Posted in #atozchalllenge 2017, #RevofKindness, A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, April CampNaNoWrimo 2017, Blogging from A toZ April Challenge, CampNaNoWriMo, CampNaNoWriMo 2017, Challenges and Contests, JuNoWriMo, Life Writing, Round Two 2017, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

A Time to Sow: ROW80 Round Two Final Update 2017

Hey there!

Round Two is now officially over, and it’s time to assess my progress toward the goals I set for this quarter.

April contained the Blogging From A-Z April Challenge and CampNaNoWriMo.

Next was the #StoryADay May Challenge, and, as I write this, I’m in the backstretch of JuNoWriMo, where I’m using my allotted 50,000 words to build a stock of blogpost drafts – something I’ve been wanting to do for the last few years.

And now, it’s a reality! =)

Did you have any major goals for this quarter?

How did things turn out?

Writing:

  • CampNaNoWriMo: Draft The Last House  (a Kifo prequel). ~65K. Target: 2,167 words/day average to complete by April 30. Primary goal back-burnered after April; but a Camp win at 65,570 words.

  • Trueborn: Complete draft of Foul Deeds Will Rise (Trueborn #2). Target: 3,333 words/week; add words every day I reach my Camp quota, above, Finish by April 30. Modest progress. Secondary goal back-burnered.

  • Story A Day May: Main Project: Draft a Kifo Island-based exploration story every day during May, using challenge story prompts. Side project: Draft a 100 w0rd TnT fan fiction drabble daily; based on prompt words and advancing the Cowled arc. Tertiary goal COMPLETED!

  • JuNoWriMo: Write rough drafts of blog posts for future use. Goal: 1,667 words/day, or 2-4 rough drafts. As of the end of Round Two: 36,537 words; more before you read this update) Quaternary goal on target; will complete during the break before Round Three.

Plotting:

  • Story a Day May: Main Project: Create basic sketches for flash fiction stories (999 words/less, with exceptions) exploring July’s Still Nameless: Kifo Island #8, using #StaD prompts. Side Project: Reread Cowled arc; create basic sketches for drabbles (100 word stories) based on existing notes and prompt words. Primary goal COMPLETED!

  • JuNoWriMo: Review brainstormed topic list; add/delete; develop rough outlines for at least 48 posts/5 topic arcs by May 31. Secondary goal; no progress.

  • July CampNaNoWriMo: Plan/plot using The Story Toolkit /The Writer’s Coloring Book combo. Begin in tandem with StaD explorations; complete through Toolkit Step 13/22 (Locations) before end of round. Will complete the final phase during the break between the end of Round Two and July 1; experimentation complete. this didn’t come up in rotation until the round was less than an hour from ending, so not much to report here. On the other hand, now that it has rotated in, it will be one of my focus goals until the end of the month. Quaternary goal; very modest progress.

Revision:

  • The IDIC Romance: On Any Tuesday Night (was First Contact, With Jazz), Complete lessons 2-4 of Holly Lisle’s Revision Course by June 30. Aim for completing 1 lesson each month. may complete Lesson 4 during the break after Round Two. Adapted goal: Audited Lesson 4; chose to back-burner it to Round 3. Lesson 3 complete excepting transcribing/revising scene notes onto index cards. Primary goal in progress.

  • Short Stories: “Miss Spider and Mister Fly”; Complete copy editor Approve line edits if they’re ready this month. Nothing new as yet. Secondary goal.

Submission/Publication:

  • Miss Spider and Mister Fly” (for Dark and Bitter anthology): follow up with editors as/if needed. Signed and returned contract. Primary goal.

  • Gather list of at least 25 possible short story venues for future research by May 31. This will likely go into higher gear toward the end of June, in the break, as some of my primary goals are achieved and ticked off the list…Secondary goal.

Social Media:

  • #atozchallenge:  Confirm scheduling, and add link and branding to each day’s post. Respond to comments daily, and visit 3 other participants at least 6 times/week. I completed the challenge, but didn’t respond to as many folks or visit as I wanted to. This seems to have been a popular theme with the venue change. Primary goal; progress fair.

  • May 2017: Begin the 2017 Kindness Challenge: complete in June; post daily flash fiction stories/excerpts to #StaD site: complete by May 31. Started late – in mid-June. Will finish around the end of July. Posted through Week One. Secondary goal; some progress.

  • Blogging Features: Continue biweekly Skywatch Friday posts, as well as weekly #SoCS, #8sunday, Mindful Monday, WIPpet Wednesday, and Weekend Coffee share posts. Pre-produce posts where possible; work on this 1 hour each on Tuesday and Thursday. Tertiary goal; Progress poor.

