts and plan to whip them up, get the graphics, and schedule them for the year.

Overall

January will be busy, that much is plain to see. I’m starting a new work schedule for myself though and I’m looking forward to getting a head start with these things. There are other projects I want to work on, but need to get the basics down on things I’ve already started. All of this will be a good start.

What are your goals and plans for January? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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A Personal Reading Goal

Books have a way of creeping into our souls and staying with us for beyond our years. We learn a lot from them and they allow us to escape reality. They’re relaxing and yet we feel empowered to do anything and everything we put our minds to.

It’s no secret that I adore the Warriors series by Erin Hunter. If you follow my book reviews, you’ll notice that I’ve picked up the series yet again.

Most people love Harry Potter and read that series over and over again. I’ve only read the series once – I love it to death and have seen the movies too many times to count. However, if there’s a book series I’m going to go back to and re-read, it will always be Warriors.

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The very first book of the whole series came out in January 2003. This was the book that originally got me into reading in the first. I was 11-years-old. I’m 25 now and the series is still going on.

Yeah, seriously. The Warriors series as a whole is broken up into multiple mini-series of six books each. The first book of their seventh series comes out in April 2019. I actually grew up with these books and have tried my best to keep up with the series.

Of course, it’s easy to get behind. There are – currently – 36 main series books, 15 manga books, 11 standalone titles, 6 guides, and 12 novellas. I’m not even going to do that math, but I know the 36 will soon become 42 once the new series comes out in a few months.

With that said, I’ve clearly gotten behind. There are other books to be read and, with this blog, I accept review requests from authors. So, I don’t always end up “choosing” what to read next. My backlog can get pretty long.

Once in a while, when I get into a reading slump, I go back to the series. It helps me enjoy reading again and makes me feel like I want to read all the books in the world. I’m on book five out of six for the Omen of the Stars series, which is the fourth series. That means I have two other series left to read before the seventh comes out in April.

So, that’s what I’m hoping to do. I’ll be spreading the book reviews out so this doesn’t become the “Warriors” blog, but I’m determined to catch up with the whole series buy the time the next book is released at the beginning of April.

Wish me luck.

The only downside I can see to this is that once I catch up, I’m no longer going to be able to binge the series. Once the next book comes out I’ll have to wait six months for the next one just like everyone else.

Do you have a childhood book or series that you read or reread to this day? Let me know in the comments below. If you liked this post, please share it around.

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September 2018 [Wrap Up]

2018 September Wrap Up | Blogging | Reading | Writing | RachelPoli.com

Reading

I did well with reading this month. I’m back to posting one review a week on Saturdays. You can check out my Reading List to see what I’ve read and reviewed this month and previous months. There’s also my Goodreads. I was behind in updating it for a while (meaning, the whole summer) but I finally caught up with it. So it should be up to date… unless I forgot a book or two.

Writing

Still going fairly strong with this. I’ve been working on a few projects… plus marketing and publishing plans for them. So that’s a thing. More will be on that in just two days!

Blogging

The blogging has been strong this past month. My stats have steadily grown over the past few months and I’ve finally settled on a social media schedule for my blogging and writing. So, I’m excited to officially start that in October! My blog posts for October are just about done as well.

Overall

September was super busy, but it was a great month. I got a lot done and a lot of thinking done as well. Which is sometimes not great, but it worked well for this month!

Posts To Remember

1. Blog Party Celebration
2. September & October 2018 Writing Submissions
3. The Creative Writing Process: Revising Your Novel

How did September treat you? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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September 2018 [Goals]

2018 September Goals | Blogging | Reading | Writing | RachelPoli.com

Reading

Summer is technically not over, but I’ll be going back to posting book reviews once a week on just Saturdays. I was going to list what books I plan on reading this month, but I’m not going to say because I know I’ll change my mind. Be sure to check back periodically on my Reading List to keep up. My Review Policy is also open for requests once again!

Writing

I’m working on the usual. Still editing my mystery novel as well as working on my next Wattpad novella. I’m also working on another project for my Patrons. Since school and work will be starting up for everyone else again in a couple of days, I’ll be able to get myself onto a regular schedule for writing and everything else. We’ll see how it goes.

Blogging

My posts for this month are just about done. I want to focus on getting my newsletter back up and running again. I’m also working on another big part for the blog that will (hopefully) be ready by the end of the month. Wish me luck while I figure that one out.

What are your plans for the month? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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August 2018 [Wrap Up]

August 2018 Wrap Up | Creative Writing | Reading | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

Reading

I was in a bit of a reading slump this month. I read a lot of quick stories such as craft books and comics. Reading is reading and it was all good, but I’m hoping to get back into the novel world soon enough. Time has escaped me this month so it was harder for me to keep up with the reading. You can check out my Reading List to see which books I’ve read and reviewed this month as well as check out my Goodreads to keep up with what I’m currently reading… though I have to update it. I’ve even gotten behind with that.

