August Goals

August is here, and before we know it summer will be over.

I have one goal for August: to finish Clara and Ezra.

This book has taken longer than I had intended, but with good reason. There have been breaks, personal set backs, and issues within the story itself that have challenged me. And of course the word count issue, being that the 2nd draft of the book was too short and didn’t hit close enough to 90k.

90k is a tough goal to reach. I’m more than halfway done in terms of reaching this goal, and I still feel like it is far from my grasp.

This month I am taking a long vacation, but when I come back I intend to be properly fueled with motivation and determined to get this book done.

I still intend to release the book before the end of this year, and if that means losing a few hours of sleep to get there I’ll do it.

This month I want to focus on finishing the book. Then we can talk about everything that happens next. But first… let’s get this thing done!

P.S. thank you to everyone for this patience! I’ve spent so much time on this book, and my hope is that it will reflect as such when the book becomes available to you. Thank you so much ❤️

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Word Count Calendar

I’ve been using a calendar to solely track my daily word count because I’m a very visual person.

Naturally since Clara and Ezra has gone through 3 different drafts now I’ve been changing things up to match along with what I’m doing.

While I was editing the hard manuscript (on paper, not on my computer), I tracked how many chapters I had read through and edited. For example a day might say “chapter 22/47” to show how many chapters out of my total chapters I was at.

For this third draft of the book I’ve been trying to be more in depth. I’ve actually been tracking a great amount of detail in my daily planner, but some nights if I remember I added in the extra details to my calendar as well.

Word count. Percentage done. And how many overall new words I’ve added in total (compared to the 2nd draft). My overall “new words” tracker is something I manually do myself, so some nights I remember to see the comparison and other nights I don’t. It’s also possible it’s not 100% accurate because so much is changing with this 3rd draft. A new chapter has already been added, and some things have been shifted around.

But it’s a rough guesstimate at best and it helps motivate me.

As for those cute cat stickers? Yes, apparently cute and sparkly things still make me happy. I have so many stickers to reward myself with I’m overwhelmed. But for me they’re a simple and cost effect way to reward myself for different word count goals I achieve. I even have wine stickers –so safe to say, I’m prepared for the celebrations!

Well, for now it’s late and I’ve written a lot so far today. I wanted to share some quick fun facts about my system in case anyone else wanted to try it out.

In the comments let me know what you use to motivate and reward yourself.

Happy writing ❤️

3rd Draft

A lot of people have been asking when Clara and Ezra will be released.

As I mentioned earlier this month I finished up with my read through of the manuscript. Now I have to apply those edits.

The best and easiest way for me to do this is to retype everything (again) and then add the edits in as I go along. This way when I need to delete a scene or add in something new it doesn’t feel forced or unnatural.

And so far this tactic has helped me add more words to my overall word count.

With this draft I want to hit 90k and then send it off to my beta readers. Then once they read it I’ll apply any last edits and get this bad boy ready for publication.

With a 3rd draft is allows me to really ensure this book is exactly what my readers deserve. I’m taking the extra time to make sure no stones have been unturned. I want to make sure I’m bringing the absolute best version of this book to you, my readers.

There’s still a lot to do, but I’m getting so much closer to where I need to be. And no, I’m not going to be able to release my book this month or next like I had hoped, but I tend to release a lot of books in July anyways, so I’m excited to have a different time of the year where I’m releasing a book.

This book will definitely be done before the end of the year, of that much I can guarantee.

Thank you again for your ongoing patience and support! The wait is almost over!

Round 1 Edits: Complete

As I previously announced on my social media sites yesterday, round 1 of edits for Clara and Ezra is complete. I’m celebrating today by going to Michael’s and treating myself to new stickers, a new calendar and planner, and perhaps some other things I can use for my Instagram photos.

Round 1 of edits was actually a lot of rewriting. I read once that rewriting is the best form of editing because you’re subconsciously added in new details as you re-type what you already had in the book. The book ended at 69k, and with this round of edits I’m at 72k. Keep in mind again this was me rewriting what I had already wrote. Fixing a lot of little things here and there. Adding in a new chapter, etc.

But the bigger changes, the ones that are going to help me reach my goal of 90k are coming with round 2 of edits.

