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text 2019-01-23 11:00
Facts About Me: 2019 Goals

I've said it for the last 2 years, but in 2019 I WILL do it! I'm determined to make sure it happens. I WILL get caught up on my Netgalley list, reading *at least* 150 books. I mean it, this time.

I also plan to publish less in 2019, only because it's necessary. I'll be releasing The Bright Side Brigade, A Royal Legacy: Part 1, and A Touch of Danger, for sure. Those books have already been accepted by publishers, and have set dates. I'm hoping to *possibly* slip in A Royal Legacy: Part 2, as well, before the end of 2019, but that will be up to whether I can get it finished in time, or not. If not, I'm hoping to at least finish my rewrites of Faithfully, a story I've been promising to update and publish for 2 years now, since it won a Watty award. I'd love to have that published in 2019, even if it means leaving A Royal Legacy: Part 2 for 2020.

 

~

 

Life Goals

 

I didn't include these, last year, only because I don't share much of my personal life. It's a bad habit I have that, as a writer, keeps me a little bit separate. But, this year, I want to make a few changes, starting with:

 

* Be kinder to myself - by this, I mean that I need to stop putting unrealistic expectations on myself, and stop fretting about the little things that I have no control over. I'm starting this before 2019, by choosing to cut back on how many books I'm publishing. Though I want to put more focus and effort into promoting them, that can be done easily throughout the course of a week/month. It's actually filling my schedule that is the problem. I can't say no to people, and I need to start doing that, by putting myself first.

 

* Give myself a break. This is something I'm not great at doing, but I've been forced into it a few times in 2018, and it did me a world of good. Though I was forced to take time off a lot, sometimes up to a month, due to bad health, I really think I can do better in 2019. Maybe if I took more time off by choice, I wouldn't be ill so often. So, my goal is to reward myself with 1 week off a month. Whether I binge read books that are *not* for review, binge watch the TV, or just spend time with the family for that week, as long as I'm not actually working, I'm sure I'll benefit from it.

 

* Reward myself. Every time I finish a story, I want to give myself the *reward* of some time off. This is a sort of sub-goal to the one above. Only, this time it will be a bit more equal to how much time I *need* to take off. So, if I spend a week or a month writing non-stop, then I'll give myself a week off from all work. If I've been writing for a few days, or I finish a short story, I'll give myself a whole day off to watch a movie or binge watch a TV show. I need to find more balance, if I'm going to stick to the long term goal.

 

* Try something new. Whether it's a new book genre, a new TV show, or a new hobby, I need to try to do more outside of my work. I literally write books for a living, and read books to review. I've left myself little time to do anything else, with my crazy schedule.

 

* Lose weight. This is something I've been trying to do for YEARS. It's not easy, considering that I'm classed as physically disabled, I have a medications that can make me put on weight, health conditions that can make me put on weight, and I'm disabled enough that I can't make my own meals. That makes it very hard to have a health lifestyle, but I try. This year, I want to break the brutal cycle of getting so sick that I lose weight, only to add on more once I'm better. In 2019, I promise to weight myself no more or less than once a month, to monitor progress and make adjustments as necessary. I'd like to lose a total of 10kg in the entire year of 2019, if possible.

 

~

 

Writing Goals

 

* I want to finish 5 books from my WIP list, whether that's stories that have been started or that haven't, it doesn't matter. I just want to have 5 books completed by the end of the year.

 

* I also want to get about 10 books edited for publication. Mostly, this will be the Surviving Vihaan series, as book 1 has been accepted by NineStar Press, and will be released in Summer 2019. I want to make sure the others are up to scratch before I submit them, later.

 

* It sounds a bit silly to say it, but - I want to finish the Surviving Vihaan series. Yes, Book 1 has been accepted by NSP, but I only have the final book in the series to write and I want it finished before book 1 is even released, if possible.

 

* If I can finish Book 6 of Surviving Vihaan: Through His Veins, then I'd love to get a head-start on the follow-up series, Rediscovering Vihaan. This series will take my previously published series; The Belesone Pack, and The Secrets of Avelina Chronicles; and reimagine them as part of the Surviving Vihaan world. This will take major rewrites and may end up resulting in entirely new novels. I may even scrap the old novels, who knows?

