Writing & Goals: Weekly update

I’m in a funk.

Last Monday my supervisor retired leaving our IT department to fend for itself. Mind you, I can handle my job just fine, but there are things that come up now and then that I like getting his input on before acting. Last week was going fine, then one of those things came up on Friday.

I was 99% sure I knew how to handle the issue, but I needed that assurance, because the data I handle is critical in communicating with our business partners. So, I contacted one of my coworkers to discuss it and was on the phone with him for over two hours before coming to the same conclusion I’d already come to. Before last week, it would have been a couple sentences in an email, wait no more than an hour for a response, while, in the meantime, working on other things. I love productivity! But those two hours felt wasted and when it was over, I had no energy to do anything else. And I still don’t.

I wrote over the weekend, but not as much as I wanted and I’m not happy with what I wrote. This is not normal for me. Even when my writing is crap, I’m at least happy I wrote it.

I’m not sure what I’m going to do to get over this. Taking a break usually helps, but only when I don’t feel like writing. That’s not the case now. The desire and drive to write is there. So, not writing is only going to frustrate me more.

I think it’s time to write something else for awhile. Maybe a short. Maybe on one of my other WIPs. I don’t know yet.

Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever wanted to write, or do something else, but struggled to focus on it? What did you do get out of that funk?


General · writing

Writing & Goals: Weekly Update

Last week is hardly worthy of an update. There was just so much life stress this week, writing took a back seat.

We had a scare with our car. The engine light came on and when we had it checked out, the shop claimed we needed a $2000 repair. After a night of WTF are we going to do, we called another garage for a second opinion and they told us it wasn’t a necessary repair. The car will run another 100K miles and at worst, lose a couple MPG along the way. Hopefully they’re right and that will give us time to save up for a new car.

If you’ve been following along, you know my father in law fell and broke his back, among other things, about a month ago. How that happened, he was messing with his security cameras in his storage unit facility after a break in. Well, we went down to visit him this weekend and while we were there, there was another break in. So, all day Sunday, my husband and mother in law spent the day boarding up windows and chaining doors and dealing with the police.

Before all of this happened, I wrote about 800 words on book 2 of The Seven Stars Series. Nothing since. I’m hoping this week will calm down and I can get more done. I’m so ready to be done with this first draft! It’s never taken me more than about 6-7 weeks to complete a first draft and I think I’m going on 9 weeks. I know. I know. It’s not that bad, but I have NO patience.tumblr_inline_n9s7jbmirh1rxc9kj.gif

Anyway, how was your week? Did you get accomplish your goals?


Monthly Updates · writing

Writing: Monthly update for February

It’s the first of the month, or close enough lol Time for another writing update!


While I’m deep in the revising trenches preparing to publish, querying will be on hold.

Current WIPs:

From Stars, Come Dragons (The Seven Stars #1) – Round 2 with my content editor is done! If no other changes are needed, it’s off to line editing. So close to having a release date.

What revisions did I make?

Too much distance in my POV. I had a lot of “I think…” “I feel…” “I look…” Not so great in first person POV. It creates distance between the character and the reader. I read my MS out loud after making these changes, and WOW, it makes a difference.


Title coming soon (The Seven Stars #2) – If you’ve been following along, you’ll know that I had hit 20K words on this, then hit a giant plot hole that forced me to start over. I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to use anything I’d already written, but fortunately, changing the POV and tense of a couple of those chapters, I was able to.

I’m now over 10K words on this WIP again! Hoping I can power through the first draft this month.



Read two books in February, which means I’m still on track with my 2018 reading goal!

Below, I included my reviews of the two books I read in February. TBH, I wouldn’t say I review books as much as I give my initial thoughts after closing it. Anywho, here they are!

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Goodreads rating: 3 stars

RedQueen-HC-C.jpgThe middle of this book was 5 stars. It lost one for the slow, unclear beginning and the other for the multiple endings and unnecessary twists.

The big twist I was fine with, but the other twists, the ones that only seemed to exist so the author could avoid a trope or cliche, were frustrating and caused the ending to drag on in an unfocused mess. It felt like I read one complete book and three alternate endings that all led to the same result. I would say more but I’m doing this on my phone and it’s late and I’m sleepy lol

Here’s the thing though, I still enjoyed reading this. I looked forward to reading it every day, up until the last fifty pages. I’m going to try the second book and hope the twists are tamed. We’ll see! 


