Saturday, February 28, 2015

Feb 28th: 2015 Big Dreams, Big Goals Update

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If you have been following my blog for a while, you know I seriously fell down on keeping up with my 2014 goals. I love participating in the goal tracking though, so thought I should set up a few new ones for 2015 (or at least modify the existing ones). So here goes....
  1. Write books 3 & 4 in my Klondike Mystery series.
    Two short stories took precedence this month, one for publication in a local print magazine and the other for a benefit anthology.
    Progress: none

  2. Write at least one novella in the new A Set of Rules Mystery Series
    This new character has been talking to me for almost six months. My thought is to have shorter stories rather than full length novels. These should be a fun, quirky read!
    Progress: initial cover design DONE
     
  3. Continue with the monthly newsletter
    Now that I'm slowly building up my subscriber list, I need to keep this on time and interesting.
    Progress: February done!
     
  4. Continue my Monday Motivation posts
    Folks seem to enjoy these and I enjoy writing them, so I will continue!
    Progress: haven't missed posting one yet and I am trying to use more of my own photos for this
I have managed to do a lot of writing, just not on the big things. My blogs have suffered as well. Trying to figure out how to simplify things so I can be more productive. What are you struggling with?

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Friday, February 27, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things - Feb 27, 2015

Well, it's Friday and time to write my post for Lexa Cain's Celebrate the Small Things.

As in the past, I may post something about writing, something personal, something random or even all the above.

Or if I have a REALLY off week, I might just post a photo. ;)


#1 My short romance story is done and submitted to the editors! WOOT

#2 We attended the magazine launch party for a new print magazine here in Cuenca, Ecuador. What a blast! Over 500 people attended, about half local and half expats.

Here is the magazine cover (my short story is listed at the bottom left)

Here I was waiting to get my portrait drawn. (standing, orange shawl)

#3 Last but not least, I managed to get through my entire email backlog!

Ahhhh, till next week!

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Monday, February 23, 2015

Motivation Monday: Simplify


I know, this is a meant to be a funny quote but there is a serious side to it. As humans in the 21st century, we do tend to over complicate things. This quote reminds me that it's okay to simplify our lives. It's okay to relax and enjoy life. It's okay to NOT be serious all the time.

I tend to be overly serious and over complicate things so needless to say, this is a great quote for me!


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Friday, February 20, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things - Feb 20, 2015

Well, it's Friday and time to write my post for Lexa Cain's Celebrate the Small Things.

As in the past, I may post something about writing, something personal, something random or even all the above.

Or if I have a REALLY off week, I might just post a photo. ;)


#1 Contracted to start design on the cover for my new (future) series for my Lia Rules character.

#2 25% finished with my short story for the romance anthology (cancer benefit)

#3 Created the logo for a local writing group I'm starting, "Writing Our World". I thought I might, just maybe might, have 10 people interested. Now closing in on over two dozen.

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Monday, February 16, 2015

Motivation Monday: Wasting Time

photo copyright DBMcNicol
We all have those days, you know the ones. No matter how hard you try, you can't get motivated to plow through your To Do list. Not even one item! Well, it's time to tell yourself that's okay. We all need downtime. When I was a working professional, I took a "mental health" day once or twice a year. A day for me to do whatever I wanted, even it that was nothing.

We all need time to recharge and in today's electronic society, that is even more difficult. I should know, I stay connected all the time. But I admit to loving my 7-14 day cruises with NO online time. I get to read and relax and feel okay about it.

Do you take time off and do nothing - without feeling guilty? Give it a try!

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Friday, February 13, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things - Feb 13, 2015

Well, it's Friday and time to write my post for Lexa Cain's Celebrate the Small Things.

As in the past, I may post something about writing, something personal, something random or even all the above.

Or if I have a REALLY off week, I might just post a photo. ;)


Hubby comes home tomorrow and here in Ecuador that is also Carnival weekend...dousing folks in water, spraying them with silly string, fun things like that. We tend to avoid the downtown area but who knows...maybe we will brave it on Sunday which is a quieter day.

