Monthly Archives: March 2014

This Was 2014 Round 1

It’s the end of the round (ding ding ding!) and I’m ready for a new one. Bring it on!

My assessment of how it went, this first quarter of 2014? Pretty darn well. I’ve made pretty good progress, though I haven’t even come close to the end of my biggest project, which is finishing the novel and getting it ready to publish. But overall I’m pleased, especially since we have a solid plan in place for doing the revisions and edits. Here are the specifics:


In collaboration with BlackLion, edit, revise and polish our NaNoWriMo novel,The Door Is the Key. Have it ready for the next step, which is yet to be determined (submission, beta readers, or self-publishing). In progress. We’re using the Rock Your Revisions system, and I’m halfway through my first read-through, taking notes and thinking about what we need to change and add. I’ve also recruited a few beta readers from my women’s group, which feels good.

Post to my Starcat’s Corner blog at least 3 times per week, and on this blog at least 2 times per week. Didn’t really happen. For our Feline Dreamers blog, we started planning out the topics for our blog posts in advance, and that has really helped us stay on target. I’m thinking of doing that for my personal blogs, too, though of course I’d leave room for flexibility depending on what comes up in my life (since I enjoy writing about my own current events, so to speak). Having at least an outline in advance should help me to post more consistently.

Write and edit at least three guest blog posts and have them posted. This includes Moon Books and Kind Over Matter, both due in February. DONE. Moon Books, Kind Over Matter, and one that BlackLion and I did for the website Bliss Habits. I really enjoy guest blogging, and it’s a good way to reach out to new readers.

Choose my next book project and outline it. Haven’t done this yet. I’ve been enjoying lots of daydreaming and pondering about new writing projects, though. I’m blessed with a surplus of ideas, that’s for sure.

Learning and Sharing

Continue learning about ethical marketing and promotion. Read at least 3 books on this subject. DONE. Well, one of them was actually about revising novels, but I’m counting it. I have a few more queued up in my Kindle, and I’ll continue my learning into the next round.

In collaboration with BlackLion, update our Feline Dreamers website and create a marketing plan for 2014. DONE. The website looks terrific, and the marketing plans we’ve made are proceeding well thus far. Yay!

Promote and sell more copies of both of my existing books. Use new techniques I’m learning as well as ones I already know about. This includes posting excerpts of my books, trading book reviews with other authors, and asking readers for Amazon reviews. Well, yes, I’ve been doing more promotion, on several fronts. The sales haven’t really taken off yet, but I’m persevering and trying new things. I have several book review trades in progress, and have asked readers for reviews (not many results from that yet, but I’ll be patient).

Explore creating a hard-copy version of Cultivating Self-Love. Look into CreateSpace and other options. Haven’t gotten to this one yet.

Practicing Wellness

Enjoy my life and go with the flow. This is going along well. March is a challenge, but overall I’m much more in the flow, and enjoying what I do.

Continue with my five main spiritual and creative practices: journal writing, yoga, drumming, dancing, and gratitude. Yes. And I’m extremely thankful for my practices. They are so good for me on many levels. On the drumming front, I’m taking a set of 3 classes on the doumbek (a Middle Eastern drum) and really enjoying it thus far.

Eat well. This means eating healthy vegan foods, avoiding sugar and junk foods, and drinking plenty of water. Meh. I’ve been in the thrall of sugar lately, though I also eat healthy meals. Water is an off-and-on thing. I need to focus on this more.

De-clutter my desk and filing cabinets. Make the space more user-friendly so I’m more likely to use it. I haven’t gotten to this yet. I still want to, though.

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Oh My, Is That the Time?

Wow, I can hardly believe that it’s nearly the end of this round. Seriously. In some ways, I feel like I’ve hardly gotten started! But in other ways, I have been making progress towards my goals, and learning a lot about myself and my creative process. I’m also pleased to say that I’m feeling good about myself. I’m living in the moment more, rather than relying on expectations and self-criticism as I might have done in the past. And therefore, I’m happier. So that’s totally a win.

OK, as for the goals, beginning with Creating: I actually have been making some progress with revising/editing The Door Is the Key. I’m on page 87 of 213 in my initial read-through, using the Rock Your Revisions system. That doesn’t sound like much, but we’re getting some great ideas for revising our story and making it stronger. I feel good about it.

My personal blogging is going pretty well. I’m not posting as often as I’d planned, but I’m doing what I can. Guest blogging, on the other hand, is going really well. I had that big post on Kind Over Matter, and this week BlackLion and I wrote a guest post for Bliss Habits (it’s not up yet, or I’d add a link). I also did my usual monthly post for the Moon Books blog.

As for choosing and outlining a new book project, well…I’ve got a couple exciting things simmering on the back burner. I won’t say more just yet, but the creative juices are bubbling. Heh heh.

Looking at my Learning and Sharing section, perhaps I’ve accomplished more than I thought. I’ve been reading and learning, Feline Dreamers is doing amazing with our marketing plan thus far, and I’m in the midst of a bunch of book review trades and such. Huh. That’s really cool. I haven’t looked into CreateSpace yet, but I will get to it.

As for my personal Wellness Practices, I’ve been off and on with these. Illness and my March malaise have held me back a bit, particularly on the exercise front. Baby steps. I haven’t done much de-cluttering, either, but it’s on the radar. The thing that I have been doing really well with, as mentioned above, is going with the flow. And in doing so, I’m pleasantly surprised at how much has gotten done. Maybe there’s something to this… Hmm.

Now I’m all excited for the next round. Bring it on!

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Getting Through the Winter Blahs

Well, the calendar has changed over to March, but you wouldn’t know it from here. It’s been another bitterly cold week, and as I look out my windows, more snow is falling. It’s a depressing time of year, but I’m trying not to let it get the best of me.

I haven’t made much progress on my goals, which is why I haven’t checked in for the past couple of weeks. I got a flu virus that has really slowed me down, and what energy I’ve had has been devoted to working for others (my part-time gig at the radio station) and some performances. The performances last weekend went really well, and my cough is slowly fading. I’ve taken time these past couple of days to rest and recuperate.

The good news is that I’ve been very accepting of the way things are, rather than beating myself up over what I’m not getting done. There is an ebb and flow to life and creativity, and I know that the quiet, seemingly non-productive times will pass, flowing into the more active phases. All is well.

As promised, here’s the link to my recent guest blog for Kind Over Matter: Loss, Love, and Music. Please feel free to share it if you’re so inspired. This week I’ve been in touch with the creator of Bliss Habits about doing a guest post for her website, as well as participating in a Facebook group of inspirational websites that share quotes and pictures with one another’s pages. I love networking!

I finished reading GoodReads for Authors by Michelle Campbell-Scott, and found some useful tips to implement. I need to choose my next book on marketing – I have several of them in my Kindle, patiently waiting for me to decide.  I also have some books to review lined up. I love it when reading is on my to-do list, since it’s something I always do anyway.

Not much progress has been made recently on editing our novel. It’s on my radar, though. And I’ve been percolating ideas for another novel, as well. My creative flow is still there, underneath the ice, patiently awaiting the spring thaw.


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