Hometending:

  • Continue adding to Flickr portfolios for this school year. Added a few pictures for both kids; more to come. Primary goal; some progress.

  • Resets/reorganizations: study, family room, bedroom, living room, bathroom, kitchen, porch, yard, and general hometending. Complete varying 27 thing flings each room, each week (based upon other obligations each month). Secondary goal; solid progress until Mid-mayish.

Lifetending:

  • My beloveds: One on one time with each, doing something of value to us both, each week.Continue planning/ attending outings (personal and family) as desired. Primary goal on target.

  • Career Furtherance: Patreon. Complete profile and launch site. Draft CV/cover letter and revise. Assist Accomplice with his goals. Recorded a video for Patreon. Designed 4/5 labels for Chef Bluebeard’s sauces, and Tertiary goal progessing.

  • Challenges: CampNaNo: Interact with cabin mates 5/week: attend write-ins and visit forums once weekly. #StaD and #KindnessChallenge: Visit two other posters for each challenge, at least 5/week. Not where I want it to be, but I’ve started visiting. Tertiary goal; Spotty progress.

Selftending:

  • Journal and meditate five mornings and three evenings each week. Generally good progress. Primary goal; good progress.

  • Get a cumulative total of at least 111 minutes moderate physical activity 5 days weekly; 123 minutes (2 hours, 3 minutes) twice weekly, and 9 hours of more strenuous activities (tai chi, swimming, hiking, cardio, weights, etc.), by end of round. Again, solid progress. Primary goal; fair progress.

  • Books: Listen to three audiobooks, and read 6 print or Kindle books by end of round. 3/3 audio in progress/4/6 read. Secondary goal on target.

Leaps of Faith:

  • Website/Blog Development: Make basic sketches of new pages; prioritize; begin implementation. Back-burnered while I took a marketing course.

  • Intuitive Eating: Reread early chapters; consider how to incorporate into Smart Change; have a sketched list by end of round. I need more pondering time, and to clear some mental and emotional space. Back-burnered.

  • Smart Change: Reread Chapters 3 and 4/complete/worksheets; create an approach plan by end of round. Back-burnered.

  • Rose and Jeremy novella: Complete Planning/plotting of “Tuesday Afternoon Tea” using The Story Toolkit and existing notes. Develop one-paragraph sketches for remaining 3-5 stories by end of round. Back-burnered.

Kait Nolan’s  ROW80 –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!
We’re also on Facebook!

Posted in #atozchalllenge 2017, #RevofKindness, A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, April CampNaNoWrimo 2017, Blogging from A toZ April Challenge, CampNaNoWriMo, CampNaNoWriMo 2017, Challenges and Contests, JuNoWriMo, Life Writing, Round Two 2017, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

A Time to Sow: ROW80 Round Two Goals 2017

Hey there!

Round Two is nearing an end – and I haven’t gotten around to updating my progress on my quarterly goals. Today, I’m changing that. =)

This update my look a bit uneven – I’ve had a major sea change in the way I see things since the beginning of the round, and that’s reflected in what I chose to work on, and what I set aside.

Writing:

  • CampNaNoWriMo: Draft The Last House (a Kifo prequel). ~65K. Target: 2,167 words/day average to complete by April 30. Primary goal back-burnered after April.

  • Trueborn: Complete draft of Foul Deeds Will Rise (Trueborn #2). Target: 3,333 words/week; add words every day I reach my Camp quota, above, Finish by April 30. Modest progress. Secondary goal back-burnered.

  • Story A Day May: Main Project: Draft a Kifo Island-based exploration story every day during May, using challenge story prompts. Side project: Draft a 100 w0rd TnT fan fiction  drabble daily; based on prompt words and advancing the Cowled arc. Tertiary goal COMPLETED!

  • JuNoWriMo: Write rough drafts of blog posts for future use. Goal: 1,667 words/day, or 2-4 rough drafts. Quaternary goal; will complete during the break before Round Three. No progress.

Plotting:

  • Story a Day May: Main Project: Create basic sketches for flash fiction stories (999 words/less, with exceptions) exploring July’s Still Nameless: Kifo Island #8, using #StaD prompts. Side Project: Reread Cowled arc; create basic sketches for drabbles (100 word stories) based on existing notes and prompt words. Primary goal COMPLETED!

  • JuNoWriMo: Review brainstormed topic list; add/delete; develop rough outlines for at least 48 posts/5 topic arcs by May 31. Secondary goal; no progress.