Writing

Writing proved to be difficult this month as well. I did a lot of planning and brainstorming for various projects, but overall time got away. I did a lot of socializing with friends and family and writing took a backseat. Not a bad thing, but I’m ready to get back into a routine.

Blogging

I kind of got out of my blogging routine as well. August was filled with real-life things going on so my virtual life was sort of non-existent. I made progress though and my posts for September are almost done. So that’s something.

Overall

August was a good month – not really work-wise, but it was a good month to get together with friends and family as well as reflect on everything else. We’ll see how September goes!

Posts To Remember

1. 6 Types of Conversations Your Characters Can Have
2. How Do You Write Internal Dialogue?
3. The Best Tip To Know About Writing Dialogue

How did August treat you? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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July 2018 Goals

2018 July Goals | Creative Writing | Blogging | Reading | RachelPoli.com

Reading

We’re officially in summer which means I’ll be aiming to read two books a week. Book reviews will now be on Tuesdays in addition to Saturdays. I’m a tad ahead in my reading, so feel free to keep up to date through my Goodreads.

Writing

Camp NaNoWriMo is here again. I’m sure my writing will get caught up with itself because of this. I’ll be working on George Florence & The Perfect Alibi some more.

I’ll also be working on a special project that I’ve only announced so far to my patrons. If this is something you’d like to be part of and you enjoy my work, please check out my Patreon and consider supporting me through there. It’s as little as $1 a month.

Blogging

I’ve gotten most of my July posts done. So, when I’m not working on Camp NaNo or reading I’ll be going through my blog and updating old posts and such. It desperately needs it.

What are your plans for the month? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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March 2018 Goals

2018 March Goals | Creative Writing | Writing Goals | Blogging | RachelPoli.com

Reading

I plan on reading 4-5 books this month. I have a couple of authors’ requests to catch up on and I also have a couple of books I read back in December that I haven’t reviewed yet. So here’s to a catch-up month!

Writing

  • Edit George Florence
  • Edit Take Over
  • Write Perplexed

I’m planning on just plugging along with all of these projects. Take Over will have priority over the others since I’m planning on publishing it on Wattpad in April.

Blogging

I’ve got March planned out, I just need to finish writing all the posts. Then I want to get a good chunk of posts written for April because of Camp NaNo… Camp NaNo is in a month, guys… I don’t really know how that happened…

I also want to start planning May while I’m at it. For reasons.

What are your goals for March? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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December 2017 Goals

December 2017 Goals

Reading

I’ve gotten ahead on my reading, so I’ll be reading books that won’t be reviewed until January. With that said, for December, I’ll be reviewing:

1. Rot by Aidan J. Reid
2. Going All In by Stephanie C. Lyons-Keeley and Wayne J. Keeley
3. Turtles All The Way Down by John Green
4. 13 Steps To Evil: How To Craft Super Bad Villains by Sacha Black
5. Things That Surprise You by Jennifer Maschari

I’m not going to list books I plan on reading for this month because… I don’t know what to read yet. You can keep an eye on my Reading List and Goodreads to keep up with what I’m reading.

Writing

Writing is definitely going to take up a lot of energy this month… I’ll be editing two projects while planning a third.

1. Edit The Scribe – This was the novella I wrote last month for NaNoWriMo. Editing is going to be tough with extra research I have to do, but I cheated and started after Thanksgiving. I should be able to have it all done by the end of the month.

2. Edit Unwritten – This is a novel I wrote for Camp NaNo this year in April. I’ve been submitting one chapter a month to my local critique group. They’re seven chapters into the story and I’m going to edit the novel using my own notes as well as their feedback so that for the new year they’ll be reading second-draft material and not first-draft material.

3. Plan Perplexed – This is a short story collection that I’ll be working on throughout 2018. If all goes well, I plan on self-publishing it in 2019. It’s a working title, but the more I say it the more it grows on me… did I mention it’s a collection of mystery shorts? Maybe now the title makes a little more sense to you. It’ll consist of 12 shorts so I want to get any prompts and plots down now so I can dive right into it in January.

Blogging

No post writing for me this month… well, unless I try to get some January posts done. Yeah, I should probably do that.

My main focus of the blog will be to finish updating all the graphics and the new theme. I want to have it all prettied up so that on Midnight January 1, I can ring in the new year with a new and improved blog!

Overall

December may kill me. Challenge accepted.

What are your plans for December? Let me know in the comments below and we’ll chat!

June 2017 Wrap Up

June 2017 Wrap Up

Reading

I thought reading mystery novels would help me get out of my slump, but it didn’t really. Still, I read three books which is good enough for me.

If you want to catch up on what I read and my reviews, check out my Reading List.

Writing

I didn’t get any of my writing goals done this month. June is always so busy and I changed my mind about what I wanted to work on anyway. So there was that.

Overall

I really didn’t get much done this month, did I?

Well, I didn’t have high hopes for June anyway. July is going to be the challenge. We’ll see how that goes.

How did the month of June treat you? Did you accomplish your goals? Let me know in the comments below!

