Tag Archives: Losses

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Progress Made – Month Six of Being a Full-Time Author

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I had such high hopes for June. I had a great plan. I even gave myself extra time for everything, but in the end, it didn’t matter. Life blew up a few times and I barely got through the musts of the month and left many of the would-be-nice things in the dust.

A writer at a conference I went to once said that you should pad all of your time by 20%. I’m starting to believe him, and I’m also starting to believe that my number should be 30%. Because, life happens.

This past month my hubby’s family has all been in town. It’s been five years since that happened, so we’ve been spending a lot of time with them. In the middle of that, my dad ended up in the hospital for five days. My mother is incapable of taking care of  herself for more than a few hours, so my two sisters (one of which is recovering from an infection in her leg on top of a recent knee replacement) and I tag-teamed taking care of them. Seriously, the schedule was a thing of beauty. And I may have got my mom hooked on fancy sodas from Sips. Oops.

Like I said, life happens and we all get to roll with the punches. Am I right?

That being said, I’m going to list my wins:

The Jagged Scars Box Set is out! All five e-books books available on Amazon at a great price, if I do say so myself. I’m still really excited about having a completed series.

New Sight 3 (the final book of the trilogy) is with beta readers.This was two weeks behind, but I did get it out before the end of the month. Which, trust me, was nothing short of a miracle.

I managed to keep up with both my blog and my Flash Fiction Friday. Although I did end up writing one Flash Fiction on the Friday it was due. I really try to avoid that.

I ran a couple of promotions that ended up being quite lucrative. I sold the most books that I have ever sold in a single month. So that was awesome!

 

Most of my quarterly goals got juggled, but I managed to pull most of the big ones out at the end.

As usual, I wanted to get more done, but life did not permit. Not without losing sleep, which isn’t a great idea for me. Not if the people around me want to live.


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Progress Made-Month Five of Being a Full-Time Author

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As usual, I started the month off with way too much to do.

I’m like a kid in a candy store whose eyes are bigger than their stomach…

Ooh, a novel to finish. Ooh, a novella to edit. Ooh, covers to pick. Ooh, another novella. Ooh, a rough draft to write. Ooh, an anthology I could write something for. Ooh, two new projects. Ooh, marketing (okay, it’s more like “ewe, marketing”).

I knew there was too much. After four months of missing my goals, I decided I wanted to set reasonable expectations. You know, so I might be able to celebrate at the end of the month instead of being frustrated again.

I went so far as to write down everything I wanted to do, then cut it back to everything I knew I had to do. Then I went through everything that had to get finished and assigned hours to it. (I know, I know, not very creative, but there you go.) Then I calculated how many writing hours I had in the month. Then I compared them.

The hours were exactly the same.

And I know myself. Something always comes up, so I knew something would slip.

I moved forward anyway. I put everything that didn’t need to get done this month on the back burner, prioritized what had to get finished and in what order and dove in.

Guess what?

Almost everything got done.

I’m so excited!

Finally. Finally. Finally I have something to show for five months of writing. It’s been a long road, but I have to tell you that it’s been worth it!

Book five of my Jagged Scars series is out. I finished two novellas and have them ready to go. I’ve started advertising. The wheels are finally moving.

Have sales rocketed? No. But they’re steady. And growing, which is good.

So I guess this is my new process for my monthly goals. I already laid out this month, and it looks good.

 


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Wins and Losses-Month Four of Being a Full-Time Author

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The Montey Python boys say that I should always look on the bright side of life.

Johnny Mercer told me that I should accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative.

Dozens of kitty and puppy memes a day tell me to be happy.

But it’s so easy to be grouchy!

Especially when things aren’t going exactly according to plan.

In an attempt to accentuate the positive, I’ve been writing wins and not so much wins each day in my journal. It helps remind me that some things are going well, and others—while perhaps unexpected—are awesome.

So that’s what my report for April is going to be.

Writing Wins:

Re-wrote the last book of my Jagged Scars series (again and for the last time) and got it back to my editor

Finished my fairy tale retelling—beta readers loved it!

Entered two flash fiction horror story contests.

Outlined and wrote 25k of a rough draft for New Sight 3.

Learned some marketing stuff.

Went on a super fun writing retreat!

Taught a class on writing action scenes. That went well.

Beta read a novel for a friend.

Blogged every week.

Put up Flash Fiction every week.

 

Not so much wins:

The rough draft of New Sight 3 was supposed to be finished on April 30th. It will be about 90k words.

I’m a few weeks behind on Jagged Scars 5 as well as a novella in that series.

Didn’t get any marketing done…because I was writing. I need to work on that.

I was supposed to start outlining my next project (just a few hours a week) but got nothing done on that.

Conclusion:

When I look at the good and then the not so good, I feel better than if I just focus on what didn’t get finished.

I took a few hours at the beginning of the month to layout Q2 of this year. And guess what? It’s already in danger.

But one thing came up that I wasn’t prepared for. I had the project I was going to work on after New Sight 3 all picked out, but I got distracted. You know how shiny, new ideas are, they’re so appealing and seductive. So now I’m trying to decide between the shiny new idea, or the awesome old idea. There are pros and cons to each, so I’m weighing them in an attempt to choose.

So basically I’m writing like mad, trying not to get distracted by the internet, family or anything else that comes up during my working time. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail.

 

 

 

 


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Month Two as a Full-Time Author

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Yes, this is a little late, because the hubby and I were on a cruise at the beginning of the month. Still, I thought I would report on my full-time authoring.

At the beginning of the year, I laid out my writing goals for 2018. They were, to say the least, lofty. But that’s okay, right, because if you shoot for the stars and only hit the moon, you still hit the moon. Right? Something like that anyway.

Well, as I’ve already mentioned, February got blown up. I started out with twenty writing days. That got cut to eighteen, then the fifteen then to twelve, and then to ten. The only one I had planned for was two days for a local writing conference. The other eight days got sucked away by different things.

First off, my old work called me in for three days. Pretty sure I mentioned that already. My hubby got laid off, got a new job and then we went on a cruise between jobs. (I know, I know, my life is hard.) So three days went to the cruise, and two days went to prep.

None of these things are bad things, but they did interrupt my writing schedule in a big way.

So I had a grand total of ten writing days in February. And guess what happened to my February goals? Yup, most of them are still sitting on my list, staring at me, wondering when they will get worked on.

I reluctantly pulled out my Q1 goals, and saw that not many of them are going to get met either. Which puts several of my 2018 goals in jeopardy. Which does not make me happy.

I thought about leaving most of my goals “as is” and trying to play catch up, but then I realized how frustrating that would be, and decided to revamp instead.

But what is there to do about it? I can’t exactly turn back time. There’s only one way to go, and that’s forward.

So in order to salvage what is left of March, I wrote down all of the projects I’m working on and their due dates. Then I arranged them in order of priority, printed the list out and stuck it right next to my monitor. I wanted to get to marketing my Jagged Scars series this month, but considering the last book and the last novella of the series aren’t finished yet, there’s no point.

Productivity is my biggest concern this year. January went well. February faltered. March is looking…iffy. But I’m going to do my very best to recover what I can.

I hate missing goals, but it’s going to happen. I keep telling myself to breathe and keep going.

 


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