  • July CampNaNoWriMo: Plan/plot using The Story Toolkit /The Writer’s Coloring Book combo. Begin in tandem with StaD explorations; complete through Toolkit Step 13/22 (Locations) before end of round. Will complete the final phase during the break between the end of Round Two and July 1; Experimentation complete. Quaternary goal; in progress.

Revision:

  • The IDIC Romance: On Any Tuesday Night (was First Contact, With Jazz), Complete lessons 2-4 of Holly Lisle’s Revision Course by June 30. Aim for completing 1 lesson each month. may complete Lesson 4 during the break after Round Two.Lesson 3 in progress. Primary goal in progress.

  • Short Stories: “Miss Spider and Mister Fly”; Complete copy editor Approve line edits if they’re ready this month. Secondary goal.

Submission/Publication:

  • Gather list of at least 25 possible short story venues for future research by May 31. This will likely go into higher gear toward the end of the month, as some of my primary goals are achieved and ticked off the list…Secondary goal.

Social Media:

  • #atozchallenge:  Confirm scheduling, and add link and branding to each day’s post. Respond to comments daily, and visit 3 other participants at least 6 times/week. Primary goal; progress fair.

  • May 2017: Begin the 2017 Kindness Challenge: complete in June; post daily flash fiction stories/excerpts to #StaD site: complete by May 31. Stalled out. Secondary goal back-burnered.

  • Blogging Features: Continue biweekly Skywatch Friday posts, as well as weekly #SoCS, #8sunday, Mindful Monday, WIPpet Wednesday, and Weekend Coffee share posts. Pre-produce posts where possible; work on this 1 hour each on Tuesday and Thursday. Tertiary goal; Progress poor.

Hometending:

  • Continue adding to Flickr portfolios for this school year. Primary goal; no progress.

  • Resets/reorganizations: study, family room, bedroom, living room, bathroom, kitchen, porch, yard, and general hometending. Complete varying 27 thing flings each room, each week (based upon other obligations each month). Secondary goal; solid progress.

Lifetending:

  • My beloveds: One on one time with each, doing something of value to us both, each week.Continue planning/ attending outings (personal and family) as desired. Primary goal on target.

  • Career Furtherance:  Complete Patreon profile and launch site. Draft CV/cover letter and revise. Assist Accomplice with his goals. Some progress. Tertiary goal progessing.

  • Challenges: CampNaNo: Interact with cabin mates 5/week: attend write-ins and visit forums once weekly. #StaD and #KindnessChallenge: Visit two other posters for each challenge, at least 5/week. Tertiary goal; Spotty progress.

Selftending:

  • Journal and meditate five mornings and three evenings each week. Generally good progress. Primary goal; good progress.

  • Get a cumulative total of at least 111 minutes moderate physical activity 5 days weekly; 123 minutes (2 hours, 3 minutes) twice weekly, and 9 hours of more strenuous activities (tai chi, swimming, hiking, cardio, weights, etc.), by end of round. Again, solid progress. Primary goal; fair progress.

  • Books: Listen to three audiobooks, and read 6 print or Kindle books by end of round. 2 audio/4 read. Secondary goal on target.

Leaps of Faith:

  • Website/Blog Development: Make basic sketches of new pages; prioritize; begin implementation. Back-burnered while I took a marketing course.

  • Intuitive Eating: Reread early chapters; consider how to incorporate into Smart Change; have a sketched list by end of round. Back-burnered; I need more pondering time, and to clear some mental and emotional space.

  • Smart Change: Reread Chapters 3 and 4/complete/worksheets; create an approach plan by end of round. See above.

  • Rose and Jeremy novella: Complete Planning/plotting of “Tuesday Afternoon Tea” using The Story Toolkit  and existing notes. Develop one-paragraph sketches for remaining 3-5 stories by end of round. This, too.

Kait Nolan’s ROW80 

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!
We’re also on Facebook!

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Challenges and Contests, JuNoWriMo, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Round Two 2017, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

Full Moon and Stories in Bloom; June 11, 2017

Hi there, and Welcome to StoryFest Weekend!

I hear you scratching your heads and trying to figure out what I’m talking about. Well, no worries – I’m here to answer your questions. StoryFest is a recital for those who participated in the #StoryADay May Challenge – our chance to spiff up our favorite story of the month, and offer it  for the world to see. This year, there was even a brand-new mini-critique group to help the polishing process along.

The selection is diverse and engaging. There are dark reads, light reads, humorous and heroic and tragic tales – there might even be a bit of naughtiness among the offerings.


Tempted? Well, it IS the weekend, so read away! Click on the icon above, and be transported anytime until the end of day Sunday, and have at it!

