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Archive for May, 2015

Sunday Summary: Wet Weekend

Some of you might remember me talking about working at a racetrack the past couple summers. Well, they were in the process of selling it, and so there is no actual racing this year. They are doing special events there, such as Crash-a-rama(May & August) & Monster Jam(June). I worked the back gate into the pits for the Crash-a-rama last night. Basically I was just making sure everyone that went through had a wristband. Pretty boring, actually. Then, the rain started. Just a sprinkle first, and it stopped. But, I’d put my rain gear on in preparation. And was very glad for that when a little while later it started pouring. And my husband had parked the truck close(he was on the fire & safety team down on the track), so I was able to run out and grab an umbrella too. And it kept raining for probably two hours with just a few breaks. Right near the end of the event, they finally called it for lightning. I’d been watching the sky light up for probably at least 10 minutes.

Supposed to rain and storm all day today too, but other than my husband going in to work a couple hours(sweeping the school parking lots so they can reseal them or something) and getting groceries, we don’t have anything to do.

My new time goal method is going all right, but I’m going to be changing it a bit. I have about a dozen 1st drafts sitting and waiting for me to get to them. So, I’m going to be switching my focus to those…in July. For June, I’ll be focusing on my JuNoWriMo project. Also, since I have probably enough stories plotted out to keep me writing for at least a year, once I finish outlining Some Fools Never Learn, I’m going to set aside any more plotting for a while. If I get ideas, I’ll write down some notes, but that’ll be it. Of course, we all know me and how I can’t just not write new words. So, when I’m revising, I’m planning to work on drafting for an hour first thing in the morning. After that, my time will be focused on revisions. I’m reworking my calendar right now to reflect this.

  • Freeing His Heart – Finish 1st draft – didn’t get this done. Still have 7 scenes to finish(1 is almost done). Hoping to get there Monday or Tuesday.
  • Law of Choice – 1st round revisions – got these done on Friday. Added just over 3300 words. Will be doing another round of revisions in July before it’s ready to send to my CP.
  • Let It Begin – finish outline – this is done
  • Some Fools Never Learn(Hunter Family #2) – Brainstorm – finished this and got Tate’s back story written.
  • Into the Sun – total: 8000 words – added 1855 words this weekend, and it’s at 8924 right now.
  • Story a Day – DONE! I only missed one day. Last time I attempted this, I didn’t make it past day 24. So 30/31 isn’t too bad. They are all listed out here, and this week’s were:
    • 5/25: Coming Home – some of Nolan’s back story
    • 5/26: Good to Be Home – A little of Patrick’s back story
    • 5/27: Rylan – a little bit on Patrick’s half brother
    • 5/28: Tate – a little back story for Some Fools Never Learn, maybe even the start of that one
    • 5/29: It Would Be Fun – a little bit on Jace(maybe the beginning of his story). Prompt was to write from the end to the beginning. Not one of my favorite pieces from the month. Also, does have a bit of spoiler from Flames of Restoration
    • 5/30: No Artist – a bit of back story for Kelan, Nolan’s other older brother.
    • 5/31: Finding Cassandra – this is from Into the Sun and from a different POV than I’ve been writing that. It takes place between scenes I wrote the day before.
  • Read: Finish Torn, Hard as You Can(Laura Kaye), Chasing Perfect(Susan Mallery), Brewing Up Murder(Catherine Lynn), & Bad Boys of Eden(this is a collection, & I have at least 1 or 2 separately) – finished reading Torn the other day. Really liked it. Almost finished with Hard as You Can. Have less than 30 pages to read. Might be able to read Chasing Perfect today, we’ll see. Otherwise it, and the other, are being shifted to next month’s.
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket – almost finished. I have 2 more rows to do and the border around it. Should be able to do that today.
  • Knit: Schooner hat – didn’t get to this.

And as it’s the end of the month, I’m going to evaluate how I did on the month’s goals. This should be interesting since it seems I keep changing my mind how to do things.

