The New Year is fast approaching and with it come new deadlines and projects for me to work through.
Something that I released over the holidays under the radar was a writing planner. I made this mostly for myself but it is available on Amazon for purchase.
Thought I'd give a sneak peek here of one of the pages.
Overcoming my own fear has been one of the biggest hurtles I find myself facing in my life. I'm sure I'm not alone in this. A few weeks ago, I had been come again consumed by this fear. I had been in denial all summer about my plans for the fall and how I would manage this new job while keeping up with my writing. Then as September approached I was wondering if I should back away. I was certain I was in over my head. I was so close to quitting it was ridiculous. I'm glad I didn't.
Two weeks in and...its okay. *insert this is fine gif here :P *
But really everything is manageable for now and I'm glad I didn't quit because this was something I had been considering doing for a long time.
Fear has stopped me in the past in my professional and personal life. It's insane to think of the opportunities I have missed out on because I was too afraid. I haven't always let it stop me and that's a good thing or I would never have even tried to write a book. It is so cliche but don't let fear stand in your way.
On that note however, I think my publishing schedule will slow down a bit. I have two more books coming out and two audiobooks being made but that will be it for this year. Next year I have only 4 books planned as I will be focusing on my new project - also in an effort to not avoid burning out too quickly.
Personally, I have always found redemption arcs compelling but never gave them much thought. In a recent discussion with a friend an interesting point was brought up; what is redeemable?
In recent shows, largely geared to the YA crowd I've seen a lot of redemption arcs where the character in question is not only redeemed but rewarded in the end. The crimes they had committed seemed to have been forgotten. Crimes which include murder, acts of violence/abuse, and many more. Should someone who had murdered several people including family members of the main protagonist, gain their redemption? Often times they basically get to walk away having won the protagonist's heart over. Their hands wiped clean of all their bad deeds with an apology. It doesn't seem right. Nor, does it seem realistic even in a fantasy world.
I simply can't get it out of my head that terrible acts such as, brutal murders are simply brushed under the rug. It is interesting to see a bad guy turn good but depending on what they did or the circumstances surrounding their actions I don't agree that they should get that fairy tale happy ending. Of course, that's just my personal opinion.
In the end, media featuring these redemption arcs from TV shows to movies to books are works of fiction written for enjoyment. But I'd love to hear what you think...
What is redeemable?
Weeks 4 - 6: 20,000 out of 30,000
Unfortunately, I did not quite meet my goals one week however, I had very good reasons. We have overhauled the website (as you may have noticed) and I worked on a few other professional projects.
On a personal level, I have fallen in love with Emma (2020) the most recent adaptation of Jane Austen's novel. I highly recommend everyone check it out. It's witty, funny and true to the original novel.
First Week Challenge: 11,000 out of 10,000 words
All it took was aggravating my carpal tunnel but I did it! In fact I surpassed my goals. It's incredibly gratifying to accomplish what I set out to do. At the same time I'm fully aware that part of my ability to reach my goal is because I had realistic expectations. I know that I could have been trying to hit 20,000 but I know I would burn out really quick if I tried to do that long term. Short term for a week long sprint sure I could push myself but any longer than that and I would become exhausted.
The burn out would lead to failure which would lead me to feeling awful about myself. So I'm learning to set these expectations of myself within reason. I definitely had to turn down a movie night in order to hit my goal. Sacrifices were made but it was all in good fun.
What are some of your goals and how are you doing with them? Let me know :)
Writing Challenge Week One: 4,000 out of 10,000
The day is not over and I started my week out strong. I currently have 4,000 words under my belt. I have hopes I will hit my goal of 10,00 by the weekend. This week I am doing a lot of business planning and making plans for the future. It brought up a lot of points and improvements I want to make in my writing career.
There are some things like taking classes to improve my Photoshop skills that I just have to commit to. These things will never get done if I just don't start. I also have started a project that though I am passionate about, I am not confident in. This is making me constantly want to stop and return to the familiar. Instead of looking at this as pushing my boundaries I like to see it as expanding them. I don't want to be stuck doing the same thing over and over again. So onward and upwards!
Do you find it hard to try something new? If so, how did you overcome this?