Drafting:

  • JuNoWriMo: Write 50,000 words of raw material for blog posts. 17,140/50,000 words. Primary goal on target.
  • Play with fiction writing as/if desired.Plot tribbles have arrived; I’m letting them at the quadrotriticale…so we’ll see what happens there. Did a snippet of new writing for my upcoming WIPpet post, Secondary goal on target.

Plotting:

  • JuNoWriMo: Plot/outline blog posts as needed to complete the drafting goal above. Picking up a bit of pace, but don’t want to get too far ahead of myself, because that can be confusing. Secondary goal on target.

Revising:

  • Look at the #StoryADay critique group; choose one of my last two SN stories and submit for peer review. Take action as indicated to polish the story; share for #StoryFest. Revised and posted. I was a little less than two hours late submitting my link, but the form took me, so…\Stretch goal COMPLETED!

*Stretch goals are that “little bit extra”; things that might make me uncomfortable, but will facilitate further growth. They will be in the background, mostly, so they don’t scare me too much! =)

Social Media:

  • Blogging: Revise/polish/package relevant blogposts in order to return to a regular blogging schedule. Designate reblogged/repurposed posts or work ahead to cover July’s schedule. Posting has begun. Still not up to par, but closer; had an idea for repurposed blogposts for July. Primary goal on target.

  • Other Platforms: Resume posting to my Facebook Writer page, Instagram, and Pinterest.  Complete Patreon  profile and launch.Wrote a post, changed profile and cover images, did some liking as my FB page; reviewed videos and selected one to use; liked and followed, added Layouts, and posted a collage on Instagram. Created a new secret board for Jim’s business in Pinterest; one public post, too. Secondary goal on target.

  • Continue in Twitter #writingcrew and #AllStarTrek sprints/chats regularly. Dabble in other social media (LinkedIn, Medium, Quora, Wattpad) if/as desired. Both sprints/ chats Wed. Read on Quora, Stretch goal om target.

Business:

  • Assist my Accomplice with his labeling/branding/platform/marketing (if this is scary for me; it’s completely alien to him). I worked out several complications; created a solid prototype ; accepted info for next product and began creating template; will begin sometime in next coupke of days. Secondary goal on target at last.
  • Complete Build Your Marketing Muscles class; simmer; draft an action plan to apply what I’ve learned, and experiment with early changes/additions to my currently nearly non-existent “marketing plan.Skimmed through new items. Went through some of the material I’ve missed. Stretch goal.

Tending goals:

It really wasn’t the best week for my tending goals; the full moon and transition from May to June caught me somewhat off-guard and off-form.

  • Hometending: Spend time at least 5x/week in mindful cleaning and/or yardtending; complete all homeschool paperwork and testing; deal with subscriptions and other business that tends to get pushed aside; support other indie writers as I’m able. Mindful cleaning: 5/5 I(brief sessions). Ran Twitter sprints for #JuNoWriMo. Contacted school superintendent to request approval for our required standardized testing.

  • Selftending: Spend time with my beloveds, friends, and myself; get at least one hour of physical activity 5x/week, and five hours of strenuous activity weekly (including Baby Steps to 5K); meditate and journal 8x/week. Meditation/journaling 1/8. Hour; 3/5; Strenuous: 1.5/5.

Kait Nolan’s ROW80  –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!
We’re also on Facebook!

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Challenges and Contests, Life Writing, Round Two 2017, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

Sowing and Growing: May 31, 2017

Hi there!

I meant to get this post up on the 1st, then Sunday…but none of those happened. I’m now, finally, getting to it. Okay, I know that June is a week old, but I’m still here, to account for May.

Since it’s taken so long, I’m going to keep this short (see what I did there)?

Writing:

  • Story A Day May: Main project – Write daily flash story of about ~333 words. Side: Write a Star Trek: Enterprise  fan fiction drabble (100 word story) for my Cowled arc, based on prompt and words from fans. Primary goal.COMPLETED!

  • Trueborn: Complete draft of Foul Deeds Will Rise (Trueborn #2). Target: 2 scenes/week, after #StaD stories. Finish by May 25. Secondary goal back-burnered. Much as I want to finish, trying to do it by the end of the month, or even this already overly busy round is more stress than I need. I’m setting this aside until August/September, when I have more breathing room.

  • Kifo Island Series: Complete draft of The Last House (a Kifo prequel). (Approximate word count TBD). Target 3,333 words per week, after #STAD stories and FDWR; complete by May 31. Tertiary goal backburnered. See above.

Plotting:

  • Story a Day May : Main Project: Necessary planning/plotting/research for flash fiction stories (333 words/less, with exceptions) exploring July’s Still Nameless: Kifo Island #8, using #StaD prompts. Side Project: Cowled arcnecessary planning/plotting/research for drabbles (100 word stories) carrying “Countdown” forward, using #StaD and fan prompts. Primary goal. Day 33/31 complete. On target.

