ROW80 – Round 1 – final check-in

Well, I can’t believe we’ve got another ROW80 under our belt. 80 days/11 weeks and we rocked our goals out hard. We laid it all out there for the world to see and were accountable to one another while also being cheerleaders and support systems.

It’s an amazing community and a huge thanks to Kait Nolan for all her work to keep ROW80 ripping up the blogosphere and to all of this round’s sponsors for their encouragement and enthusiasm! I know I speak for all of us when I say it made a huge difference in my world!

Overall, I am pretty pleased with my success this round. I may not have nailed each and every goal, as you’ll see below, but I made huge steps towards making writing, social media, and a healthier lifestyle bigger parts of my life. That was the ultimate goal so I feel like this was a HUGELY successful round for me. And I’ll take that! Not to mention, I learned a TON about what works for me, and what doesn’t! Squeee!

Writing Goals:

Social Media Goals:

  • Done: Blog – post 4 times a week
    Goal: 44 posts
    Total: 47 posts
    24 047 words in total
  • Done: Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
  • Done: Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
  • Done: Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    I think I hit every week although might have missed 1 – although I hit more than 1 new person a few weeks

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Close: Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    Goal: 33 Cardio
    Total: 23
    Only 11 short 
  • Bit far off: BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    Goal: 33 BowFlex
    Total: 16 BowFlex
    17 off from goal so not stellar 
  • Done: Maintain a daily food/migraine journal

What I learned:

  • I have no issue nailing the social media stuff. Woot woot!
  • On the other hand, social media can be a time burner. I need to be careful that it’s not a detriment to my other goals. It’s about finding a balance. Maybe setting time limits or leaving it to later in the evening when other priorities are checked off the list.
  • I am not great at writing every day. Instead of doing small bursts of everything, I do much better when I do one or two main focus areas for each evening.
  • Making a list of priorities for each day helps me ensure I meet my daily goals, especially on weekends.
  • Putting things like TV or going to the movies off until after I hit my priorities (later in the evening or later in the week) is key to lessening procrastination and distraction.
  • Weeks when I came out of the gate hard and with momentum, I was able to keep that going all week. That means kicking my procrastinating butt on Monday night to get stuff done ensures a great week going forward.
  • When writing, I have to leave the couch and go into my office and shut the door. Distractions are extremely counter-productive to my creative nature. And I can’t help but get lost in whatever TV show is on.
  • No beating one self up! I do better when I shrug off a less than stellar week as “obviously I needed some down time” so I can move forward amped up for the week to come.

As you can see, I got a TON out of this round of ROW80.

I would also like to take a moment and thank all of you who read my progress updates, cheered me on, tweeted your support and were just all round fabulous! Each of you made the last 80 days a tremendously rewarding experience and without you, I’d be lost. So…THANK YOU!

Unfortunately, I won’t be returning to the next round of ROW80. I am on vacation from April 4-18, 2012 and when I return, I’ll already be 2 days behind in Laurie Schnebly Campbell’s Master Class: “From Plot to Finish” which is essentially the continuation of the class I am taking now. It runs until the end of April and I want to give it my full attention. But, I will still be around to cheer all you ROW80ers’ on! And here’s hoping I join in Round 3 with a plotted novel ready to be WRITTEN! Squeee….

Take care everyone and here’s to always Rocking the ROW!

How did you finish up ROW80? What were the valuable lessons your learned? Any tips/tricks to share?

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ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-n #22

Time for Sunday’s ROW80 progress update.

Don’t hold your breath. This check-in is going to be short and sweet since I made little progress since Wednesday. It was a crazy week with a lot of busy evenings and…we made this weekend my birthday celebration weekend (actual bday is tomorrow) so hubby and I kicked it up hard.

Writing Goals:

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    4 posts – total word count: 1649
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Done

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    2 Cardio (does dancing for 3 hours last night count?)
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    2 BowFlex 
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal

The wins:

  • Rocked the reading.
  • Rocked the writing course and Jenny’s contest entry.
  • Rocked the social media.
  • Rocked the dance floor.
  • Exercise wasn’t bang on but I am still pleased.

Where to improve:

  • On busy weeks, can’t let writing fall to the side.

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #21

Time for Wednesday’s ROW80 progress update.