I believe this picture represents the interesting internal struggle I had negotiating with myself these last few weeks. It's felt like an impossible journey to a destination I couldn't really see but I was positive bright blue skies waited for me once I "made it".
Besides deciding to plow ahead with my new book, and promising to stay on top of my blog posts, I switched jobs. Should it have been a surprise that my life would become chaotic? No. Did I think I would be able to handle it? Totally. Was I on the verge of a panic attack a week later? Yes.
I wish I could say I found a way to handle the changes overnight through yoga but it was not as simple as that. It took some cold hard negotiation with what I saw as my ideal self over a four week period. I started out small with simply making it my priority to get to bed on time. This proved to be a monumental first step and took me about five days to achieve (stress was making it hard for me to fall asleep). Then slowly I began to work my way up from that.
I have since met my ideal self halfway where I dedicate at least an hour every day for writing, stay on top of housework and find time to bake. I've had to come to terms with the fact that my new job does not give me the free time I once enjoyed.
I've had to relearn that I cannot do it all. This is where negotiation comes in to help determine what you will spend the precious hours of the day on. Negotiating with yourself is difficult because you are so tempted to just do what you want and not what you need to do. Worst of all is that you know exactly what buttons to push with yourself. So as cliche as it is to say you can become your own worst enemy.
I have managed to go from feeling overwhelmed and stressed to feeling like myself again. It's funny how seemingly simple things (like a new job) can throw your world upside down.
However, I should note these last few weeks have not been a solely negative experience. I've learned that cooking is how I unwind, that spending time with friends is more therapeutic than a massage and most shockingly of all, that I can skip out on TV and still survive. I've traded free time for a more fulfilling job and my lifestyle has had to adjust accordingly. More importantly, I gave myself the time to get used to these changes (note: slow and steady wins the race).
To those out there who are also struggling with similar problems please know there is always hope. It will take some hard work and internal struggle but you can find a solution - it just takes a bit of negotiation.
I was waiting to see this movie for nearly a year and I am happy to report that it did not disappoint.
I truly enjoyed the wit, the characters and the plot. I only wish that the movie was longer as it only has a run time of just 1.5 hrs. Even my husband who usually falls asleep during period dramas managed to stay awake and the movie even got a few laughs out of him. This is glowing praise.
I'm happy to add this movie to my small collection of movies and shows that I re-watch over and over again. Currently, I have the White Queen, Pride and Prejudice BBC mini series and a few others. I don't usually buy copies of movies or books anymore. Subscription services like Netflix and Scribd have eliminated the need for it but for those few favorites I am happy to splurge so I can have them on hand whenever the mood strikes me (which seems to be often enough to justify the purchases).
So if you love period dramas make sure to check this one out!
It’s hard to even write this.
Today was one of those days where I piled on so much work and expectations for myself that I was practically asking for trouble. First, a pipe burst and the water had to be shut off for a few hours then my internet crashed. I realized I was behind schedule on a project and to top it off I was reminded of a dentist appointment the next day. My over-dramatic self was sure the world was crumbling down and I was feeling anxious about every little thing.
As I was deciding between screaming and climbing into bed for a nap, I started laughing.
Then I went into the kitchen got out some flour, sugar and eggs, etc. and began baking a cake.
By the time this was done I had to run to the closest store for a bathroom break and proceeded to buy myself an ice cream. I know I tend to be a negative person but today I just dropped my expectations and took on the day, letting the negativity roll off my shoulders with a shrug.
In the evening, we tempted friends over with cake and ended up playing board games (the water was also back on!). A day that had started out causing me so much anxiety ended in laughter.
Lesson Learned: Roll with the punches.
I've always written in third person but as I set out to begin my new book I had the overwhelming desire to write it in first person. Through my research I got to know the main character so well that I felt myself imagining what she might have been thinking and why she behaved in certain ways. Writing in third person just felt wrong.
So after debating with myself for a few days I decided to take on this challenge. My goal is to build the world around my character while also providing a very personal view point. As I said I generally prefer third person but I know that first person novels can be just as powerful and engaging.
Perhaps, this will be a flop but I’m happy to try something new and trust my instincts.
In other news, I was craving Indian food today and was so happy when I found out my local restaurant delivered that I nearly cried.
C'est la vie.