ROW80 – Round 4 – Check-in #19

It’s time to update you on my ROW80 progress. You can find a list of my goals here.

Work In Progress Goals:

Not much done this week so far but I am hoping for a super productive weekend. I feel like I am losing a bit of my ROW80 steam to the Christmas craziness. As I am sure a lot of you can relate.

  • 1 hours on WIP (goal: 5 hours/week)
    • More brainstorming on story ideas
  • Haven’t chatted with my ROW80 Sista, Nancy J. Nicholson since last week but we’ve been cheering each other via the blogs.
  • I reported on my ROW80 goals on time.

Well…I don’t think I am going to meet my all my goals. It’s not looking like I am going to get my ½ outline complete. Sniff. Well, I shouldn’t “sniff” entirely because the specific outline elements I chose were part of K.M. Weiland’s Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success (which was good). However, I’ve since opted to follow James Scott Bell’s formula. So those elements aren’t really relevant now.

I do have two novel ideas plotted out with the main theme along with major plot points (normal world, inciting incident, Act I, Act II and Act III). Since I am not finished Mr. Bell’s book, I am not sure if that’s half way or not but my guess is no. Regardless, I do know that this is success. Even if I don’t use this work right now, I know it’s a useful learning exercise and who knows…maybe I’ll use it later.

Where I am stuck is making the decision which idea I am going to run with or if I want to run with another idea all together. I have a couple more story ideas I want to develop to the same level and then maybe I’ll be ready to decide?!?! Lord. Y’all must all be tired of reading about my “pick an idea” plight. I know, it’s lame. An excuse? I don’t know.

Either way, my plan at this point is to continue on through the rest of ROW80 and work towards completing my goals over the Christmas holidays (I get a week off and hubby’s working so here’s to some WIP time…). My plan is to have THE story idea chosen that I am going to run with for January’s ROW80.

And quite honestly, for me at this point, however much (or little) I put in towards my WIP is a HUGE success. I haven’t EVER invested any kind of time towards my book dream. I’ve never pondered story ideas other than a passing whim. I’ve never read craft books or blogs (let along took NOTES). I’ve never sat down and wrote out possible plot points and ideas.

I might not sit at the desk and pound out hours on the WIP or thousands on the word count but I am OBSESSED with thinking about writing fiction; tossing around ideas CONSTANTLY! That’s new for me. That’s huge for me. I do realize the hit and miss of my WIP schedule is not going to get me any closer to my dream. But for this first ROW80 as I dip my toes into the writing waters and ask myself “is this really your dream???” I’ve come to realize my answer.

“Yes…this is my dream and passion…I feel FIRED UP, excited, empowered, thrilled, delighted, and just wildly enthusiastic!”

So…2011 was about learning to blog, social media, and dipping my toes in writing waters and I think I’ve done all of that quite successfully. 2012 will be about continuing to build my blog brand and making a serious investment towards the WIP dream! No more toe dipping….I’m gonna dive in!

Blogging Goals:

  • Blogged 3 days (3 posts) including this post
  • Read, commented, retweeted/tweeted on at least 10 blogs.

How is your ROW80 progress going thus far?




  1. Woot! I’m so proud of you!
    In this business, nothing is wasted–not a thought, not a word, not an idea … Everything is part of learning the craft, which never ends, really. And I know you learned a lot!
    Keep it up! I want to see you rocking the ROW in 2012!

  2. Good for you, dear! Like Juliana said, nothing is ever wasted, and learning never ends! Congrats on finding that passion!

  3. Natalie I think you’ve done fantastic! Really. You’ve accomplished soo much. So what you need to tweak some of your goals. I think that happens to just about everybody.

    But seriously, the WWBC will help you get that novel started. The timing couldn’t be more perfect for what you want to achieve. Like Kristen Lamb brought our in a recent blog, you have no story without the antagonist. So that’s the first thing they have you working on. Then comes the rest of the story. Cool huh?

    Oh I can’t wait until January to be in Row80 with you all. 2012 is going to be a great year! 🙂

    • Sounds FANTABULOUS Karen! I am definitely going to look into it further and am strongly considering for 2012 along with another round of ROW80!!! I want to make even MORE progress in 2012!
      Thank you sooo much for your FAB vote of confidence. I love it and it really helps!! HUGS!!

  4. Ohhh, Natalie, I have to say that I love it when my brain suddenly starts churning out ideas. It might be my favorite part of the writing process — so much raw creativity at work. I had a yucky bout with writer’s block for almost 2 years where there no ideas at all, so I feel like anything that comes to me is a gift from the muses. 😉

    You are ROCKING it, girl, and I will be waving my pompoms for you as we make our way into 2012. Here’s to diving into writing waters!

    • Thanks sooo much Lena!! I really appreciate your support. Wow – 2 years is a long time and I can see I should be wayyy more grateful for my “plight”!! Thank you for the reminder…it’s soo true! There are worse things in a writer’s life than having too many story ideas to pick from. LOL!!
      Really appreciate the rocking pompoms girl…HUGS!!!

  5. Girlie, girl, you are doing exactly the right thing. Thinking about things. Doing the exercises. Getting used to the ideas, vocabulary, and people. **THAT** is part of the process and don’t feel like it isn’t valuable because it is. I used to think I could jump from point A to point E without messing with points B-D. Sooooo wrong.

    Pat yourself on the back. You’re doing goooooood.

    • Thank you Bridgette – I really appreciate your fantastic vote of confidence. I guess I feel like I “should” have more “stuff” to show progress but I do FEEL fahhhbulous about what I have done even though a lot is in my head…lol…
      I am patting away…thanks sooo much…hugs!

  6. Inspiring post, Natalie! The fact you’ve got two novels plotted out is huge. Sometimes we have to let our creative side lead us instead of the practical. I think you’ve done an awesome job!

    • Soooo true Stacy – thanks for that! I appreciate the kind words and it really helps to know that someone like yourself, that I respect as “a really doing it writer” thinks I am doing great. 🙂

Don't be shy...tell me what you think

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: