Wednesday, December 31, 2014

To the New Year - 2015 Goals

It's my birthday! :) I'm twenty-six today, though I don't really feel much older. Maybe next year, I'll start acting like an adult, but I'm not holding my breath. I bought myself Elsa underwear to wear for my birthday today. Yeah, I'm that cool. :) But enough about my awkwardness!

Goals for 2014

“Nothing Left to Lose”
* Complete first round of revisions by February
* Send to critique partners
* Revise again
* Query/consider self-publishing

“Silent Beauty”
* Query another round of agents
* Consider self-publishing
* Hire editor/cover designer

“Cold to the Touch”
* Finish first draft by April
* Revise and consider submitting to small publishing houses

NaNoWriMo – November
* Write a new novel

Personal –

* Read at least 50 books
* Find a literary agent
* Learn to drive a manual
* Attend a Writer’s Convention

Those are my goals for the new year and I hope they go well! :) Happy Birthday to myself and Lord Voldemort! (Oops, I said his name again.) Happy New Year!

Wow... I should have put Kili on my birthday wish list...

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Wrapping Up 2014

It's almost the end of the year... wow, I feel like this year went quickly! I felt like everything came too soon. It's time to wrap up my 2014 goals. I do goals every month, but I also have overall goals for the year. It's my "Things to Do" list, instead of resolutions.

Goals for 2014
Writing Goals –

* Complete another round of revisions by February
* Hire editor/cover artist
* Self-publish

“Somebody to Love”
* Complete revisions by June
* Send to critique partners
* Finish another round of revisions
* Query

“The Freaks/The Damned”
* Complete another round of revisions
* Consider self-publishing series

NaNoWriMo – November
* Write a new novel

Personal –
* Finish rereading “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy
* Read at least 40 books
* See “The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies”
* Get a tattoo
I self-published my novella on April 1st. Though it didn't do as well as I hoped, I'm still happy that my novella is out there to be read and that people have enjoyed reading it. :)
"Somebody to Love"
I had intentions of finally editing my NaNo novel from 2013, but I did not get a chance to do it. I did read through it in December and I see potential in the first draft, but it will need some serious editing next year.
"The Freaks/The Damned"
As much as I love my YA Urban Fantasy novels, I've decided not to write the final book in the trilogy yet and to shelf the books until I decide I want to rewrite the whole series, due to some issues that can't be fixed easily. I love the books enough to put them away for now.
NaNoWriMo novel - "Sweet Little Lies"
I finished my YA Contemporary Romance on November 20th and though I've plans to change a lot of it, I'm excited to have finished it!
The little girl I nanny and me
Though I didn't get all of my goals done this year, I did read 60 books, twenty more than my goal of 40! I'm very excited about that! I read some really wonderful books this year that I might have to reread next year. :) How did your overall goals for 2014 go? I'll be sharing my new goals for 2015 on Wednesday, so be sure to check back!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Merry Christmas!

I just wanted to wish all of you a Merry Christmas! I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating with your friends and families this holiday season!

Merry Trek-mas!
Tomorrow, after I work 4 hours, I will be spending some time with my family and playing our annual BINGO for fun prizes. Then after the Christmas Eve service, we exchange one present with each other and I read "The Night Before Christmas" to my little siblings. Once the little ones are in bed, we pull out "National Lampoon's Family Vacation" and laugh until bedtime. A great family tradition. :)

I will be back to some blogging before the end of the year to catch up on a few end of year things as we prepare to head into a new year! :)

Merry Christmas everyone!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

'Tis the Season for Questions

I know I've not posted much lately, but work has been pretty busy. I work at a retail store part-time, so that makes me busy. Also I start a third job in the beginning on 2015. I'll be an educational assistant in a preschool in the mornings, a nanny in the afternoon, and working retail one afternoon and on the weekends. Am I a bit crazy? Probably, but hopefully it will help out with some financial struggles. They never tell you in high school that after college you might never get your dream job and that you might end up working several jobs to pay rent and eat food other than macaroni and cheese, which I've discovered you can actually get sick of eating it.

Christmas and the end of the year is coming; a time when I look at my resolutions from the past year and my yearly goals to see how well I did. I suspect it won't be as good as I wanted in some areas, but good in others. I won't do the full review of them until the last day of the year.

But it's making me wonder a little bit about one of the goals always hanging over my head. To make it count this year. To make it as an author. And I don't mean sell a national best-seller because I know it doesn't happen to everyone. But, at the same time I want to be more than a self-published novella with a few good reviews and a few books tucked in the hollows of my computer.

What am I going to be as an author?

I know one of the things on my list was to find a literary agent this year. Unless it happens in the next two and a half weeks, it didn't happen this year. I'm trying, but it's harder some days than others. I feel like I'm starting to make progress and then the emails come back and they are polite passes. I just haven't found the right agent to support my book yet, but it still could happen.

It can just be hard to remember that I'm not a failure because I don't have an agent yet. I feel like there are others who started writing after me and already have agents and book deals. I know it's a subjective market and every one's journey is unique. But some days I wish my journey was more than getting a third job and then struggling to find time to pursue my actual dream in there.

Some days it just feels like it is taking longer to achieve my dream.

But at least my Christmas tree is decorated and all of my gifts are bought and wrapped! :) I'm ready for some relaxation time with my family and friends. Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Trouble with Faking Release Day!

The Trouble with Faking by Rachel Morgan
Release Day Blitz

December 2, 2014
After a stupid miscommunication, everyone in Andi’s new res thinks she’s secretly dating Damien, boyfriend of resident queen bee Charlotte. Since the rumour’s already out there and refuses to be squashed, Andi and Damien decide to keep up the facade in the hopes of snagging the attention of the people they really want to be with. Brilliant plan, right? Especially since Damien is the guy Andi’s always wanted. But now there’s Mike, the guy Andi’s pretending to be interested in for the sake of the fake relationship plan, and Noah, Damien’s annoying best friend—who is so not Andi’s type—and suddenly the plan isn’t looking so brilliant anymore.


Rachel Morgan is a South African author who spent a large portion of her childhood living in a fantasy-land of her own making. After completing a degree in genetics, she decided science wasn’t for her—after all, they didn’t approve of made-up facts. These days she spends much of her time immersed in fantasy land once more, writing fiction for young adults and those young at heart.

She is the author of the bestselling Creepy Hollow series, and the lighthearted contemporary romance Trouble series.

I got to read an ARC of this book and it's wonderful! It's such a cute romance and one you'll really like! :) Congratulations Rachel on another sweet and perfect romance!

Monday, December 1, 2014

December Goals

It's almost Christmas time! I put up my tree last night, along with wrapping a few gifts while watching "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" and "Holiday in Handcuffs", two of my favorite Christmas movies! :) There's only 24 days left until Christmas. I only have to finish making one gift and then find the perfect gift for my older sister. The rest of my gifts are purchased and wrapped under the tree. :)

Yes, I do have two Star Trek ornaments.
It's time for an update in my monthly writing goals!

Here are my goals from November:
* Write to 50,000 words on my NaNo Novel
My NaNo novel is tentatively called "Sweet Little Lies" and it's a YA contemporary romance between a cheerleader and a male dancer.

Completed! I only had the one goal, but I did complete it. I wrote 51,110 words in twenty days instead of thirty! It's a very rough draft, but I've now written eleven novels. :) I also managed to get some reading done last month too! :)

The Maze Runner by James Dashner
The Scorch Trails by James Dashner
The Death Cure by James Dashner
Burned (Dragons' Trust Book 2) by Krista Wayment

I read the whole Maze Runner series last month! It was very, very good! If you haven't read it yet, you should definitely put it on your "to read" list. :)

Goals for December:
* Work on revisions for "Somebody to Love"
Completely rewrite the ending, along with adding to the beginning.

* See "The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies"

* Spend Christmas with my family

* Create new yearly goals for next year

Those should be pretty easy! :) How did your goals for November go? What are you goals for December? I'm off to find another Christmas movie to watch! :)

Saturday, November 22, 2014

NaNoWriMo Winner 2014!

Yes, you read that right!

I finished my NaNo novel on November 20th. I wrote 51,110 words in 20 days, which is super exciting! I'm done with my YA contemporary romance, "Sweet Little Lies". This is my eleventh completed novel!! :)

Whew! I'm done. Parts of it turned out completely different than I thought they would, but that's what happens since I'm a pantser and really went into this novel with a title and a general idea of a cheerleader and a male dancer. Here's what I ended up with!

Title: Sweet Little Lies
Genre/Category: YA Contemporary Romance
Word Count: 51,110
Pitch: Ellie is a cheerleader, who is terrified of heights, has the perfect quarterback boyfriend, and loves high school. Thackery is a male dancer, who doesn't care what other people think of him. When Thackery joins the squad, things become quite a bit complicated. Tragedy and lies keep them apart until they have to rely on each other or feel completely broken.

I wanted to share a short little teaser with you! As background, this is when Ellie begins to realize her boyfriend, Mark maybe isn't the perfect guy for her. And it shows a great conversation between Ellie and Thackery. (Also, just so you know, Eve is Ellie's identical twin sister.)

Thursday of Homecoming meant our pep-rally in the gym. Eve insisted on coming back to school, but I negotiated if she didn't play her flute to give her sick lungs a chance to heal some before Friday's game. I adjusted my uniform skirt as I stood up and headed toward the gym. We'd been dismissed a little earlier than the rest of the school to give us a few minutes to set up and warm up. Thackery stretched behind me, gently smacking the back of my knee with his foot. I put my hands on my hips.

“What you doing?” I asked. “If you injure me, I won’t be able to do the pyramid. We’d have to toss you up instead.”

“I would look adorable in that skirt.” Thackery laughed, causing my heart to contract at the sound.

“Shut up.” I elbowed him as I laughed in return. “You don’t have the right legs for the skirts.”

Thackery lifted the edge of his pant leg and showed me his calf. “I have beautiful legs. You should see them when I wear heels.”

“Hey Ellie, how are you, baby?” Mark jogged over to me and wrapped an arm around my shoulder.
Baby? He’d never called me that. I didn’t know if one date and a few text messages meant we were at the romantic name-calling stage. I shrugged him off. “I’m okay, dear. What’s up with you?”

Thackery rolled his eyes and went to talk to Eve as she sat on the sidelines next to the band. For some reason, it hurt to see him walk away and I didn’t want to think about him laughing with my sister. Mark flipped his head to the side and I forced myself to keep smiling.

Good luck to everyone still writing their novel and if you've already finished, congratulations! :) I'm off to celebrate by having an early Thanksgiving with my sister and brother-in-law. Have a great weekend!