Friday, June 30, 2017

Do You Have Goals? July 2017 Update

This awesome, encouraging hop was created by Misha!

Reporting on June
June Goals: 
1. Heal, renew, walk, and take tiny bike rides. - I walked, healed, and rested.

2. Continue to Market Hero Lost: Mysteries of Death and Life and other works. Some, yes, mainly through hootsuite.

3.  Watch my oldest graduate. Have a party! Celebrate! - Definitely did this!!!

4. Go to a Montana State University Registration and Orientation session with my oldest daughter. - Yes!

5. Watch both daughters race at the Ted Houk Regatta in Seattle. - Yes!

6. Clean up the yard and house. (as able) - Yes!

7. Go barefoot. Some.

8. Continue working on The Greenling Chronicles. -YES.

9. Keep reading Cling to God. - Yes!

10. Sort through job and teaching stuff. Prepare for next fall. - A tiny amount.

11. Practice Storytelling. - only once.

July Goals
1. Finish Eclipse: Greenling Chronicles Book 1.

2. Continue marketing efforts with hootsuite.

3. Make some social media changes. (Will report more fully next month.)

4. Keep house clean, more yardwork (as physically able). 

5. Scrapbook/photo project.

6. Encourage family and friends.

7. Practice Storytelling.

8. Write all ideas down for school prep in the fall, but no major work allowed on this. (15 per day, tops)

9. Get outside!

10. Walk, hike, bike, kayak? More exercise and fewer carbs.

11. Continue super short writing prompt posts.

12. Continued Bible Study and reading Cling to God.

How are you doing on your goals this month?

Writing Prompt: If the villain/antagonist of your story created a "honey do" list, what would be on it? Does your villain/antagonist have a significant other?

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Good News!

The results are in - I don't have breast cancer!!!

Woohoo!!! Praise God!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

#IWSG JUNE - "I Quit," Double Graduation, and Summer Schedule

A database resource site and support group for writers and authors. Featuring weekly guests and tips, a monthly blogfest gathering hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh and co-hosts: , a Facebook group, a book club, and thousands of links – all to benefit writers! #IWSG

OPTIONAL June 7th IWSG Day Question: Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?

I've said "I quit" more than once.
  • When a "friend" shared one of my short stories without my permission ... I quit sharing and I quit writing for a while. 
  • I quit when I couldn't seem to concentrate long enough to write more than 15 minutes at a time when my children were toddler and pre-school age (I truly appreciated If You Give a Mouse a Cookie and If You Give a Moose a Muffin - those books represent early motherhood to me - all the joy and all the messes.)
  • I quit for three months at a time when I waited for magazine editors to respond to some of my early short stories - "Dragonfold" and "The Crystal Sword."
  • I quit for a few weeks in 2015 after a particularly bad book fair - rain all day, books dropped in mud, when painful social anxiety had me huddled in a corner and I couldn't seem to shake it off and I was landed between an ultra religious group that chased people down with their flyers and a young man who self-published his book in found materials that he bound together himself. That particular day, I was told that I "really should write about dragons." That I "had obviously stolen" my author name (it's my real name). That I "shouldn't write Christian fantasy" (once from a fantasy reader and once from a Christian who abhors fantasy). I know I wasn't the only one having a bad day - the lady across from me cried on her husband's shoulder after someone said something rude about her poetry books. (I bought one a few hours later and it was good.) I'm not sure I'll ever attend that fair again since it seemed to be occupied by trolls - or maybe it was just a bad year.
  • I almost quit last year after I had invested time into a new novel project that died a slow, painful, plot-plodding death and I felt like all my marketing efforts were worthless.
  • This year I almost quit during the first waiting part between my first biopsy and the first results. (This week, I'm on my fourth biopsy of the year for a new health concern - it's getting to be a new normal.) Good News as of Thursday - I don't have breast cancer!!!
So, what made me come back?
  • I'm stubborn, hard-headed, and determined.
  • I like to play with words and now and then in my hardest moments, I find it ironic that I've had poetry published when it's my "go-to" for my off writing days, but that irony keeps driving me forward as much as the fun I have with poetry writing. (And I have gratitudefor a particular 10th grade writing teacher who told me to give poetry a chance - Thank you, Mrs. Bee Evans.)
  • I daydream stories all the time and I love writing them down.
  • I write because it helps me process my thoughts, my emotions, my faith, and all my crazy ideas.
  • I came back because I want my daughters to know that it's worthwhile to work hard at a dream, even if it isn't a financially successful dream (yet). 
  • I came back because I refuse to let fear to conquer me.
  • I came back because of the awesome encouragement I receive from family, friends, and IWSG.

BTW - "Dragonfold" found a home at Mindflights in 2009 and "The Crystal Sword" became my first self-published novel Champion in the Darkness in 2013.

Double Graduation?
Is it possible to graduate twice from high school?
Yes, it is - if a student is a home-schooler in Washington State and attends Running Start classes at a local community college.
My oldest went to her first graduation ceremony at Harbor Christian Homeschool Cooperative on Saturday, June 3rd. (She's in the center of the top pick in this photo collage):

Earlier that day, she walked in the Gig Harbor Maritime Parade and that night she went to Senior Prom hosted by the high school with friends:
Anna is in the black skirt.

The next day, she helped lead Youth Sunday Worship at our church - which included roles for every young person in worship, in the short film that we created "High School Parable," in a presentation of a Veggie Tales story, and in a beatifully choreographed dance about the Prodigal Son. The worship ended with an amazing gift of encouragement for all of the high school seniors in words, prayer, and gifts of Bibles which had been highlighted by members of our church with notes and prayers. Of course, the only photo I took comes from a goofing off moment of worship rehearsal before everything started:

It was a jam-packed weekend. 

In two weeks, she'll graduate from Tacoma Community College with a general associates degree and another high school diploma  (this one from an accredited insitution and not just "mom").

So ... I'm headed into my Summer Schedule early.
But, what does that mean this year?
IWSG - first Wed
Goals Hop - last Friday
Potentially a fair number of extremely short writing prompt posts with some off weeks/moments. I won't expect or hope for comments on these, but I plan to put them out there in the hopes that they will be "of service" to my fellow writers.

Hootsuite will have tweets, google+, and facebook author posts on auto-pilot most days.

Have you ever "quit" writing for a while? How do you celebrate the end of the school year? And, do you have a summer schedule?