Sunday, June 30, 2013

A Roller Coaster Week Of Emotions

Sorry if I've been a little incommunicado this week. It's been the week from HELL. I only wish I were kidding. My emotions have been run through the wringer this week, and it's been several highs and several lows. I've cried more this week than I have in a long time, and I'm just ready to throw in the towel.

For starters, last week there were constant rumors that my company was going to do layoffs, and if you weren't in one of the meetings they scheduled, you were out.

I wasn't in a meeting last Tuesday.

The next day, people tried their best to clear the air, but not one of the members of upper management ever said that the rumors were untrue. I'm still pretty wary about going back tomorrow.

Oh, yeah. That's right. Tomorrow. Thinking this week would be amazing, I opted to move my regular day off, Monday, to Friday, so I could get a five-day weekend for Independence Day. I'm mentally spent just thinking about going to work tomorrow, especially with rumors going about. It's like living in season one of The Office, only without the comic stylings of Mr. Jim Halpert.

Source
But, let's not get ahead of ourselves. While I'm not crazy about my job, I don't want to be laid off. Mostly, the Chick Lit Goddesses on Facebook talked me through it (you girls are amazeballs!), and I was looking to see what else is out there. I hate job hunting so much, it exhausts me just thinking about it.

Well, the rest of the week was pretty uneventful until yesterday. I don't talk about her that much on here, because I don't see her much anymore, but my high school best friend and I used to be so close. Almost sisters, or so I'd thought. When we get together, things are like they were back then. Relaxing and just fun.

I've been unable to get in contact with her for months. Probably since November. I've never been good at making friends, because I'm a pretty introverted person, but she and I somehow hit it off at Theater Day Camp back in 1998. Yesterday, my mom and I decided to go see Monsters University (Super cute, by the way), but while we waited in line for tickets, we saw her. She was chatting with another girl, and I called her over (I'm shameless when I want to talk to someone), but she looked right at us, half-heartedly waved and then walked out. It was like a knife to the heart. She's my oldest friend, and frankly, I think I deserve some kind of explanation. It hurt me so much, I could barely enjoy the movie (which was, ironically, about friendship).

I've always felt like I was the one that tried hardest on out friendship. Whenever we got together in the past, I guess the blinders finally came off, but she was the one who wanted to know if I was available, like all of her other friends were busy.

That really put a damper on my weekend. It made me really homesick for my friend, Lauren, who I feel really is my soulmate of a best friend, and we had a tentative Skype date scheduled. She always makes me feel better.
Santa Fe, 2010 on the Best Road Trip Ever!!!

In Omaha at a Bible Study Dance, 2011



























Which brings us to the next blow to this week: My phone died. Like, it's a rubbery, purple paper weight now. I don't know what happened, but yesterday, it wouldn't turn on, and the charging light wouldn't come on, either. I've done every reset I could find on the internet, but she's dead. Not Mostly Dead, but ALL dead.
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Yeah. Miracle Max wouldn't have been able to bring my phone back like he did Westley/The Dread Pirate Roberts (Please tell me you get these references!). So, I'd more or less decided on getting the Motorola Droid Razr M, until I actually saw it at Best Buy. It's about the same size as my Rhyme, and I really wanted a bigger screen, so instead, I opted for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus, which was also free. Get up to the counter, start my upgrade and...bill is past due, and none of us could afford the payment right. *Sad Trombone*

Source
Meet my old phone, the LG enV Touch. After having a smartphone for a year and a half, going back to a feature phone is WEIRD! I should only have to wait for a couple days, but it still kind of sucks. You get so used to a responsive touchscreen and autocorrect that not having them is throwing me off. A LOT.

I'm nervous about what the rest of the week will bring, but I did have some good things! I promise!