Writing:

  • Stained Blood – finish 1st draft – this fell a little shorter than I planned, but it’s done.
  • Flames of Restoration – finish 1st draft – this was just short of 80k.
  • Jace’s Story – write 30,000 words – didn’t start this at all. This will shift to next month’s goal
  • Story a Day Challenge – wrote 30/31 stories.
  • Into the Sun – add 4k or finish – actually added closer to 6k

I also wrote most of a novella. Total words written for the month = 107,953

Editing:

  • Flames of Renewal – 2nd round revisions – this is ready to be sent to my CP
  • Law of Choice – 1st read through – I have the first round of revisions done. setting this aside until July.
  • Just Add Moonlight – revise & submit – this was done. It wasn’t accepted for the anthology. Not sure what I’ll do with it.
  • Any WiPs I get back from CP/Betas – revise for next stage – haven’t gotten anything back yet

Plotting:

  • Kurztown 2.5 – Outline – this is done and waiting for when I get to it.
  • Stained #4 – start brainstorming(though Jacob hasn’t been talking to me, so may shelve this one) – really think I’m just going to shelve it.

Reading:

  • Listen/Read: 19 books -just barely made this. If I finish Chasing Perfect today, I’ll be able to make it 20.

Crafting:https://fallonbrownwrites.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post-new.php

  • Knit: Schooner Hat – didn’t get to this.
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket – finished 1 of these and almost finished with the second

My goals for next month should be simpler. We’ll see if I can keep it that way.

Writing:

  • Freeing His Heart – finish 1st draft
  • Jace’s Story(really needs a title) – 1st draft
  • Into the Sun – finish 1st draft

Editing:

  • Revise anything I get back from CP/beta readers

Plotting:

  • Finish outlining Some Fools Never Learn(Hunter Family #2)

Reading:

  • Listen/read 20 books

Crafting:

  • Knit: Schooner Hat
  • Crochet: Women’s Peaked Cap

And for the first week of June:

  • Freeing His Heart: finish 1st draft
  • Jace’s Story: Start(hoping for at least 10k)
  • Some Fools Never Learn: Finish back stories
  • Into the Sun: total – 11k
  • Reading: Finish Chasing Perfect(Susan Mallery), Brewing Up Murder(Catherine Lynn), & Bad Boys of Eden(various – probably won’t read all of them)
  • Crochet: Finish Loopy Love Blanket
  • Knit: Schooner Hat

Fitness Friday: Not So Good

I almost didn’t even write today’s post. I really don’t want to. In the last four weeks, I’ve gained .4 pounds. No, it’s not a lot. But, I’m so not happy with it.

And I can really only blame myself. I haven’t gotten out for my walks/runs much in the last two weeks. Before that I was doing pretty good. But, there’ve been a lot of rainy days. And I’d been falling behind on my to-do lists, so I put off working out in favor of getting other things done. And just generally lacked the motivation to do it. Again, totally all on me.

I have been drinking water, but certainly not as much as I should be. I just have a hard time to remember to drink it, even if I keep a bottle filled.

My snacking is still so-so. I don’t snack constantly, so that’s something. I still need to come up with some healthier alternatives. And I have a sweet tooth, so there’s that.

Kids’ last day of school is next Wednesday, so I’m going to have to find an alternate workout as well. I’d thought I’d let them ride their bikes down to the beach(at the lake where we live. maybe about a mile from our house…possibly less) and I’d walk with them. But, they aren’t so good at staying on one side of a path/road. So, I’m not so sure about that. Then, there’s the hill they’d have to ride back up to get back to the house. I’m sure I’ll figure something out.

Writing Wednesday: One More Week

Just one more week of school left for my kids. Hoping my new schedule will work once they’re home. I think it’s flexible enough to adapt. And the kids are old enough that I don’t really have to hover(not that I was ever much of a hoverer) when they’re playing outside. I still go out with them, but I can sit on the porch while they play. One of the nice things about being outside of town. We have a long driveway they can ride bikes up and down and a big yard to play in. And I can usually get about an hour out of my computer before I have to plug it in again.