A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Goodreads rating: 5 stars (This was a reread and I upped my rating from 4 to 5)

This is my original review:

77493_originalAfter TOG I thought I’d never read another SJM book. I didn’t find many, if any redeeming qualities in it. But I thought, at the library the other day, what the hell. It didn’t cost me anything to be curious. Now I’m glad I picked it up. I’ve been struggling to read this year and this drew me out of my slump. It was entertaining as hell, if absolute trash. And I will read the rest, because she so thoroughly entertained me.

My thoughts after the reread:

This second time, it was even better. I still rolled my eyes a couple of times, but I got so much more out of the characters and plot knowing what was coming.


Beta Reading:

I read for CK Page last month and provided him with feedback on the third installment of his series Love, Death, & The After. Check out him and his books!


So, I’ve gotten pretty good at this! Making it part of my routine helped a lot. Thursday and Monday now blog days! I write my weekly update on Monday, then read, like and comment, and follow new blogs. On Thursday, I usually write a thoughts blog and visit the blogs I follow. It’s awesome! Here are a couple of the bloggers I’ve been keeping up with!

Ashley Rae @ Thrifty Bibliophile

Bree @ Perpetual Fangirl


Well… I think that does it. Some ups and downs, (let’s be honest, mostly ups) but all in all a great month!
How was your February?

General · writing

Writing & Goals: Weekly Update

The most important thing I accomplished last week was finishing my revisions of From Stars, Come Dragons and returning them to my editor!

I started writing on Book 2 again, but didn’t write as much as I should have. Just a little over 1K words. I suppose though, since I didn’t have a writing goal for last week,  I knocked it out of the park 😛

This week, I’m writing. I’m going back to my 8K word goal.

My struggle is rewriting a scene I’d already written, because the original is from the wrong POV now. As soon as I get through that, I’ll be well on my way 🙂

What are your goals this week?

General · writing

It’s complicated…

What’s your biggest inspiration that led you to writing?

So, Kenneth Howard, a dear friend, asked this question on my Ask Me Anything page and I answered.

The things is, it’s more complicated. It’s 100% true, but there are more layers.

Here’s my original answer to Kenneth’s question:
Biggest, is definitely my husband. When I came to him and told him I wanted to try writing again, but I was scared of the time and energy it would take. Scared of losing myself in yet another time consuming endeavor, he cheered me on. He reminded me that we’re in this together and whenever I get discouraged, he’s there to pick me up and keep me going. I wouldn’t and couldn’t do this without him ❤

Again? You mean you wrote before and stopped? What happened?

220px-RadiolandposterWhen I was kid, I wrote all the time. Mostly on yellow legal pads and mostly about balloons for some reason. Once, pretty sure I was in grade school, but it might have been in junior high, I wrote a murder mystery about a live radio show, where the actors were being killed off during the broadcast. Now, to be honest, I’m pretty sure I just ripped off Radioland Murders (1994). But if you were to ask my memory and not my common sense, my memory would tell you, I wrote my story before the movie came out and they ripped me off, because I swear I remember being inspired by Phantom of the Opera and my story wasn’t a comedy. But I’ll never know, because I have a terrible memory, and that notebook is long gone. Not that there would have been a date on it. Still wish I had it.

Anyway… Why did I stop writing? The short answer, school. I’ve always been a slow reader and when I was in grade school, it mattered. I can’t remember the program, but it used breeds of birds to split the class up into groups by how well you could read. I never could get out of the bottom group, because no matter how much I tried, I couldn’t read fast AND retain what I read. Because of this, my 8 year old brain thought I wasn’t good enough and I gave up on reading and not long after, writing.

Of course, I read and wrote when I had to, for school, but it never helped. I was constantly met with a chorus of “not good enough.” One high school teacher, who I respected and confided in, that I wanted to write stories, told me my grammar and spelling wasn’t good enough and I needed to fix it if I ever wanted to make it as a writer. Whether she liked my stories or not, regardless of my technical issues, I don’t know. She only ever focused on the negative.

The desire never left me, but the voices of all the naysayers never left me either. And I thought that would always be the way. Until a pretty big, near life-ending event, showed me I can’t let what other people think about me keep me from doing what I love. And I can’t do it alone.

This is why I stopped writing, and reading, and this is why I have my incredible husband to thank for inspiring me to write. He supports me.

That’s deep. You got a lighter answer?

Sort of… As cliche as it seems, my desire to write was revitalized with a dream. But not so cliche, was that it wasn’t my dream, it was my husband’s.