Round 2 of edits is something I also did with Clara and Claire. I print out the entire book and get it spiral bound –something you can order from Staples. I then go through the book again with a pen and highlighter, actually reading the book and looking for the bigger questions this time around. See what’s missing, what’s not fitting, what needs to be changed or added. And then I apply those changes into the book.

I like to take this process chapter by chapter. And for me looking at something on paper makes it much easier for me to see problems than on a computer screen.

I want to present my best work to my beta readers. So when I finish reading through the book one last time and added in the additional scenes I already have planned out, I will then send it to my beta readers for the last read over before getting it ready for publication.

This might mean my book doesn’t release in July. And if that’s the case I’m not going to beat myself over it because quiet honestly this book is more complicated than the first. This book I also had a long break from at the beginning of the process. I don’t want to force it into publication if it’s not ready. And I know once I go through this last read through it will be in its strongest form.

I’m both excited and nervous that this book could potentially be done before I know it. I think this summer will be the perfect time for me to finish what I need to get done in the book and then hand it over to my beta readers. And while they have it I’ll prepare for the next book (the one after this) that I still have yet to reveal.

There’s a lot of good things coming. There’s a lot of hard work being put into this, and I hope at the end of this you’re as excited for Clara’s new adventure as I am.

May Update

Somehow May is already here, and I missed the memo.

As I mentioned on several of my social media sites, the stomach bug hit me last week and delayed my editing progress. Thankfully this week I’m back to my normal self and can concentrate on the work ahead of me. Clara and Ezra edits will be done before the end of this month. I’ve hit 60k in rewrites, so there’s another 30k approximately before it’s at the length where I want it to be.

In regards to other happenings…

This year my goal is to re-release Thicker Than Blood with a new cover and new interior design. This is something I really want to accomplish, along with the release of Clara and Ezra, so that by next year the entire Magicians series will have the makeover it so desperately needed.

With a new cover design and interior design unfortunately comes more expenses. And I’m going to be upfront with you guys –it is pricey.

So just keep in mind this year when you purchase a copy of any of my books, whether it be ebook or paperback, I’m putting that money towards the 2nd edition of Thicker Than Blood.  It’s not going to be easy, and if by the end of the year finances don’t make it possible, then unfortunately I will have to wait, but I am determined and hopeful that it will be able to happen this year.

Edits have been eating up a lot of my time, and there’s still a lot ahead of me before I’m done with Clara and Ezra, so I might not be on the blog as much as I want to be, but I’m going to keep killing it with edits.
Here’s to happy writing!

April Goals

leafs

Hello April, hello spring (hopefully).

I’ve been unusually quiet these past few months. So much has happened, and still ahead of me there is so much more to do. I’ve let work, moving, and life itself come in the way.

So here I am, again, trying to breathe back life into my website.

So let’s get back to it.

It’s April. It’s a new month, and I’ve set new goals for myself. The first part of getting back to work is getting myself back into a routine and holding myself responsible for that routine. I’m hoping to have edits done this month, send out my book to beta readers in May, and then work in June through the final stage of edits and prepping the book for publication.

Meaning that hopefully (and this is a big “hopefully”), Clara and Ezra will release in July. August at the latest.

I’ve set these goals for myself within what I think is a reasonable time frame. This book is still releasing this year, and I won’t let all the big (and might I add wonderful) changes that have happened get in the way of its release.

So here’s to this new month. To setting new goals again. Wish me luck!

And to all you Camp NaNoWriMo folks out there, good luck and happy writing!

Leave in the comments your goals for this month. How do you keep on track –I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Clara and Ezra -cover news

I’m very pleased to announce as of today I’ve received the official cover for Clara and Ezra. The cover, like my previous two, was designed once again by Hell Yes Design.

It’s a weird thing to have a cover for this book after feeling as though I’ve worked on it for so hard. There really is so much to be done in order to maintain the release date of this year. A release date I intend to keep.

I won’t be revealing the official cover until I have something more definitive than “in 2018” for the release date. But I will say I love the cover, and quite honestly I don’t know what cover is my favorite anymore after this.

Admittedly I’ve been behind in my edits. Only just this month I hit 25k. I have a lot of work ahead of me.

Can’t wait to share the cover with you guys!

In the meantime I’m hoping this year I can get back into blogging. Patience. It’s a slow process, but it is going to get it done.