Plans and Goals 2018: Week 29 Review


Okay, first things first: I’m a lot less cranky than I was last week, and would like to thank anyone who read last week’s post for putting up with me. 🙂

Second things second: we are continuing to experience an uncharacteristic heat wave in Nova Scotia, with the humidity on this particular day currently at 82%. So what I’m basically saying is, don’t expect too much in the way of overwhelming productivity, especially if the task would involve a lot of movement.

Thirdly, my brain has been a little scattered lately, partially because of a stressful situation that I still find myself trapped in, but also because of the aforementioned heat wave, which feels like it’s frying those lovely squishy bits beneath my skull. I know that Nova Scotia is not nearly as hot right now as some other places in the world that are also experiencing heat waves, but remember that it’s all about perspective. What we’ve got right now is much hotter and more humid than anything I can ever remember experiencing personally, and whereas Nova Scotia weather is generally fairly bouncy (hot one day, cool the next), this wave has been going on for a few weeks now with only a day or two of (somewhat) respite. So yeah, I’m pretty much ready to become a nudist and start living underground where the heavy, moist air of the surface can’t get me.

Anyway, with that all out of the way, let’s jump into this:

Plan #1: Focus more on Writing.
I did try, I really did! My efforts just weren’t particularly fruitful, is all.

  • Goal #1: Write half a million words throughout the year. I’m not going to waste time mincing words on this one. I did poorly. I wrote 1916 blog words and 333 fiction words, for a weekly total of 2249. That brings the yearly total (slightly) up to 117159 and my daily average down a little further to 577. I really want to see that average go up, you guys. It’s driving me foolish, it really is.
  • Goal #2: Sell more books. I’m starting to genuinely hate having this goal on the list, because I really don’t know what else I can do to try to accomplish it. I’ve been sharing my books on the author social media accounts as often as I feel I can without just annoying people, I’ve been pimping them here and there at local stuff, and I’ve been encouraging people to rate and review, but none of that really seems to be helpful in the slightest. It all comes down to the fact that I’m not advertising, I feel, and this is something I simply can not do right now, unless someone wants to give me some free ad space somewhere.
  • Goal #3: Complete and publish The Other World: Book Two. Okay, here’s something I can be a bit less of a downer about. I actually did get some work done on this one in the past week, getting a few chapters edited and ready for the beta-reader copy. I got hung up a few times on possible plot holes and stuff like that, but in the end, I did get a fairly decent amount of work done, and it’s moving forward nicely. I expect to have the beta-reader copy ready pretty soon now.

Plan #2: Focus more on YouTube.
There was focus! Genuine focus! Well…at least for a couple of days. 😛

  • Goal #1: Film more often.  We filmed four videos! And we filmed them all in one night! I was so proud, seriously, you have no idea. We then edited those videos and got them uploaded over the following two days, so that we got a nice chunk of content up on the channel all at once. The unfortunate side of this is that we filmed those four videos all at once, at night, in the cool basement, on a day when the heat wasn’t too bad, and we were both STILL sweating all throughout the filming. In other words, I don’t know how much else we’re going to get done any time soon, because it seems basically impossible to sit in front of those lights during this heat wave and not look like a shiny, wet, disgusting blob.

    But four videos! Yay!

  • Goal #2: Put more focus into, and have more fun with, the social media aspect. I think I’ve been doing okay with this one, although I have to admit that I really haven’t been thinking about it all that much. Twitter has simply become a routine thing that I use throughout the day, and since we actually filmed some videos last week I had easy stuff to share on Instagram. The author accounts may have suffered a little in the past week because I was distracted by channel stuff, but that’s a balance that I’m probably going to struggle with for quite a while, so I’m not going to beat myself up too much.

#3: Focus more on myself.
I’ve been trying to put more focus onto this one lately because my mental state hasn’t really been the greatest for the past month or so.

  • Goal #1: Take time daily to read/watch/play. I’ve definitely been reading. I managed to finish The Lunar Chronicles: Winter last week and wrote a review on it, so that was excellent. I’ve also been playing dumb phone games with the kid, because screw it, they’re brain-dead and help me relax. Jason and I have also been re-watching Dragonball Z, which is a show that just makes me happy, so that’s been good. So basically I’ve got the “read/watch/play” thing pretty much covered.
  • Goal #2: Stay active, but don’t obsess. Reminder: heat wave. I haven’t been doing any kind of unnecessary movement at all. I definitely want to get back into my running, but I just can’t right now. I’m sweating to the point of dehydration just laying in bed at night, so there’s no way that I can go running and not risk passing the hell out. So, at least for now, this one is a wash.

Overall I don’t think it was the greatest week, but I’m not worrying too much about it. We got a good bit of channel work done, and I didn’t die of heat stroke yet, so I’m calling that a win. Also, as of the writing of this post I’ve already exceeded my word count from last week, so at least I’ll have that to report for next week. Little victories!

How was your week? Were you able to accomplish anything? Do anything fun? Make any progress toward your own goals? Feel free to share!

Plans and Goals 2018: Week 24 Review


Week 24 was EXHAUSTING.