One morning, in November of 2015, he woke up and told me about a crazy dream he had. I won’t go into detail just because I might still use it someday. When he finished, I told him I thought it would make a great book and he said, “write it!” Well, this wasn’t the first time we’d had this exchange. Over our, then, twelve years of marriage, I’d thought of and told him an idea would make a great book/movie, he’d say “write it!” and that was it. Or I’d develop the idea, tell him all about it and that’s where it died.

This time, in 2015, was no different. Except, I got mad about it dying. It was a cool idea and it was going to just sit in a notebook and no one was going to see it. For the first time, instead of accepting that this was how it was always going to be, I took action.

Research, self-reflection, more research. Round and round I went, until I figured it out. For me, once I tell a story, it’s told and I have no desire to tell it again.

This is where my wonderful husband comes back in. We had just been through a lot in the way of learning how to better communicate. Imagine my dismay when I realized the only way for me to write, successfully, was to not communicate my thoughts and ideas with him.

imagesBut I had nothing to worry about, because when I told him how much writing meant to me, he understood and I moved forward with my writing. And I wrote and wrote and wrote. And I will continue to write until I run out of ideas. All thanks to the support of my #1 fan. My Tebbiebear

General · writing

Writing & Goals: Weekly update

What a week! But not because I got much done.

If you’ve been watching my Twitter feed and read last weeks update, you’ll know that I hit a huge plot hole on my WIP (the sequel to From Stars, Come Dragons.)

Well, it was so bad, this last week I threw out everything.

I’m starting over.

This decision was not an easy one, but it was the right one. Even though I’m still coming to terms with the loss.

Fortunately, I had a few good distractions to keep me from feeling to down about it.

  1. My father-in-law is doing better. He’s able to stand and sit with his back brace and his pain is manageable.
  2. My dad is getting ready to start radiation and is excited to put cancer behind him.
  3. I beta read for another author, which I love to do.
    1. His name is CK Page and you can check him out on his website and Amazon. BUY, RATE, REVIEW! #supportIndieAuthors
  4. My editor sent me her feedback for round 2 of From Stars, Come Dragons.

Which brings me to my goals for the week!

This week is all about revisions. I’m already almost done reading through and cleaning up some distance in my MC’s POV. A lot of “I feel… I think…” Stuff like that. Next up, I’ll read it on my Kindle, trying my best to put my writer aside and only read, to check the flow.

As soon as that’s done and sent back to my editor, it’s time to jump back in to book 2. 🙂



General · writing

Writing and Goals: Weekly Update

WELP! This is fantastic…
So, I’ve been going in circles with this MS, book 2 of The Seven Stars Series, and I think I finally figured out why.
There was a GIANT plot hole. Like, EPIC. The question, vaguely, was “How does this character know this thing?” And I couldn’t answer the question without breaking everything.
I think, THINK, knock on freaking wood, I finally worked through it.
The problem now? I have to scrap the last 8K words and find a new path to the ending. Or possibly a new ending entirely.
The upside? It didn’t break book 1. From Stars, Come Dragons lives to fight another day!


Always working toward that word count goal, but a lot of those words, this week, are going into outlining.

Still waiting on editor feedback for FSCD. Nothing to report there.

I started beta reading another author’s manuscript. I’m a little over 30% done.

Father-in-law is still in the hospital, recovering. Things are looking up.

Time to get back to work! Have a great week!

General · writing

Writing & Goals: A tough update

Well, this is going to be a tough update.

I made some good strides with my writing goal. Ended up with 6K words out of the 8K I was shooting for. Untitled book 2 of The Seven Stars series is now over 18K words total.

I’m still waiting on feedback from my editor on my recent revisions to From Stars, Come Dragons.

It’s a good thing I made some progress last week though, because things are going to be tough for awhile.

This weekend, my father-in-law had a terrible accident, which resulted in him breaking his back and nearly freezing to death. We’re still waiting to hear if he’ll need surgery and are still unsure the full extent of his injuries.

Needless to say, our lives are going to be unpredictable for awhile. This may make goals harder to achieve, but, for my own health, I need to keep moving forward while helping my husband and his parents through this.

I’ve already received many messages from people wishing him the best and we are grateful. Thank you all for your kind support and positive thoughts.

Monthly Updates · writing

Writing: Monthly Update for January

It’s the first of the month! Time for another writing update!


While I’m deep in the revising trenches preparing to publish, querying will be on hold.

