now browsing by category


In Which I Bring Back Goal Posts

But not, like, for soccer or football or whatever. I am referring to a blog post—this blog post, as it happens—in which I set goals for an upcoming month.

Fascinated already, aren’t you?

Sherlock Sleeping
That’s what I thought.

Anyway, I haven’t done a monthly goal post for a while now. I just checked—the last post concerning a goal that wasn’t “Pack up my belongings and move to the other end of the East Coast” was back in October 2014. There were two goals set that month:

1) Finish Part Two of my then-current (and, hell, still-current) WIP, Second Nature.


2) Walk, run, or bike at least 88 miles.

Ann on Jogging

But I never blogged about whether I had accomplished these goals. I know for a fact that I didn’t make the first one, as I didn’t finish Part Two until March of this year. I went back and checked the mileage log (Yes, I have a mileage log. Yes, I know it’s weird.) and saw that I only logged 50 miles last October, with a note written in the margin that October 2014 was the month I was dealing with my horrendous back injury. So, given that, I think 50 miles was pretty damn good.

Anyway, as part of my goal to get back into the swing of things following the Big Move, I am bringing back my monthly goal setting, and I am posting them for all to see on this blog to help hold me accountable.

And now, without any further ado, here are my goals for the month of July:

1) Win Camp NaNoWriMo and, by doing so, complete this never-ending draft of Second Nature.

I am so excited for Camp to start this Wednesday. And scared. But excited. And scared. But, you know, excited. Really. It’s going to be great. Or, potentially,  a huge disaster. But it’s going to be great. Have I mentioned that I’m excited? (And scared…) I really want to finish this book this July.

2) Attempt to make some progress on my Goodreads Reading Challenge.

Back in January, I set a goal to read 60 books this year. In general, it’s not too difficult for me to achieve this…She says as she admits that last year, she only finished 56 books. And so far this year, I have managed only 19 books. According to Goodreads, I am ten books behind schedule. Could be worse, I suppose, but I’d like to make up some ground on that this month. This could be a crazy goal to set, given that I’m also attempting to write 50,000 words in July, but it’s not like I have a day job. (And it’s not like I’m still bitter about that, either.)

I Didn't Know You Could Read

3) Log some serious mileage.

I’m also way behind on my 2015 mileage goal. In January, I set out to log 800 miles (via walking, running, biking, etc.). I have 730 miles to go. So way, way behind. Last July, I managed 125 miles, so I’ll shoot to match that number this July. Again, it’s possible I’m setting myself up for failure come August, but go big or go home, right?


Just think of it this way: If I keep crazy busy, I won’t have time to dwell on how much I don’t enjoy living on the surface of the sun. (Yes, I know the surface of the sun is much, much hotter than Florida, and that if I truly did live on the surface of the sun, I would have been incinerated or whatever long before now, but C’MON! Just give me this one, okay?)

And on that note, I’m outta here. Gotta rest up while I can. July’s going to be rather busy. (I hope.)

Checking In

Hello all.

I know I promised you a post on my Storyboard Substitution, and I do intend to follow through on that promise, but I haven’t quite finished that post yet. (Translation: I have yet to start it.) Perhaps this coming Wednesday, I’ll have it done.

In the meantime, I thought I would announce my goals for 2015, as it is now January 12th, and I haven’t done it yet.

Last year, I did pretty well on my goals. I missed the mark on more than half of them (but let’s be honest—I was never going to make that healthy eating goal), but I did accomplish the Big Goal: the Publishing Of Effigy.

It’s been a while since I’ve posted this cover art here.
Unless you look over at the sidebar, but who does that, really?

And as I have often said, if I make the Big Goal, I am far less upset about missing any of the other ones. Turns out, I was even telling the truth.

But this year I have no publishing goal. I guess that means I have to do everything on the following list:

1. Finish Second Nature.

Second Nature is Effigy‘s sequel, the second book in the Coileáin Chronicles. I talked a little bit about this last week, but to recap: I need to finish up Parts Two and Three. The characters are being rebellious, and so this draft has been hanging on long past my point of appreciation or amusement. But I’m gaining, though (unemployment is agreeing with me. At least until I run out of money.), and have truly been writing a lot in the first twelve days of this new year.

