Updates

Progress Update

Update

Oh my gosh, guys, things have been one whirlwind of a mess after another. Nothing has gone as planned and progress has slowed, but sometimes you just have to roll with the punches. Here is an update of what I’ve been dealing with:

  • I sent out my manuscript to some beta readers and frankly, the feedback wasn’t good. Many stopped reading all together.
  • My dad ended up in the ICU to the point where he had to have someone with him whenever he left the house (and to be honest, I went over there to check on him even when he didn’t leave) my kids and I walked with him every day to get his strength back up and to keep his diabetes under control. He’s doing a lot better now.
  • Shortly after his recovery, they purchased a new house and my kids and I helped them move (as much as we could)
  • Guess the hospital needed someone in our family there, because I ended up there while helping them move. Ive had muscle spasms in my back (under my shoulder blades) and though I tried all my stretches and techniques to loosen it, I couldn’t move without pain shooting there. At 2am, I couldn’t take it any longer and went to the ER.
  • Then, the flu ran through the house so my kids were both sick and my husband had a cold.

With all that going on, I just didn’t have the motivation or strength to keep things going as they were. So, I’ll update you where my progress is with each of my usual categories and what’s happening to get back on track.

Books

Book Update

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

Series Update

The response from betas affected me more than I would like to admit. After going through eight chapters, I realized what they were all talking about.

Even though I can swear that I’ve gone though that manuscript more times than I can count. I can even remember changing a large section. I take responsibility for not getting the right copy to my betas.

Where the right copy is, I can’t seem to find. So it’s back to square one; taking the feedback I’ve received and revising it until it’s ready for another round of betas to read through it.

This is one hill on my journey and I’ve learned that even though Scrivener creates backups for your work, Prowritingaid may not transfer your stuff back when you’ve gone through it with their software. Time to add saving a copy to my checklist and update my process.

Stand Alone/Possible Series

I have nearly finished the book. You know, the one I’m still deciding whether to make a series or a stand alone and the definite stand alone is still on hold as I work through my problems. To be honest, a break was necessary and all those things piling on top of each other, forced me to do what was necessary for me to keep going.

There are just times you need to take a break from things and come back to it with fresh, new eyes. Let me tell you, it’s been eye opening.

To Be Read

One of my goals was to NOT add to my To Be Read list and I have only added books where the author has asked me personally to read. Boy have I found some great stories.

I myself have not added to that list, and I’ve begun reading through them. You would think being on break would have made more time for reading, but I just wasn’t into anything that dealt with writing and that included reading.

Yeah, crazy, I know. I never thought I would say that, but it’s how things happened.

Short Stories

As things have thawed, including me, I have plans to get back to this soon. I’ve finally figured out how to make Trello work for me and I’ve been slowly adding the things to it that I’ve been putting off. Short stories are one of them, but I’ve got some in mind that I’ve written down (you know some just won’t leave you until you have it down on paper) and I will have those to you by the end of July early August at the latest. Don’t worry, I’ll update my Trello boards to include that.

Beta Readers

This is what started my downward spiral. I’m the type of person who lets EVERYTHING get to them and I’ll dwell on it forever. It’s something I’ve been working to get better at for years.

The problem was that I put so much time, energy, and soul into my book and the feedback was, well, brutal. I was not expecting the reaction I got from something I worked so hard on.

As I worked through the feedback (mostly of the one person who read the whole book), I realized my mistake, and it was mine. The copy I sent to the beta readers was not as polished as I could have made it. Though I remember changing sections or deleting sections, I have not been able to figure out what happened to the changes, this is where my progress hit a snag and may have not saved when I should have.

So, those of you that read even a portion of that story, thank you so much, and I want to apologize for what was not my best work and I’ve been working to make sure that doesn’t happen again, while I update it to a better form of the previous version.

Communication

Communication

Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

The most important part of this blog, what you take from it and how I can communicate with you, my readers.

Blog Update

The one area where I feel like I’ve keep up with my writing, though I did take the two weeks off after my dad and I were in the hospital. I did my best to keep up with the topics planned and give you fresh inspiration, thoughts, and inklings that come to me.

I want to say ‘thank you’ to all those who have supported me, commented, and liked my work. It means the world to me.

Connections

One of the places I felt I was slacking, but again, this break got me to really think about what I want out of it and I really want to provide you with helpful, inspiring, and even funny content to keep your day entertaining. So, I’ve got more content coming to my Social media channels. Care to see what I’ve been adding or want to stalk me? Links Below!

