Monday, September 14, 2009

Your Summer Time Achievements and Fall Goals

Join in the open discussion: "Your summer time achievements and Fall goals."

To get the ball rolling I'll start:

For one I had grand summer plans for writing each and every day. However, it did not pan out the way I planned. I know, I know as writers we should not get distracted from our writing. But since my girls are now 14 and 11 and entering the 9th and 6th grades I threw my initial plans out the window and decided to spend as much time possible with them this summer. Considering the fact before you know it the oldest would much rather prefer spending time with friends. There were certainly days like that, but I cherished the many days she preferred to hang with me and her sister. And of course numerous times I had a house load or yard load of their friends here too. All good times, ones I will certainly cherish forever. It reminded me very much of my days of growing up with my mom being "The Cool Aid Mom" in the neighborhood.

I adjusted my plans and opted to FINALLY finish my first draft of my historical fiction manuscript, which I've been working on off and on for a couple of years now and get it typed into my computer. You see, I write my first drafts in long hand with my wonderful Graf Von Faber-Castell pen my family gave to me for my 40th birthday a couple of years ago. For me my initial first draft flows better with good old paper and pen and no distractions from my computer. Now with my edits well underway and several note pages of ideas for new manuscripts I look forward to a productive remainder of 2009 and into 2010. I also started planning out my blog postings and scheduling them for future dates in an effort to keep my blog presence current and strong. And last but not least I will be implementing my marketing plan for my first story book, The Golden Pathway...publication date to be announced.

What about you? How did your summer go? Did you have to adjust your initial plans? And how will you tackle the Fall of 2009?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes for a wonderful Fall season.


  1. My distraction this summer was cleaning out a house we bought. The old man had lived alone for years. You can imagine the mess! Hopefully it will soon be finished. Not writing, but necessary. I did get my first book, a YA novel Unwelcome Guest at Fair Hill Farm, in print. That was a thrill. It will be on Amazon soon.

    For fall, I plan to start the second book in the YA series, Arizona Adventure. I had started it years ago, but in moving computers I lost the manuscript. Sad, but probably for the best.

    Good discussion topic, Donna!

  2. Well, my quiet summer of writing & planning was disrupted by several tragic events. (Four friends killed on the Fourth of July on Ocracoke Island and my stepfather was in the hospital for over a month before he died.) It was emotionally draining as well.
    So with a very full fall schedule of appearances, I'm still hoping to complete my work by the end of the year.

    L. Diane Wolfe “Spunk On A Stick”

  3. I'm glad I'm not the only writer that has lacked in the writing department this summer due to different catastrophies. I also had a rough summer, moving across the country with my husband after his father died has been the biggest hurdle.

    I did, however, start a novel and come to realize that us writers need our support groups to keep us going. I've also had a couple of miracles along the way, which has helped tremendously.

    So, my goal for this fall is to complete my first draft of this novel and hopefully find a more workable writing schedule. It's hard to do in between a disabled husband and three kids. I plan on MAKING IT HAPPEN this fall!!


  4. Hey Donna. I thought I pay you a visit, since you did to my blog, this summer. My summer was a bit hectic, as I wrote Specimen, my 3rd eco-thriller and second Julnanowrimo ms. I also got ready for CVS pharm tech training with testing. I also dreamt of my new Nano ms for this fall: Web of Deceit. This isn't an eco-thriller this fall. Romance suspense/thriller. For the fall, between training/work, once I know my schedule, subbing as a secretary, volunteering at the hospital and next month's Muse conference, I hope to finish Venom by 10/11 or even later, when it's close of being done. I'll be pitching it too and will send out my pitch and agenda to Lea this morning. I also will be doing prep and research for this month. That's all I know right now.

  5. I'm not sure if 2009's summer was atypical. But it's sounding like deferred writing projects may not have been that unusual. In the critique group I moderate, it seems everyone has had lots going on for several months and all are hoping the summer break has recharged them.

    My summer was busy with our Boy Scout Troop and our family enjoyed a mini-reunion at the beach, in part to celebrate the wedding of our daughter. On the writing end of things, it's been more a story of infrastruction building (e.g., rebuilding a website) and pushing a couple new picture books out the door. "No Bones About It" (first of a series of anatomical picture books written in rhyme) popped out in July and "My Grandma's Kitchen Rules!" was released early this month, both by Guardian Angel Publishing.

    Now time management (to make blogging, promotion, marketing, networking and even a little writing) has become my biggest challenge. I suppose having a full dance card is not the worst problem to have....

    Bill Kirk

  6. For three whole weeks I thought I had met my goal this summer - to find a book publisher. I had a contract from a small publisher and was in the process of having it looked over when I was informed that the publisher is cancelling due to a health concern. So now my new goal: keep writing for magazines for greater exposure, and continue researching publishers/agents to submit to. The emotional ride of getting published is not for the meek!

    Great topic Donna. And great goals!

