Blogging, life

A Hobbit’s Walking Tale- January 2017

A Hobbit’s Walking Tale by fogisbeautiful

  • Miles Walked This Month (December 29th-January 25th):  48.9 miles
  • Total Miles Walked:  745.7 miles
  • Milestones Reached: none (78.7 miles into Mirkwood, halfway to the Enchanted River)

“It was not long before they grew to hate the forest as heartily as they had hated the tunnels of the goblins, and it seemed to offer even less hope of any ending. But they had to go on and on, long after they were sick for a sight of the sun, and of the sky, and longed for the feel of wind on their faces. There was no movement of air down under the forest-roof, and it was everlastingly still and dark and stuffy.”

~The Hobbit, Chapter 8: Flies and Spiders

 

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Oh I had such plans for this year… and then Mirkwood sucked the life out of me.

As I mentioned at the end of 2016, I had planned to start integrating walking into my writing routine through dictation this month. What I didn’t consider when I made this decision, was Daylight Savings Time. In my part of the world, its getting dark around 6 pm, and I don’t even get off work until 5:30. So I haven’t been able to take my writing “on the road” as it were, and have therefore lost all motivation for walking more. I’m attempting to come up with alternatives now, but so far, nothing. We’ll see how it goes next month I guess. Hopefully I can at least get to the Enchanted River…

Until next time!

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Reading

Have You Hugged A Book Today?- January 2017

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New Year, New Book Challenge! And I’m already behind, of course ;P As I said in my Conclusion to 2016, I’ve raised my goal to 55 books this year instead of my customary 50… Can I really call it ‘customary’ if I’ve only done it two years in row? Oh well, I’m using it! 😀

Here’s the link to my star rating breakdown if anyone needs a refresher. It’s also up in the header 🙂

  • What I’m currently reading:
    1. Miles in Love (Vorkosigan Omnibus #6) by Lois McMaster Bujold– I haven’t finished anymore of this yet. I will. I just… haven’t. I have no excuse.
    2. Audrey Hepburn: An Elegant Spirit by Sean Hepburn Ferrer– If I haven’t made any progress on this by next month, I’m taking it off the list, because it’s depressing me. Audrey Hepburn is a lot of things, but ‘depressing’ should not be one of them.
    3. Storm Front (The Dresden Files, #1) by Jim Butcher– I finally started the series! Yay! I’m a little disappointed by the narration, but I think that might have more to do with the production than with James Marsden (if that makes any sense?) and the story is pretty good. I think it’s about to get really good, and I’m told things really pick up around Book Three. I think I can stick it out until then. Also, Bob is the best. That is all.
  • Books I’ve Finished- None this month, mostly because I’m just failing at life a little bit. This also means that there’s no Book of the Month this month. Sorry, we’ll try again in February 🙂

However, I would like to go ahead and introduce a new segment this month:

The Destructive Creativity Corner

Basically, a lovely coworker got me a really neat book for Christmas this year, a book by the same author that created Wreck This Journal: F*nish Th*s B**k, by Keri Smith. The basic premise is that you have found a folder full of half-formed ideas, and now you have to complete the book using your creative intuition. I’ve been thinking about trying out a book like this for over a year now, so it just seems like fate that one has now fallen into my hands. I’m very excited!

Now, the instructions in the book say specifically that I shouldn’t share the results of this endeavor until specifically instructed to do so… but, I couldn’t resist leaking a picture of my gathered materials at least:

I’m really enjoying what I’ve done so far, I’ll post whatever pictures are “leaked” as they become available ;P If you’d like to follow my progress in real time, you can follow my Instagram, @fogisbeautiful.

That’s all! See you guys in February!

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Blogging, Writing

The Yearly Writing Round-up!- 2016/2017

It’s that time of year again! Time to take a look back, see what I’ve accomplished this year, and lay out my tentative plan for 2017. This is going to basically be an elongated Quarterly Round-up post, so let’s start with a recap of the goals I had going into 2016.

