Monday, January 3, 2011

First Year Blogoversary

Well, the holidays are over. I hope everyone had a great break. Whew! It was fun, but I'm ready to get crackin'. So, here it is, my first year as a blogger. That's right. One year ago, I started this crazy gig. I met my first CP, Kelly, at a SCBWI Conference. She has been the best. I had no idea what I was doing. Both of us were "just starting" all this novel stuff, and she has helped me a ton. Thanks so much Kelly!

She also told me to start blogging. I definitely didn't know what I was getting myself into or what to expect. Many things have happened and, well, I've learned a lot. I didn't think I was ever interesting so I'm quite flattered all you blogger buddies are reading what I write. I even got to meet some of you in person. So fun. I've found wonderful critique partners, and people that are just plain awesome. The support has been amazing.Thank you! Yeah, you keep me going.

When I started, I finished what I thought was a first draft. I guess now it's sort of like a really detailed outline. I've re-written most of my WiP#1, but I'm happy where it's going. Sure I'm about to rip my hair out at times, but that's part of this whole thing. This journey. I've decided to share my current stats:

WiP#1 --working title: Lingering Souls (first draft/loose outline 87,000 words), re-writes/revisions 60,000 words

WiP#2--outlining

WiP#3--working title: Wrapping Paper currently outlining, 2500 words written.

Six other ideas just waiting.

With all this. I've had to learn how to critique, and how to take a critique (still not easy). I've had an agent tear my work apart, and I've had a senior editor tell me my idea and synopsis were cool, interesting and intriguing. This basically made my year, and pushed me to keep going. For every hit that knocked me down, I searched for something to pick me up. Becoming more positive is something I've had to work hard at (I'm natually a pessimist), and I've had to learn patience. That has been the hardest.

I started this blog like a horse racing towards the finish line. I was everywhere, wanting to know more, thinking I would be finished WiP#1 and query it in about 6 months. For a seasoned author, sure, but for me...no. I'm learning, I admit it. Plus, I have two kids, a hubs, and a household to run. I'm not complaining, I'm just statin' the facts here folks. I was in a hurry to do so many things that I realized I really need to take my time at this, if I don't, stupid mistakes happen.

So I'm ending my freshman year, happy. Like most freshman, I thought I knew it all, tried to rush through it, and possibly partied too hard. The wake up call was learning what it takes, and if I can take it. The answer-- I can, and I can't wait to keep going. It took me this long to pursue this, and I'm going to die trying.

Now that the New Year is here, I have some--ahem--goals/resolutions for my sophomore year:
1. To finish WiP#1--it's been almost two years since I started it, and I want it done. Thanks to all my CPs who have suffered through this.
2. Query WiP#1 in the fall. Don't laugh.
3. Work on WiP#3.Would love to finish the first draft. **fingers crossed**
4. Learn more.
5. Learn even more.
6. Read more than I did last year.
7. Figure out a schedule that works best for my writing.
8. Fit into that schedule some sort of exercise because I ate way too many cookies.
9. Comment more and update this blog. It's been too long.
10. Spend time with the family. I do this now, but it doesn't hurt to try and fit more time in.

Well, there it is. Sure, most of it may be a little above and beyond, but, hey, it's worth a shot.

Let's hear from you:

What are your goals this year?

Was Santa good to you?

Any tips on how to create an awesome writing schedule with family duties? (I'm always looking for advice on this.)

I have some exciting things coming up. Contest--of course. To be announced this next week. Also, another blogfest. This time Writing the Next Line blogfest. I will announce on Wednesday.
Thanks again to Frankie for hosting that awesome No Kiss Blogfest yesterday. I hope to read more entries today!

Have a wonderful day and thank you, thank you, thank you! Here's to 2011! *toasting my glass* Prost!

28 comments:

  1. Congratulations and Happy New Year! I'm so glad you joined the blogging world. You're one of the best Christine!

    As for schedules -- up at 5 a.m. is the only thing I can say. And there're no guarantees it will work. When the kids go to school things get a LOT easier.

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  2. Congratulations on a whole year! I hit my first year in November and like you, I've learned a lot. My goal for this year - polish the sequel to my book and have my publisher accept it.

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  3. Congratulations on the 1 yr blogoversary. You have some great resolutions there. Mine are similar, I'm planning to query my current work while starting another, then there's finishing and passing uni so I can become a registered teacher by the end of the year.

    Good luck with accomplishing all your resolutions.

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  4. Hi Christine - We comment on a lot of the same blogs so I thought I'd pop over and say hello. Congrats on finishing your freshman year! :) Great goals for your sophomore.