* I'd like to re-write at least 1 book from my "re-write" list. There are less than 10 on the list, but I want to have at least one completed by the end of 2019. For this, I'm not counting Faithfully, as I started rewriting that in 2018. This means it will either be: Surrender, Evanders Trilogy, Courage in the Kiss, or the Holiday Collection.

 

~

 

Reading Goals

 

* I want to read at least 10 Agatha Christie paperbacks. I have them all, so it's about time I actually sat down and read them in order. I'm thinking that I'll read 5 Miss Marple and 5 Hercule Poirot, to keep it even.

 

* I also want to read at least 150 Netgalley books, though I'd love to double that number. I have so many books approved on there, some of which I wasn't aware were series books, that I plan to read the entire series in order, even if I was only approved for book 3 or 9. I'm a series reader and I can't abide reading them out of order, even if it does mean doubling my TBR list.

* I plan to cut back on my Divine review list, only so that I can get more Netgalley books off my list. I'm getting better at saving my money for books I really want to read, so the ones that I don't have time to read (if it's going to compromise my "time off" goals) will be added to a buy list, instead. Because of that, I'll keep this list to 50.

 

* I'm never really bothered about how many books I get off my TBR list - despite how large it is - because I need to focus on my review/Netgalley books. However, inevitably, some of the series I'll be reading/reviewing will have books I don't *need* to review, so they'll be placed on my TBR list. Plus, it would be awesome to get some of my Kobo/Amazon purchases finally read. So, I'll keep this number to 50, though I smashed through that number last year.

 

~

 

Keep your fingers crossed for me!

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photo 2019-01-22 11:00
Preacher's Son, by Elaine White

#teasertuesday

Preacher's Son

http://smarturl.it/Strength.PreOrder

Part of the 'Strength' Anthology

#anthology #YA #Strength #indieauthor #preachersson #lgbt #authorsofig

 

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review 2019-01-21 22:12
On Writing . . . . and writing
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Stephen King

Disclaimer:  I purchased the Kindle Edition of this book in May 2016.  I do not know the author but follow him on Twitter.  I don't think we've had any direct exchanges.  I am an author of romance fiction and assorted non-fiction.

 

I read Stephen King's On Writing and enjoyed it . . .  mostly.

 

The first part is an autobiography/memoir.  King's childhood was far from ideal and often difficult, but it doesn't seem to have made him bitter. Twisted, maybe, but not bitter, and I say that as a sincere compliment.  He covers his life, through sometimes real poverty and almost always financial struggle, up until the sale of the paperback rights to Carrie for $400,000, which changed his life forever.  He also briefly touches on his battle with alcoholism and substance abuse.  I was surprised how much I enjoyed not only the story itself but his humor and almost unflappable optimism in the face of adversity.

 

The second part is about the writing.  This is the part I expected to be more interested in.

 

There's a part of me that wants to find a magic formula for writing success.  As much fun as writing is for me, as full as my head is of ideas waiting to e written, I also know it's hard work that requires patience and discipline.

 

King offers no magic, but he does offer affirmation.  Right now, that is almost as good as magi.

 

In addition to pointing out that yes, writing a novel requires discipline, King delivers some brutal honesty.  Many aspiring writers are not likely to take his bluntness without protest, but I think he's absolutely correct when he states, "Sorry, but there are lots of bad writers," and "it is impossible to make a competent writer out of a bad writer."

 

I've seen far too much supporting evidence.

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review 2019-01-21 18:39
Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day - Ray Cruz,Judith Viorst

Alexander And The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is a book about a boy that has a terrible day and can't wait for the day to end. Every student ( and teacher) can relate to this story because everyone has a bad day at some point. Students can write about a time they had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. This book is a level 3.7 on the accelerated reader leveling system.

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review 2019-01-21 18:35
The Giving Tree
The Giving Tree - Shel Silverstein

The Giving Tree is a story about a tree that loved a boy who would come to her everyday and eat her apples and swing from her branches. As the boy grew up, he wanted more from the tree and the tree kept giving. One activity to go with this book is that students could create their own giving tree and write about a time that someone helped them by giving and how it made them feel. This book is a level 530L on the lexile leveling sytem.

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