Last week, I stated that I had ten scenes left to finish in Part Two. I wrote a lot (the word count is now sitting at 227,000 words.) this past week. So naturally, I now have eleven scenes left to finish before I can move on to Part Three. Because my characters decided to add three other scenes. Because they hate me. Because I’ve tortured them far too much. Because I’m a writer, and that’s what we do.

But anyway, the goal is to finish this book this year.

2. Read 60 books.

I had the same goal last year and only read 56 books. I was doing all right there for a while, but fell apart at the end of the year. Maybe I’ll be able to hold it together this year.

3. Walk, run, or bike 800 miles.

Last year the goal was to log 700 miles. I ended up with 768, so 800 isn’t much of a stretch. Of course, the fact that I have only recorded one lonely mile thus far in 2015 might make things interesting. Only 799 to go!

4. The requisite healthy eating goal.

I need to eat healthier. I’m not overweight by any stretch of the imagination (even my Wii tells me I need to gain weight), but I need to eat healthier. You know, have some fruits or vegetables once in a while. And no more soda. I don’t normally drink a lot of the stuff, but I fell into bad habits at the end of the year. Lots of soda. So no more…Unless I’m having a Jack & Coke.

So that’s going to do it for me today. I know this questions is late, but…Did you set any goals for yourself this year? Anyone else out there giving up soda? Are you having caffeine headaches as well?

See y’all next time. Thanks for stopping by.

September Goals And A Few Other Things

Considering it’s the tenth, I’m a little late with this post, but that’s been the theme of things of late. If possible, I seem to be getting worse at time management. Not that I was ever all that good at it before, truth be told, but it feels like I am only ever efficient when I’m at my day job these days.


I really wish the opposite was true.

But since it isn’t, let’s start with a quick review of the goals I had set way back in August, shall we?

1. Walk, run, or bike at least 103 miles.

I killed this goal, logging a grand total of 131.5 miles. This was aided by a ten mile hike, and a pair of 15 miles bike rides while I was on vacation in Acadia. Thanks, Acadia!

2. Make some progress on Part Two of Second Nature.

At the start of August, this WIP’s word count was sitting at 222,400. Now it’s currently sitting at 225,504. Technically progress. I’ve been feeling stuck and a tad uninspired. I created yet another plan, and we’ll see if this one sticks. Here’s how the old storyboard’s lookin’ (see if you can spot the moment where I stop knowing what the hell is happening):

20140907_134449 (Medium)

3. Read more books.

Yeah, this one didn’t go as well. I read two books last month, which isn’t terrible, but it’s much lower than my average. There’s just never enough time…and I’m an insomniac.


And now for the goals I’ve set for September (can you stand the excitement? I know I can’t…)


1. Walk, run, or bike at least 66 miles.

Apparently, I really slacked off last September, so this month’s mileage goal is pretty low. Which is nice considering how much I’ve been slacking off on the mileage front so far this month.

2. Part Two of Second Nature still needs to be finished.

The starting September word count is 225,504. Maybe it’ll be higher come October. (Crap…is it really almost October?)

3. Survive First Public Author Appearance.

That’s right…I have scheduled my first public author appearance. I’ll be at the Local Author Book Fair at the library on September 20th. I have books to sell and bookmarks to give away. Well, provided they arrive in time. Maybe if they don’t, I can stay home.

4. Read more!

I miss reading. I need to do more of it. Maybe I’ll manage that in September.

5. Plan a trip to the Ren Faire.

A while back, I promised myself that if I managed to publish EFFIGY, I could buy myself either a double bladed battle axe, or a matching pair of short swords at the Ren Faire. Well, I managed to publish the book, and now I shall buy swords. Or an axe. I haven’t really decided between the two yet, but I think the swords have a slight edge. I have a character who fights with two swords, so…Yeah. Probably the swords. Or maybe the axe.


And just one more announcement before I go…


Shelfie Blog HopI’m helping out with the Shelfie Blogfest, the brainchild of author Tara Tyler. Other co-hosts, co-conspirators, contributors are Heather M. GardnerChristine RainsVikki BiramCD CoffeltElizabeth Seckman, and Rena Rocford.

