Goal Update 4/4

Goal 1) Publish SKoS

  • My Goal: Spend at least 10 mins, 3 days/week minimum
  • Where I planned to be: Spent at least 30 mins
  • Where I am: Hopeful
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
So, in case someone missed it, I got the edit notes back from Matt the other day, and they were overwhelmingly positive. I’m still a little speechless about it.

There are a few things he’s right about and I’ll definitely need to fix, most likely with his suggestion. A few others that I’ll have to think about. A couple I’m not sure how to fix because his suggestion was good, but still wrong for the story, but I know they need fixing now.

As much as I’d like to do the fixes on paper, unfortunately due to the whole COVID-19 thing and our printer having been sent out to pasture a while back, I’ll have to deal with doing them on the computer. Or maybe I’ll come up with something. I’m still reeling.

Also, he said in his opinion, it’s pure urban fantasy. And I think I’m gonna go with that. So I wasn’t too terribly off-base with the genre, and I can continue working toward that goal with covers. Which I think are going well.

Goal 2) Revise SYCU

  • My Goal: 2 Lessons per month/ 1 Lesson every 2 weeks; 3 chapters/13 scenes per day
  • Where I planned to be: Lesson 5 finished
  • Where I am: Lesson 5 finished!
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
Lots to think about. But it’s going. That’s about it.

Oh, and uh…

GOAL 3) Survival

  • My clear target is: Write 50,000 words
  • My reachable deadline is: Dec 31, 2020
  • My working days are: Mon, Wed, Fri (i.e. my usual work days, so this will have to change when I go back to work. But for now…)
  • My method of measuring progress: Word count
  • My end goal: Finish a novel (preferably 50,000 words worth)
  • My daily goal, and number of available days: Write 500 words, 3 days a week. So 1500 words a week.
  • My leverage — WHY I need to do this: If I’m gonna be a paid author, this is just part of the gig. And I really want to be a paid author.

And since I already started on this…

  • My Goal: 500 WPD, 1500 WPW
  • Where I planned to be: 1500 words
  • Where I am: 1544 words
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
Ignore the title, it probably won’t be the final one. Two scenes in and I love this already. It’s a little clunky and I may have to hammer out some details, but I’m not gonna let it bother me.

First draft is always crap. First draft is allowed to be crap. Because I know now, thanks to Matt, that I can make it shine.

Goal Update 3/28

Well, I got laid off Wednesday due to COVID-19 causing loss of business. Bossman said he’d appreciate my return when he reopens the branch, so it’s only temporary, but. For how long, we don’t know. I’ve applied for unemployment in the meantime, hoping for some kind of income, even if it’s… meager. Gotta pay my phone and insurance bills and feed the cats, yanno.

School is restarting face-to-face classes next week via Google Meet. So we’ll see how that goes.

GOAL 1) PUBLISH SKOS

  • My Goal: Spend at least 10 mins, 3 days/week minimum
  • Where I planned to be: Spent at least 30 mins
  • Where I am: Contemplating
  • On Target or Behind: On Target?

How’s It Going:
I got some really great feedback this week on the forums. Not that the covers I posted were all that great, but some of the advice. I’m still not hitting the mark for genre, and it probably has something to do with the photos I’m using/my criteria for photos I’m using. Someone had the brilliant suggestion to just make random covers that have nothing to do with my novel for practice, to take my writer hat off, so to speak.

In other news, I finally got the okay to email my manuscript to Matt! He said he’d get back to me no later than next Friday. I can’t wait!

GOAL 2) REVISE SYCU

  • My Goal: 2 Lessons per month/ 1 Lesson every 2 weeks; 13 scenes per day
  • Where I planned to be: Lesson 5, through scene 38
  • Where I am: Lesson 5, through scene 40
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
Slogging through. Nothing amazing. Lots to fix.

More free time, new work?

So I have this story idea that started off about 10 years ago as an alternate universe fanfiction. I got the opportunity to talk about it with Holly at the beginning of 2018 and she pointed out that if I wanted to use the idea for a novel, I had to fix my world, because it was tragically broken. Which it was, absolutely.

Literally the night before I got laid off, I couldn’t get this old idea out of my head as I tried to go to sleep, and how I could rework it to fix the world. I tried to ignore it – I’ve got enough going on right now, right? And Holly always says the best ideas will come back to you when you need them – but a little after I got the phone call, it all came rushing back.

I’ve run the idea through the beginning stages of How to Write a Novel to develop the concept a bit more. I won’t be setting any goals just yet, other than I’ll probably start in on the writing by the end of next week.

And, of course, any goals I do make for this will need to be modified as the situation changes.