  • Kifo Island: Complete plotting as needed to complete rough draft of The Last House. Begin hybrid planning for Still Nameless, using The Story Toolkit  and The Writer’s Coloring Book; get through basic character sketches. Secondary goal backburnered. The Last House will wait for August, as noted above. Still Nameless will be a priority in June.

Revision:

  • The IDIC Romance: On Any Tuesday Night (was First Contact, With Jazz), Complete lessons 2 (Promises), and 3 of Holly Lisle’s Revision Course  by May 31. Aim for 3 hours/week (timing TBD). Primary goal.1/3 hours complete; Lesson 3: Created notes for Scenes 1-3/p. 9/82; index cards pending (I’ll do those neatly after read-through and notes are complete).

  • Short Stories: “Miss Spider and Mister Fly”; Confirm copy line editing if ready this month; take any other necessary steps. Secondary goal. Contract signed and returned. On target.

Submission/Publication:

  • Miss Spider and Mister Fly” (for Dark and Bitter anthology): follow up with editors as/if needed. Primary goal. See above. On target.

  • #StaD Cowled drabbles: Submit to fanfiction.net as completed. Secondary goal. Day 28/31 complete. I’ve moved from 9 days behind to only 2without abandoning my family! Definite progress; will finish later today!

Social Media:

  • Kindness Challenge: Write twice/weekly posts on weekly themes (7 week challenge, so it will continue through and a bit beyond this round. Respond to comments daily, and visit at least 3 other participants each week. Primary goal. Simmering combo post 2/3. A bit of progress; behind on the visiting.

  • Story a Day May: Post daily –I’m sharing the planning, along with favorite lines to the stories, and links to the complete writings, in separate posts to keep things from getting too long. Visit at least 1 other participant daily. Secondary goal. Day 33/31 complete. Visits through Monday. Solid progress here.

  • Blogging Features: Continue biweekly Skywatch Friday posts, as well as weekly Stream of Consciousness Saturday Eight Sentence Sunday, Mindful Monday,WIPpet Wednesday,  and Weekend Coffee Share posts. Pre-produce posts where possible; aim for one hour every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Tertiary goal adapted.

Hometending:

  • Homeschooling: Complete rough drafts of third quarter reports for both kids (due 6/15/17). Continue adding to Flickr portfolios for this school year as circumstances warrant. Primary goal. Completed Lise’s English Language Arts section; 1/14. Scrolled through some recent pictures; nothing added yet.

  • Resets/reorganizations: study, family room, bedroom, living room, bathroom, and kitchen. Complete three 27 thing flings each room, each week. Two flings on porch, and two 27 minute yardtending sessions weekly. At least six General Hometending rounds per day, 6 times/week. Secondary goal.

Lifetending:

  • My beloveds: One on one time with each, doing something of value to us both, each week. Continue planning/ attending outings (personal and family) as desired. Primary goal. Homeschool co-op; conversation; lunch; television; flirting.

  • Career Furtherance: Complete Patreon profile and launch site. Assist my Acomplice in his efforts to launch his cottage industry; aim for 10 hours/week. Secondary goal. Accomplice: 1/10 hours; marketing course.

  • Beta reading/critiques: Complete at least first five chapters of both beta novels. Catch up with crits for my local group (I’m behind 3 at the moment). Tertiary goal. Spellfire: Author thinks we’re a good fit, so on we go! Highlighting for Chapter 2/13 in progress, p. 16/161. Stained: Chapter 1/26 complete; taking a detour because I forgot I had an unrelated chapter left to beta. Did initial read-through for that one; simmering.

Selftending:

  • Journal and meditate five mornings and two evenings each week. Primary goal. 1/5 mornings.

  • Fitness: Get a cumulative total of at least 111 minutes (1 hour, 51 minutes) moderate physical activity 5 days weekly; 123 minutes (2 hours, 3 minutes) twice weekly, and 4 hours of more strenuous activities (tai chi, swimming, hiking, cardio, weights, yardtending, etc.) each week, using my Samsung Health app for guidance and accountability. Secondary goal.

=

Leaps of Faith:

  • Marketing: Sign up for and keep up with fellow writer (and unschooling mom) Gwen Montoya’s 30 day course, Building Your Marketing Muscles. l This will help both my Accomplice and I as we move forward to the place where we are selling our creative efforts. Downloaded Scapple trial and began mapping and brainstorming. Copied and skimmed Step 2 for simmering.