Monday I didn’t get as much done as I’d like. Well, I got a lot done, just not the stuff I had on my list. We’ve decided we’re going to have a yard/garage sale sometime this summer. So, I hauled all the baby stuff and some other things, out of the kids’ closets to our cargo trailer. There was a lot more there than I’d figured. And our washer hasn’t been working right(taking 3 hours to wash 1 load of clothes), so husband took it and tried to clean out the hose. So, I didn’t get laundry started, which meant I ended up doing 3 loads yesterday. Only took 2 hours in the washer now. Better at least. I did manage to catch up on pretty much everything yesterday, so that’s something at least.

Still sharing from Freeing His Heart for WiPPet Wednesday. Doesn’t look like I’ll be finishing this week like I’d planned, so you may get another snippet from this next week as well. Trying to give snippets that don’t share spoilers of Chasing the Ghost. Of course that could be a bit difficult as this novella is quite connected to something that happened during that one. Today’s snippet does kind of reference that situation, but I think it’s vague enough it doesn’t really give anything away. 28 sentences(5+27+2+0-1-5).

Kellie couldn’t believe it. What was he doing here? Had he followed her? No, she couldn’t believe that. Jared had told her to leave early. She’d argued, but he’d insisted. Her mind hadn’t been on work all day anyway. Because she hadn’t been able to stop thinking about him. And now here he stood right in front of her.
What the hell was he doing here? There had to be any number of stores closer to his father’s side of town. Why was he here?
And why was he just standing there staring at her?
He already had his cart half-filled. So obviously he’d started before she’d gotten here. It had to be a coincidence. And he looked just as shocked to see her. Still, she couldn’t face him. It had been over four months, and yet it still felt so damn fresh.
She started to turn her own cart, but there were two people blocking her way out. The only way to go was forward, right past Jason. He was still standing right there, staring at her. She would have thought he’d been struck by lightning. In fact, she remembered he’d kind of looked like that when he’d come into the clinic all those months before. That was ridiculous, though. A person wasn’t actually struck mute by looking at someone. He’d just been faking his reaction back then.
She couldn’t quite make herself believe he was faking it now though.

He lied about one thing, and she applies it to he obviously lied about everything. Will the figure things out? Will she give him a second chance? Will he pick his chin back up off the floor? Why do I ask questions we all know the answers to? 😉

Now for my RoW80 update:

  • Freeing His Heart – Finish 1st draft – I have at least 10 more scenes to finish. So this is not likely. I may have to take first week of June for this. Have added 5924 words so far this week.
  • Law of Choice – 1st round revisions – adding new scenes in now, then getting to rest of revisions. Have added 1846 new words so far.
  • Let It Begin – finish outline – got this finished yesterday
  • Some Fools Never Learn(Hunter Family #2) – Brainstorm – got started on this yesterday. have general characters and protagonist brainstormed
  • Into the Sun – total: 8000 words – weekend project
  • Story a Day – didn’t get Sunday’s written, but that’s the only one I’ve missed so far. You can find the list of them here, and this week’s:
    • 5/25: Coming Home (a bit of back story for Nolan)
    • 5/26: Good to be Home (a bit of back story for Patrick)
    • 5/27: Rylan (you haven’t met him yet, but this is Patrick’s half-brother…who may be asking about his own story now. *sigh*)
  • Read: Finish Torn, Hard as You Can(Laura Kaye), Chasing Perfect(Susan Mallery), Brewing Up Murder(Catherine Lynn), & Bad Boys of Eden(this is a collection, & I have at least 1 or 2 separately) – way behind on reading. Only about halfway through Torn.
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket – About 2/3 of the way through this.
  • Knit: Schooner hat – will start when I finish the blanket.