For one, I finished How I made $42,000 in 1 Month Selling My Kindle eBooks by Cheryl Kaye Tardif and it was so informative and so motivating. I've joined the websites she recommended for marketing and social networking, and while I haven't seen extra sales yet, I hope to soon. I especially hope to finish my second book and have it published soon. I've asked my editors to PLEASE get back to me as soon as possible, and I even described the cover to my designer friend, Lindsay Shoemaker. Things are falling into place, and then I can do a lot more for marketing, which was outlined in the book (and yes, I will follow it word-for-word if I have an opportunity to make $42k in a month!). I hope to get a review up later this week because it was that good of a book.

So, seriously, more lows than highs, but I really hope that this week is much better. I'm bracing myself, though, because I just feel like something is coming that I don't want to face.

That being said, since it'll be my one year publish-aversary of Sugar and Spies, I've dropped the sale of my book to $1.99 on all eBook avenues. Check them out!

Kindle
Nook
Kobo
Sony eReader


Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sunday Musings

Hi! Welcome back! It's been almost two weeks since my last post! Yikes! Did not mean to let it go so long, but truthfully, I have been going through some stuff, and needed to step away. Haven't had a lot of time to blog, and I wasn't sure what I wanted to blog.

You might have noticed some changes around here. I've had the blog over a year, and decided to change up the look a little bit. Give Jane Austen a little something summery. My garden's gotten so huge, I thought I could jazz dedicate the new backdrop to how great it looks!
I have FIVE Cabbage plants. I keep looking for the Cabbage Patch Kids

The first Eggplant flower. There are about four more flowers now!

I accidentally let a sweet potato grow vines, so now they're buried in the yard.

Yellow tomatoes! I hope they do well! I want them to do well so badly!
My love of kale might really be tested with how much of it I'm getting this cool, wet summer.

Zucchini Blossoms!

Strawberry flowers! I might get strawberries yet this summer!
I was looking back at the early pictures of my garden, and the amount that it's grown is absolutely amazing. My lackluster gardening efforts the last two years weren't for nothing. And we have a perfect backyard for planting. My plants are getting adequate sun, and with the soaker hose, it's easier to water them.

I've also been attempting to compost this year. Bought a $5 bin at Target, drilled some holes, dump my compostable items in it and give it a flip every few days. I'm thinking of getting two more bins as this one gets full, to have a three bin system that some people swear by.

Gardening has been an amazing stress reliever the last few weeks. Sometimes, when you butt heads with someone, there's nothing better than getting your hands into the dirt while belting a Sutton Foster song. 



I think my plants like the showtunes. I know I do. ;-)

So, not too exciting around here, lately, but hopefully I'll be able to use the zucchini blossoms for This Recipe. I'm looking forward to having fresh veggies. I've enjoyed the lettuce and kale so far, but I'm looking forward to everything that's in my garden.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Make it Happen Monday: The Before 30 Bucket List

Gina over at The Fitnessista posted an intriguing post today. She's a fitness instructor, Air Force wife and mother who has some awesome recipes that I need to make more of. I've been following her for a little over a year now (like many other bloggers. I should set up a list), and she's got some great workouts that I highly recommend.

Anyway, today, she posted a "Before 30" Bucket list (See the link above to go directly to that post), and she questioned her readers on what their Bucket lists might be. I thought I'd follow suit and list my own. I'm only 27, but what better time to put together a bucket list?



1. Run a half marathon. I'm slowly getting into running (really slowly. My shins were hurting when I went out today), and I have a dream to run the Disney Princess Half Marathon with my college girlfriends, and one friend from high school. The plan is for me to dress up as Meg from Hercules, who isn't an "official" Disney Princess (though according to Greek Mythology she was the daughter of a king, whereas even after marriage, Mulan wasn't. Just Sayin'), but she just has the best lines and song in the Disney Universe!