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  5. Hi,

    Happy Blogoversary!!! No resolutions at this end - it would be a pointless gesture! ;)

    best
    F

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  6. Happy Blogoversary!! Glad to have met you. Juggling writing and kids' schedules is not easy. I think the key is to be flexible yet keep a collective goal. (How much writing, reading, editing, am I going to get done this week.) I find that less stressful.

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  7. Wow, that was some New Year resolution you had last year--to write a blog. Congrats on your blogoversary, Christine.

    The only way I've been able to juggle writing and kids (and blogging) is because they're all in school. And this school year, they're all in school full time. :D It's still hard though. Despite having all those hours, I can still get busy doing other things, then I feel guilty that I didn't write as much as I wanted to. I don't think there's an easy answer. You just have to be proud of what you do manage to accomplish.

    But, boy, would it be great to be as prolific as some authors. :D

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  8. Happy blogaversary! And Happy New Year :-)

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  9. congrats on your one year anniversary. you've been a sweet blogging friend. my goal is to finish my sequel this year. crossing fingers. writing schedule? what's that?

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  10. Blogging has really surprised me by being one of the best things I did in the last year. Both in terms of camaraderie and in terms of finding GREAT crit partners. Happy anniversary and have a super 2011! :o) <3

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  11. I enjoyed reading about your journey! Best of luck to you in the New Year.

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  12. Congrats on one year! Yah, Christine!

    You are so right about this community it is the best. I am going to the scbwi conference in NYC in a few weeks. Are going? I would so love to meet a blogger friend.

    Michael

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  13. Happy Blog Birthday! Great list for this year! Good luck on all your want to accomplish!!

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  14. Happy Blogoversary! And hope you have a happy New Year. Your resolutions are almost the same as mine. :)

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  15. Happy anniversary & happy new year. I feel like such a slacker.

    I thought you were spot on about those unrealistic expectations when first starting. I really was a lot like a freshman this past year too. Hopefully, it's okay to get an agent and publishing contract as a sophomore, because I still haven't quite mastered that patience thing.

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  16. Congrats and Happy Blogoversary! LOL

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  17. Congratulations Christine!! You have done amazing! Truly you have. And I feel so honored to have met you and call you my friend. :) You will meet all your goals! I'll be here to help! Expect a little bit of an email from me in the next few weeks. :):):)

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  18. You have some great resolutions. COngratulations on one year of blogging. I hope you finish WIP # 1 it took me two years to finish the first draft of my book and I wish you all the best this year!

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  19. Whoo-hoo! Congrats on one year! We've both come along way-- and I'm so looking forward to the rest of this journey that we'll "write!" I'm a dork. So glad to have met you and I wouldn't be here without you!

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  20. Happy Blogoversary! You've accomplished so much this year, and that's amazing. All your resolutions are great ones, and good luck on them!

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  21. Happy 2011 to you, Christine and best of luck to you on your writing goals!! I've got two drafts to seriously revise and a wip to finish - hopefully all this year, and soon - I'd like to start querying as well. *fingers crossed* :)

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  22. Happy Anniversary. I'm glad you've had a good blogging experience. I am impressed by the amount of work you've done on your WIP, too. I hope your find your ideal writing schedule. i have no children, so I guess I don't have any excuse. Blogging is so addictive though ;O)

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  23. New follower here! Happy Blogoversary and Happy New Year!

    You've made some great goals, mine are pretty similar, as I also tend to be a pessimist (and I so want to be more positive).

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  24. What a success you've had, and only blogging for one year. You're inspiring.

    My goals for next year include finishing two books my editor wants to see by June. Yes, my fingers are tired, but it's all good. :)

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  25. Congratulations one your first year! I'm glad you started blogging as well :) Gives me another great writer to relate to! I love your title for WiP #1 and #3 (since #2 doesn't seem to have a title!). Good luck with all of your goals! I know you can do it :) I'm definitely rooting for you!

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  26. Wow Christine! I had no idea you were a newbie blogger/writer! You handle yourself with such class and confidence that I totally pegged you for a seasoned professional.

    What you've accomplished this past year is HUGE. I remember that first year for me and it's an amazing game-changer, isn't it? YAY for you!

    As for me, I'd love this year to be the one I learn to love exercise. Yes I'd like to lose weight, but honestly I see that as a positive aside to learning to be more fit. To care for myself better. I always have writing goals, though, so that's nothing really new. But my writing goals for this year are: Finish my BECOME rewrite and query it. Finish edits on JUMP BOYS and query it. Take THE SWIFT out of first draft ugliness and make something pretty of it. Query it. I'd like to finish/write three more novels this year ~ finish THE BLOOD CROWN and CHILDREN OF THE GODS and write something brand spankin, probably ADDICTED. Good times!!!

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  27. Happy blogoversary! You're accomplishing so much.

    My goal is to get my two wips into shape.

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