Sunday Update – July 16, 2017

Sunday Update – July 16, 2017

Late day Sunday Update today! We had family over today to celebrate my youngest’s birthday. It was a fun-filled day of food, sun, and lots of talking.

The week went by pretty quickly. I really don’t remember much of it! I have to look back at my photos to see what happened. Lol.

Monday was a bit stressful. I had an all-day takeover in a very big reader group on Facebook… that I thought was on Tuesday. Oops! I hustled right away and got the day rolling with only a 15-minute delay. My takeover went really well though! I kept everyone chatting all day long, played lots of games and gave away a lot of books. I met new people and had a great time. No complaints. People were commenting on my posts well into later in the week! I obviously had an impact on them. heart I did some of my posts from the pool and treated the kids to a cool and easy evening there.

Tuesday was chill. We got our weekly vegetable share and spent the evening at the pool. The kids ate dinner there since my husband was working late. I had a giant salad at home later for dinner. Tuesday was Amazon Prime Day. I didn’t really sell any books but I got a great deal on something that’s hush-hush for the time being. šŸ™‚

Wednesday was my youngest’s 7th birthday. Happy birthday, Lil’D!! She went to camp and I worked, cleaned up the house, and saw my chiropractor. Then I picked up the kids, and my mom and aunt came over. My aunt was just visiting, and my mom stayed for the night. We all went out to dinner together to celebrate D’s birthday and had ice cream for dessert. My mom had an excellent night’s sleep on the couch.

Thursday, Mom was still here. We went out for a walk together in the morning, had lunch together, and then I drove her to the airport in the afternoon. Her trip home didn’t go as planned (don’t ask) but she eventually made it home.

Friday, my husband and I took the morning off and saw Wonder Woman at the dine-in theater. It was nice seeing a movie together! We haven’t done that in a long time. I enjoyed Wonder Woman immensely! It was awesome to see women kicking butt, and Diana Prince was super charming and had great depths of character that I admired. A hearty 5 stars from me! Afterward, I got the kids from camp and went grocery shopping in the afternoon. We then spent the evening at home since it was a rainy day.

Saturday, the sun was shining again, so after walking in the morning and having lunch at home, I took the kids to the pool in the afternoon.

All this week, I wrote little bits here and there on Daydreamer 4. I’m loving this story already, even if it’s slow going. I’m not pushing myself on this draft, especially right around the launch of CRASH LAND ON KURAI, which is weighing heavily on my thoughts and my confidence/self-esteem. I’m hesitant to make a prediction on how well it’ll do, especially since it’s the first book I’m launching into Kindle Unlimited. Let’s hope it exceeds expectations.

What else happened this week?

I enjoyed some Stress Away essential oils with a foot bath.

I consumed plenty of beverages.

We grew a cucumber in the green house!

Birthday ice cream celebration for D.

I worked on my knitting for a bit.

And some new copies of THE DAYDREAMER DETECTIVE came, so I’ll be doing some giveaways in the months ahead!

And that’s it! This week on the blog we have the launch of CRASH LAND ON KURAI and two teasers for it! Have a great week!

Sunday Update – July 9, 2017

Since this past week included a holiday, the week felt very off, but not in a bad way. Monday felt like Tuesday, and several times during the day, I was sure it was Tuesday. Lol. Sigh. Four day weekend can really mess with your head.

Monday we spent the day mostly at home due to rain that came and went throughout the day. No big deal. I got some writing in and relaxing on the couch.

Tuesday was July 4th, Independence Day. We spent it mostly at the pool. Then we picked up our veggie share and cooked out at home for dinner. It was nice hanging with the family and eating outside! We also had some fireworks so we set them off around 9PM and we were done before 9:30 when the kids went to bed.

Wednesday it was back to work! I had a weird morning where everything went wrong, but the rest of the day worked out. Nothing awful happened. It was just one of those days. I got writing done and I took the kids to the pool in the afternoon.