2. This one, I'd actually like to do by the end of this year, but my ultimate goal is to be able to quit my day job and focus completely on freelance writing, blogging and fiction writing. This has been my dream since I was nine years old, and for my entire life, it's been the only thing that's really remained constant in my vision of the future, and it's one of the only things that makes me happy and excited (singing is the other thing). The story I'm working on right now is making me more passionate than anything else I've ever done, work-wise. I've got a couple other books that I've got outlines for, and I'd love to up my blog readership Facebook Fans and Twitter followers to at least a thousand by then. That'd be awesome! *hint hint*

3. Get a dog. I miss my dog, Charmin, so much. When they say that a dog is "man's" best friend, Charm really was mine. She was born to my sister's dog, Rosie, in 1996 and died in 2010 from gastric torsion. I was completely devastated (just ask my friend, Lauren) and had a really hard time getting over it. Animals just find a place in your heart and never really leave. But, I think I'd like to get a new dog. I keep working on my mom, even telling her the tragic story of Isabella, the homeless, three-legged dog from Bosnia who is now in Foster Care in Omaha. Based on her bio on Petfinder.com, she could be the German Shepherd version of Charm's mom, Rosie. Great attitude!

4. Write a Cook Book. I've contributed to a couple cook books in the past, but I have several friends who keep telling me to put together a cook book. I think it'd be fun and interesting, though I know it would be hard work. I'd want to invest in a good camera, rather than trying to take pictures with my phone, and I'd also have to put together enough to make a book, rather than a pamphlet. I have a few that have been my own, but a lot of the recipes on this blog have been from other people.

5. Buy a house. Or Build my dream house. The other night, I was walking around Menards with my sister (She's the HR Director there), looking at paint chips and lightswitch and socket plates. She's painting her room this month, and we got to talking about building our own homes with our own personal touches. I've touched on this in the past, how I want chickens, a movie theater in the basement, etc etc. Still rings true. I really want a place to call my own. As it stands now, I'm thinking about ripping up the nasty carpet in my bedrom (it's 19 years old this year!) and laying a cherry flooring. I'd probably paint my closet doors to match, maybe even the baseboards, and also paint my walls a gray-blue or something like that. Right now, my bedroom's pink, and it's getting a little old. I wanted tons of color in my room when I moved home, because I wanted some place that was completely different from where I'd been living (a tiny bedroom on the hellmouth with a demon even the Scoobies would be terrified to fight). I wanted some place to make me happy, and now I'm wanting some place that relaxes me. Bring on the hard wood floors!

6. This one kind of goes hand-in-hand with the owning my own home, thing, but I would really like to have a garden large enough to not really need to go to the grocery store. I'd love to be able to live off the (literal) fruits of my labor. My garden is huge this year, and I think I might be getting the hang of it. I also found some Pink Lemonade Blueberries that I want to grow at Menards this week. I think it's a bit late to start growing berries, but they smelled so good! Maybe next year? Or in my new home?

7. My best friend, Lauren, and I have talked about going into business together. Probably a film business, or something like that I'd really love to make a movie with the help of our filmmaker friends from college. A complete Stephens College production (well, probably not ALL the actors, but some Stephens actors). It'd be amazing to get that film made by the time I turn 30 (I'm a bit older than the rest of them, so they have time. This is by MY 30th birthday!).
We're princesses. Deal with it. :-)
I think seven is a good number. It's Biblical. I think I can manage 7 in the next two and a half years. Now I have goals written down, with an end date of September 21, 2015. Let's see what happens. 

Friday, June 7, 2013

Fun Facts Friday

Hello, again! How is everyone's Friday going? I've had a pretty decent week, but I'm so glad it's Friday, and almost time for my three day weekend. I took yesterday off blogging to work on some freelance stuff, but I have to say, I'm pretty proud of how many words I've gotten written this week. More on that later. For now, check out Fun Facts Friday!


