3/23/16 – 3/29/16 | Writing Wednesdays

I had a very productive week. My numbers:

3/23/16 – 604
3/24/16 – 547
3/25/16 – 983
3/26/16 – 1,761
3/27/16 – 1,093
3/28/16 – 789
3/29/16 – 1,447
*Total for the week = 7,224

I’m very proud to have made my goal of 7,000 words for the week. There were a few nights that I really didn’t want to write (mainly due to being tired or exhausted), but I forced myself to sit down and just do it. And I was really productive on those particular nights.

I’m going to try and push myself to reach at least 1,000 words a day. And I am going to try to reach a goal of 10,000 words for this next week.

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Support System | Motivational Mondays

Today, instead of a quote, I wanted to discuss a topic: Having a Support System.

I think in anything that you do, whether it’s writing, playing a sport, playing an instrument, singing, painting, drawing, acting, etc, etc, etc, it’s important to have a support system.

This can range from all types of people that are in your life such as parents, siblings, cousins, other family members, friends, teachers, school mates, fellow athletes or club members, and the like.

It’s really important to have people who can help and support you  in making your dreams and goals come true. They can help lift you when you are down. They will be there to help motivate you when you are stuck. They are your cheerleaders. They are your mentors.

Do not listen to anyone who ever tells you that you can’t do something, can’t reach something, can’t obtain something.

This is definitely a topic that is “Do as I say, not as I do.”

I never had a support system (up until pretty much this past year). Sometime in elementary school, every year we would do a “All About Me” thing, and it was pretty much the same questions every year. In the “What do you want to be when you grow up” category, mine was always different every year because I never knew what I wanted to be. It was never anything specific (except for being a writer – in which I never shared). I never shared, because one year (I don’t remember which) when the teacher came by to help us, I told her I wanted to be a writer (I don’t remember if I used that term or said something else) but I remember the teacher basically laughed at me and said something I don’t entirely recall the exact words. So, when I filled in my sheet, I wrote something else.

I think this is where my low self-confidence and fear of sharing my dream of being a writer stems from. That one year. I’ve never shared my dream up until a few years back (at that time with a few friends online – because hey, I don’t know them IRL, and this blog – which I still don’t share any of my writing posts on any social media).

Through my schooling years (middle & high) I was always coming up with characters and ideas, but never finished stories and the such. And I truly believe the experience from that time all those years ago is what affected me. That it was stupid to have this dream of what I wanted to be. It’s funny how one little comment could have such a huge effect on someone.

Over the last 15 years of my working life, when I was at work I’d dream of writing (even taking moments to jot something down), but nothing ever accumulated into any worth. I was stuck in a schedule (granted for about 12 of those years, I worked 7 days a week). I was stuck in a rut. And just in the last month, I have gotten quite serious about it (About Damn Time, Right?!?!). And I am excited. And I am making progress. And that makes me even more excited.

And I do truly believe, since I have never really shared my dream of writing with anyone, I never had a support system. And really, it is no one’s fault but mine (I’m not here to just lay blame on that teacher). But, I was afraid to share. That it was stupid. The I would be made fun of for expressing it. And those feelings still float through my head present time. There’s that little voice in the back of my head that even though I don’t hear it, its presence always lingers.

So, if you are truly passionate about something, share it freely. Share it with everyone. Find a good core group of people that you trust to help push you, be there for you, support you, lift you up, cheer for you, motivate you. And if you don’t feel like you have any people like this in your life, look at forums and groups on the interwebs and social media for like-minded people.

Good Luck! Don’t Be Afraid! Stay True To Yourself! Rise Above! Keep Determined! Follow Your Dreams! Reach Your Goals!

 

Happy Easter & Updates on Life

To all who celebrate, Happy Easter!!! I hope you have/had a great day filled with family.

Last night, I hit 10,000 words on my WIP!!! Now, this may seem like a minuscule thing, but I am counting it as a milestone. I am doing it! My goal is to finish this WIP by the end of April. And i believe that I can fully accomplish it.