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    542 
  • Finish James Scott Bell book
    In progress
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    1 down – 1 just about done
  • NEW goal: Complete weekly assignments of Plotting Via Motivation
    Homework Assignments – done

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    3 down – 1 to go
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Wednesday – done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Not yet

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    1 down – 1 scheduled for tonight – 1 to go Saturday
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    1 down – 1 scheduled for tonight – 1 to go Saturday
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #20

Time for Sunday’s ROW80 progress update. Work has gotten a wee bit insane and I had three evenings with plans so it was a bit of a challenge to balance it all. I wasn’t around as much on the social media front/blogging/twitter as usual but I’ll be around tonight and tomorrow night to visit y’all! All in all, I think it was a stellar week!

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    1524 total  
  • Finish James Scott Bell book
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    Done Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a ChickLit Novel
    3/4 through Save the Cat 
  • NEW goal: Complete weekly assignments of Plotting Via Motivation (March 5-30, 2012)
    Done (3 assignments)

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    4 posts – total word count: 1577
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Done

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    4 cardio 
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    3 BowFlex 
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal

The wins:

  • Did great on the word count and writing. Maybe not 100% but I am pleased
  • Writing course is going great!
  • I wasn’t quite as active on social media/blogging/tweeting but I’ll catch up with y’all this week.
  • Rocked the exercise this week! Round 3 of 8-week Death by Swimming started and I did 56 laps. Started skipping during BowFlex to amp up heart rate and work in some cardio (now known as Death by Skipping). Walked the dog with one of my best gal pals – what’s better than that? Did a total of 80 squats and 40 lunges (potty breaks and during BowFlex). I am feeling it today with a little muscle tenderness and shin splints but am super pumped. Hoping to keep up the work this week.

Where to improve:

  • Quite honestly, I think this was another bang up week. I felt like I missed getting around to all the blogs I normally do but I think the ebb and flow overall works out so I am pleased. Here’s to finishing up this round of ROW80 strong!

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #19

Time for Wednesday’s ROW80 progress update.

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    0 – so far
    I plan on doing my writing later this week since the week’s been full thus far.
  • Finish James Scott Bell book
    In progress
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    1 down – 1 in progress
  • NEW goal: Complete weekly assignments of Plotting Via Motivation
    Homework Assignment 1 – done
    Homework Assignment 2 – in progress (due Friday)

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    3 down – 1 to go
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Wednesday – done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Not yet

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    1 down – 1 scheduled for Thursday night (Death by Swimming resumes) – 1 to go Saturday
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    1 down – 1 scheduled for tonight – 1 to go Saturday
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #18

Time for Sunday’s ROW80 progress update.

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
    Ain’t gonna happen this round and I am ok with it.
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    628 total
    Yes, this did not move from Wednesday but I have a very good reason. I am working on my entry for Jenny Hansen’s Dirty Fighting contest so I’ve been editing and playing around with those 628 words all week – FUN!! I have likely met and exceeded my word goal with all my rewriting, adding, deleting and revising! 
  • Finish James Scott Bell book
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    Done Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a ChickLit Novel
    1/2 through Save the Cat 
  • NEW goal: Complete weekly assignments of Plotting Via Motivation (March 5-30, 2012)

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    4 posts – total word count: 1420
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Done

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    2 cardio 
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    2 BowFlex 
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal

The wins:

  • Felt I did great at making writing a priority regardless of the word count.
  • I took Emma’s advice (fahhhbulous) and moved Save the Cat to the bathroom and made great progress reading my craft book this week. Wonderful way to ensure I read both craft and fiction every day! LOL!
  • Social media was great although I haven’t been as active the last few days (sorry – been busy having a great weekend with hubby). I’ll be around to see most of you later tonight and tomorrow.
  • May not have hit all my work outs but the 2 of each that I did were great! We had our final Death by Swimming class Monday and I hit a record 66 laps! And…hubby and I signed up for another 8-week of session (Thursday nights this time) so woot woot for us!

Where to improve:

  • Quite honestly, I think this was a bang up week balancing writing, social media, fun, and healthy lifestyle so I’m gonna say I want to aim to make every week as fabulous!
Now…I am off to walk the dog and then write some blog posts (my stockpile is just about depleted). Have a wonderful Sunday y’all! I’ll be back around the blogosphere tonight to say hello and have some fun…

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #16

Time for Sunday’s ROW80 progress update.

