Good morning and welcome to February!
When I was trolling through Canva looking for an image for my review post title card, this one struck me as a far more accurate picture of what working towards goals feels like for me. It’s uphill, but with a lot of little plateaus. I climb, I think I’ve reached a point of comfort and ease, then suddenly there’s another hurdle to overcome.
I don’t have a whole host of goals to go through. Last year I did quarterly goals and had 10-12 goals, this year I’ve decided to switch to monthly goals and only have 3-4 per month. This, I think, is going to work out much better for me. The post where I made these goals can be found here.
January Goals Recap
1.) Finalize and submit the hardback of Alabama Rain to IngramSpark. It took almost every second of January for me to do this—but it’s done. Sort of. Why did it take so long? Welllll…..I’m not going to lie, I’ve been focused more on my current WIP and every time I went to work on Alabama Rain’s hardback, I got an idea for Harlot I felt compelled to flesh out. And, truth be told, it’s only sort of completed. I have it uploaded, but also my husband and I got really sick (nothing life threatening) and I had to spend a fat wad of cash on medication so I haven’t ordered a hardback proof, therefore I haven’t approved it for sale. But, since I didn’t specify in the goal, I’m counting it as complete. I’m not going to make getting copies an official February goal; I feel that would be cheating. Of COURSE I’m going to do that.
2.) Get at least three ladies to commit to a collaborative giveaway I have planned for March. I did this too, in some capacity. I mean, three ladies did commit to participating in the giveaway…but after diving into the planning a little more and on the sage advice of someone more experienced, the nature of the giveaway is going to change dramatically. So, yay! for completion…boo for obliterating the giveaway’s premise. It’s the best thing in the long run, I think.
3.) Read one non-fiction book which will help me along in my writing journey. Oh yeah, nailed it! Again, I have a small caveat with this. I didn’t finish the nonfic I originally started and intended to use as my January nonfic read. More on what that was in a minute. What I finished was 5 Secrets of Story Structure by K.M. Weiland.
I am so glad I read this book, short though it may be. It’s filled with stuff you think you know, and some of it you might, but it was a really nice reminder that there is always something else for me to learn. It also helped me realize I had some structure issues happening early on in Harlot and I am now much happier with how the beginning reads. I most definitely intend on picking up more of Weiland’s nonfiction books. In fact, I enjoyed adding this nonfiction goal so much (I admit I didn’t read nearly enough nonfiction before.) that I’ve decided to aim for one nonfiction book per month—though I may not always make them writing-related. And I’m not going to have this as one of my monthly goals. Again, I think that might be cheating just a tad.
What about that nonfic I started by didn’t finish? Well, it is the one I will finish in February. Why didn’t I finish it in January, if I like it so much? Easy. I left it somewhere and didn’t have it for a couple of weeks. (Don’t give me that look.) I have this book in paperback, so when I couldn’t finish it in time, I chose one of the nonfics I had on my Kindle. What I can tell you about How To Read Literature Like a Professor is that I absolutely adore the writer’s voice. This is my biggest issue with many nonfiction books, I can’t connect with how the information is being presented. Not an issue with this author and I don’t suspect it will take me all month to devour this book.
While someone might argue this book is about reading and not writing, one cannot argue the two are intimately connected and from the first third I’ve read, I can tell you this book may help me with writing more than any other. I have actually edited my blogging schedule to include a full review of this book.
I won January! By a frog’s hair, but I won. As my reward, I treated myself to a small shopping spree at Bath and Body Works.
The last thing I need to do is be transparent with my word count for my WIP, The Harlot of Blue Ridge. At the end of December I had just over 10,000 words. Right now, I am sitting at 19,707. Netting me in the ballpark of 9,000 words for January. I’m not exactly impressed with myself, but I did have an entire week of being stupidly sick where I couldn’t stand to look at my screen, much less form words. So, not entirely bad considering. I hope to be closer to 35k by the end of the month.
I thought about only making two goals this month since it’s a short month, but the whole point of this is to challenge myself and push harder, right? So I’ll stick with three. In no particular order:
1.) Approach one local bookstore about carrying Alabama Rain on their shelves.
2.) Launch a book trailer for Alabama Rain in conjunction with the hardback.
3.) Draft a solid blurb and tagline for The Harlot of Blue Ridge.
If I win February, I’m treating myself to a new purse.
How are your goals and resolutions shaping up so far? Let me know in the comments!