  1. My garden is getting HUGE! I'm so proud of it, even though the only things I've harvested are leafy greens (good thing I love leafy greens). We had inside-out cheese burgers for dinner last night, and added butter lettuce on top of them. I'm also going to be harvesting massive amounts of kale for kale chips this weekend. Last time I made them, they weren't great, but I've found other recipes to try, so we'll see.
    Taken at Night with Flash

  2. Last week, I was taking daily walks at work. I wasn't wearing my tennis shoes, but my extremely worn, favorite pair of flats. Halfway through my walk, the bottoms of the flats detached from most of the top of the shoes. You can imagine my heartbreak (I'm a shoe FANATIC!), but all was well last Saturday when I went shopping for shoes with my mom and sis. I found these gorgeous pairs. My favorite are the coral with the bows. I had a pair in an aubergine (eggplant) color, and I wore them until they got holes in the bottom (sound familiar?). I'm pretty psyched to have another pair. I might have to go back and get them in Navy. They're just so darn comfortable! Payless!
    So flipping adorable! So in love!
  3. I've been bitten by the writing BUG this week. I haven't been able to stop writing. I've had to force myself to actually put it down and do something that, ya know, actually pays me. But with this book that I've started working on this week, I feel like I have a lot more passion for it. It's a stand-alone novel, and I got the idea by watching the scene from the last episode of Dawson's Creek, where Joey and Pacey see each other after a couple years. I love that relationship so much, and watching Fringe made me nostalgic for it. If I could handle seasons 2-the finale, I'd probably go back and watch them all. But, oh. This story. I actually like it better than Sugar and Spies. Which is saying a LOT, considering I've been obsessed with that series for a long time (I swear! I'll get the second on out soon!).
  4. I managed to convince my sister, cousin, and future cousin-in-law to do the Glow Run 5K with me in August. I think I got them when I said we can wear neon tutus and glow jewelry. And there's a glow-in-the-dark medal. Did I meantion there's a glow-in-the-dark medal? Haha.
    Source
  5. I've been having a really good week at work, which is surprising, considering the trials I've had there in the past. But I gotta say, when one area of your life goes right (or two. See Fact 3), something else goes spectacularly wrong. I'm not going to go into details, but I do think God is trying to teach me something about humility, teamwork, and showing up with the heart of a servant. It's a lot harder than it sounds. My mom calls it growing pains, and I have a lot of people praying. All will work out in the end. 
  6. Did you hear Esther Williams died? The Million-Dollar-Mermaid? She was a big star back in the 40's and 50's, and swam in almost every one of her movies. She was a popular pin-up for GI's during WWII, and just seemed like a beautifully nice lady. I'm a horrible swimmer, but she made me want to be a water dancer. She was 91.
    Source
Thus ends another segment of Fun Facts Friday. Kind of fun! And if you want to check out my Freelance Article, you can see it Here: Buffy: The Ultimate Superhero and 5 Lessons I learned from the Greatest Show Ever.
Source

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

WIP Wednesday!

The Work-in-Progress (WIP) is something all artists are familiar with. You always know that something will be finished eventually, and where you want it to go, but it's not quite there yet.

I have several works-in-process right now. The Truth and the Spy that I posted yesterday, plus two outlines that I finished last week. I've recently started turning one of those outlines into a real book. I'm still thinking about a title, but it's about a couple who were really in love, who parted ways with broken hearts, only to find each other again ten years later. I'm a romantic at heart. I love people who get together in the end. The last episode of Dawson's Creek made me so happy (not even a huge fan of the show, but I was so glad Joey chose Pacey!), Luke and Lorelai getting back together at the end of Gilmore Girls also made me happy, just not to the extent of Joey/Pacey (I blame the whole last season of GG and its show runners).

Anyway, my two lead characters, Xander and Charlotte (Charlie) were high school sweethearts. He was poor and she was rich (tale as old as time, right?), but that wasn't the reason they broke up. The reason is a secret only Xander knows, and it changes their lives forever. When they come back together for a friend's wedding, secrets bubble up, and it could either bring them back together, or destroy them even more.