Thursday was not a good day for me. I battled a headache all day. No matter what I did, it did not get better. I drank extra water, extra caffeine. I took Advil. I took a nap. There was just no getting away from it. I went to bed early that day and got very little done.

Friday was much better even though it rained like crazy. (And now that I think of it, the oncoming full moon combined with the weather was probably what caused my headache.) I got some walking in in the morning then grocery shopping. In the afternoon, I took the kids to the pool and it was quite nice, not crowded. Most people probably stayed away because of the morning downpour.

Yesterday was a typical weekend day. I worked while walking in the morning, then I took the kids to the pool in the afternoon.

Today, I’m writing this update from the pool! Ha! We’re here all the time. šŸ™‚

Not much to report work-wise. I continue to write on Daydreamer 4 and I now have 21,000 words on it. I know where I’m going with the story, but I’m taking it easy because I have a ton of other stuff going on right now with the launch of CRASH LAND ON KURAI coming up next week. There are AMS ads to set up. Facebook ads to prep both copy and images for. Book Blitz to prepare for. Plus a million other things. I’m trying to keep the stress levels low.

What else happened this week?

I enjoyed wearing my Space Mountain t-shirt.

Reading at the pool is a total summer thing.

The remains of fireworks.

I did everything I could to get rid of my headache, including gin.

I’m watching the bears in Alaska again. Every year they’re on this live feed and it’s always a pleasure to watch them catch salmon. I watched while I was on the treadmill.

The paperback for CRASH LAND ON KURAI arrived on Friday!

I’ve started rewatching BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. It’s still one of the best shows of all time.

And I’ve been writing at the pool using my AlphaSmart! I love that thing. šŸ™‚

Coming up this week on the blog: Teaser Tuesday and Thursday for CRASH LAND ON KURAI. Have a great week everyone!

My Publishing Schedule For The Rest Of 2017

Happy Tanabata everyone! Now that we’ve hit the mid-year mark, it’s safe to say that I know what I should be able to publish the rest of the year.

When I started out 2017, I had hoped to bring you 4 books this year. But now, I think there’s a strong possibility I will only be able to publish 3 books this year, with a new book in early January 2018.

The reasons for this change are time, novel length, and money.

Though I’m continuing to write and edit, there are only so many hours in a day, and I get burned out if I spend too much time working. I see tons of authors doing really well, working 12 hours a day or more, and I’m super impressed by them. That was me in 2014 and 2015. I worked really hard but saw very little growth of my business, which left me feeling very depressed in early 2016 and then I didn’t write for six months. I want to avoid that at all costs, so keeping a healthy schedule is really important to me. Since I do the majority of my own edits too, I always have to leave time to whip a manuscript into shape. I wish there were more hours in the day, but there aren’t! šŸ™‚

This is me, working late into the night, with a drink in hand.

Having the time is directly impacted by novel length. I write books on the longer side when compared to the current market. All of my books are 80,000 words or more, and most books I see being published now by my contemporaries are 60,000 words or less (not all but most). Writing longer books takes more time, and like I said above, there are only so many hours in a day. Since I have two established series with books that are longer, I can’t really make subsequent books in those series any shorter without feeling like I’m cheating readers from getting the full story. My goal is to start writing a new series next year that has shorter books in it (40k-50k in length), but right now those novels are just a dream. Hopefully I can get around to them!

And, of course, money. Without going into too many details, I haven’t made much this year. In fact, I haven’t made enough to cover most of my expenses. My husband, the CFO of this organization, is chipping in more money to cover ads and other expenses for my upcoming two books I plan to launch this year, and we’re going to hope that these books make back their investment. I can afford to publish three books a year and take a loss. Four books per year? Not as much.