 

Sunday Summary: Timing It

Planning by scene hasn’t gone so well for me this week. Mostly because I keep adding scenes in as I go. So, I’m about 2 scenes behind where I want to be. Because of that, I’m also behind on my revising and plotting goals. So, I’m thinking about changing back to a time goal. I’ve done this before and it usually works for a while. It helps to have a certain target to reach, though, so I’ll still be keeping those scene goals as my target. Otherwise I stare at the screen and hardly get anything written. So, I’m planning on writing for 3 hours, revising 2 hours, and plot for 1 hour. This will give me time to get other stuff done as well.

  • Flames of Restoration – finish 1st draft – done
  • Freeing His Heart – Write 4000/day – wrote 15344 for the week. Over 4 days that was an average of over 3800 words, so close.
  • Law of Choice – Read through/reverse outline – Got all the note cards done, just need to apply it to the project now.
  • Let It Begin(Kurztown 2.5) – Outline – just about. I have to put all the scenes into scrivener still and figure out the Goals, Motivation, Conflict, Disaster for each one.
  • Into the Sun – total: 7500 words – I got up to 6000. I may write more later today, but probably won’t make this goal.
  • Story a Day – haven’t written one for today yet, but otherwise have kept up with it.
  • Read: Finish Hope Flames, Alliance(Trisha Leigh), Head Over Heels(Jill Shalvis), Eyes Turned Skyward(Rebecca Yarros), & Torn(Kate Sparkes) – really loved Head Over Heels and Eyes Turned Skyward was really good. Only 6% into Torn.
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket(going to actually try to get to it this week) – made it through row 19 of 45. Hopefully I can finish it this week.

Didn’t get nearly as much done this week as I would have liked. But some of them go that way.

  • Freeing His Heart – Finish 1st draft
  • Law of Choice – 1st round revisions
  • Let It Begin – finish outline
  • Some Fools Never Learn(Hunter Family #2) – Brainstorm
  • Into the Sun – total: 8000 words
  • Story a Day
  • Read: Finish Torn, Hard as You Can(Laura Kaye), Chasing Perfect(Susan Mallery), Brewing Up Murder(Catherine Lynn), & Bad Boys of Eden(this is a collection, & I have at least 1 or 2 separately)
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket
  • Knit: Schooner hat

Writing Wednesday: Shifting Plans

No, I’m not changing my plans again. Not exactly anyway. I’m still working on Freeing His Heart(Gilbert, Co 4.5) since I finished Flames of Restoration on Monday. But, I was planning on writing ~5000 words a day. Instead, I have certain scenes I want to get through each day. Some days this might take longer than others, as I may end up adding more between those scenes as I go. But, for what I have now, this should have this done by the end of the month(actually 5/28 if I stick to it). On day 2 of this plan, and it’s working so far. I’m about halfway to today’s goal. We’ll see if it continues to work though. And between each scene I’m getting non-writing tasks checked off my to-do list.

The kids only have 2 weeks left of school. Still figuring out how I’m going to handle having both at home all day again and still get things done. I’m sure I’ll find a way to juggle it though. The school is having their book fair this week. The girl’s class(1st grade) went yesterday & she got 2 new books. One of them is labeled as 4th grade reading level. She read some of it on the bus on the way home & finished it before bedtime last night. And then, started reading it over again. Oh, yeah, she definitely takes after me.

This morning when I was washing the dishes I sliced my finger on the blade for the food processor. Typing is a little difficult with a bandaid on my finger. But, on we go.

And enough randomness from me. First up, a snippet from Freeing His Heart. 7 paragraphs from Chapter 1. This actually references one of my Story a Day pieces from this week. Patrick(which I realized yesterday, both the one I’m drafting & one I’m plotting have a Patrick in them. In different series, but may have to change one) is talking to his stepmom here.