Oh, so what am I celebrating, besides hubby coming home on Valentine's Day?

#1 I have a short story being published in a local print magazine here in Cuenca! Okay, so they solicited me to write it and I don't get paid but the layout looks really cool!!

#2 I have started writing another short story to be included in an anthology of romance stories.

So that's my week, how was yours?

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Monday, February 9, 2015

Motivation Monday: Self-doubt

photo copyright DBMcNicol
Not just the enemy of creativity, but also the enemy of success. Every time we second guess ourselves, every time we doubt what we are doing, we are chinking away at our goals.

I am guilty of this, even today. Every time I publish a book I worry if it's good enough, will people like it. The first reviews that come in help reassure me but still that doubt lingers.

So how do we dispell the doubts? I found a good article that has helped me address my issues, maybe it will help you as well.

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Friday, February 6, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things - Feb 8 2015

Well, it's Friday and time to write my post for Lexa Cain's Celebrate the Small Things.

As in the past, I may post something about writing, something personal, something random or even all the above.

Or if I have a REALLY off week, I might just post a photo. ;)


Hubby headed off on a short visit to the states on Monday, flying out of Guayaquil (Why-a-keel) early Tuesday morning. He'll return to Ecuador on the 13th, be home on the 14th, after enjoying his annual Retired Firefighter Reunion in Florida as well as getting a few days of scuba diving in Key Largo.

So this week should have been a productive week, right? Sigh...well, it was but not for writing. I managed to make several calls back to the US, getting account access fixed for my prescription coverage and stopping a monthly auto-pay bill.

I got all my paperwork done to file for my local sales tax rebate for 2014. Last time I submitted receipts was back in August before we visited the states so had Nov-Dec to file. Always a pain but feels good when done.

I cleaned up all the little miscellaneous pieces of paper littering the corner of my desk.

BEFORE
AFTER
See? I can be productive...just harder to squeeze out writing time when you need to get all the above done, have two meet 'n greet lunches, go to yoga twice a week, get a haircut plus a mani-pedi. Hey, a girl has to have priorities!

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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

#IWSG Feb 2015: Time Management

Wait, wasn't it just January? How can it be time the February IWSG post?

I sincerely hope to get back to working on my novels this month but the theme for this month's Insecure Writer's Support Group is TIME MANAGEMENT.


NO! It can't be time for IWSG again, can it? Sure is but the funny thing is I'm writing this in January. Why? Because on the day this is due, I should be hard into writing my 2nd or 3rd day of productive writing on book three of my Klondike Mystery Series, "Almost a Touch".

Time management has been a real issue for me ever since we moved to Cuenca, Ecuador. Why? Well, mainly because this is our grand adventure and there is so much to see and do. We plan to be here for another 4-5 years, but as you know, the older you get, the faster the time passes.

Just as in the states, I'm not real productive when writing at home, even blogging tie can be difficult to find. But to go somewhere else to write is quite different than being in the US where I hoped in our truck or on my motorcycle, loaded up the laptop and headed to a local McDonald's. Here, I have to carefully pack my laptop in a secure bag, walk to the closest bus stop, wait 0-20 minutes for the next bus, ride 10-15 minutes, get off and then walk to the little restaurant or cafe that offers free wifi.

"But you don't need wifi," you exclaim. Um, unfortunately I do. Since I am pantsing these books, I tend to do a lot of research as I write. That means, wifi access. Because I sit for 3-4 hours, I always buy something, even if just a cup of coffee, and I always rotate locations. I don't want to abuse the privilege of free wifi access.

So I'm hoping for better time management this month - how about you?

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Monday, February 2, 2015

Motivation Monday: Distasteful

copyright DB McNicol
We all have those tasks/problems/issues that we'd prefer to ignore in hopes they will disappear. We know they won't but we think the longer we procrastinate, the better our changes.

When I saw this quote, I broke out laughing because of the visual. But it's also very true...get it done and over with, then move on!

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