Motivation Monday

February recap

While I didn’t make my over writing goals, it was a descent month for me:

    • Wrote, edited, and subbed short novella – Kick Start for an anthology call.
    • Finished my holiday suspense romance
    • Almost 1/3 of the way with young adult series
    • Finished line edits for naughty fairy tale
    • Blogged on a almost regular bases

Again the biggest area, I lacked in -again – is promo :”( Over all word count was only 400 less than my target. The short novella wasn’t planned so it threw off my individual word goal on my different planned pieces. I’m hoping to add the missing 8k to my young adult in March. We have several ½ days at the day job and spring break begins the first week of April. If I don’t then I’ll make permanent changes to my writing que.

Have your heard the saying if March comes in like a lion it will go out like a sheep… I’m hoping to be a lion all month. I have ‘big’ plans for March.

This is in one of the guys I get to hand out with my month :D

This is in one of the guys I get to hand out with my month 😀

My goals for the month of March ~

FINALLY - get to write his story :D :D

FINALLY – get to write his story 😀 😀

    • ~Make edits to naughty fairy tale and submit
    • ~plot cupid series (3 books) using the series bible worksheets and Rock your Plot (both new to me)
    • ~Start my ultimate fighter story~ word goal – 15k
    • ~work on young adult  ~ word goal – 30k

 

 

What are your goals for March?

 

Motivation Monday

Recap & goals.

2013 didn’t start off with the bang I had hoped. My overall word count for January is 25k less than my target and I didn’t submit my naughty fairy tale… 😦

I have sever asthma and spent a week focusing on breathing. It’s hard to write humor or sexy when the only thing on your mind is getting oxygen into your lungs. With this disclaimer the area where my word count really fell short of my goals is on the weekends. I made my week daily goals 92% of the time. So I’m going to keep the word count goal the same for February. If I fail again then I’ll re-evaluate.

I do need to revise my submission goals which I’m going to wait to do until the end of the month.

So for February the bar is:

He's still waiting - my next hero

He’s still waiting – my next hero

Minimum 500 words daily during the week.

Minimum 3,000 words on the weekend.

Submit the naughty fairytale.

Complete the romance suspense novella

Complete the rough draft of book 1 in the young adult fantasy

Start the steamy romance suspense – full length

Finish the next novella in the ‘The Cabin’ series.

Promotional was pretty much a bust this month also.

One the ‘personal’ front – the diet is limping along and I’m doing my exercising plan. I also have started and planned out my next copy of craft projects.

I’d love to hear how your 2013 is going.

Motivational Monday

I think Mother Nature is having some issues… record cold, 9 inches of snow in a six hour period, etc. I’ve offered to order her Girl Scout cookies, to buy her M&M’s, and to make her brownies. Told her I’d play Magic Mike and leave all the curtains open so she could watch…as I’m writing this it’s 12 degrees out, snow is pelleting my windows, and there is a high wind advisory. So clearly, I’ve hit on nothing that will motivate Mother Nature to give Northern Michigan a mild winter.

If I had sent the pages on fire with a high count, would he have come and put it out?

If I had sent the pages on fire with a high count, would he have come and put it out?

This last weekend I signed up for writer’s marathon. I received ‘cheering-on’ messages, had a writer partner to check in with, and hubby agreed to make his own meals (which means he ate eggs and hot dogs for two days). So am I going to dazzle you with a high word count??? Nope.  I did do a deceit amount but truly little more than average.

I’ve come to realize that like Magic Mike can’t sway Mother Nature, writing marathon’s don’t do it for me. In truth I do better if I just stick to my ‘daily’ grind plan. Because this weekend’s higher than average word count just puts a cement block into my flow for the week when I have less time to plot ahead due to the day job. So come next Friday will I still be ahead of my projected word count goal for the month? It’s hard to say….

Do write – ins or marathons help boost your overall word count?  How do you prepare for them?

 

Writer’s Wednesday

A Pantsers planning tool.

I’m a pantser – I’ve been trying to convert to more of a plotter but so far it’s been as effective as trying to climb a mountain of Jell-o.  I was asked not too long along by a new writer as a pantser what kind of planning do I do?

Well, the answer is very little.  I do more of record keeping as I write.  The one thing I do is describe my characters. I do this on index cards. The main and reoccurring secondary characters each have their own cards while I keep a ‘master’ list of all characters on another card. 

