Hello, 2016!

Hello 2016

Another year has come and gone. I have no idea where the time went, but I’m going to try to keep track of it this year!

Did I complete my resolutions from 2015?

I pledged to read 52 books on the Goodreads Challenge and ended with reading over 52 books. I didn’t read one book a week like I was supposed to, but I still managed to hit my goal… I hit it early, too. So my resolution to read more is checked off!

I wanted to have George Florence completely edited and ready to be queried by now. I worked on the novel throughout the whole year, but it’s still not ready. One reason for this is because I completely rewrote the novel with a new POV last summer. So I kind of started from scratch. So that resolution gets a half check.

I also wanted to start eating healthier… I’m not even going to mention whether that gets a check or not. I’m sure you know the answer.

What are my resolutions for 2016?

I made a list back in November of new things I wanted to do and try in 2016. I’m not going to post that list here because it’s in my journal and private, but if I do them I’ll be sure to write about them on here. So one resolution is to check off some items from that list.

Reading: I want to read 52 books again, one book a week. I am hoping to surpass last year’s goal though. I would like to read 60 books, but I’m not making promises. I’ll be happy if I hit 52 again.

Writing: I want to completely edit George Florence and prepare it to be queried. Now that I have my writers’ group, it shouldn’t be too hard. Hopefully.

I also want to edit a novel I wrote for Camp NaNo a while back (the title may sound familiar to some of you) called Take Over. Once that’s edited I may post it on Wattpad or even try to self-publish it. I haven’t decided yet.

I want to continue working short stories and enter more contests and submit to more magazines. It would be nice if I could submit something at least once a month. I make no promises on that, either.

What’s up for the blog in 2016?

Blogging is more or less the same with some slight changes here and there.

–Sunday: Still Short Story Sunday
–Wednesday: Still Inspiration Station
–Friday: Still Time to Write
–Saturday: Still Book Reviews (book reviews may occasionally happen on Tuesdays as well)
—-I also put up a new policy on reviews. You can learn more on my Book Review Policy page.
–One Tuesday and one Thursday a month: Guest Bloggers will make an appearance. There are still slots open if you want to check out my Be a Guest Blogger page to learn more.

Once every other month there will be a Grammar Check instead of an Inspiration Station. Also, once every other month (the months without the Grammar Check) will have the Bookshelf series at the end of the month where I compile a list of themed books.

I will also continue to post my monthly goals at the beginning of each month, my monthly wrap-up at the end of each month, and a list of monthly writing contests.

I’m going to continue to post every day (if that didn’t seem obvious enough). Like I said, the daily posts are still the same for the most part with some slight changes and add-ons here and there.

I hope you enjoy these changes and new features!

I wish everyone a happy and healthy 2016!

What are your resolutions?

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Prepare For 2016: Writing Style

Writing Style

If you’re like me, you’re probably banking on 2016 to be the year for your writing. You’re hoping to get something published, something accepted for publication, or even just get something query-worthy and start sending it out.

So here’s how to prepare yourself for what’s to come in 2016 because, let’s be honest, we don’t know what 2016 is going to bring.

1. Set a goal.

I haven’t really decided what stage of my writing I want to be in by the end of 2016. I think I want George Florence to be completely edited and start querying it out to agents and/or publishers by the end of December 2016.

I also want to submit short pieces to contests and magazines.

I have a few manuscripts completed that aren’t edited yet so I’m wondering if I should edit those and post them somewhere whether it’s Wattpad or I self-publish it. I have to go through all my options.

2. Figure out what to work on.

Think about what stage you’re on in each of your writing pieces. First draft, second, final? Querying, searching for beta-readers?

Then you get think about your goals. Which pieces can be sent to a contest? Which pieces can be seen by agents?

I would say focus on three pieces max. For me, I’ll be focused on my mystery novel, George Florence, short works for contests and magazines submissions, and I might work on another novel. There’s a particular manuscript that I wrote and fully completed for Camp NaNoWriMo a few years ago. For some reason that novel has been popping back up in my head. I guess I’ve let it sit for too long.

3. Find a daily routine.

I set aside an hour each day to get some work done. It’s tough when you have a full-time job and, in my case, a few part-time jobs on the side as well, so an hour is all you need. Sometimes it’s all you can get.

I spend Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday getting any writing, editing, or outlining done. Thursday, Friday, and Sunday are blog days.

I don’t think you can write seven days a week. You’re going to need to have a break in there somewhere. The same goes for blogging. Sunday is considered a blogging day for me, but I usually don’t do anything on that day.

On Saturdays I try to work for two hours instead of one. Saturdays are my only free day where I don’t have work, so I try to get a little bit more done. Unless I stall and decide to clean the house.

4. Find a monthly routine.

You can have a daily routine or you can have a monthly routine. I like to have both because it keeps things organized.