I’m not throwing that out there right at the beginning so that I can use it as an excuse or anything; I’m just stating it as a fact. I spent a lot of time the past week getting my reading/writing/gaming room exactly the way I wanted it, selling off old furniture and other items to make room for the new layouts of both this room and my daughter’s bedroom, worked my ass off reading through my own book in order to complete a necessary side-project (more on that later), plus dealt with a bunch or random kid stuff (sports group, multiple birthday parties, etc.), and capped it all off by driving three hours yesterday (one-and-a-half out, another one-and-a-half back) so we could all spend the day at the local amusement park before it packs up and moves to the next town. So all in all, by the time I laid down my head down on my pillow last night I’m pretty sure I’d already been asleep for several hours. 😛

I just thought I’d share that, because sometimes I’m pretty sure people get the impression that I sit around doing nothing all day and then complain about not having time to write. ^_~

So anyway, with that out of the way, let’s move into the guts of the post.

Plan #1: Focus more on Writing.
I can honestly say that I did put significantly more focus on writing this past week, although not necessarily when it came to the actual writing. Let’s explain:

  • Goal #1: Write half a million words throughout the year. My word count for week 24 was pretty sad, but actually still better than week 23. I only wrote the one blog post, which accounted for 1895 words, and I wrote a further 961 words toward my fiction count. Together that makes a paltry total of 2856, but on the bright side that means my year’s total has finally hit a major milestone, as I’m now up past 100k! The total right now stands at 100,024, which is massively behind where it should be, but is still an excellent number to be able to look at. The second downside, however, is that my daily total has dropped to it’s lowest yet, at 595, so my new mini-goal will be to try to get that back up over the 600 mark.

    Now, normally I’d be extraordinarily disappointed in myself (as usual) for having such a poor word count for the week after I just last week listed some new websites I found to help me actually REACH my writing goals. However, there is a very, very good reason why the actual writing was low in week 24, and that will come up again shortly.

  • Goal #2: Sell more books. Hey you! Yeah, you! You reading this right now! Buy my books!

    That was a little rude, wasn’t it? Unfortunately I’m starting to feel like that kind of shouting into the void is all I’ve really got left in my self-promotion tool-bag. I’ve been putting as much spare time as I can manage into my author social media accounts in the hopes that this will eventually lead to some sales, but it’s a very slow-going kind of plan. Oh what I wouldn’t give for the spare cash to buy some actual visual promotion!

    All that lovely whining aside, I did get two book sales last week. Go me. Ha!

  • Goal #3: Complete and publish The Other World: Book Two. Okay, here we are. This is the reason why I got very little in the way of word count for week 24. I’VE BEEN WORKING ON BOOK TWO! Yes, you better believe it! I spent an entire evening early in the week going through Book One paragraph by paragraph and scribbling down every possible important piece of information in my little notebook, and then I really got to work on the beta-reader-copy edits. It’s taking a little longer than I was hoping because I had to completely rewrite most of a chapter in order to rectify a ridiculous plot hole, but progress is definitely being made, and I hope to be able to send the manuscript off to my beta readers very soon. FINALLY.

Plan #2: Focus more on YouTube.
With each success comes a modicum of failure.

  • Goal #1: Film more often. Nothing. We filmed absolutely nothing this past week. At least part of the reason can be attributed to the business I mentioned at the very beginning of this post (it’s difficult to film when you’re out at the circus for a full day or waiting for people to show up to your house to haul away furniture you’re selling), but a good part of it simply has to do with the fact that Jason and I have been having a hard time getting into it lately, for a number of reasons. The good news is that we’re still working on the channel in other ways, which I hope will eventually become evident once we’ve learned a lot. If that seems cryptic…it’s on purpose. 😛
  • Goal #2: Put more focus into, and have more fun with, the social media aspect. The social stuff continues to go fairly well. Although my attention is now split between two separate personas – the YouTuber and the Author – I think I’m doing a pretty decent job of keeping both moving forward steadily. I go a little quiet on days when I’m extra busy, but more or less I feel that I have a steady handle on things there.

#3: Focus more on myself.
The biggest stride I took toward personal focus in week 24 doesn’t relate to either of the goals for this section, but rather the work (and there was a lot of it!) that I put into getting my reading/writing/gaming room set up. I am in love with this room now. The futon my parents gave me is actually really comfortable, I’m surrounded by things I love – books, geeky plushies, my dragon collection, etc – and although I’m obviously not going to lock my husband and daughter out of the room, it’s still, for the most part, a space just for me. I’ve spent a good bit of time in there the past few days, and it just feels lovely having this place where I can go and curl up to read or get something written in moderate silence, or relax with an old game or two. It is a genuinely huge deal to my mental and emotional health, and I’m so happy that I took the initiative to get it done.

  • Goal #1: Take time daily to read/watch/play. The biggest thing to mention here is that I played a significant amount of Breath of the Wild this past week. That significant amount mostly involved wandering aimlessly across the enormous map and finding random stuff to gather, but oh man…what a beautiful game. And relaxing too! I feel like I could just wander and collect things forever and still be happy with it.
  • Goal #2: Stay active, but don’t obsess. I took a few days off last week for things like the circus day, but I also finally finished the ridiculous race missions on the Zombies Run app so that I could finally get back into the normal Season 2 missions. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to do the races so that I could get the secret story points, but who the hell thought it was a good idea to hide bits of story behind a 20 kilometer run?! Do you know how long it takes me to go 20 km? Long enough to develop shin splints and massive blisters, I’ll tell you that much. But at least I can say they’re out of the way!

Looking back over this post I tend to feel as though I didn’t really get that much done in week 24, but a lot of time and energy was put into my room, and the majority of my focus has been on editing Book Two, so I look at that as a win. These are important things, my friends! Important things that move me (at least a little bit) toward success!

How was your week? Were you able to accomplish anything? Do anything fun? Make any progress toward your own goals? Feel free to share!