On my Writing Wednesdays blog, I reported that my weekly word goal (Wed-Tue) is 7,000-10,000. And now since I finally started the WW blogs, I am not only holding myself accountable on writing in my planner, but to all of you guys now too. And that really helps motivate me more.

The last few nights, I have been writing until 2-3am. And as I am writing, all I can think is this is what I want to do. I have always been a night owl. I feel most creative in the middle of the night. But with a full-time job, it isn’t possible.

Typical day: I get off at 5:30pm, 30 minute drive brings me to 6:00pm. Get home, eat dinner (and read a few pages of the current book I am reading), walk the pup. So now I’m at 6:45-7pm. Then I shower. From there, if there are any tv shows I watch, the tv goes on, or else I leave it off. Now it’s social media time. I typically start with Instagram (by the way, I HATE the update. I follow people for a reason. I don’t want to sign up for notifications. I get enough notifications in my life. I just want the pics on my timeline. That is why I follow them in the first place.). Then, if it’s a day I know a favorite youtube uploads, I will catch up on some Youtube videos. Then I check Facebook. And then I will check Twitter (but I’ve been slacking on Twitter. I used to check my timeline and go back as far in the day as it would on the app. But now I follow way too many people. So I don’t bother. And I’ve been slacking on the VFF one too. Need to get back to work on that.) So, at this point it’s already between 9-10pm. Then I get started on writing usually between 10-10:30pm. But a lot of times it isn’t until 11pm. On weekends, I only write until 12am (maybe slightly later if I am on a roll). Then it’s bed time.

My main dream and goal is to be able to write full-time. I’m not asking to be famous or be  a millionaire. Just to be able to make a living at it (minimum would be what I currently make – which isn’t a ton. We aren’t in the veterinary field to get rich, that’s for sure). Because then I could make my own hours. I could write in the middle of the night when I feel I am at my best. And maybe I could even have a life.

A certain part of my life for the past few months has been pretty awful for me. Very frustrating. Very emotionally draining. By Wednesdays, I am completely exhausted – physically, mentally, and emotionally. There is one certain person makes it very difficult. I am emotionally and mentally abused. I’m pretty much I’m told that I am not worth a damn (not in those exact words) and that I’m just a stupid little girl. It sucks. So, I try to make this my motivation. To push me. If I want an escape, I need to make my own escape. There are certain circumstance and issues currently at play, and I have surpassed my breaking point for some time now. And I want out now, even though I can’t be out just yet.

I’ve also been trying to read 1 book a week, and have been pretty successful. I will read a few pages at breakfast, a few pages at lunch, and a few pages at supper. If it’s a slow day at work, that is when I get most of my reading in. And if I am hooked, I try to read some at night (usually during a tv show that I wanted to watch, but now has passed by since I am caught up in a book, but that’s ok).

So, I do have a routine. And it seems to be working. I need to switch the focus to more writing. And I am still trying to work on the getting up early to get in more writing, but that hasn’t quite worked yet. I am waking a little bit earlier in the mornings than I used to though. So, there’s a little progress there.

But, I am trying. I am writing, finally serious about it too. And that’s all that matters.

If you have any words of wisdom, or any words of advice, please share them below with a comment.

Keep the Faith (Vince Flynn) & Stay in the Fight (Brad Thor) – ALWAYS!

The Catalain Book of Secrets | Thursday Reads

“The Catalain Book of Secrets” by Jessica Lourey

Jessie became one of my favorite authors since I discovered her Murder-by-Month series (which you can find on Amazon here) (she is under Jess for this series). CBS is a novel she started back in 2002, but it was then set aside, until 10 years later she rediscovered it, and finally finished it in 2012. It had been rejected by traditional publishers. Jessie decided to start a Kickstarter project for self-publishing it. I am proud to say I was her first donor! Well, the campaign was successful and on December 12, 2014 it was published. And take a look at this cover! It’s is one of my favorites. Top 3 for sure!