Overall goals for the year: Finish Changing History rewrites DONE! (Q1, February), Finish first draft of Changing History: Entwives DONE! (Q3, July), Write the Worth Living For short that I’ve been planning for ages, DONE! (Q3, July) Edit and begin posting Clarity DONE! (Q2, June), 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.

As I mentioned in my Q3 round up, I’m pretty happy with having completed 4 out of 5 of my goals for the year. Wonderland Reclaimed… well, it’s going to have to take a back burner for a while. I feel like I maybe could work through its issues eventually, but I’m going to be a little busy with The Stars Are Fire in the next year, and I already have plans for another book in that loosely connected universe, so… we’ll see how it goes 🙂

Other notable highlights from the year include:

  • March- Began posting Double The Baggins, Twice The Took (15 chapters posted, 2016)

This was an unexpected addition to my workload this year, but not entirely unwelcome. I’ve enjoyed working on this fic and it has taken the place of Changing History in my life quite nicely. Though I do hope it won’t take me 15 years to finish! ;P

  • July- Finished posting Clarity

I honestly did not expect to finish this story this year. I expected to still be posting it well into January. But it was so… easy. Really, this whole process flowed so smoothly (even if sometimes it didn’t feel like it was) that once it got down to posting, it was simple. It was a real encouragement, especially as I had so much trouble finishing Changing History this year.

  • October- Finished the Changing History saga

This was a bittersweet moment for me. One of those moments I thought would never come, and certainly never expected to come this year. 15 years of imagination and now, it’s over. I legit cried.

  • October/November- The Stars Are Fire original novel

This one truly came out of left field and I once again have to thank my writing group for making this possible. I’m hoping for this to be the book that I (finally) publish in 2017, and honestly, even as a rough draft that I know needs work, I’m really proud of it.

And a few stats, just for fun!

2016wordkeeper

  • New words written– 112,610 (across five stories)
  • Fanfiction chapters posted– 75 (across five stories)
  • Stories Completed– 4

What’s Coming Up in 2017

Overall goals for the year: Edit and Publish “The Stars Are Fire”; Write, Edit, and Post “Good Intentions”; Finish Writing “Double The Baggins, Twice The Took”; Finish Writing “Wonderland Reclaimed”; Write first draft of Tempest in Space novel (tentatively titled “Such Stuff As Dreams”)

So another five goals for 2017! These are a bit more ambitious, but based on what I was able to do in 2016, I think they are doable. I also have a non-quantitative goal of trying out dictation for my brainstorming and possibly even my first drafts. I’ve been hearing a lot of good things regarding dictation and writing productivity, so I thought I would give it a try and see if I can’t incorporate some more walking into my life. Healthier and more productive? Sign me up!

I loved doing the Quarterly Round-Ups last year, so I plan to continue the tradition into 2017! Here are my goals for the first quarter!

  • January– First month of NaNoWriMo’s “Now What?” months, focusing on revising and editing. TSAF- make character sketches, flesh out settings, build up the system of planets, research the tech, and figure out my themes. Dictate my brainstorming for “Good Intentions”. Post four chapters of DBTT.
  • February– Second month of NaNoWriMo’s “Now What?”. Self-edit TSAF. Continue to dictate brainstorming for “Good Intentions”. Post four chapters of DBTT (possibly start dictating new words?).
  • March– Give TSAF to a select number of readers for feedback. Translate my dictation brainstorming to a workable outline for “Good Intentions”. Post four chapters of DBTT and write 25,000 new words (possibly through dictation).

I’ll be honest, I’m a little nervous about this. A lot of it rides on my dictation experiment being a success. If not, I might have some trouble getting all of these things accomplished. But I’m going to try it, and if it doesn’t work, well, I’ll modify my goals for Q2! 😀

And our adorable animal to start out the new year!

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The capybara! The world’s largest rodent (and arguably the cutest as well):

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Babies!!!

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Look at him, he’s so chill! 😀

Happy New Year, everyone! See you guys in a month!