Monday, July 18, 2011

Mid Year's Resolutions

Last week during the one hour ‘Monday Writing Sprint’ on Facebook, I wrote a blog post entitled ‘What Warms My Heart’ for award winning children’s author, Sally Murphy’s blog. You can check out what warms my heart here.

This week during ‘The Sprint’ I thought I’d catch up with a few blog posts of my own. Life has been very busy lately as I try to attain my goals. Now with the year well and truly half gone, I thought I’d go over what resolutions I’d made at the start of the year and see how I was doing so far. Here they are:

1. Work/write every day from 9am.
2. Exercise 3x a week.
3. Lose 3-4 kilo. (ha ha)
4. Practise my art.
5. Complete and submit my short novel wip.
6. Complete my novel wip.
7. Complete illustrations for pb.
8. Blog 2-3 times per month.
9. Promote my book Pond Magic.
10. Initiate work as a workshop presenter/speaker.

I know, this is a ridiculously long list of expectations. But, I’ll be happy if I can check even three off the list. So how have I been going?

1. Yes, I have worked every day. The support of the one hour Monday Writing Sprint has really helped here. It’s a Monday morning kick start that sets me up for the week and my family know ‘I’m working’ and leave me alone.

2. Hmm…I think this one has averaged out to once per week as I was really sick in March (excuses).

3. Ditto. Lost 2 kilos being sick, then visitors arrived and well…

4. I’ve been working on my picture book and doing other illustrations for fun.

5. My short novel first draft is complete and I’m editing it.

6. My novel is sitting patiently waiting for me.

7. My picture book illustrations are up to the final draft stage before colouring.

8. I’m enjoying my blog and may even have found my ‘blog identity’.

9. I’ve been able to promote Pond Magic through my author talks and workshops and I was interviewed on radio when Pond Magic was book of the month on ABC 91.7.

10. My ‘authorpreneurial’ work has started to increase rapidly. In the next few months I will be speaking and conducting workshops at writers’ groups, libraries and schools. So far ‘word of mouth’ has been getting my name out there.

Having evaluated how far I’ve come this year, I feel a little more confident now that my writing and illustrating is heading in the right direction. Here’s a little sample:

And the year is only half way through, right?

Did you make any goals at the start of the year? And how’s it going so far?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Writing Sprint

I have had a very good reason to get up early on a Monday morning the last few months. Over on Facebook I convene the Monday Writing Sprint group. It's an open group, so anyone can join in and bring their writing friends.

The idea is to write for a solid hour with no interruptions, no self-editing and the nasty critic within us locked away in the downstairs cupboard. That means you switch your phone off, tell the family you're too busy to talk and shut the door to the rest of the world.

See the focussed determination set in that bottom lip.

At 9am every Monday morning Australian Eastern Standard Time we kick off the sprint and write like crazy until ten. Sometimes there are only three of us scribbling away, on other days we've had up to ten people with some well known names popping up amongst them.

It doesn't matter whether you're new to writing or a seasoned author trying to meet a deadline. The Monday Writing Sprint is for everyone. By writing together simultaneously there is the knowledge that you are not alone and the camaraderie of sharing your word count or success at the end of the hour is uplifting.

And you can write anything. It might be that blogpost you've been putting off, or an edit of that first draft in your bottom drawer, it might be a poem that's been wafting around in your head or the next scene of your novel.

Don't worry about stumbling along.

Kicking off your Monday morning with a solid hour of free writing not only sets you up for the working day/week ahead, it also nurtures your muse and puts you in 'the zone'.

Believe me it's the best way to start your week!

Try it. You'll like it. Monday Writing Sprint Then we can all be winners.