 (pic taken from Amazon.com)

Ok, so what is CBS about? Well, let me tell you! It’s a tale of a family of strong women, a family curse, and magic. If you are a fan of Practical Magic or The Craft, you will love this book.

The Catalain’s live in the little town of Faith Falls in Minnesota. The family home is the impressive Queen Anne mansion. Ursula Catalain is the current keeper of the Book of Secrets. Soon, the ghost of a man she murdered when she was 12 appears at her door in a new form.During this time, Ursula’s daughters Jasmine and Katrine are pulled back home. The Catalain women [Ursula, Xenia & Helena (her sisters), Velda (her mother), Jasmine, Katrine, and Tara (Jasmine’s daughter)] must band together to save Ursula and Jasmine from the dark family curse. Oh, and the town gets visited from snakes every few decades.

And while you in Faith Falls, be sure to stop by the bead shop, Stacy’s Beads, and visit with a friendly and familiar face 🙂

Jessie also wrote  companion novella called “Seven Daughters”. The blurb: Every one of Helena Catalain’s handmade candies carries magic, and that’s a problem for Meredith Gottfridsen. Awakening the 100-year-old feud between her family and the Catalains, Meredith forces peaceful Helena to fight to keep Seven Daughters, her famous candy store, and the beautiful Queen Anne mansion she calls home. When a massive ball of snakes overtakes the town, bringing with it knowledge and fear, Helena realizes the stakes are even higher than she imagined. Brimming with humor and heartbreak, hope and magic, this novella takes readers deeper into the world of the Catalains and Faith Falls, the snug Minnesota town that houses them.

Order “The Catalain Book of Secrets” on Amazon here
Order “Seven Daughters” Novella on Amazon here

Visit Jessie’s website here (P.S. I LOVE her website!!!)
Find her on Facebook here
Follow her on Twitter here

3/5/16 – 3/22/16 | Writings Wednesdays

So, for the first official WW, I am extending it from just one week to when I started tracking my progress.

Here we go…

3/5/16 – 292
3/6/16 – 693
3/7/16 – Didn’t write but entered a project into Word
3/8/16 – 121 + 269 = 390
*Total for the week = 1,375

3/9/16 – 213
3/10/16 – 658
3/11/16 – 467
3/12/16 – 0
3/13/16 – 69
3/14/16 – 209
3/15/16 – 483
*Total for the week = 2,099

3/16/16 – 1,003
3/17/16 – 883
3/18/16 – 0
3/19/16 – 480
3/20/16 – 1,541
3/21/16 – 398
3/22/16 – 218
*Total for the week = 4,523

So, I want to push myself with a goal to write 7,000 – 10,000 a week.

Introduction to Writing Wednesdays

Finally, my first Writing Wednesdays blog. This one will be a brief (or not so brief) introduction. I’ve been reluctant to start these blogs until I finally got serious about writing. And I have.

I loaded MS Office into my computer a few weeks back. I initially bought MS Office for Word a few years ago, but I ended up being hesitant to load it due to my computer always having freezing issues (it’s something it’s done since I first got it), but surprisingly I haven’t had any freezing issues as of late.

So I’m going to use the WW blogs to help hold me (and keep me) accountable (which was the whole point of me starting this blog).

My plan is to write every day. Even if it is only like 50 words. And if I miss a day, I’m not going to beat myself up about it, I’m not going to count it as a failure. Because life happens.

I’ll be tracking how many words I write a day and sharing them with you (Wednesdays – Tuesdays).

I’m currently working on more than one project, but am mainly focusing on one of them. For me, it’s nice to have a few other projects/ideas int he works, so whenever I get writer’s block or can’t decide what to write on the main work, I can work/brainstorm on another. That way I’m not just sitting there not being productive.

So, welcome aboard my journey of writing (and finally finishing a book – hopefully)!