I'm so glad that this outline is complete because if it wasn't, I don't know that I would know where to take it. I finished chapter one today, and began working on chapter two. I love that I can work on my book anywhere from my phone. I have an HTC Rhyme (though I'm thinking of upgrading soon), but when I first got it, I was stunned when I got the Google Drive app, and I could write on my phone. I wrote most of my first book on my phone, and a lot of my second book on my phone. Since I can't get to my Google account at my day job, I use my phone when I'm on my break. If I get over half of this book written on my phone, I'll think that's hilarious.

Yesterday, I shared the first chapter of the second Spy Sisters book. I won't be sharing anything else today, story-wise, but I'll be glad when this work-in-progress is a finished product. Since the outline has been finished, the actual writing is going to easy.

If you want to be a writer, and have a story idea, I can't stress enough how important an outline is. I'm getting more done faster with my story because of it.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Share Tuesday: The Truth and the Spy

Hey! What'd you think of Make It Happen Monday? I think it was a good learning experience for m. I'm terrible at scheduling things and actually doing them when I'm the only one involved. Thanks, Chick Lit Goddesses for the ideas! Great Writers.

Now, Share Tuesday. I'm going to share the first chapter of my second book, Spy Sisters: The Truth and the Spy. I'm pretty optimistic about it. It's actually kind of crazy, but I was worried that it was bad, but it's really not what I remembered it to be.