Dates: Now through Monday, Oct 6
How To Enter: Take a picture of you and your book(s) – your favorites or your own novels. Or you can just arrange the books in a special way and take the picture – but you do get extra points for being in the photo.
Formats: Post on Twitter, Facebook, Blog – just make sure to include a link(s) to each for us.


Enter today for a chance to win some fabulous prizes!


I’m planning to do some other, better, photos later on for this blogfest, but I thought today I’d post a pic of my Harry Potter books. I am what my significant other calls a Completist, meaning I feel compelled to have complete sets of everything. Meaning I have the American, British, French, and Russian Harry Potter series. Most in paperback and hardcover. Because I am a freak. Anyway, here’s a picture of my Harry Potter collection:

DSCN2968 (Medium)

And that is going to do it for me today. This has been a very long post, and if you made it all the way to the end of it, I applaud you. I’ll try to make the next one shorter.

Have a great day, all.

August Goals

Effigy Proof Copies (Medium)Before I get started with a riveting recitation of goals and progress, let me say that the Effigy blog tour visits the blogfather himself, Alex J. Cavanaugh, today where I’ll be talking about the music I write by. Stop by and check it out!

On this blog today, I am talking goals. I set some for myself last month, and did pretty well with them. Take a look:

1. Walk, run, or bike at least 102 miles.

Completed. I logged 125 miles last month.

2. Publish Effigy.

Though you’re likely very tired of hearing about it, this goal was completed as well. (Enter the giveaway below! You know, if you want.)

3. Finish Part Two of Second Nature.

Nope. Not completed. I’m not surprised—this goal was a pipe dream from the start.

4. Complete guest posts for blog tour.

Not quite completed. I have one left to write, and two to send out. If you’re one of the bloggers waiting for those post, I swear they’re on their way. Very, very soon.

5. Read a book.

I actually read three. One was good. The others…not so much.

And now for this month’s goals…

1. Walk, run, or bike at least 103 miles.

Last August I covered 102 miles, so this month I will endeavor to do more.

2. Make some progress on Part Two of Second Nature.

Last month, I ended up deleting a lot of stuff. Not exactly the progress for which I had been hoping, but what are you going to do, right? Certain scenes weren’t working, and they had to go. Maybe this month I shall replace them with scenes that do work. Second Nature‘s word count is currently sitting at 222,400. Maybe by next month, it’ll be higher.

3. Read more books.

Last month was three books. Maybe this month I could read four. Maybe more. Probably not more.

And on that note, I’m outta here. I have another sure-to-be-fun shift at the day job. See y’all on the other side, and thank you for stopping by today.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

July Goals

According to my calendar, it’s the end of June. Some days I think my calendar is a big fat liar because how could it be the end of June already?


But either it truly is the end of June, or all the calendars in the world are a part of a massive conspiracy. I’m pretty sure it’s the latter, but until I can prove it I must accept the fact that it’s time to set some goals. For July.


1. Walk, run, or bike at least 102 miles.

According to last year’s mileage book, I logged 101.5 miles last July. My goal this year has been to increase that number every month. I’ve done it so far, but I’m thinking this could be a real challenge. It’s an average of 3.25 miles each day. Not impossible (yesterday, I logged 10.5 miles), but a challenge. Which is good. I like a challenge, and something tells me I’ll need a distraction because of the next goal on this list…

2. Publish Effigy.

The date is set for July 22, 2014. All signs point to this actually happening. It’s possible that not even I can screw this up at this point. But I guess we’ll find out…

3. Finish Part Two of Second Nature.

It just has to get done. That’s all there is to it. I kind of have a road map to follow as I attempt to make this happen. Here’s hoping that it holds up.

4. Complete guest posts for blog tour.

I have ideas. Well, that’s kind of a generous term for what have. I have the very vaguest sense of what I intend to write about. They just need to be fleshed out and, you know, properly executed. And by that, I mean written. Not given a blindfold and a last cigarette.

5. Read a book.

I haven’t been doing a ton of reading of late. I’d like to change that.

And that’s going to do it for me today. I’m off for an action-packed shift at The Store. What’s on your agenda?