So, that’s what’s going on with me and what you can expect the rest of the year ā€” the first two books in the Hikoboshi Series. I hope to write much more than that! And maybe next year’s schedule will have more books in it, but I’ll let you know in 2018. šŸ™‚

Sunday Update – July 2, 2017

Compared to last week, this was one was anti-climatic. Lol. I spent a lot of time at home, cleaning up, working, and just trying to recover from Disney.

Monday, I took it easy. I went for a walk around the park in the morning and then worked on cleaning up our crafting corner at home. Cleaning the crafting corner, though, took THREE HOURS. It was a mess and had been for several months, so it needed work. I set aside a giant bin of paper to be recycled, went through all the coloring books and determined which to keep, and organized two spaces into one. Then in the afternoon I took the kids to the pool where I read and worked a bit.

Tuesday, I went for another walk in the afternoon after lunch. I spent the morning cleaning up the house and putting stuff away from vacation. In the afternoon, I took the kids to the pool again.

Wednesday, I ran errands and went to the chiropractor. I then worked for a bit and took the kids to the pool. (See a pattern here?)

Thursday was the only day I didn’t take the kids to the pool. They had piano lessons in the afternoon so we took a day off. It was also a good day to work on hydrating their hair, as the pool tends to suck their hair dry and brittle. For me, I spent the day painting the front door and threshold!

Friday was a usual day. Went for a walk in the morning, went to Whole Foods for groceries, and lunch. And then took the kids to the pool for the whole evening and even fed them dinner there.

Saturday, we slept in and spent the day at home because lots of storms came through. I got some walking on the treadmill in, but I took it easy too.

The whole week my husband was gone to Europe and the UK, so I had to stay busy! Work-wise, I put together all my teasers for CRASH LAND ON KURAI, read what I’ve already written of Daydreamer 4, and I’ve been reading lots of non-fiction on plotting and Amazon ads. I hope to start writing on Daydreamer 4 again tomorrow!

What else happened this week?

Before and after of the crafting corner. Much better now!

Enjoying one of my new Disney shirts.

New veggies from the CSA means salads!!

Summer thunderstorms bring double rainbows.

Got some home improvement done.

Husband brought me back my favorite candy from the UK.

The coolest watermelon on the block.

And I dyed the tips of my girls’ hair on a rainy Saturday.

Hope you all have a great week!

July 2017 Goals

Boy, June was busy!! I don’t think I’ve had a month like that in years! I’m glad we’re coasting into July which is nothing but summer summer summer and pool pool pool.

What Happened With June’s Goals?

Finish edits of Hikoboshi 1 and get it ready for publication. DONE! I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown before I finished but I did finish right before we left on vacation. I’m glad to have it done now. The deadline really motivated me but next time I’m going to loosen it up a little bit. I ended the deadline by having a night of tears. I’d rather celebrate next time! Lol.

Cover, blurb, and title reveal of Hikoboshi 1. Done! This went great and I love that the cover got some love online.

Make six teasers for Hikoboshi 1. Done and uploaded to my blog. I’m going to spend some time this weekend scheduling these all out for the month.

Get all book blitz materials to Lola by June 14th. Uh, I did not get these to Lola. I had hoped to, but it didn’t happen. I’ll be getting these to her this coming week.

If I have anything left in me, brainstorm more for Daydreamer 4. I did brainstorm for Daydreamer 4 a bit and I’ve gone back to read what I’ve already written.

Knit in the evenings. I didn’t knit as much as I wanted to because of the insane deadline. I did knit on vacation, though!

More walking, reading, and audiobooks. I did well with this this month! Mostly because walking around Disney made me hit all of my walking goals easily.

As you can see from these charts, I’m 54% complete with my walking goal for the year and I was ahead of my miles for the month!

Sit outside more. I did sit outside more and it was good for me.

Go on vacation! I finished pretty much everything before we left and then we went to Disney! it was a lot of fun and it was a good trip, both for my family and me personally. I was present the entire time, rode almost all of the rides (no Tea Cups because motion sickness), and re-energized myself for the road ahead.