CHAPTER 1

Taking her place in the long aisles, she eyed her enemies with the ferocity of a tiger. They picked the wrong day to mess with Stella Gainsbourg. Glancing at her watch, she ran down the aisle grabbing the last supplies she needed for Thanksgiving dinner. Okay, Riley was right. Shopping the day before Thanksgiving was stupid! But how was Stella supposed to know? She’d eaten Thanksgiving dinner. She’d never cooked it!
Since she’d been trained to be a spy, Stella had moves that other frazzled homemakers couldn’t contemplate. She sped through the store so fast that it was almost like she was a gust of wind sweeping through the aisles. As she rounded a corner to get into the turkey freezer, Stella spotted one lonely turkey left. It was all hers.
Right as she grabbed it, she felt another hand on the plastic netted bag, and as the two pulled, they rammed into each other. Stella dropped her basket, and all the supplies she gathered had scattered everywhere. Crazy shoppers grabbed her groceries before she could even get up.
“Excuse me, honey,” The plump woman in a bright orange turkey-appliqued sweater tried to give a sweet, older lady smile. “I saw that turkey first.”
“Uh, no you didn’t.” Stella protested from where she sat on the floor. She quickly jumped to her feet, realizing not for the first time that she wasn’t quite as agile as she once was. "My hand was on it before you got over here.” She looked around for an employee. “Can we see some security camera footage? This is my turkey!”
“No, you see, dear,” The woman started to sound a little testy, “I had my eye on that turkey. I need it to feed my family tomorrow.”
“I need that turkey. I promised Riley I’d be able to handle Thanksgiving dinner, and I am not going to break that promise!”
“Your first Thanksgiving?” The woman asked, with a knowing, slightly condescending, smile.
Feeling like she might be getting somewhere, Stella tried a smile, but it came out awkward and a little frightening. “Yes, it is.”
Taking her opportunity, the woman pulled on the turkey and threw it in her cart before hurrying away. “Maybe you should just get your husband a Hungryman Dinner!” She cackled.
“Joke's on you, lady!" Stella cried. "I'm not married!" It didn't sound nearly as badass out loud as it did in her head. As Stella watched the woman scurry away, she knelt down and picked up her broken basket. All of the supplies she’d just picked out were gone in the crowd. She threw her basket into the turkey freezer and walked away. She hit a button on the bluetooth device in her ear and waited a moment. “Stan? Dinner has been compromised. Meet me at the Wine and Spirits entrance.”
“Affirmative.” He said in a crackly voice.
Stella made her way through the crowded store, taking a shortcut through the toilet paper and paper plate aisle on the outer perimeter, and as she passed by the health market on her way into the Wine and Spirits department, she saw a special on Tofurky in the cooler. She reached out for it, but at the last minute, she pulled away and hurried into the next room. “I am not buying something that sounds like it’s made from a Muppet!” She spat out. Grabbing a stray cart, she loaded a large case of German beer and several bags of organic snack chips into it, then she headed for the long checkout line before meeting her best friend, Stan Darrow, outside.
Stan and Stella had been friends since college, when they both discovered they could speak Russian and had both been selected for special training within the CIA. He was a doctor, but frequently worked with Stella when he wasn't busy with other duties, such as saving lives and doing good deeds. When Stella had quit the CIA the previous spring, he'd decided to take a regular hospital job and stay in the area. He didn't stay for Stella, though. He stayed for Stella's recently divorced step sister, Riley.
Stan was now behind the wheel of a late model periwinkle blue minivan, but before Stella could climb into the passenger side, he jumped out to let her drive.
“How could you lose a turkey?” Stan asked after Stella regaled him with her story. “You’re an unstable, dangerous spy." She flashed him a dirty look, but he ignored her. "Truth is truth, toots. Couldn’t you take down one little old lady?”
“I guess I’m just in the holiday spirit.” She replied, sarcastically as she pulled up to a stop sign. "And don't call me toots. You're not Al Capone.” She thought back to her life, pre-Stay-at-Home-Aunt as she wistfully looked at the clock. “We have time to shoot a few rounds at the range before we have to pick up the girls! Wanna go?”
Stan started to shake his head and went, “Eh...”
“Oh, come on! Pretty please! Don’t make me act all girly! It’s bad enough living with three chicks in one house.” She whined, referring to Riley, and her two nieces, five-year-old Chloe and three-year-old Madison.
“That’s not fair.” Stan retorted. “I live with you too.”
“You live above the garage.” Stella continued driving. “It hardly counts.”
“Cold, dude.”
Stella opened the window and felt the frosty November Iowa air on her cheeks, calming her frazzled nerves. “I’m sorry, Stanny. I’m just getting so bored! I wasn’t cut out to be a housewife. Especially when the sole breadwinner in the house used to be a housewife!”
“You’re going through a period of adjustment. It’s only natural. You haven’t been in one place for this long since college.” Stan gazed out the window at the passing houses as Stella sped through a picturesque Midwestern neighborhood. “What are we going to tell Riley about the turkey?”
Stella pulled into the driveway of their two-story house. It was white with blue trim and had a place for Riley’s flower garden out in front, under the windows. The house, as well as the minivan they were driving, belonged to Riley. She had purchased it after the divorce, had it repainted and set to work planting every imaginable flower.  Now, even in November, it looked spectacular. The orange, yellow and rust colored mums looked festive and homey.  It was an older house, built in the 1930’s, with a detached two-story garage. Stan lived above the garage in the remodeled apartment that Riley’s father, Elliot, had done as a retirement project.
“She should be thankful I didn’t buy Tofurky.” Stella snapped, getting out of the van. “Look at me, Stan!” She cried, holding her arms out. She wore a pair of light-colored boot-cut jeans and a heavy black and gold University of Iowa sweatshirt under her black pea coat. The entire outfit was ill-fitting and tight, but Stan didn’t want to say anything about Stella's recent weight gain.
Ever since Stella had decided to quit the CIA, she’d been moody and hungry. Before she’d quit the CIA in lieu of being fired for refusing to submit to retraining and Post-Traumatic Stress therapy, she chased down criminals, and her deplorable eating habits could be overlooked. She'd run every day, and also lifted weights. She had been stunningly beautiful, slim and athletic. Most men found her attractive, Stan did too, but they had known each other for years and knew they were not right for each other. In the eight months since she’d almost been sold piece-by-piece to the highest bidder in an online Russian black market scheme, however, she’d taken up eating almost as a sport. She’d put on fifteen to twenty pounds, and while Stan thought it might be in her best interest for him to say something, it was in his best interest that he not say anything.
Stan put his arm around her shoulder and guided her toward the house. “You look fine.” He lied. “I’d rethink the Iowa sweatshirt, but I’m a Husker fan.”
“I’ve been trained to hunt people down and kill them. I can shoot a fly off the leaf of a tree and what am I doing with my life?”
He didn’t want to answer. “What are you doing?”
“Picking fights and losing to little old ladies in the grocery store over the last frozen turkey in all of Council Bluffs, Iowa!” She cried, throwing her hands up into the air, before gathering the 12-pack of German beer from the back seat. “I drive a minivan, Stan. A minivan!” She stormed into the garage to put the beer in the outside refrigerator before stomping across the driveway and into the house.