  7. I am glad to hear that I am not the only one lacking in the "keeping my writing goals this summer" department. I had high hopes that getting a clinical manager day job rather than the PICU night nursing job would give me more writing time, but it not only has given me less writing time, it has required more hours than a 40 hour week, giving me less time for family and less time write. Loosing my Dad in September of last year drained me more than I thought as well. I guess being the oldest, I kept strong up til this summer, and then with the new job,etc I lost my writing focus.
    My fall goals are to regain my writing focus, and to set my path back on what I really want to do and that is to get published. I have a new blog for beginning writers that I want to get out there to offer more encouragement for others like myself who want to write and publish. And I have picture book manuscripts to revise and resend.
    Thanks for opening up the discussion. Writing is so much more than taking a class or is putting words on the page,revising, networking, taking critiques and reworking your words, and finding a publisher. I agree it is not for the meek.

    Blessings to all who are revamping their writing goals this fall. Good luck.


  8. Summer pased by co quickly I barely remember any of it. The week that my girls got out of school we headed to Capd Cod for a few days for my brother-in-law's wedding. I read a book or two while there, but didn't write, as I promised my family I would take a "real" vacation. Didn't even bring my laptop.

    Our other vacation plans changed and we went away to North Carolina for two weeks in August, so July was crazy and I didn't have time to write much of anything except book reviews and blogs. And with being gone two weeks in August and then teaching Vacation Bible School right after we came back, guess what? Yep, no writing, just read and reviewed 10 books. Sigh!

    I've started up with a couple of critique groups again, which will encourage me to write, as it is a requirement for participation. Other than that, the virtual book tour business is going well, I have an article due to Writer2Writer in October and I'll guest blog at Market My Novel.

    Let's hope we all meet our writing goals.


  9. Yes, time with family always usurps my writing, too. My youngest is gone to college, and now I am glad I stayed up those late nights to hear about her current boyfriend, to look at the new clothes she bought, and so on.

    Funny that you should post this today. I entitled today's blog "Getting it Done" and the post it on the same subject as Donna's here, and how I've rearranged my schedule to get done what I need to get done, and more specifically, working on my work-in-progress.

    So, here's some shameless promoting: check out my blog, too, and leave comments 'cause I'm looking forward to hearing more opinions.

  10. Phew...everyone has had their share of trying and tragic instances. My heartfelt concern and sympathies for all. go girl...Keep me posted when you book is listed on Amazon.

    Diane...good luck with all your fall appearances. I'm sure you will do terrific.

    Kristi...with your positive outlook I'm sure you will accomplish all you set your mind to.

    Kristen...happy to hear you are going to submit for the manuscript pitch at the Muse Online wishes!

    Bill...sounds like you had a wonderful summer. It's amazing as a writer how much time with spend on our writing without really writing. Best wishes for your continued success.

    TerryLynn...don't give up. I'm sure you find the perfect publisher for your manuscript.

    Terri....your new blog is terrific. Keep up the great work!

    Cheryl...glad to hear you got away without the laptop. It truly does make a different. Good luck with your critique groups!

    Katie...thanks for sharing. I've posted a comment on your blog. And never apologize for bringing attention to your blog on my blog. I'm happy for you to make mention any time!

    Best wishes for all your continued success,

  11. Like Donna, I've had a house full this summer as well and enjoyed every minute of being the "Kool-Aid Mom". I have been completely distracted because I have not made the time to get my 3 book ideas going; one devotional and 2 children's books.

    I homeschool as well, but that isn't really the distraction since I've been homeschooling for 20 years. I have found over the years that I like order but organization seems to come harder.

    Anyway, I am designating Fridays to be my day to get busy. These are the days my kids go to their programs for music, gym, etc., and I will be home alone. I also now have my own computer that will also help me to stay focused.

    I actually write almost daily on my blog but haven't sat down and seriously began compiling the books. I just imagine sitting down on a Friday morning and then saying, "Okay, now what?"

    Anyway, my goal this fall is to stay on track with Fridays and treating it "as a business" which I learned on my online writing for children course that I took last fall.

    Kathy Moulton

  12. Kathy:

    Sounds like you have a terrific plan in place. Good luck!


  13. So much great content here in your posts! Checking in frequently should help keep my goals in front of me.

  14. A lot of great goals here. I wish the best for everyone. Between doctor appointments, hospital stays (for hubby)and a viit from our grandkids, I did a lot of writing. My laptop goes everywhere with me. :) Also worked on promo for my books, queries for my YA I'm marketing, and the workshop for the Muse Conference.

    The rest of 2009 will be pretty much the same. I've added another story to my WIP (make three now). This one I started in 2003, but put it aside to do other things. Time to get back to it.

    Great topic, Donna.


  15. This summer went by very fast, and I did a lot of traveling. But everywhere I went, I had paper and/or my laptop so I could write whenever I felt the urge. I've actually written more articles and sections of my book this summer than I did the first half of 2009.

    My plans for the rest of the year, writing-wise, are to get more clips and begin to query local publications in an effort to start getting paid for what I write, instead of just blogging.

  16. I'm glad that you were able to take the time you needed to spend with your kids. I don't ever want to look back and regret not spending more time with mine. My summer plans went pretty well. I'm still working on defining my fall goals, which probably means I ought to get those hashed out.

  17. Kathie...thanks for your kind words. I look forward to staying in touch.

    Bev...good for you about taking your laptop whereever you go. That is a specific tip Margie Lawson provides, take your writer's bag with you can slip in your writing on the go!

    Daree...Good for you. Keep up your momentum!

    Tara...I feel the same way. It certainly is precious time we will never get back. Good luck ironing out your Fall goals. I look forward to hearing about them.

    Best wishes to all and thank you for checking in.



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