Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Resolution Review 2014

I can't believe 2014 is over. It seems like just yesterday I was celebrating New Year's with my family. It's been a rollercoaster of a year and I know 2015 will be just the same.

Keep track of my daily word count
Success! I tend to have trouble remembering to record how many words I wrote in a day, but this year I managed to get in the habit of it. 

Read 100 books
Last year is no longer my worst reading year since I started keeping records. 

Go for a run every morning three days a week
I tried to get started over the summer but I also had to walk the dog and the dog won't run with me. I didn't want to go for a run, come back, and then go back out to walk the dog.

Watch 50 movies
So close. I know I watched way more than 50 movies but unfortunately too many of them were movies I'd already seen before. 

Do five things I've never done before
This is one of my favorite resolutions and I was able to check it off early this year. On the list for this year include presenting a research poster, traveling to Washington DC, and driving a four-wheeler.

Happy New Year everyone!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

This Year in Writing...

I don't have a ton to report on with writing this year. The year started off with a partial rewrite of Weredragon that I felt made the book much stronger than it was. It's still gathering dust at the moment while I try to decide what to do with it. I'll likely go over submission materials after the new year and think about querying again. It's been a while since I've jumped into that ocean.

I also drafted my newest work in progress, nicknamed LP, and it rounded out at 75k. I'm really excited about it but I also know that it's going to need a lot of work. It's simmering for the time being.

I don't have anything in the works at the moment, though I am toying with the possibility of returning to a couple old manuscripts.

One of my goals this year was to keep more careful track of my daily word counts and I succeeded, although with some bumps in the road. My best month was easily June, with 32,628 words. My best day was November 23rd, with 5,572 words.

Grand Total: 202,360 words

Monday, December 29, 2014

This Year in Books...

As usual I set a new year's goal to read 100 books. I did not read 100 books. I didn't even come close to 100 books. I'm embarrassed for myself after crunching the numbers and subtracting unreleased, unpublished, and class-assigned books so I'm just going to talk about some of the highlights. I may not have read many books this year but there was no shortage of quality.

My favorite book this year was: Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan
This was easily one of the greatest books I have ever read. Now I've loved this series since the beginning. I remember the exact moment I picked The Lightning Thief off the shelf at the library. I remember quickly devouring the next two installments and going into the bookstore when the fourth came out. I remember reading The Last Olympian in one sitting and declaring it a member of my top five favorite books. I had very high expectations for this book and it was everything I wanted and more. On my personal records, it's rated a 15 because I couldn't just give it a 10.

#2 is Seraphina by Rachel Hartman 
I put off reading this book for a long time but when my girlfriend told me that it was brilliant I finally picked it up from the library. And it was brilliant. The voice is gorgeous, the worldbuilding intricate and perfectly woven, the characters are easy to fall in love with. I'm so excited for the sequel to come out next year.

#3 is Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
I was late to the party with this book. When it first came out, I remember hearing mixed opinions about it that turned me off pursuing reading it. Once again I was told by my girlfriend that I had to read it. When my roommate offered to let me borrow her copy, I didn't have any more reasons to say no. I couldn't put it down. The book grabbed me and it wouldn't let go for anything and when I finished I felt like my entire life had changed.

Some honorable mentions:
House of Hades by Rick Riordan
Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

What's Up Wednesday - December 3

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly blog hop created by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk to help writers stay in touch. I can't believe it's December already. It seems like New Year's Eve was just last week.

What I'm Reading: 
Last night I skimmed through two books about octopus for a presentation. In other words, no pleasure reading.

What I'm Writing: 
I read through an old WIP over the weekend just to see where it stands. It definitely needs a massive overhaul, especially in the middle, but that's going to have to wait.

What Works for Me: 
Keeping notes of future revisions while working on the first draft and then while it's simmering. I find that when I get an idea for revisions when I'm not actually working on them it's best to just write it down and keep it aside until I get to that point. I don't revise while drafting because I'd probably never finish but it makes sure that I don't forget.

What Else I'm Up to: 
It's the last week of classes before finals and I can't wait for it to be over so that I can go home and just chill out for a month.