Depending on the length of the story, I use different ways of keep track of them.  For full length I use 3-ring binders. For novellas over 20,000, I use the 3-prong folders. For short novellas, like the one I wrote for Christmas, I do something like this….(click on the pic for a closer look and description)

Because I’m a VERY visual person so whatever I use will have some sort of pictures on it. For this novella the front is for pictures that inspire the story. I hang it on the corkboard I have by computer so when I settle down to write I look at it and the muse takes over.  On the back I have index cards for the characters, the blurb, promo ideas & blog dates, and submission info (including the guidelines, publisher website, and e-mail addy).  I also have a very ‘loose’ summary typed up – I usually keep these somewhere between 100 to 150 words. It’s meant to just keep me from diving too keep into rabbit holes.

Once this novella is completed and submitted, I take this down and file it until I hear back. If it’s rejected, I update the submission info with the second publisher I send it to.  I will also use it when doing edits. Reading over the character cards brings those characters back into focus and I find I can do the edits much easier and quicker.

So there is a pantsers form of plotting for a short novella….

Recap – Motivation Monday ~

So let’s just say last week was a test in the unplanned. I lost my Internet Monday afternoon it came back on ‘briefly’ Friday – sort of like a teenage girl tease – then went down until Sunday Night.

Lesson learned here – have blogs written at least a week in advanced and scheduled to post.  Now this is a doable lesson. Sometimes my lesson vs reality ratio isn’t good.  But I generally know what I’m blogging about. I had last weeks all planned out so….

The weather here in my sweet Northern Michigan town where I complain that our four seasons are just different phases of winter has broken all records for heat.  All last week was in the upper 90’s with a couple of days kissing 100! Of course, our home doesn’t have AC – why when the average summer temp is 76?  The effects of this? My asthma went into psycho level. Trip to ER where student nurse told me I was fat…

This was the beach at 6:30 am… all last week after 8 am there was NO sitting room last week.

The effect of the weather? LOW word count.  The lesson here? Not sure there is one  for weather that hasn’t occurred in hundreds of years.  BUT I do need to not to become so derailed by bumps in the road. It’s sort of funny this happened because my EDJ was filled with bumps.  You don’t work with sever EI kids without there being a lot of sunk holes along your daily path.  I think some of the problem is that I still haven’t found my writing rhythm.

Which brings me to the focus of this week’s motivation Monday’s goal ~ what is my rhythm? In my EDJ I would talk to my students teachers in the morning (while they were still in a good mood) and make calls to homes after school, etc.

When will I get the highest word count? Mornings I have a ton of ‘natural’ energy. I think this comes from years of hitting the floor running. So I have been tackling my ‘house’ projects. The problem here –after six of hours of organizing kitchen cabinets, I’m not in the mood to write a hot sex scene. For some reason stacking plastic bowls isn’t a turn on for me – go figure.

I’m going to try ‘writing spurts’ throughout the day.  I’d love to hear how you block out your writing/editing time.

Sooooo true

Motivation Monday ~

First, I’d like to thank EVERYONE who stopped by and left me a comment during the Hot Summer Nights blog hop.  I”ll be e-mailing the five winners today to get your addy’s. 

Everyone needs motivation to accomplish a task or reach a goal. And what works for one person may not have any effect for another. During my years at my EDJ I had to constantly figure out what would motivate my students. For some a box of PopTarts would work wonders, others it was a 2 litter of soda, and then for those who could look long term there were shoes, jeans, or cell phones.

 

I’m the kitten and my current WIP is the big bird…

Now as I shift to full-time writer, I’ve come to see what use to work as motivation isn’t there. I no longer have restricted time but the major difference – I don’t need the escape. Before, I’d come home and need to rid my mind of the nightmares of my EDJ. I’d submerge myself into a hot sex scene, a cliff hanger suspense chapter, or a humorous exchange between characters and my day would fade away.

 So while I need to increase my output for the shift I need in income, I have found that last week’s word count was less then when I had strip throat.

 This smack in the forehead led to my subject matter – motivation.  What will it be? Now I know for some if they set personal daily word count goals, they are driven to meet it. Me? Not so much. My mind just doesn’t work like that. I’m not competitive by nature (the entire can’t color inside the line thing I have). I have the desire/want to be a full-time writer but then I also have the desire/want to live in a hut on a tropical beach and so far neither is happening.

 I’m setting goals again this week but I’m also taking into consideration I need ‘prizes’ attached to them. So I’m making a list of things I’d like. “Mini” prizes with a bigger one at the end of the week. 

 I’ll report back next week on which one worked and which didn’t. (I’d like to say I know this will be a ‘sure thing’ but also from experience I know that even though the goal/prizes are there the mental hurdles can block the success).

 So what are some of the things you use for motivation? Does a simple word count goal work for you?