Current WIPs:

From Stars, Come Dragons (The Seven Stars #1) – Had a great month with this. I received feedback from my content editor. Not as bad as I expected. I spent two weeks revising and handed my revisions in. This guy is is now back with my content editor and I’m waiting on my next round of feedback!

What revisions did I make?

There were some clarity issues. People in one place suddenly appearing across the room with no indication they had moved. It was a bit disorienting.

No structural changes. But I did add and change some minor world building things to allow for the development of other characters and the direction the series is going.

General clean up! It had been many months since I touched this manuscript. My writing has improved a lot in those months. There were several passages that were clunky. Descriptions that were too shallow or on the nose. Not that I went purple with my prose or anything. That’s not how I write. It just needed beefed up a bit to bring you into the scene better.

Title coming soon (The Seven Stars #2) – The beginning of January, when FSCD landed on my editor’s desk, I dove into book two of this series! I’m having a great time with it. I love where it’s going! As of this morning I’ve already written 16,752 words. It’s coming right along. My goal is to finish the rough draft by the end of February. Though, revising FSCD could push that back. Publishing comes first!



Read two books in January, which means I’m on track with my 2018 reading goal!

Below, I included my reviews of the two books I read in January. TBH, I wouldn’t say I review books as much as I give my initial thoughts after closing it. Anywho, here they are!

An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson51kirZzj7BL._SX328_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

Goodreads rating: 4 stars

I’m not really sure what to say. A beautiful story told even more beautifully. Yet… I was left feeling off balance. Not bad, necessarily, just… Off. A lot happened in this book for it being a little less than 300 pages and yet, I didn’t feel like anything important was missing. Then came the end and the epilogue, and I just felt like there was so much more could have been told between them.

I suppose my only complaint is the one I should have… I wanted more.

The Beast is an Animal by Peternelle van Arsdale


Goodreads rating: 4 stars (I really wish they’d implement at least half stars)

4.9 really, but can’t quite bring myself to round up. This was such a fantastic journey. It was so deliciously dark. I even teared up at one point. The poor children! Truly, I loved this book. Until the last chapter. Not that I didn’t like it at that point. I was just so far on the edge of my seat throughout, I thought for sure the end would push me off. But I just felt like… is that it?

I still highly recommend it! It’s a journey worth going on. The fairytale telling. The characters. OMG the Defaiders! The use of religion… Deep breaths… I don’t know if the author was inspired by it or not, and this story is not this, but the tone, many times, reminded me of the movie The Village. I’d say if you like that movie, you’ll like this book. Just don’t expect the M. Night twist 😉

Ok that’s it. Really liked this book. Probably read it again sometime.

Beta Reading:

Unfortunately, I didn’t have time for beta reading in January. I have volunteered to read for one of my beta readers. Should see that soon and read it in February.


This week I set a new goal to read more blogs! To keep myself honest, I’m also tweeting about the blogs I read. I’m doing pretty well with it so far. Here are the links to the tweets about the blogs I read this week.

S.E. Isaac

Lindsay Newton


Well… I think that does it. Some ups and downs, (let’s be honest, mostly ups) but all in all a great month!
How was your January?

General · writing

Writing and Goals: An even minier update?

Well, I thought things would get back to normal after my son got over Influenza A, but nothing is ever that easy, is it?

Poor kid had one good day last week, then came down with the stomach flu. 😦

Fortunately, he’s come out on the other side a little tired, but functional. Ready for life to be normal again. And so am I!

It was not at all a normal week for anyone in our house, and sickness wasn’t the only reason, but I digress. And because of the abnormalities, I didn’t get any new writing done for the second week in a row.


I did get my revision of FROM STARS, COME DRAGONS done and turned into my content editor last night. ON SCHEDULE!

Now that I’m waiting for new feedback, I can start writing again. Our lives are still a bit uprooted and we’re trying to find new footing, but I’m shooting for the moon with my goal this week to try to get myself back on track!

My word count goal this week (always available in the What’s the buzz? widget in the sidebar) is 8K words.

Image result for wish me luck gif

And writing isn’t the only goal I have this week. I would also like to read more. And not just books. I’d really like to read more blogs. I follow so many now and I haven’t had the time to read any. And, to be honest, reading them kind of intimidates me. I can’t tell you why. I know it’s weird, but it’s true.

So, this week, I’m going to set another goal. I’m going to try to read one blog post everyday. And when I finish reading one, I’ll tweet about it! Keep me honest 😉

What are your goals this week?