Facebook

Instagram

Pinterest

Twitter

Business

Business Update

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

New products

I’ve been thinking about adding products that would benefit you readers and writer alike. I’ve been hard at work creating digital products as well as items you can purchase. If you would like to stay up to date on what’s been added and when things are up and running, check out my newsletter where you’ll be updated on all thins I’m working on, products, writing prompts and more. Click here for more.

Video

Seriously, I didn’t realize how freakin’ hard it was to get on camera and actually talk without freezing up or stumbling over words. On the back burner until I’m ready – I’m chicken in front of a camera and refuse to wear makeup, but you’ll see me there eventually. I promise.

Other Items

Interests

Image by Lorri Lang from Pixabay

Educational Update

I’m always looking for books, email courses, online courses that will help me with my writing. I’ve taken a few (or are in the process of taking them), so that part is going well. I’ve got to catch up with one. I’m a bit behind, but I’m gaining momentum so I believe I’m doing well here.

Art/Music

Something I wanted back in my life was drawing and playing my guitar. Two things that brought me joy and I felt I excelled at. I’ve started a drawing challenge with my sister, so I’ve finally started drawing every day, but the guitar hasn’t made it into the plan… yet. It’s going to though. This is a promise I made to myself.

Sometimes you need something for yourself.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, you can plan all you want, but life will find a way to put you off track. It’s not what you can do to stop it; it’s how you handle it when it comes around. That break did wonders for me and I highly suggest taking one yourself if you’re feeling too overwhelmed.

Don’t forget, if I can get through all that, you can traverse what has been put in your path. Remember one step at a time. You’ll be over that mountain in no time!

Our Traditions… What are yours?

Traditions

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Traditions are everywhere during the holidays and we are no exception. Though some may find our traditions silly or unique, they are ours and we will continue them for years to come; passing them to our children and our children’s children.

What Are They?

Well, I’ve touched on this as well as reasons for and the importance of traditions in another post you can find HERE. Today I want to tell you about a few we have in our family and I would love, love, LOVE to hear some of yours so comment below or send me a message!!

Reason For Our Traditions

Honestly, some of our traditions started by accident and continued from there. Perhaps it was a treat and was asked for year after year. Perhaps it was something we just always did naturally as the night wore on…

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Whatever the reason, I’m glad we have traditions to pass down to our children that show compromise, love and a willingness to come together no matter the circumstances. My and my husband’s families are quite different, but we’ve been able to blend them so that each of our traditions are still present for everyone to enjoy.

Importance Of Tradition

I’ve touched on this in a previous post as well, but the importance of tradition for us is massive. We are able to bring things to light that our children may not have known about their families, the differences as well as the similarities. It teaches them that even though we come from different families, we’ve come together as one to share in the events that we believe are special to us. Not just the ones that appear during Christmas or Thanksgiving, but during any time of the year.

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What stories can you tell your children about these traditions that they didn’t know about? Do they know how they started? Who started them and what they stand for? 

Some Of Our Traditions

Here is the part you’ve been dying to know, I’m sure.

Since it is the holidays, I’ll focus on those and perhaps I’ll update this throughout the year with our others as they happen.

Thanksgiving:

Every year on thanksgiving we spend time with our family, usually his side because mine is larger and everyone has their own things going on. We usually host, but this year his little brother hosted and it was wonderful. We had a great time with our nieces and their side of the family.

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When all the eating is done and cleanup is finished, everyone had gone home. We settle down with some hot chocolate (glass bottles of Coca-cola for my husband) and put our Christmas tree up while we listen to Christmas music.

Yes, I know its still Thanksgiving and we are very thankful. Thankful that we have each other present to participate in this tradition that been in my life since before I was born. My children are experiencing something I loved as a child.

Christmas:

Now here is what you’ve all been waiting for, right?

With our two families coming togethers and some other complications, we have 3-4 Christmas celebrations beside our own. We schedule a day to meet with all my sisters for a sister Christmas, which is scheduled whenever we can get six sisters together. We see my parents on Christmas Eve, his family on Christmas day, and my family has an extended family party too.

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But that’s not what I wanted to tell you about. One of our traditions came by accident when our middle sister couldn’t think of what she wanted for Christmas. My parents would ask her and she would say she didn’t know.

So, my dad being him, did something that would create the best tradition we have ever had. That one act had created years of creative enjoyment for all his daughters to enjoy and it will continue for years to come.