  • Website/Blog Development: Make basic sketches of new pages; prioritize; begin implementation. Setting aside until marketing class is complete and simmered.

  • Smart Change: Reread Chapters 3 and 4/ complete/worksheets; create an approach plan, going forward. Setting aside for a more reflective period.

  • Intuitive Eating: Reread early chapters; consider how to incorporate into Smart Change. See above.

  • JuNoWriMo: Organize/flesh out lists of blog topics; create one sentence sketches for all ideas; develop sketches into rough outlines for at least 50 posts.

  • Blogging from A-Z Challenge 2018: Gather links and sketch out base idea for these posts. Setting aside for June; it makes more sense there.

Kait Nolan’s  ROW80  –

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!
We’re on Facebook!

 

Posted in Challenges and Contests, Coffee and Conversation, Just for Fun!, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Story a Day May Challenge, Weekend Coffee Share, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

June Gear Shift for #weekendcoffeeshare

If we were having coffee, you might just find me scratching my head and saying, “Wow – June seems to be flying by!’ I may also be scratching my head and staring around me in stark befuddlement….

Or, more likely, I’m at my laptop. I’m finished with #StoryADay May, other than StoryFest this weekend – I’ll tell you more about that a bit later in the post – and I’m about a third of the way through the #JuNoWriMo Challenge (think a more freeform version of NaNoWriMo).

But here I go, putting the conversation before the coffee again. I have a tendency to do that when my mind is busy, and I’m deeply involved in something….or when I have a new passion. Please do come in, sit down, make yourself at home. It’s cold and rainy today (I’m typing this on Tuesday), but it’s snug here in the house, if none too tidy.

That goes hand in hand with my busyness of the mind and overall sense of distraction.

I know, I know. I’m rambling. Haven’t slept much the last couple of days. My sleep/wake cycle seems to be influenced strongly by the moon, and there are a couple of days most months when I don’t actually sleep at night; just take a catnap or two during the course of the late morning/early evening hours. You’re catching me after the second night…and I’m more than a little bit tired.

But that doesn’t mean you’re not welcome. I’ve got a wide variety of teas, coffee, lemonade, and an assortment of snacks. Please, help yourself.

So, in addition to my marketing and revision classes, I’m also still refining my Accomplice’s labels, and now taking a more professional approach to the business side of my writing career. I’ve gotten very efficient at producing first drafts, adequate and gaining skills at plotting, and I’m making strides with revision – which means the only remaining obstacles to publication are production and marketing.

I like to start learning things before I specifically need them, so I’m making an internal shift toward those things. As time goes by, I expect to be putting more of my energy into them.

And that’s a bit of where my JuNoWriMo effort fits in. This year, instead of writing fiction for a third straight month, I’m drafting blog posts (including this one). When I’m in a place of creative intensity, I tend to get too absorbed in the project at hand to focus on writing new posts – or even reblogging older ones. Also, since I’ve been deeply engaged with fiction projects for the past two months, I’m in need of a bit of a breather – a changing of the gears, so to speak.

So I’m using my breather productively to create a blog pool. I’ll use some of the time to get back into the rhythm of my weekly blog schedule, which was abandoned somewhere along the middle of April, and really hasn’t been seen in anything more than the barest glimpses since.

But the rest will become my rough draft inventory, to be revised, polished, and packaged for later consumption.

For the first time, I will have a substantial stock of material ready to develop; once the month is finished, dedicating to a few hours a week of maintenance and replenishment should keep me in good shape. August brings another month without a major challenge, so I’ll use that for developing and finishing posts and ideas.

I think I’m onto something here, and it’s making me very happy.

Oh, I almost forgot!

This weekend is StoryFest – the “virtual recital” of the StoryADay May Challenge. If you’re a fan of short fiction, stop by the homepage anytime before Monday morning (EST), and enjoy a nibble, or a buffet, including my 1,100 word story, “Broken.” Writers write for readers to read! =D

There’s probably a lot more I could say, but I feel like I’ve been talking your ears off already, figuratively. Now I’d just like to sit here quietly and sip my drink while you tell me what’s been going on with you. If my eyes start to drift closed, feel free to just leave your cup on the table. I’ll get to it….later.

As you venture out on your way, I wish you a week that’s filled with all the joy you can imagine – and then a little more!

This post is part of the #weekendcoffeeshare, hosted by #nerdinthebrain. Clicking the link will take you to more conversations – and please leave a comment in the box below, because it’s not a very good conversation if I’m the only one talking. =)

Posted in A Round of Words in 80 Days, A Round of Words in 80 Days 2017, Challenges and Contests, JuNoWriMo, Life Writing, Marketing my Writing, Round Two 2017, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom

June Blooms: June 4, 2017

Hi there!

