This is a masterpiece of the English language, and I can’t… :’D LOL
2015 is dead! Long live 2016!
…unless of course it sucks as much as 2015 did. But let’s try to stay positive, shall we? 😉
A new year is upon us and it’s time to evaluate what worked, what didn’t, and prepare for the year to come! This is going to be a little bit like my monthly review posts, with sections for Writing, Reading, and my Personal Life goals. So let’s get started!
2015 in Review
Goals were: Finish Changing History, Finish one original novel, publish something new every 4 months.
At first glance, these goals don’t seem like much. But they turned out to be far more complicated than I could have imagined. As a result, I did not actually finish a single one of them. This might be depressing, if I hadn’t carefully recorded the things that I actually did do this year. Here is that list.
- I almost completely rewrote my Changing History trilogy this year. This is the major feat that I’m really congratulating myself for. I finished all three parts except for the last five/six chapters of Second Chances. This means that I reread, rewrote, and reposted 281,557 words this year. That’s a LOT of work! And the sad part is, as part of a reviewer’s journey, I’ve recently found myself rereading Choices again and discovering even more grammatical errors that need correcting! I’m ignoring them for now, but it’s just proof that I will need to go through this story at least one more time before I am truly done. There is still so much left for me to do, but the bulk of the work is finished and that is something to celebrate.
- I finished the first draft of my Loki/OC fanfic, Clarity. This is also a big accomplishment for me, as I’ve been planning this story for over a year, possibly longer. I’m very pleased with it, I think after some major revision and editing it will be just as good, if not better than Worth Living For. As much as I love the Changing History saga, I feel like I have poured more of my soul into these Marvel fics than I have into any other pieces of writing I’ve done thus far. They are extremely close to my heart and finishing even one more part feels like something worth recognizing.
- I overcame The Great Disaster of 2015 and managed to finish Part Two of what I hope will be my first published original novel, currently titled Wonderland Reclaimed. Those who know me personally will know how much I struggled with this, how hard it was for me to open that project knowing how much work there was to be done. But I did it. And I’m fairly happy with the progress I have made, enough to feel even a little bit of eagerness to jump into rewriting the missing pieces of Part One in the near future.
- I started blogging regularly! Granted, it’s not that often, but once a month for six months is far more than I’ve blogged before on a regular basis. I have a long way to go, but I’m determined to at least keep plugging along on what I’ve started.
- Lastly (and what I feel to be most importantly), I learned more about myself as a writer this year than I think I have in any year previous. I kept records of what I accomplished and didn’t accomplish, I focused my writing efforts into chunks that seemed reasonable, and when I did not reach my goals, rather than falling into depression and giving up, I took a step back, reevaluated, and modified. I feel as if I have a better understanding of what works for me as a person and as a writer, I have a better understanding of how much I can reasonably expect of myself, and I have a better understanding of how much WORK I am actually putting in to these projects. I am able to celebrate my accomplishments, rather than just berating myself for my failures, and that is in itself an accomplishment.
Overall goals for the year are: Finish Changing History rewrites, Finish first draft of Changing History: Entwives, Write the Worth Living For short that I’ve been planning for ages, Edit and begin posting Clarity, Finish the first draft of all three parts of Wonderland Reclaimed.
Reward Project: If I finish Wonderland Reclaimed, I can write my Avengers: Age of Ultron fic for NaNoWriMo in November.
The following is how I am planning to break up my week and what I plan to accomplish on each day:
- Catch-up Monday- Spend this day working social media, responding to reviews, and generally playing catch up from the weekend. Writing Group meets on this day, so work on anything related to that.
- Blogging Tuesday- This does not mean I will be blogging every week (that would be crazypants), but I will do at least one thing blog related on this day every week. Whether that be updating the draft of my Monthly Wrap-Up post, or working on something completely new, well, we’ll just have to see.
- Whatever Wednesday- This is a day I can do what I want. I can write, I can watch TV, I can read, I can lounge around and do nothing at all, WHATEVER!
- Writing Thursday- This is my writing day. I dedicate this day to nothing but writing related shenanigans, whether that be new words or editing.
- Friday, Saturday, Sunday- Are usually pretty packed with social interactions, so I’m leaving those open.
After some consideration (and talking with my writing group!) I have decided to do Quarterly Goal updates this year. That means that ever three months, I will reevaluate my goals and re-prioritize, based on what I’ve accomplished thus far. As such, here is the break down of the first three months of my writing life in 2016!
January: First month of NaNoWriMo’s “Now What?” months, focusing on revising and editing. My goals are to finish editing and posting Changing History: Second Chances, and to finish the first draft of Entwives.
February: Second month of NaNoWriMo’s “Now What?” months. I’ll be setting aside Changing History this month and shifting my focus onto my intense editing of Clarity (Loki fic). I will also add new words to the rewriting of Part One of Wonderland Reclaimed.
March: Prep Month for Camp NaNo #1. Prepare to edit Entwives, write out an outline of what I have so far and make note of any plot holes that need filling. I’ll also continue to add words to Wonderland Part One.
2015 in Review
And just for fun, here are some cool stats about what I read!
My original Reading Challenge this year was to finish 60 books, but as I began to take my writing more seriously it became apparent that something was going to have to be done to make time for that. So I lowered my goal to 50 books rather than 60, and I stand by that decision. 50 books is a great goal, I feel like it pushed me to continue reading, but didn’t overwhelm or depress me. I also had a personal goal to reread the Harry Potter novels this year and I accomplished that! It was so rewarding to return to a series I had enjoyed so much and read them again with fresh eyes.