She squeezed his arm then offered him a soft smile. “Come on downstairs. I made your favorite cookies yesterday before we even knew you were coming. It must be a sign.”
He forced himself to smile back at her. Then, he followed her down to the kitchen. He knew it made her feel good to take care of them. Even if he was old enough to take care of himself. He was already biting into the first M&M cookie when she set a glass of milk in front of him. He’d finished that one and was grabbing a second when she broke the silence.
“So, what really has you upset, Patrick?”
His hand froze, and he waited for his heart to slow again. “I don’t know what you mean. I told you what happened with my job. I’m on vacation, and I didn’t have anything else to do.”
“But, you could have found something. And I’ve known you for more than twenty years, Patrick. I know when there’s something more you’re feeling and won’t say.”
“Why do I suddenly feel thirteen again?” he wondered out loud.
Sophia smiled at him. “If you’re referencing the one and only time you said you hated me, I feel it too. But, I doubt it has anything to do with your mother this time. Or homework you have no desire to do.”

She knows him pretty well, but will he actually tell her what’s going on? (hint: not quite)

As for my RoW80 progress:

  • Flames of Restoration – finish 1st draft – done! Wrote 4053 words on Monday to finish it. It’s sitting at a bit over 79k. That will of course change when I start revisions.
  • Freeing His Heart – Write 4000/day(not sure of total – depends on finishing ‘Restoration’) – I’ve written 5206 so far this week. 3240 yesterday and 1966 so far today.
  • Law of Choice – Read through/reverse outline – I’ve gotten note cards done through the midpoint. Found a few issues already. This definitely feels like a better way to see it all.

    revision board so far

    revision board so far

  • Let It Begin(Kurztown 2.5) – Outline – I have plot summary written out & signpost scenes listed. Need to do beat sheet, full scene list & outline in scrivener & it will be ready(don’t know when I’ll actually get to writing though).
  • Into the Sun – total: 7500 words – weekend project
  •  Story a Day – keeping up with this. You can follow that link to the list of all this month’s pieces so far. Or for this week:
    • 5/18: Back in Town – back story for Let It Begin
    • 5/19: Not Your Mom – this is the one linked above, referenced in this week’s WiPPet
    • 5/20: Condolences & Consequences – more back story for Let It Begin. My one(and probably only) attempt at present tense. Warning for mentions of abuse.
  • Read: Finish Hope Flames, Alliance(Trisha Leigh), Head Over Heels(Jill Shalvis), Eyes Turned Skyward(Rebecca Yarros), & Torn(Kate Sparkes) – enjoyed Hope Flames. Alliance was…I don’t know. Good story, but it really felt like it dragged for a lot of it. Still looking forward to the third book whenever it comes out.
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket(going to actually try to get to it this week) – got this started.

 

Sunday Summary: Mixed Up Week

I’m not exactly sure what to say about this week. I feel behind on Tuesday and feel like I’ve been playing catch up since then. Not sure exactly what happened Friday, but the words were not coming very well. I ended up getting caught up on that and finishing the polishing round on Flames of Renewal Saturday. So, that’s ready for my CP whenever she’s ready for it. Didn’t get any crocheting done this week, but did spend almost all yesterday afternoon reading. Getting some things done this morning then we have my niece’s 12th birthday party this afternoon. Hard to believe she’s 12 already. She was born my senior year of high school. Got her B&n gift card because the girl loves to read(and my sister had no other ideas for her). Kind of amusing b/c my sister hates reading.