I try to treat some months as “NaNo” months whether it’s NaNo time or not. My monthly schedule that I hope to start for real in 2016 is as follows:

January — Edit
February — Write
March — Outline and Edit
April — Write (Camp NaNo)
May — Write and Edit
June — Outline and Edit
July — Write (Camp NaNo)
August — Write and Edit
September — Write
October — Outline and Edit
November — Write (NaNo)
December — Write (Short Story Sunday for next year)

At the beginning of each month I’ll figure out which piece I want to work on for that month. Some months will be multitasking. For example, for May I can work on short pieces for contests and edit George Florence at the same time.

2016 is about a week away. There’s so much to prepare for.

How are you preparing yourself for the new year? What are some of your goals?

Hello 2015!

 

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

2015 is officially here! It’s time to look ahead confidently and make this year really count.

Did I complete my resolutions for 2014?

Eh… yes and no. One resolution was to read more. I made a Goodreads challenge to read 20 books in 2014 and I read 24 books. I think I could have read more, but 24 was an overachievement.

Another resolution was to write more. I kept up pretty well with my Short Story Sundays on here (I think). I won two out of three NaNo challenged in 2014, and I also got pretty far in writing/editing my Detective Florence series.

What are my resolutions for 2015?

My resolutions are more or less the same as last year… I want to read more than last year. For the 2015 Goodreads Reading Challenge, I’m going to pledge to read 52 books. That’s one book a week. We’ll see how well I can keep up with that.

For writing, I’m going to focus more on my Detective Florence series. By the end of 2015 I want to have the first novel ready for publication so I can start querying.

On a side note, I want to start eating healthier. I give myself until the end of the first week, but it’ll be good to try.

What’s up for the blog in 2015?

I’m going to start posting regularly. There will still be plenty of “personal” posts on here. However, I’m going to have a few posts already written to make sure I can keep up with the blog. Also, the topics will be more about reading and writing in general as well as my own writing.

–Sunday: Short Story Sunday will continue. Each Sunday I will post a short story or poem or some other type of my own writing.
–Wednesday: I will post advice and tips about writing. I will also links to outside articles and blog posts about the same subject.
–Friday: Something short and simple, I’ll post a writing quote or picture. I think it’ll be a great source of inspiration/motivation.
–Saturday: I’ll post what book I read that past week and let you all know what I think about it.
–Every “first” of the month: I’ll post either a character spotlight on the characters in my novels or a WIP summary of my current novel. I’m hoping that will be interesting for all.
–Every “sixth” of the month: I will post six six-word stories. This challenge is brought to you by Adam Ickes. I found his challenge a long time ago and decided it would be something to try for 2015.

Depending on what days the dates fall, some posts will be modified as such. For example, if the sixth falls on a Friday I’ll either post the six six-word stories or the quote or maybe both.

There you have it. My new and improved blog for a brand new year. I hope you all enjoy the ride.

I wish everyone a happy and healthy 2015!

Hello 2013!

I Can’t Believe Another Year Has Come And Gone…

 

I hope everyone had a great holiday and a lovely New Year! I spent last night at my friends house with my sisters…our host fell asleep. But it’s okay, we woke her up 20 minutes before midnight! We watched the people in New York…no one would be able to drag me there for anything on that night. Too many people and it was way too cold. Plus, I like to go to bed right after midnight…even though I didn’t. But that’s besides the point.

Anyway, I got a new little nifty gadget from Santa! I got an iPod Touch. I know some of you probably don’t think that’s a big deal because most of you probably have the iPhone 5, but my phone is an old Sony Ericsson flip phone that I have had for a few years and it still works wonders…even after I accidentally drop it a million times a day. His name is Caleb and I love him.

But speaking of Donny (this is what I named my new iPod), I have used him quite a bit. One of my favorite things is the WordPress App that I have for it. That’s what I used when I wrote my last post oh so long ago. But at least now, I can update while I’m in class at school! Isn’t that great? 😀

But let’s talk about the new year. The past two years I have had the same resolution and both years I started off the beginning of the year really well and followed it. Then half way through the year, I would either get bored or just forget about it. That resolution was to read more. So, I think I might try it again, but we’ll have to see how it goes. I am on GoodReads and the link to my profile is on the Come Find Me page of this blog if anyone wants to check it out (I also have the app for that, too!). I also just joined the 2013 Reading Challenge on there with a goal of 20 books. It told me that I only read eight books last year. That’s kind of sad…but kind of a new record for me, I guess.

Another resolution: write more. I feel as though I say this every single day, but I really am going to start writing a lot more. Here’s a little bit of news for you: I finished Saving Each Other. Remember that NaNo I was trying to accomplish? Well, I finished it in the middle of December. The only thing is that I’m going to try doing something  a little different…

My sister came up with this idea and I’ve decided to follow through with it because I believe it would work out better this way. Instead of Saving Each Other being one book with sequels, I’m going to have it be in one book. Saving Each Other is just the first part. So I guess you can say that I finished one part of a book that’s going to have five parts. So, I edited my To Do List page and replaced “finish Saving Each Other” with “finish Seeing Things.” I also got rid of the whole write 360 pages by the end of the year…I think I got to a little over 200 pages. Not bad, at least.

So this is what I’m going to be doing this year: reading more and writing more. Let’s hope that I can keep it up with school and work!

Happy New Year everyone! And good luck with all your resolutions! 🙂