So…I suck! There…I said it. This week was nearly a total right-off. After a 3-day migraine (thank you for all your wonderful support and suggestions), I played catch-up at work and at home which meant that I barely kept my head above water to achieve some of my other goals. That’s like 3 weeks in a row I’ve not quite hit – grrrr – so I am going to have to hit it hard this week.

Now, on the plus side, I signed up for 2 online writing courses after the first was highly recommended by Carrie Spencer:

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    466 – yip – dismal
  • Finish James Scott Bell book (must finish soon)
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    Done Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a ChickLit Novel
    1/3 through Save the Cat 

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    4 posts – total word count: 2248
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Done

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    1 cardio (told you I sucked)
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    Zero – (again…told ya…sucked hard)
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal
    Done!

The wins:

  • Super pumped for the 2 writing classes.
  • I managed to keep up with blogging (mine and others) and social media stuff (although I didn’t tweet as much as I normally do I did try to swing by as many peeps as possible to read and comment).

Where to improve:

  • MUST write this week.
  • I’d like to spend some time on my craft books as well.
  • MUST work out – so non-negotiable – must get back into this routine!

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #15

Time for Wednesday’s ROW80 progress update. Another slow week thus far (hmmmm…I hope this isn’t a trend). Today was the first day since Sunday that I’ve felt half alive. Been climbing up after a nasty 3-day migraine which has thankfully subsided. I did do some story plotting/thinking (when I wasn’t blinded by pain) but not a whole lot of writing.

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    466 – so far
  • Finish James Scott Bell book
    In progress
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    1 down – 1 in progress

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    3 down – 1 to go
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Wednesday – done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Not yet

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    1 done
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    1 scheduled for tonight if my head will allow it
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal
    Done!

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #14

Time for Sunday’s ROW80 progress update.

I took everyone’s advice from last Sunday’s check-in and spent most of my writing time doing some visualization, thinking and writing about how I see myself as a successful author to try to nail down my genre. In doing so, I discovered that I have a character arc/theme that keeps rearing its head. It wants to be told. It’s begging to be told. It won’t leave me alone.

I realize this is the issue I am struggling with because I can’t figure out how to show the character arc in a story without it being a self-help book. Hence the reason I keep bouncing around genres and why I can’t settle on a story idea because I haven’t hit on the right story and conflict to showcase it. And this weekend I started wondering if it can even be done?!?!?

That’ll be the question I’ll spend this week pondering and playing around with.

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    1347 – words total for this week
  • Finish James Scott Bell book (nearly done)
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    Done Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a ChickLit Novel
    1/3 through Save the Cat 

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    4 posts (+1 guest post at Elena Aitken’s – total word count: 4381
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Done

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    1 cardio (another busy week and exercise took a back seat)
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    Zero – oops!
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal
    Done!

The wins:

  • Although I didn’t meet my word goal, I feel like I made good progress on figuring out what the issue is. I believe this will help me move forward and either find a way to write the story or let it go for now.
  • Rocked the social media.

Where to improve:

  • Gotta step up the exercise!

Have you ever started the writing process with a character arc first and built the story and characters around it? How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

ROW80 – Round 1 – Check-in #13

Time for Wednesday’s ROW80 progress update. Slow week to start off with three evening events. Monday night was death by swimming, Tuesday was Valentine’s Day (full evening celebration with Mr. Sparkle) and then tonight, I am off to support V-Day (thank you Patricia for the fab info on what it’s all about) by attending the Vagina Monologues with Mom….squeeee. So writing and working out, I’ll see YOU this weekend!

Writing Goals:

  • Complete outline of WIP
  • Write 1750 words a week, on average 250 words a day (can be on WIP or other writings like flash fiction, character development, world building etc)
    Nada – busy week thus far
  • Finish James Scott Bell book
    In progress
  • Read 2 other writing craft books
    In progress

Social Media Goals:

  • Blog – post 4 times a week
    3 down – 1 to go
  • Blog – post ROW80 progress reports twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday)
    Wednesday – done
  • Tweet/Comment on at least 10 blogs a week
    Done
  • Comment on 1 new blog per week (ROW80 or otherwise)
    Not yet

Healthy Lifestyle Goals:

  • Cardio – 3 times a week (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
    1 done
  • BowFlex – 3 times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday)
    Continue to suck on this….
  • Maintain a daily food/migraine journal
    Done!

How are you making out with your ROW80 goals?

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