  • Flames of Restoration: add 15000 words(70000 total) – I increased this when I finished Stained Blood. ended up writing over 20k on it, it’s now just over 75000 words. I still have about 5 scenes left to get through. Just wrapping things up now, though. Hoping to finish Monday or Tuesday
  • Stained Blood: finish 1st draft – got this done Monday. Sitting at a bit over 46k. About 15k shorter than I’d planned on.
  • Freeing His Heart: start – start then set it aside until I finish Flames of Restoration. Wrote just over 1k on it.
  • Flames of Renewal: Polish – done & ready to go to CP
  • Kurztown 2.5 – Character work – done with this as well. Starting the outlining this week.
  • Into the Sun – add 2000 words – I’ve added almost 1400 words so far. Just made a realization about a character I didn’t even know beforehand. This is a departure from my usual strict plotter-ness.
  • Story a Day – been keeping up with this too. You can find all of this month’s stories listed out here. Not happy with all of them(especially Saturday’s 2nd person POV one), but they’re done. For the second half of the week:
    • 5/14: What You Don’t Know – this takes place after Flames of Restoration, so if you don’t want to know Nolan & Maura end up together, well…you obviously don’t know me well. 😉
    • 5/15: Maura – this is a continuation of Already Taken, but from Maura’s POV.
    • 5/16: You – This is the 2nd POV. This is from the one I’m plotting right now. Like I said, not happy with it. Warning for mentions of domestic abuse.
    • 5/17: Into the Sun – this is taken from the short story/novella I’m working on now. I rewrote the first scene in 3rd person. Definitely keeping the full version in 1st though. Which is weird b/c I usually do write in 3rd.
  • Read: Unafraid, Rumor Has It(Jill Shalvis), To Get Me To You(Kait Nolan), Never Love a Highlander(Maya Banks), & Hope Flames(Jaci Burton) – Loved To Get Me To You & Never Love a Highlander(which I may have live-tweeted with my CP, since it’s one she’d loved too). 64 pages into Hope Flames. Will probably take it with me to the party(and no one in my family will be surprised by this.
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket – finish second blanket – didn’t work on this at all. Going to try to do it this week, even though it will mean not giving blankets this weekend.

So, looking at that, I actually had a good week. Even if it feels like I didn’t do as much as I should’ve.

  • Flames of Restoration – finish 1st draft
  • Freeing His Heart – Write 4000/day(not sure of total – depends on finishing ‘Restoration’)
  • Law of Choice – Read through/reverse outline
  • Let It Begin(Kurztown 2.5) – Outline
  • Into the Sun – total: 7500 words
  • Story a Day
  • Read: Finish Hope Flames, Alliance(Trisha Leigh), Head Over Heels(Jill Shalvis), Eyes Turned Skyward(Rebecca Yarros), & Torn(Kate Sparkes)
  • Crochet: Loopy Love Blanket(going to actually try to get to it this week)

Fiction Friday: Ready for June

yeah, yeah, I know it’s only the middle of May. But, I always seem to be looking ahead. And June means JuNoWriMo. I do love those WriMo months. Not that I don’t usually write a lot of words in one month. I don’t know if I can even say what my favorite parts of them are. The community maybe. Even though I’m one who tends to keep to myself. Having other people working toward the same goal seems to help keep me focused on mine. Particularly the sprints. Those definitely help as you’re only focused for a short time then you can break.

This year, while I may be finishing up a novella in my Gilbert, Co series, I will mostly be working on the first in a spin-off of my Flames series. These 4(so far) books focus on a member of the Hunter family(for those of you who’ve read the first snippet from Flames of Restoration, this is Nolan’s family) and the volunteer fire department they’re with. This may end up extending to other volunteers. My “muse” seems to have no problem dumping more ideas on me as I write.

This is by far, not the final summary of the story. But, I wrote this up as a way to help plot it out.

Jace Hunter once wanted to be like his big brother, a Marine, a firefighter, a hero. But, time and his own interests showed him that wasn’t his place. Now, a successful artist and volunteer firefighter, he still doesn’t feel he’s found that place. He wants to help people, and he wants to create, but he’s not sure if that’s enough any longer.
Kammi Yates loves teaching young children, but she wants more than that. She wants a family of her own. When her father sets her up with one of his colleagues to go to an art showing, she didn’t expect to be more interested in the artist than her date, who turned out to be the artist’s brother. She also didn’t expect to see that artist when the volunteer firefighter presenting in front of her class removes his helmet.
As she draws closer to Jace, she sees something in him no one else seems to. But, before she can figure out just what it is, and if this is something they could share, danger approaches. She’s not sure if she can handle having him only to lose him. Or if it would be worse not having him at all.
As the flames get worse and spring even closer to him, Jace worries what it means and who the target could be. When they move beyond abandoned buildings, though, he has a strong sense he could be the final intended target. But, he’s determined no one he cares about will get caught between him and the flames.

I’m really looking forward to getting started on writing this one.

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