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May 2017 Wrap Up

May 2017 Wrap Up

Reading

I kind of got back into my reading routine. I read one book a week, which was good. I also got a head start for June’s reading list.

Check out my Goodreads and Reading List to keep up to date with my reads and reviews.

Writing

I’m still editing my mystery novel. I thought I would get through it during the month of May, but time was limited (thanks a lot to my day job…) and when I did edit, I was pretty slow. Thorough, but slow. It would take me about an hour to get through five pages or so. So, I didn’t accomplish this goal, but I’m working on it.

Blogging

I talked a lot about editing this month. I think they were some of my best posts yet. I received a lot of great feedback on them and my stats even went way up because of them. So, thank you to everyone who liked, commented, and followed my blog this month. It really means a lot!

And I have to say that I got a lot done for blogging, in general, this month. I’ve already started working on June’s posts as well as Double Jump’s June posts.

As for the new blog, I’ve mostly just brainstormed. But that’s better than nothing at all.

Overall

May was a good month. I didn’t get as much editing done as I would have hoped, but I worked hard and worked a lot so it was a good month.

Posts to Remember

1. 57 Questions To Ask When Editing Your Novel
2. Beta Readers: Who Are They And What Do They Do?
3. How To Find A Great Beta Reader You Can Trust
4. Guest: Jennie Fitzkee
5. Guest: Robert Kirkendall
6. Interview: Anne Goodwin
7. Interview: Mark Canniff

How did the month of May treat you? Did you accomplish your goals? Let me know in the comments below!

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May 2017 Goals

May 2017 Goals for blogging, reading, and writing

Reading

Okay! This is the month I get back into my reading routine. As usual, I’ll read at least four books, but I hope to read more than that. Here’s what I plan on reading:

1. Snap, Cackle, and Pop by Carol Kearney
2. Madam Tulip by David Ahern
3. Underneath by Anne Goodwin
4. Dream, Recurring by Mark Canniff

Feel free to following along on my Goodreads and my Reading List to keep up to date with my reviews. Also, follow my Bookstagram. I’m still trying to get into a routine with it, but it exists. So, there’s that.

Writing

After a month of writing 50k, I don’t plan on getting much writing done this month. With that said:

1. Edit George Florence – I wanted to edit this last month, but Camp NaNoWriMo took over. I haven’t looked at this novel in a while, so May is dedicated to working on this novel.

2. Submit to two contests or magazines – I want to still attempt to get my writing out there. I’ve done well submitting this year, but I didn’t submit anything in April. It’d be great if I could find a couple of contests or magazines to try out.

If you’re looking to follow more of my writing journey, please consider signing up for my Newsletter. It’s free and I don’t spam. If you’re still unsure, check out more Info on it.

Blogging

Blogging is about to get busier this month, not because I’m in the works of a third blog (I know, I know…) but also because I’ve gotten behind on posts with the two blogs I currently have.

1. May posts for writing blog
2. May posts for Double Jump
3. Plan new blog (I won’t be talking about this one much. It has nothing to do with writing or reading, so I don’t even know how many of you would even care about it, but I do hope to get it up and running by the end of the summer. So, it’s another blogging goal for me.)

Oh, and I have to start commenting on other blogs again. I do pretty well with blogs I follow, but I need to explore WordPress a bit more.

Overall

I don’t know if I’m ready for May yet… Bring it on!

What are your plans for May? Is it going to be just as busy as mine? Let me know in the comments below!

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April 2017 Goals

Reading, Writing, and Blogging goals for April 2017

Reading

April is going to be a better reading month than March! Especially since I have a week off from work towards the end of the week… I should be able to keep up with my reading.

I plan on reading:

1. Afterlife by Matthew O’Neil
2. Renaissance The Nora White Story by Yecheilyah Ysrayl
3. Descendants by Rae Else
4. Unpacked Sparkle by Patrick O’Roland
5. Snap, Cackle, Pop by Carol Kearney

Be sure to check out my Reading List to stay up-to-date!

Writing

New month, new routine! It’s Camp NaNoWriMo time, so my main focus will be that. However, I do hope to get some other writing done in addtion to camp.

1. Write Unwritten — This is my Camp NaNo novel. I have half of the story outlined so the beginning should be a piece of cake. While I hope to get the whole novel written, my main goal is to just write at least 50,000 words. If I can make that, I’ll be happy.

2. Edit George Florence — I really need to get back into the swing of things with this novel… I’ve been putting off the editing for a bit too long. I have a schedule for it and a deadline now so I’m hoping to meet those needs starting this month.

Blogging

In the last couple days of March, I kicked my blogging into high-gear to get most of my posts done for this month. This way I could focus on Camp and writing (and reading).

So, for this month I’m just going to try my best to keep up with reading and commenting on other blogs, keeping up with my social media, and maybe (if time permits) attempt a head start on May.

Overall

April is going to whiz by because I’m going to be so busy. But I’m confident that I’ll get my goals done!

What are your plans for April? Are you participating in Camp? Let me know in the comments below!

rachel poli sign off

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