Business Goals For July

Write 40k on Daydreamer 4. That’s approximately 1300 words per day which I think I can do even with some ramp up the first few days of July. I need to do some plotting and planning.

Launch CRASH LAND ON KURAI. This includes getting everything together for the book blitz, Facebook and AMS ads, newsletter, launching the paperback and asking the review team to review, etc. Plus sacrificing something to the Book Sales Gods.

Finish reading up on plotting and Facebook ads. I have a few non-fiction books I’m reading that will help me with advertising. Now’s a good time to advertise in the summer when rates are low, so I’d really like to get them going.

Personal Goals For July

Read every day. Not only am I reading a bunch of non-fiction books for work, but I’m also reading ANNE OF GREEN GABLES with my oldest daughter. I’ve, of course, read it before, but reading it with her is fun too.

Knit more. Now that most of my hard deadlines are past, I’d like to go back to knitting a few rows every night.

Walk more. I’ll be writing so I can walk on the treadmill and either dictate or type.

Enjoy summer. It’s my favorite season, so I plan to be outside at the pool as much as possible, even if I’m working there.

Have a great July everyone!

Sunday Update – June 25, 2017

I’m back from vacation!! Though it was a vacation from work, it wasn’t one of those on-the-beach relaxing vacations. It was a DisneyWorld vacation! We walked a lot every day. We came home exhausted. I’ve spent this whole Sunday recovering since we got home late last night. I’m going to share what we did but because many of the pictures are of my kids, which I don’t share publicly, I’ll be sticking to the highlights.

We flew out on Monday and the trip down to Florida was rather pain free. We took the Disney Magical Express (a bus service) from Orlando airport straight to our hotel and Disney took care of our luggage for us. Day one went really well! We explored our hotel and the properties around us, had an awesome dinner at the Contemporary and stayed up to watch the fireworks over the Magic Kingdom. They happen every night at 9pm like clockwork.

On Tuesday, we went to the Magic Kingdom and figured out where everything was and how our Fast Passes worked. If you don’t know about these, they’re wrist bands that let you get into rides that you select in a faster line so you don’t have to wait. You make reservations ahead of time and you’re given an hour window in which to use your slot. We figured out a good strategy for us using the app on our phone. We waited for some attractions like the Pirates of the Caribbean ride when we had the time to spare, and others we zoomed right to the front. The kids really loved the Seven Dwarves Mine Train (so did I)! We saw the treehouse from Swiss Family Robinson and rode on Aladdin’s Magic Carpet. Then we had lunch with the Winnie the Pooh characters. Then story time with Belle in the afternoon.

On Wednesday, we made it back into the Magic Kingdom super early so we could hit a bunch of rides before there were lines. We rode on Dumbo and then my family did the Tea Cups (Alice was there!), and then we went to meet Ariel (also no line!) Then we had our Fast Pass for Space Mountain which was just as much fun as I remember it being as a kid! Loved it! After that, we met Tiana and Rapunzel. I love Tiana. She’s one of my favorite princesses. She’s a businesswoman! šŸ™‚

We hit It’s a Small World After All which my youngest called “The Little Land Ride.” Lol. So funny. Then we rode the race cars and let the kids drive. I rode with my oldest and she did a great job. My youngest was a terror on the road. Of course. For dinner, we went back to the Contemporary and had dinner at Chef Mickey where we saw Goofy, Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Pluto.

On Thursday, we went to Animal Kingdom, which was my least favorite park, I’m sad to say. It was so hot, and there were no indoor spaces to cool off in. We were also bored much easier in this park. It was fun to see all the animals, which I love, though I’m not a big zoo fan. It also took a long time to get to and from this park from our hotel. The funny thing is that I ran into an old friend on our way out of the park. I knew she was there but I didn’t think we’d have time to meet up!