Things aren't great in Stella's world, but isn't that how adventures start? If there's something about your life that you don't like, change it. I'm hoping continuing this writer's journey will change mine.

Have a great Tuesday, everyone!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Make it Happen Monday!

Jane Auten orders Mommy to give her the
 Life she wants to become accustomed to.
Okay. Trying something new this week. To focus more on writing-centric blog posts, today I will be taking a cue from the Closed Facebook Group, Chick Lit Goddesses, some of the most talented and informative ladies I've had the pleasure to befriend, and using their daily prompts as blog posts. As follows

  • Make It Happen Monday, where I will hopefully share how I will attempt to make my writing dreams come true.
  • Share Tuesday, where I just might share what I'm working on, either snippets or just basic story outlines. Or, maybe I'll share what I'm reading, and what inspires me.
  • Work In Progress (WIP) Wednesday is where I've decided I'll share how the current WIP is going. I've got a doozy for this one, so I'm looking forward to this Wednesday.
  • Thursday Tips is going to be a bit harder, because I'm still learning a lot about marketing, eBook formatting, and writing, in general, but we'll see where we go from there.
  • Fun Facts Friday isn't from the Goddesses, but something I started last week that I want to keep doing. It won't necessarily be about writing, but it'll hopefully be something fun about me. If I'm even that interesting. We shall see, I supposed.

Since it's Make it Happen Monday, today, I'm going to talk about outlining, and how it's helped me with my current WIP. 

I'm working on this novel that takes place here in my hometown (Write where you know, right?), and it's one of three outlines I've written. For the first two Spy Sisters books, I didn't write outlines, and they each took me about a year to finish. This is aggravating to me as a writer, especially as an Indie Published writer because I know that I could and should write faster than that. My pastor said something very intriguing today at church. Ministers write the equivalent of 7 novels in the course of the year with all of their sermons put together, word-wise. That nearly dropped me on my butt, because I'm a professional writer, albeit, not a full-time writer, but professional nonetheless. 

That being said, I started outlining the third Spy Sisters book back when I finished the rough draft for book two, in hopes that it would come together faster for me. I also wrote outlines for two other stand-alone novels that aren't associated with the Spy Sisters in any way. Last night, I started writing the actual book for one of them, which is probably the more difficult to write because It's written in the present with flashbacks to see why the characters are the way they are. I started writing it last night, and I've already written 2,737 words in 24 hours. I think the outline works for me. It's still the first chapter, but I think it's going to work well for me, having a map of where I'm going. 
I'm making my career happen by having this map. It's amazing how much further you can go when you have a plan and a direction. Since I wanted to be a full-time writer by the time the year is out, there's a good chance that I could make it happen with the outlines. The sooner I get my work out, the more people will be able to and (hopefully) want to read, right? I really hope so. I hope to learn from everything, and use my new education to become a better writer, and to write what my audience wants to read. 

There you have it. The first Make It Happen Monday. Let me know what you think of the new features. I just hope I can keep up with this and be consistent with blogging. 






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All That Matters Now (Finding Neverland)

I've been a MASSIVE Peter Pan  fan since I can remember. Disney , Mary Martin version, I loved  this story. I actually have several memo...