What is it, you ask? What did he do that would spiral us into a creative tradition that we all love? Well, he grabbed a large box, some rubber bands, and one of those rectangular fruitcakes. He taped the fruitcake to the rubber bands, stapled the rubber bands to the inside of the box, wrapped it and had fun asking people to guess what was inside it whenever they came over.

To be honest, I thought it was a bunch of small bouncy balls, but the great thing was that we all laughed when we found out what was inside. And don’t worry, that wasn’t the only gift she received that year.

The Christmas Fruitcake:

That was the year of 1998 and every year since it is passed to another sister to disguise and re-gift to another sister for the next year. Yep, it’s the same one from 1998 and yes, it’s been wrapped multiple times in plastic wrap and duct tape.

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It’s one of the things we look forward to every year and gives us another reason to see each other, cause really? Who wouldn’t want to see what you could do with a fruitcake.

If you’re interested in seeing what we’ve done with this fruitcake, you can check out my Patreon Page. I update it every year with the latest disguise. We couldn’t remember all of them when I decided to start keeping track, but will from now on.

To not leave you hanging, I’ll give you a few things we’ve done.

~ It’s been baked into a birthday cake (my and my twins birthday is close to Christmas)

~ It’s been put in a bear you have to squeeze for it to poop it out.

~ It’s been literally mailed to another sister

~ Buried in a box of coal (I was the lucky one to get that one!)

~ Buried in a box of Crackers (They had snacks for a long time!)

What are Your Traditions?

I would love to hear about your family traditions! Do you have something unique that you pass around as we do?

Self Faith

Self Faith

Has anyone ever said to you, “Have Faith . . . “?

“Have faith, you will see this through.”

“Have faith, you can do anything you put your mind too.”

“Have faith, you are doing a great job!”

Faith: a belief, confidence or trust in a person, object, religion, idea or view despite the absence of truth. Synonyms:  hope, trust, belief

Faith

Now that we have the definition out of the way. I would like to talk about self faith. The faith someone has in themselves. There are many people who have faith in themselves, but if you are anything like me; having faith in yourself can come as a challenge.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have faith in many things: my family and friends to always be there for me when I need them; my children to make good choices, to grow and to learn; my electronics (such as phone and computer) to provide information and communication, my home and car to provide shelter and transportation; games/movies/attractions to provide entertainment, but the faith I have in myself . . . Not quite where I would like it to be.

Faith in Oneself

I believe having faith in oneself can be one of the most challenging things to overcome. You have many people who have faith in you, but you will never accomplish what you want accomplished if you do not have faith in yourself. There are so many small things you have faith in, such as getting up every morning to go to school or work, being there for a friend or family member, or having faith in someone you truly trust, but the bigger things like public speaking, starting something new or just getting your voice heard. There is always this fear that something will somehow backfire, people won’t look at you the same, or you feel people will think you are less than you are and really. . . who wants that to happen? So most of the time we just don’t do what we’ve been dying to do. We don’t jump and believe God will guide us. Yes, the road may be rocky and you may get hurt, you may become tired and weary, you may think about giving up, but when you finally reach that pivotal point in your journey, you will be changed. Changed for the better!

Motivation and Determination

I believe motivation and determination are closely linked to faith. Motivation and determination can be a driving force for your faith. Some use motivation to create a backdrop for faith, I guess you could say. Some use a scrapbook of motivational pictures or objects that they look at each day to stay focused, keep their faith in themselves to accomplish what they set out to do. Some read a inspirational book, blogs, add pins or watch movies, and for some it take the desire to help others to have faith in themselves to start. This is what this blog is to me. I want to encourage and inspire others to have faith and to keep fighting for what they believe in, their hopes and their dreams. To continue that journey and see it to the end, to jump and land safely. You may have battle scars, but you will never forget your journey and what it took to achieve what you did. Never stop fighting for that.

Have Courage

I encourage you, if you are anything like me, find something – anything that will assist in keeping your faith and fight for your dreams. What you find may surprise you!

It has been two years since I have written this post and I have come a long way in my Journey. There have definitely been some ups and downs. I’ve been in a car accident, gone through physical therapy for my back, started writing novels and have one published with two more to be published at the end of this month. We have been force to give up our malamute/husky due to unfortunate circumstances (one of which I am still struggling with, her absence has been a struggle). We adopted three more cats to help our two children cope with the loss of having to give up our family dog and I have been committed to continuing with this blog. With the support and the continued faith in my abilities I am forging ahead. I have jumped and am still falling, but our goals are not to far away. I am still fighting for my achievements. Are you?

What motivations or helpful aids do you have to Have Faith, to Keep Fighting… to take that leap?