From Animal Kingdom, we hurried back, got changed and went to the Polynesian resort for the Luau dinner show. It was awesome! And we had some really delicious food there. The show was super cool and we made it back to the hotel at a decent time.

On Friday, we went to Epcot. This is one of my favorite parks. Lots of places to go inside and cool down, plus learn about the world and space and taking care of our planet. I really loved Soarin’. I could’ve been on that ride all day. Then we also road on The Land ride to see the greenhouses and learn more about farming. I find farming to be totally interesting so I enjoyed that ride. We finished out the day by visiting all the countries and having dinner in Japan. Made me really miss Japan, but it was a tasty and wonderful meal. We had beers in Germany then caught the monorail back to the hotel and saw the fireworks from our spot on the monorail!

On our last day, Saturday, we spent the morning at Hollywood Studios where we saw the Muppets, Star Wars Star Tours, and then The Great Movie ride. They were all fun! We had lunch and went back to the hotel around 2pm to get to the airport for our flight home. Our flight was delayed, though, a few times and we didn’t make it home until close to midnight.

I’m exhausted today! And still recovering from our trip. This week I have a lot of work to do. It’s back to the grind!

Here are some pictures from our trip!

We arrived and Mickey had been in our room to drop off tons of snacks and mouse ears for the kids.

Fireworks over the Magic Kingdom from the Contemporary Resort.

Tigger goes in for a hug.

I love retro futurism so this Tomorrowland sign is right up my alley.

On the way into Space Mountain.


Minnie Selfie!

The animals at Animal Kingdom, and I ran into my old friend, Katie, on our way out.

Dinner at the Luau at the Polynesian Resort where they put on a great show.

Some of the t-shirts I purchased on this trip (there are more).

Snow White signs autographs.

Inside Spaceship Earth in Epcot and a Baymax selfie!

Dinner in Japan in Epcot, some very tasty crab and shrimp tempura, and all ladies at the sushi counter (which you almost never see as that’s a male-dominated field in Japan.)

Beer with my husband in Germany. We were pretty happy with the trip by this point.

And Star Wars Star Tours at Hollywood Studios! It was a fun ride and it’s great to see all the Star Wars fans there.

And this morning I enjoyed tea from my Epcot mug.

Phew! What a week! And this week will be killer too. I have to read up on what I wrote for Daydreamer 4 and get back into that project, I have to make teasers for CRASH LAND ON KURAI, I have to paint my front door and its threshold, and I have a lot of cleaning up to do around here. Plus, my husband will be away all week on a business trip so it’s just me and the kids. Wish us luck!! šŸ™‚

Sunday Update – June 18, 2017

Guys, this was the busiest, most stressful week I’ve had in a long time. It was the last week of school. It was also the last week I had to get CRASH LAND ON KURAI ready before we leave on vacation. Every day was PACKED with stuff to do. By the time Friday rolled around, I was crying at dinner time because I was so stressed out. BUT I feel much better now, so no worries! Obviously I just needed a good cry to get things out.

Monday was one of our last normal days. My oldest kid had a class trip for the whole day and my youngest had a normal school day. It was hot and muggy, and I worked while on the treadmill in the basement.

Tuesday was the last full day of school. The kids had a good day and then we picked up our CSA veggies afterward. Not too bad.

Wednesday, things started to get crazy. I had to go to school for a Flag Day assembly in which my youngest sang songs about the U.S. and was all patriotic and stuff. Lol. It was really cute. Then I ran errands, picked the kids up at 12:30pm, fed them, and took them to tennis in the afternoon for their last lesson until Fall. I worked every spare minute I had.

Thursday, I was at the school pretty much all morning for the Fourth Grade Farewell. My oldest is graduating from her elementary school. It was both sweet and sad, and there were many tears. She was awarded the Aspiring Author Award for wanting to be just like her mom (omg I’m so proud) and always being on Google Docs penning her next best seller. šŸ™‚ After school, we had piano lessons and friends over for a playdate. Again, I worked in every spare minute.