Motivational Mondays #10

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain

You definitely can’t get ahead if you never get started.

The hardest part in anything that we do is always the getting started part. But once you can get yourself motivated to get started, you will take off.

Whether it’s the fear. Lack of motivation. Laziness. Afraid of the unknown. Etc. Etc. Etc. Say SCREW IT and just DO IT!

Let’s face it, starting things is scary. A new school. A new job. An interview. A new project. Getting started is always half the battle.

But, if you start something, you are already ahead. And each day you continue to work/do something, the farther you get. The more you can accomplish. And who knows what successes can be reached. The sky’s the limit. Unless you go into outer space or something 🙂

Don’t tip toe it. Dive (or jump) right in. Put both feet in right from the get go.

Nothing CAN hold you back. Nothing WILL hold you back. The future is YOURS and what YOU make of it!

 

The Fate of Mercy Alban | Thursday Reads

“The Fate of Mercy Alban” by Wendy Webb

Grace Alban, along with her daughter, returns to her childhood home, which she has avoided for 20 years, due to her mother’s death. Long-buried family secrets return to the surface including old love letters and a lost manuscript that could lead to solving the mystery that surrounds a decades-old scandalous party.

So this one doesn’t involve a haunted house, but it involves a house with secret passageways. What fun! I’ve always wanted to live in a house that had a secret room.

If you haven’t read Wendy Webb yet, you should definitely pick up one of her books. I love her writing style and I have fallen in love with the stories and characters in each of her books. And they have surprise twists at the end. Her books are quick reads too. I averaged 2-3 days for each.

Purchase “The Fate of Mercy Alban” on Amazon here

Visit Wendy’s website here
Follow Wendy on Twitter here
Like Wendy on Facebook here

Check out my Thursday Reads for “The Vanishing” here
Check out my Thursday Reads for “The Tale of Halcyon Crane” here

The Tale of Halcyon Crane | Thursday Reads

“The Tale of Halcyon Crane” by Wendy Webb

So after reading Wendy Webb’s “The Vanishing” I fell in love with her writing style and purchased her other books: “The Tale of Halcyon Crane” & “The Fate of Mercy Alban”.

In “The Tale of Halcyon Crane” Hallie (Halcyon) James receives a letter notifying that her supposedly deceased mother, Madlyn, just passed away. Then her father, who has been battling Alzheimer’s passes away. So, she heads to a remote island in the middle of the Great Lakes where she realizes her family’s dark secrets and the history of the strange community of the island.

I loved this. And once again, it includes a haunter house, on a creepy remote island, with some strange characters. What’s not to love about it???

Purchase “The Tale of Halcyon Crane” on Amazon here

Visit Wendy’s website here
Follow Wendy on Twitter here
Like Wendy on Facebook here

Check out my Thursday Reads for “The Vanishing” here

Motivational Mondays #9

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis

Age is nothing but a number. You are never too old to do something. Or to try something new. So don’t let age stand in your way of anything.

Setting new goals and dreaming new dreams keeps us young. Keeps us moving. Keeps us living.

And maybe, just maybe, if you have an existing dream/goal or a new one, maybe you were meant to have it when you are older. Maybe you weren’t ready for it yet, so the universe kept it from you until you were ready to achieve it or think it.

So much of our lives are based on the decisions that we get forced to make, leading our lives in one direction or the other. If you dwell on the past, don’t. If you regret a decision you made, don’t. You can’t go back, just forward. And those previous decisions that you made are the ones that shape your life today. How you act. How you think. The people that you have met. And based off of those, are what your dreams and goals are made of today.

Just like the saying “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” Yes you can. If the dog is willing. So for yourself, be willing, and be open.

Do what makes you happy. No matter your age. Just because you are a certain age doesn’t mean that you can’t re-invent yourself, choose a different career, etc, etc, etc. Successful people are those who make goals and accomplish them (or at least try to) over and over. Even if it takes years, don’t stop trying, don’t give up.

You only get one life.