We’re four days into June, and I haven’t checked in for a week. I needed to relax and reset after I completed #StoryADay May and eased into #JuNoWriMo.  I’m past the halfway point of my Creative Chaos Marathon, and I’m a little fatigued.

Last year I pushed on – and burned out before July was over.

So, I’m shifting direction, and taking June largely away from fiction. I’m building a pool of blog posts (these words are part of that effort). I tend to stop blogging when I’m in the midst of an intensely creative period. Soon, I’ll have raw posts to polish, package, and publish when I’m too fictionally focused to write them.

It’s easier to work with my nature than against it. So this month’s goals will be simpler, in keeping with my need for a breather before the return to fictional intensity with CampNaNoWriMo.

I’m also taking a more businesslike approach to my writing career, and these goals reflect that transition.

Drafting:

  • JuNoWriMo: Write 50,000 words of raw material for blog posts. 5,085/50,000 words. On target. Primary goal.
  • Play with fiction writing as/if desired. I’ve been intensely focused on fiction for the last two months. My mind needs freedom to play or not. Writing might include my two WIP novels, short stories, and/or fanfiction. Secondary goal.

Plotting:

  • JuNoWriMo: Plot/outline blog posts as needed to complete the drafting goal above. I’ve done some sketching out of the first several posts. I expect to pick up steam as I settle into this new direction. Secondary goal.

Revising:

  • Holly Lisle’s How to Revise Your Novel: Complete Lesson 3 (in progress; check beginning point) using “On Any Tuesday Night” as my WIP. Skim Lessons 4 and 5; make decision regarding how much I can reasonably take on, and set an endpoint for this month’s progress. I’m leaning toward a time-based weekly goal rather than an endpoint based on lessons completed. Read Lesson 4; about half of Lesson 5, Primary goal.

  • Sea Changes (Kifo Island #1): Organize the manuscript – one of the cats dumped it a week or two ago – and move forward with the revisions as desired. Began organizing the manuscript. Secondary goal.

  • Look at the #StoryADay critique group; choose one of my last two SN stories and submit for peer review. Take action as indicated to polish the story; share for #StoryFest. In my ongoing quest to grok revision, I need to push the envelope a bit more. Asking relative strangers to review a story I wrote in under a day seems like a very good way to do that! I’ve joined the group; received an invitation to collaborate, and chosen my story. It needs a quick revision pass, then I’ll send it on its way. Stretch goal *

*Stretch goals are that “little bit extra”; things that might make me uncomfortable, but will facilitate further growth. They will be in the background, mostly, so they don’t scare me too much! =)

Submitting:

  • Miss Spider and Mister Fly”: Complete any details/authorize copy edits needed for publication. Currently waiting to hear back from the copy editor; should be soon. Primary goal.

  • Read guidelines and sketch rough ideas for the two projects I’d like to submit this summer/fall. One is a novella length story (I think); the other a short story based in the Adirondacks, which I only have the first teasing glimmers of. Secondary goal.

  • Explore Duotrope; compile list of 25 paying short story/novella markets. This is pretty self-explanatory. I just want a source pool I can research in a couple of months, when the CCM winds down. Stretch goal.

Social Media:

  • Blogging: Revise/polish/package relevant blogposts in order to return to a regular blogging schedule. Designate reblogged/repurposed posts or work ahead to cover July’s schedule. Began revisions of the first post or two (including this one). It’s still very early in the month, though. Primary goal.

  • Other Platforms: Resume posting to my Facebook Writer page, Instagram and Pinterest. Complete Patreon profile and launch. Patreon video: created relaxed script; polished, and Miah shot the video “on location” at Saratoga Battlefield. Will be editing/polishing during the next week or so. Secondary goal.

  • Continue in Twitter #writingcrew and #AllStarTrek sprints/chats regularly. Dabble in other social media (LinkedIn, Medium, Quora, Wattpad) if/as desired. It’s almost magical to be able to share my Trek passion with others who “get it”, since my family really doesn’t. Plus, I’ve been invited to role-play a crew position, which is an extra layer of playful Trekgeek fun). I’d like to find similar vibes in other places where my quirks will add value. Joined #writingcrew sprint Friday; #AllStarTrek Thursday. Stretch goal.

Business:

  • Assist my Accomplice with his labeling/branding/platform/marketing (if this is scary for me; it’s completely alien to him). I worked out one complication; moving forward. Secondary goal.
  • Complete Build Your Marketing Muscles class; simmer; draft an action plan to apply what I’ve learned, and experiment with early changes/additions to my currently nearly non-existent “marketing plan.” Worked through items I’ve missed during the end of May. Stretch goal.