Friday, I was finally done with work! I had proofed the whole book, changed a few names, ironed out my timeline, and fixed all the timeline inconsistencies. I formatted it in Vellum and sent it out to my ARC readers. It was weird to be done with this book but exciting too! I hope my readers love it! It was also the last day of school. My oldest daughter was clapped-out of her school. This means that everyone in the school lined the driveway and all the fourth graders came out to music and everyone clapping for them. Yes, there were more tears from me and from her. We gave her roses for her big day. Then she and her sister were at a birthday party all afternoon until gymnastics time.

Are you exhausted yet? Because I was. I cried through dinner that night because I’ve been working so hard and the end of school and finishing off my book just got to me. Sigh.

Saturday, I was feeling much better after a good night’s sleep. I took it easy, got my hair cut, cleaned up around the house, and read. It was a nice chill day. We went out for lobster buffet dinner in the evening to celebrate upcoming Father’s Day. It’s so nice to do these things with the kids now!

Sunday, today, it’s Father’s Day. My husband took the kids to church, I went for a walk, and then we gave him the afternoon off by going to the pool without him. Now it’s time for dinner and packing for a week away.

What else happened this week?

The week started out nicely with some Japanese for lunch! Oishii!

We flew the flag on Flag Day.

The Fourth Grade Farewell was full of great moments.

My eldest indulged in a blue sparkly bath bomb.

Flowers for the elementary school graduate.

Dinner last night was spectacular! And the place was hosting a wedding while we were there.

I’m halfway to my walking goal for the year!

The pool was hot and sticky today!

And now it’s time for knitting and HOUSE OF CARDS.

Coming up this week on the blog: celebrating my critique partner’s new novel, and that’s it, because I’M GOING ON VACATION. Bye!

Sunday Update – June 11, 2017

I don’t remember much about this week because all I did was work and get children to and from their various social obligations!

Monday, the kids had a playdate after school, so I spent the time working, of course. Tuesday, my oldest daughter had her last tutoring session of the year. I went grocery shopping and worked.

Wednesday was the Girl Scout pool party during which I tried to work, but Amazon went tits up on Wednesday and the site I use to help identify grammar errors in my books also went down, so I socialized instead. I was so sore, though, from all the walking I’d been doing (I walk and work at my treadmill desk) that I had to come home that night and soak in an Epsom Salt bath. I felt much better afterward.

Thursday, I worked and took the kids to the dentist. Friday, I worked (are you noticing a pattern here?) and then took one kid to another pool party and the other kid to gymnastics.

Saturday and Sunday were spent at the pool! Yay for pool season! Guess what I did there? I worked, of course. Lol. But at least I was outside and I did socialize some.

The good news is that all the working paid off, and I finished the major copy edit of CRASH LAND ON KURAI. Now, I’m running it through Grammarly and listening to it. I should be done by Tuesday evening if all goes well. Then I plan to send out ARCs by the end of the week! And it’ll be off to my proofreader then too.

This is also the last week of school coming up! I can’t believe how quickly the year is flying by! Then the week after next, we’re off for vacation which is the main reason I’ve been pushing so hard to get this thing done. I’m right on track!

What else happened this week?

I tried this lovely apple green tea that came in last month’s Bokksu. It was really tasty. Very strong apple scent and flavor. I loved it!

This week has required quite a few alcoholic beverages.

My breakfast has changed and I’m enjoying cereal now. This is a mix of regular and honey nut cheerios. Mmmm.

The ugly tree next door came down this week. Yay! I never liked it.

And I enjoyed a new salad yesterday and today. My buddy, Amy, suggested this. It’s arugula, apple, sunflower seeds, and shaved parmesan, with lemon and olive dressing. Really delicious!

And that’s it for the week! On Friday, we’re having a cover reveal for CRASH LAND ON KURAI and I’ll send out a newsletter as well. Have a great week, everyone!

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