2017 Goals

Last year, I had planned on setting goals each month with a long term goal as the grand prize. I think I made it through four months of the process, but like most “resolution-ists”, it kind of fell to the wayside. This year, I have some ideas of what I would like to accomplish in 2017, but some aren’t fully fleshed out just yet. I’m thinking I might create a few monthly goals, but I also have some that I would like to set for the overall year as well.happy-new-year-2017-images

This month:

-Figure out how to lose weight. I’ll expand on this in another post.
-Write 10K words on my new project.
-Continue to Tweet daily and blog at least weekly.
-Have a date night.

Overall year:

-Travel. I have a wedding to attend in Colorado, so this should be easy, but I also want to go to Florida. We’ll see what we can manage.
-Take a vacation. This kind of goes with the above, but I also want to make sure that I take the time to enjoy a break from the norm.
-Graduate. My bachelor’s degree is so close. I will finish it this year!

We’ll see how it all pans out, and I promise I’ll keep you’ll posted. After the excruciating year 2016 turned out to be, I’m crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.

 

“Want to” and “Have to”

As an Independent Author, I have come to find a piece of very important information about how to maintain this status. Let me share! 

I am an Indie Author because I love to write; it is my greatest passion. When I write a story, I find myself lost in the world I am creating. One of the best parts about being an Independent Author is never having to worry about the stress of demands on your writing. Some people work well with deadlines, and I do not disagree that they are useful, but as a self published author, you can set your own pace without putting yourself under extreme distress. And if you happen to go over on your time limit, there is no one but yourself to answer to. 

As an author of two novels now, I find my greatest writing moments come out of no where. I start writing when the mood, or Muse, strikes, and I stop whenever the Muse has left. I like having a quota of how many words I should write in one sitting, and a round about deadline of when I would like the novel to be finished, but I never feel the pressure like I normally do at my full time job when a project has a fast turnaround time. In my mind, there is a huge difference between these two scenarios.

On one hand you have work, which its very definition is “1. the physical or mental effort or activity directed toward the production or accomplishment of something.”. You are doing something for an end result. Thus, making work a “have to”. A “have to” is a necessary action like cleaning, or laundry, and even, going to a full time job. These are not necessarily things you want to do, but in order to make it through life, they are what you “have to” do.

On the other hand you have a passion. Let’s define this as well: “6. the object of an intense desire, ardent affection, or enthusiasm; 7. an outburst expressing intense emotion”. Most writers are enthusiastic about their novels; we love what we do! We “want to” write because we desire the world we have formed in our heads and have grown a great amount of affection for the characters we have created which then comes out in an intense expression in the form of an outburst on paper! 

To sum it up, as an Indie Author, you are part of a group of talented writers who “want to” write. We all love creating these worlds and sharing them with our readers. But as an Independent Author, just remember, you are the creator. There is no one else you have to answer to, so it is just fine to go at your own pace, and if you have to take a break, there is nothing wrong with that. 

Taking a break keeps your “want to’s” as passions, and your  “have to’s” at work. Let your writing flow!

How to: Focus Your Characters

Every author knows the pain of the newest curse words to be added to the writers dictionary in the last century: writers block. It happens even to the best of us. I cannot count how many times I have started a new project and half way through realized I had come to a block. Instead of becoming frustrated, here’s what I do to overcome the block and write on!

I have found that whenever I have been unable to continue in my story, I have to take a step back and refocus my characters. As I write, my characters and their personalities develop, taking me on the journey with them as they make their way through the novel. What I as the author must do is gently direct them in the direction I hope to go. Sometimes this works, sometimes my characters get away from me. When they move too far from what I hope to accomplish, I find myself stuck.

As I take a moment to find where the rest of my story will go, I think of the possibilities. If my character has come to a crossroad, I rival with them, deciding which road will be the best taken for my novel to continue. If I am in the midst of an action or dialogue and I back myself into a corner, having used every option, I take a step back, reread what has lead up to the blockage, and search for some sort of symbolism that I might have forgotten to use to help me out.

If none of the above has worked and the magical little Muse of inspiration has decided to stay away, I try and find it elsewhere. Besides writing, I enjoy dancing, music, movies, or just being in the company of those I love. I take the time to enjoy one of the above, completely forgetting the stress of my block, and focus solely on the moment. Only when I have remembered again about my work in progress, the stress not resurfacing, do I reread what I have written and write on, relieving the block.

These are the tricks of the trade that I have found to be most helpful, and I hope they help you through that rough spot. Remember, it happens to us all, and you will get through it! Write on!