Goal Update 3/21

GOAL 1) PUBLISH SKOS

  • My Goal: Spend at least 10 mins, 3 days/week minimum
  • Where I planned to be: Spent at least 30 mins
  • Where I am: Screaming
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
Listen, I’m still screaming about being next in line for my content edit. Holly said she’d get back to me in at least a week, depending on how well Matt’s current edit is going. So hopefully sometime next week? I’m excited and nervous all at once but I just… idk. I know parts of it probably still suck, but I hope there’s also parts that are really good. And that the latter outweigh the former.

Man, I’ve worked on this thing for so long, and now it’s come down to this. It’s a weird rush.

In cover news, I made another four and posted them on the forums for critiques. Covers are hard. We’ll leave it at that.

GOAL 2) REVISE SYCU

  • My Goal: 2 Lessons per month/ 1 Lesson every 2 weeks
  • Where I planned to be: Lesson 4, roughly halfway, can’t really do this one by chapters
  • Where I am: Finished Lesson 4; Lesson 5, 12 scenes in
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
Lesson 4 was rough, but not as bad as SKoS. It was a little easier to separate everything out because I wrote… incredibly lean, somehow, even though out of the three novels I have now, this one has the highest word count. Most of my scenes are plot-centric. So that’s a thing. And I’m ahead of schedule now, yay!

So I didn’t mention it, but I came up with 75 scenes in this, so that will be how I measure progress for Lesson 5. This is the lesson I get to go through my conflict scene by scene.

And, uh. It’s not pretty. But that’s okay. It can be fixed.

The time has come for the content edit!

Ahhhhhh! I got the email today that there’s one person ahead of me in line, so my turn is coming soon. I’m so excited but also nervous. What if this thing is just… awful? What if it’s too broken to be saved?

And the best and worst part is, I know he’ll be brutally honest about it.

Goal Update 3/14

Due to the coronavirus bullshit, I’m now on extended spring break. Which I guess is good for my writing work, but I’m still upset. I like going to my Cisco class. And I still have to do my Linux work because it’s online anyway.

GOAL 1) PUBLISH SKOS

  • My Goal: Spend at least 10 mins, 3 days/week minimum
  • Where I planned to be: Spent at least 30 mins
  • Where I am: Confused
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
Surprisingly, my last round of covers went over really well on the forums. I’m not quite there, but I’m getting damn close, and that’s something.

Although, some of the conflicting critiques are… hmm. First my colors are too subdued, now they’re too bright. And I have all the elements in there that supposedly indicate urban fantasy, but these covers don’t “feel like UF”. And it seems like every font I’ve used is wrong, even the ones that are supposedly good for UF. Idk what you want from me.

GOAL 2) REVISE SYCU

  • My Goal: 2 Lessons per month/ 1 Lesson every 2 weeks; 3 chapters per day
  • Where I planned to be: Lesson 3, through chapter 16
  • Where I am: Lesson 3, through chapter 16
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
…heeeeeeey, macarena!

Goal Update 3/7

GOAL 1) PUBLISH SKOS

  • My Goal: Spend at least 10 mins, 3 days/week minimum
  • Where I planned to be: Spent at least 30 mins
  • Where I am: Spent at least 30 mins
  • On Target or Behind: Probably on target

How’s It Going:
Someone from the forums offered to beta read for me! I’ve seen him around on the forums, and he seems to know his stuff, so I’m excited. He liked the first chapter at least, which I posted on the forums with my request.

Finally finished up enough covers to throw on the forums again. At this point, I’m afraid of the response, so I haven’t even looked. On the bright side, I do think I’m getting better at this, at least.

Still hoping to hear back soon about my content edit from Matt. I got all excited when I saw an email from Holly, but it was the DM from the guy offering to beta. Which is still pretty good, but.

GOAL 2) REVISE SYCU

  • My Goal: 2 Lessons per month/ 1 Lesson every 2 weeks; 3 chapters per day
  • Where I planned to be: Lesson 3, through chapter 9
  • Where I am: Lesson 3, through chapter 9
  • On Target or Behind: On Target

How’s It Going:
So this is the lesson that points out to me that this story isn’t quite as good as it looked on first read. I have a lot of scenes that are missing an antagonist and/or conflict and/or a twist. Fortunately, some of them I already have ideas on how to fix this.

But I can tell that my main issue is gonna be consistency. Because I wrote this thing five kinds of out of order, and while I’m proud of past me for trying to organize stuff into something almost coherent, cleaning up all the loose ends is gonna be… well, an effort in literal cut and paste.

Fun stuff.