Goals and Criticism

As I was finishing up a few items for the book release giveaways of my latest novel Alyeska, I started to scroll through my previous two novels, See You Soon and The Shoreline, reviews. As a writer, I believe each novel I complete brings me to the next level in my writing like I become a better novelist as each project progresses. Going through some of these older reviews on my past projects only confirms my mindset.

I’m proud of the ratings each of my novels have including my first, See You Soon. This novella was my first go around with the world of indie authors, and I am extremely happy with its performance. Some reviews were outstanding while a few rare comments would appear negative. I refuse to consider them as such because every review is a learning moment. If a reader doesn’t like a certain aspects of the book then it is my job as the author to understand what need was not met by my work on behalf of the reader. Writing at times can be a selfish act, but without an audience, we are only talking to ourselves. That starts to look a little scary to outsiders watching the dialogue between you and you, so it’s best to have someone who wants to listen to you.

As I read through the comments, I realize how much I have grown in three short years since my first novel release. Some of the constructive feedback helped me to become the writer I am today because in those comments that some might take to heart and allow to hurt their spirit, I found enlightenment and a challenge that I gladly accepted. 

So to any and all that find criticism hurtful, my advice is this: look that person/avatar/computer personality in the eye and say, “Watch this.” Push yourself for better, strive to exceed their expectations, but always be sure that you are happy to do it. Always be hungry for more to not only outshine a seemingly below average standard, but to prove to yourself that you can be better.

Disclaimer: you won’t ever make everyone happy which is clear in any reviews you read on anything, but if you find a way to push yourself to meet the goals you set, then the only happy person that matters is you.

I’m going to try to remember this as well as we head into the new year, and I create my resolutions. Hmm. I have to get that list done soon. What goals can I set this year?

New Year, New Resolutions

I’m not one to follow the fad of creating resolutions only to break them three to four months down the road. I have very strong will-power exhibited by my strict diet before I was pregnant, my strict diabetic diet while I was pregnant, and now my more lax, but still stringent breastfeeding diet. One of my biggest pet peeves in life is for someone, including myself, to say they are going to do something, but then do not follow through. It irks me to no end, and I eventually lose trust in the person. If it is me that is not completing what I set out to do then I become my own WORST critic. (Yes, I mean WORST!)

So this year, I plan on doing things a little differently. Instead of setting goals for the entire year, I will be setting goals each month with a long term goal as the grand prize, but not the must meet point. Thus, alleviating myself the stress of not following through if I do not meet the ultimate goal.

January’s goals:

-Write 10,000 words on my work-in-progress novel (that should complete it, but we will see where the characters take me!)
-Blog weekly =)
-At least one date with Hubby
-10 minutes of me time a day (in which I will probably blog or write)
-Wean my daughter (already started, but I would like to finish this item this month)
       and if I complete the above:
-Lose 8lbs. (I know, it’s on everyone’s list, but I’m serious!)

I’ll start with these, celebrate the items I complete (which I really need to learn to do), and see where I end up next month. Celebrating the things I do complete rather than focusing on the things I don’t will be an area I know I will struggle, but by creating these mini goals, I am hoping that I can learn what it means to win battles rather than focusing on the war. Seeing the big picture is one thing; obsessing over it for a year is madness.

Here’s to hoping 2016 will be better than 2015. Cheers!

Bringing in the New Year!

Happy New Year, fellow seekers! I hope you celebrated well, and still feel a bit of its high today! (That’s how you know you did it right!)

As most people do on New Year’s, I have resolved to set a resolution. I say resolved because I normally choose not to participate in the fad due to their very nature in becoming empty promises, and I try to always keep my word. After all, your word is all most people have! But, I digress. 

I have a couple of items on the resolution list, so let me share:

1. (The usual) Become a more healthier me! 

I have neglected this aspect the entire holiday season, and am sad to say it is catching up with me. I am not setting some drastic weight drop number or going on some diet trend; I’m just encouraging myself to get back into shape! Maybe I’ll start dancing again! 

This kind of goes in hand with the next one since I want to be in a bathing suit for most of it!

2. Travel! 

Hubby and I have been married for about seven months now and have yet to take our honeymoon! We want to go to Cancun, Mexico as our designated trip, but I also have a few other places that I want to go hopefully soon. I told my husband that before we have kids I want to go on a cruise, go to Vegas, and to Cancun! (Fiji is in there also, but that’ll be after many years of saving! Have you seen the flight fare?)

3. Write like crazy and give back to my readers! 

During the holiday season, I become extremely distracted! I feel like I haven’t had a great scene session in a while, so I am going to write until I hit the block, find my muse, and then write even more! I have been on the publishing schedule of one book a year which I find to be a good pace for me, but I would love to finish my current novel early this year and begin my next even sooner. I’m thinking this will help my focus when holidays come around again this year to have something closer to completion. 

And to give back to my readers, I have decided to make The Shoreline FREE! Free, she said? That’s right! Lindsay Chamberlin here with another great offer! 🙂 Again I digress.

My latest novel, The Shoreline, will be free for some time because I want to share this experience with as many people as possible! Please, enjoy!

Happy Holidays!

I enjoy the holidays like I know most people do, but every year I am reminded of its stress. I used to work in customer service as many teens usually start in their working career, so I have worked during practically every holiday including Thanksgiving day, Christmas day, and New Years day.

Leading up to those days when I was on shift, people were always so rude and wound up. If they so much as stubbed their toe by their own mishap they would snap on the closest person to them which usually was the workers like me, and it would always be my fault. Customer is always right, after all!

But then the actual holiday would arrive, and suddenly, everyone is your best friend, wishing you a Happy Holiday, and apologizing for you having to work during it. Crazy!

Now that I am older and work for a more office like company, I receive holiday pay for these days and am able to spend them at home, but I promise it is no vacation!

It’s Christmas Eve, and I’ve vacuumed, mopped, picked up, setup, and laundered all day yesterday and all morning today to prepare for tomorrow (continuation of “Life of a Housewife” duties). The past few days have been a test of holiday endurance, traveling north and back in a weekend, celebrating two Christmas’s so far and a couple of birthday’s, all while finishing wrapping and shopping for the little items I couldn’t order online! (I was finished shopping for all the big things on my list by November 30th!)

Two more days are left with a total of 3 more Christmas celebrations within, so hopefully by Thursday I can finally relax again.

Don’t get me wrong, I know the real meaning of Christmas and am reminded of it every time I give a gift and watch the receiver open it. Holidays are times of giving and togetherness, so I am not complaining about spending the time with family and enjoying the moment as they open their gifts from my husband and I, but so often, I have to remind myself during the down times like traveling and struggling with wrapping paper that the end product is always worth the stress.

I think that is the reason why people were always so rude during the days leading up to the actual holiday; they had to keep reminding themselves of the end product. I propose that we create ways for people to be reminded of the end product, the cheer that we all experience during the actual holiday moments to be carried through the entire season!

So here’s my reminder to you in hopes it will brighten your in between times: The Shoreline eBook will be $0.99 into January! Have a wonderful Holiday!