Tending goals:

Note: Customarily, I’ve separated these into separate categories. This month, I’m trying more general categories, and being more mindful. None of these goals has a priority designation.

  • Hometending: Spend time at least 5x/week in mindful cleaning and/or yardtending; complete all homeschool paperwork and testing; deal with subscriptions and other business that tends to get pushed aside; support other indie writers as I’m able.

  • Selftending: Spend time with my beloveds, friends, and myself; get at least one hour of physical activity 5x/week, and five hours of strenuous activity weekly (including Baby Steps to 5K); meditate and journal 8x/week. June began on Thursday; so 3/5 days for activity (all walking/hiking), with about 1.75 hours strenuous. Meditation/journaling 3/8.

  • Lifetending: Continue developing professional goals and connections; reading and audiobook listening, and The Star Trek Chronology Project. Onward w/marketing, #writingcrew, #JuNo, and revisions.

Kait Nolan’s  ROW80 

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

ROW Along, or Cheer Us On!
We’re also on Facebook!

Dawn of a new month, and a new direction!
Posted in Challenges and Contests, Flash Fiction Pieces, Story a Day May Challenge, Writers' Resources, Writing in Freedom, Writing Samples

Lavender? #StoryADay May; Day Thirty-One

The Prompt:

  • Write A Story About A Writer.

  • This story is the thirty-first in a series of explorations for my upcoming novel, Still Nameless (Kifo Island #8) , which I will be drafting in July.

Today marks the final story in my expedition to learn more about my pending novel’s characters. So it seems fitting that we’ve come full circle, all the way back to what began this series – a postcard of a tropical beach, written in lavender ink, and carrying a shocking, presumably impossible message.

It’s time to meet the author of that postcard, and learn something of the reason for it…

But, before we do that, please let me take this moment to thank everyone who came by to read some or all of this story. Things got a little crazy between physical and fictional realities, and I haven’t been as prompt at responding to comments as I’d like to be.

I’m going to take a few days of (relative) rest, though, and, during that time, comments will be high on my agenda, because I really do love reading and responding to them.

And now, I present…

Lavender?

Ophelia tapped the edge of the postcard on the play table. She looked at the clay, the sinks, the tools, the paints. It was all bright and lovely , and she had it pretty much to herself – the young woman who ran the place was out on the attached beach with her husband and twins.

She hated being here. It was so much like home. But so poisoned, to her mind, by everything that had happened here, ten years ago.

She had to know.

There was no way that Lavender could be alive. She’d held her while she died, while Marilyn was off in the bathroom shooting up her last-ever dose of opioid poison. She’d always wondered which of them had died first, or if it had been at the same time.

She also wondered why that mattered to her. Dead was dead; the end.

Unless, somehow, Lavender was alive.

The bells at the door tinkled, and it opened. A girl who looked barely into her teens came in.

She was blonde, blue-eyed – and she was wearing lavender – a sundress that slipped gently over new curves. She had a wide sunhat with a lavender band, and she looked around the room, then, apparently noticing Ophelia, she came right up to her table.

“I see you got my postcard,” she said, softly, ducking her head. “I wasn’t sure you would come.”

“Why did you write this? Who are you?”

“It would be easier to show you. Can I sit down?”

Ophelia nodded. She hadn’t expected a child – or someone who looked almost like Marilyn brought back to life the way she’d looked in some of those old family portraits in that mausoleum of a house where she’d grown up. Maybe she should be on her guard – but this girl could be Lavender – if Lavender had been a quick developer…

“I brought you a little gift. Maybe that will help me explain.” The girl reached into the handbag slung over her shoulder – it was made of denim, and trimmed with embroidered lavender flowers. She pulled out a long box, gift wrapped in silver paper with lavender hearts, and tied with a satin bow, also lavender. It seemed a bit like overkill, until Ophelia remembered being this age, and how forcefully she’d identified with certain things.

She took the package the girl offered. “Thank you.” A pause, and the child ducked her head. “With all my heart. Please open it.”

Ophelia did as the girl asked. Inside was a bed of – what else? – lavender tissue paper. When she lifted it, she discovered a purple stethoscope.

“I don’t understand. I’m not a doctor or a nurse.” She didn’t add that she also didn’t see what any of this had to do with Lavender.

“But you had a baby niece. Ten years ago. She died.”

“How do you know this? And why did you write this postcard?”

“I – didn’t know how to meet you. And I wanted to.”

“Why?”

“It’s been ten years. I thought you might want to hear your niece’s heart beating.”

What does the girl mean by that?

Who is she?

How does she know about Lavender?

Any guesses?