It’s officially June, unofficially summertime, and nearly the midpoint of 2018. Unbelievable, right? While I’m trying to figure out where the hell May went, let’s take a look at all the great things we did this past month and set some new goals (or update some old ones) for the new month.
One of the things I’m trying to do more often this year is appreciate the non-writing parts of my life so I can reintroduce some balance into my world. In May, I visited out-of-state relatives, saw a fantastic opera at the Kennedy Center with my favorite (and coincidentally only) daughter, tried some new kinds of Scotch, and hopped a plane to Boston and then drove into the wilds of Massachusetts to meet up with other writers in person. (In fact, I’m writing this blog post on the plane ride home!) Although that last one was a writers’ retreat and therefore writing related, it also included talking about life stuff, making s’mores around a campfire, and dogs – Maya and Dustin, our unofficial retreat mascots.
For activities over the course of a month, that might not sound like much, but it’s a lot for my introverted soul, and I need a nap just thinking about it! But first, accountability. My progress against plan for May was mixed, but I’m still on track for 2018 overall goals, so as our mentor Jenny Crusie says, nothing but good times ahead.
1) Complete the next 20k words of my Women’s Fiction project. DONE and then some! I wrote 32,191 words of the story in May. Perhaps another reason I need a nap.
2) Complete the major threads of my Harrow’s Finest Give novella and novel 1 revisions. Partially done. What was I drinking when I came up with this goal??? I harvested the low-hanging fruit for revising each story, wrote some missing scenes, and I introduced a new and fun (at least to me) element to address a story issue in the novel. But the rest of the revisions are shifting to June, which isn’t a disaster because I told my editor she’d get a second pass at the stories in July. My take-away: set editing goals drunk, manage your editor’s expectations sober.
3) Find a new cover designer, discuss series branding, and get on the designer’s calendar. Mostly done. I’ve chosen the design company, learned their process, and have the paperwork to submit to start the process. I didn’t complete this one, but made enough progress that I should have covers to reveal later this summer. WOOT!
4) Update my website. Nope. I did update the template for GDPR compliance, but honestly, that’s because the template designer did all the work and pushed the update, so I only had to click a few buttons to complete it. The other updates, which will reflect bigger changes in my writing career, have to be completed in June or I’ll fall behind schedule. So stay tuned for my reveal of the website and the reasons behind it later this month.
1) Finish the first draft of the Women’s Fiction project. I have approximately 30k words to go, so if I can meet my goal of submitting 20 new pages to my writing coach each week, I’ll be typing ‘The End’ (which we all know is just beginning of the next phase of the writing process) by the last week of June or the first week of July.
2) Finish the romance novella and novel revisions. I have a hard deadline unless I want to email my editor and beg for more time (I do not want to do this). I hate to say it, but sometimes hard deadlines are necessary for me to motivate myself, so I have high hopes for accomplishing this one in June. Who says I’m not an optimist? (Other than my husband. And my daughter. And my friends.)
3) Update the website. Step 1, pull up big girl pants. Step 2, set aside an entire morning or afternoon to do it. Step 3, update the damn site!
4) Prep the partial I have of novel 2 of the HFF series for my coach to review in July. I made a conscious choice to walk away from novel 2 and let it marinate for more time while I completed the WF first draft. But in July, it will move to the front of the writing queue, so it will require a bit of TLC in June.
That’s all I’ve got on my work agenda for the month. If I manage my time a bit better, I really should have no trouble meeting all these goals. And it’s time to get my time management issues under control. After all, I’m entering the fourth month of being a full-time writer. You know you’ll find out how well it all went when I report back next month.
In the meantime, to quote another Crusie-ism, how’s by you? Did you reach any milestones in May? Is the summery June weather (if you’re in the Northern Hemisphere) inspiring your creativity, or enticing you to take some down time?