I’m going to repeat my goal of 50 books for the year. As I said before I felt like it was a perfectly reasonable goal that gave me a sense of accomplishment without overwhelming me and I see no reason to fix something that isn’t broken 😉 The series I would like to try to finish this year is The Dark Tower series by Stephen King.
I started to read these books several years ago, and I devoured the first three, but I stalled on book four. I’ve heard so many good things about the series, and I think I’m ready to try tackling it one more time. If you’d like a list of the other books I’m planning to read this year, here is a link to my To-Read list on Goodreads.
I didn’t really have any goals for my personal life this past year, other than the usual. Get in shape, lose weight, be the best you can be. And really, that’s all I ever want, so that’s what 2016 is going to be about too. I plan to get back into the gym, starting this month. I want to eat in more than I eat out, and try to find some way to keep my (sometimes damn near crippling) anxiety at bay. I don’t know how yet, but I’ll be exploring some options to see what I can squeeze in to a schedule that already feels full to bursting. That’s the best I can do.
On that note, Welcome to 2016! I’ll be seeing you around.
This is probably going to be a short one today (yeah, yeah, go ahead and laugh!), because most of my words are going to be spent on my New Year’s Goals post, coming up shortly! But I thought you guys should at least get a quick overview of what I’ve been up to this past month. So here we go!
Once More Unto the (Writing) Breach
I did a whole lot of nothing this month. And I am okay with that. I needed the time to recharge my batteries, and now I feel much more able to tackle my goals for the new year. I’ve finished outlining my plan for the year, I posted one chapter of Changing History (which to be honest, is one more chapter than I had thought I would post), and now I’m ready to jump back in with both feet!
Have You Hugged a Book Today?
I made my goal for the year! Easily! With room to spare! Yay me, let’s get into the books I read this month 🙂
Here’s the link to my star rating breakdown if anyone needs a refresher. It’s also up in the header 🙂
- Books I’ve finished:
- What I’m currently reading (In order of Date Started):
- The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss– I got this for Christmas from my boyfriend. BEST CHRISTMAS EVER! Seriously, the way Patrick Rothfuss writes is beautiful, but not in a boring, flowery way, it’s beautiful that really works to enhance the plot, rather than detract from it. I’m on the edge of my seat! On the one hand, I can’t wait to find out what happens. On the other hand, Pat doesn’t seem anywhere close to publishing book three and with only a short(ish) book left between them… The Great Torturous Wait is a looming inevitability.
- Mirror, Mirror by Gregory Maguire– I got this on sale once upon a time, long, long ago, and I’m just now getting around to listening to it. It’s… okay. I like the characters, it’s made me laugh out loud a few times, but I’m a third of the way through and we still haven’t gotten to what I would consider “the good parts” yet. I remember this from reading Wicked a few years back, but I guess I had forgotten what it was like. We’ll see if my mood improves as the book goes on.
- Book to Screen:
- Marvel’s Jessica Jones– I technically finished watching this in January, but I really want to talk about it. Because OH EM GEE, you guys, I can’t even! I don’t even know if I have words. This was so good. It was gritty, but in a totally different way than Daredevil. While Daredevil used mostly physical violence to invoke horror, Jessica Jones relied on the psychological aspect, something that I appreciate far more as a viewer. I can’t handle blood for blood’s sake, and I honestly find the powerlessness that comes from brainwashing and hostage-type situations much more frightening, rather than just disgusting. Not to say there wasn’t a fair amount of blood, but it all felt much more necessary, instead of added for shock value. The cast was superb (David Tennant as the villain was probably the best thing I have ever seen) and the plot twisted and turned in so many surprising ways. There are several characters that I hope might make appearances in the next Marvel shows from Netflix (Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and The Defenders), but I have to say, watching Trish Walker kick a$$ and take names was probably the most satisfying part of the whole show and I look forward to a return of her character almost as much as Jessica herself.
#Hashtags and other minutia
I don’t even know if I did anything on social media this month. Let’s find out!
- My Favorite Tumblr Reblog: I just think stuff like this is gorgeous.
- My Favorite Tumblr Post: This is the only original post I made on Tumblr this month. I REGRET NOTHING!
- Twitter Retweet: This is too hilarious not to share:
- Twitter Post: I got my winner’s shirt from NaNo! WhoopWhoop!
- Just For Fun: GALAVANT IS BACK AND I AM SO HAPPY RIGHT NOW! 😀
Do I Actually Have a Life?
Still no. I am planning to have MORE of a life, now that the new year has started! 🙂
“And In Conclusion…”
- Writing- January is the month of focusing on Changing History. I am back to full writing strength, and I will be posting chapters regularly (at least once a week) and working on finishing the first draft of Entwives. I will be making a blog post detailing my plans for the year later this week.
- Reading- This will also be in my goals post, but I’m planning to read 50 books this year! I plan to start this month, by finishing 4-5 books, which includes at least starting The Gunslinger by Stephen King and rereading Alice in Wonderland to prepare for my continuing work on my original novel.
- Social Media- Make more of an effort in all areas. That’s the goal.
- My Personal Life- Get back to the gym and cook more, eat out less!
That’s all for now, folks! I’ll be back later in the week, with a full breakdown of what my goals are for the new year. Have a good month, everyone! 🙂