A few changes…

This year I’ve been trying a few things to get more organized. I didn’t have to do spring cleaning (after moving twice in three months I already purged everything I could) but I am in desperate need of organization of my time.

On that note I am starting a bullet journal. This is just a fancy calendar that has a few extras, like mood and habit trackers so that you can see a bit more in depth how your month went. It also has spaces for keeping track of daily tasks, and for mine I added a tracker to see how much time each day I was spending on writing, art, marketing, and other things I need to do.

A few years ago I started tracking how much I wrote daily, and that helped a lot. I still track that, but now I need to branch out and look at how much time I am spending on it as well. Word counts can’t go up if I’m spending more time playing games than writing.

The second thing I did last month was separate my writing from my art… for the most part. I created a new Instagram specifically for art projects, and set aside a little time each day to do a new sketch or finish an old one. This has been a lot of fun, and a boost to my accomplishments since I am completing a project every day, even if it’s a small one. Finishing these small projects makes me want to go out and finish bigger projects. It’s also encouraging me to learn new techniques, and just get better.

You can find my art Instagram HERE.

I’ve been working on making prints, or other items with the art. I’ve added a few things to my Etsy store, and I’ve been working on prints. I really do want to do a little more with my art then just show it online. For right now I’m going through and redoing a LOT of my old art to make it up to date. Crisper, sharper, better colors. I also need to figure out a printer soon so I can do even more.

Okay, now I need to get back to the writing portion of the day.

Let’s Make a Deal

So I just found out RedBubble is having a site wide sale of 25-60% off everything. The code is CYBERDEALS. If you’d like stickers, totes, cups, or blankets go to my shop here and get some cute things: LelulaGames

I also re-opened my Etsy shop. I have enamel pins, coloring pages, and a few other things there. If you go before December 15th and use code “TISTHESEASON” you’ll get a 20% discount to all of your purchases.

I just might have something in store for this weekend too, so keep an eye out for that.

Productive.

This week has been really productive.

I spent most of the weekend painting a project for Bjorn. I forgot how physically demanding painting can be. I can’t wait to show pictures of the thing I painted in a couple weeks. I’m really kind of proud of how it turned out.

The rest of the weekend I finished writing my first article for fiverr. I’m trying to start doing a few commissions here and there and make a little extra besides the book sales. I think it will help build my confidence too.

The last couple of days I finished some art work, uploaded it to redbubble and spoonflower, and was pretty happy with that. A few birds, mostly.

I’ve been toying with the idea of a booth at a con, but I don’t think I have anything to really set me apart yet. But I’m working on it. Maybe my fabric, but I’m not sure how to present that.

I have a few designs for resin molding that I want to try, and that could be an interesting direction to go. I just need something to make people come take a look, and some things they might want to buy.

Today I finished a set of bugs. I know, sounds weird, but they’re cute.

And they were fun to draw. It was a nice break from other things.

Tomorrow is back to the novel. I’m half way through the first round of edits, and I’d like to get most of it done by the end of the month. Let’s see how that goes.

The Birds Have It

This week I’ve been working on a lot of art work. Drawing, cleaning it up, and even posting a few things on Red bubble. I also learned that Red Bubble has a few new items, so I had to go through and edit most of my pictures that are already there. Like a throw for your bed or couch. I think I’m going to have to order one of those.

If you’d like to see some of the art I’ve been doing you can follow me on instagram. I try to do a couple of posts a week, but it depends on what else is happening. I’m currently working on editing book two of my Half Blood Sorceress series so I can get that out soon.

I’ve also been setting up some free promos for books over the next couple of months, and planning some more drawings. I still want to do some sort of figurine, but I’m still designing something. Right now the books take priority.

But I’m exhausted so I’m off to bed now. If you’re interested in taking a look at the new designs please check them out here. And look forward to the free book promos in the coming weeks.

 

Progress….

Quick announcement: I will have a short story free every weekend for a while, so if you follow me on Amazon, or here, or join my newsletter, you can get information about the free short stories. I will be trying to get a few new, never before seen, short stories out soon as well, so look for those.

Now on with the regularly scheduled blog post:

I decided to catch up on some files today and see what I’ve been doing. It’s the middle of the year, and the third month into my “writing for a living” adventure, so it seems fitting. I think I’m doing more check ins since going full time, but this helps me gauge how well I’m doing with the word count and keep things in perspective.

Sorry but this is going to have a bunch of numbers. There will also be a summery at the end.

Since 2012 I have published 33 short stories, 6 novellas and 5 full length novels. (Novella is 10-49k, shorts are less, novels more.) That’s just over half a million words published. Of course many of the short stories are in anthologies so I only have 24 books out, but… that’s a lot of stories that I’ve completed. It’s hard to see how many things I’ve completed since I am often working on a single book for months at a time with no end, so it’s good to remember that I can, and have, completed stories.

This year has also had it’s busy moments with moving twice (in Feb and May) slowing me down a bit. But I’m still getting a steady stream of words out, and so far this year I’ve written 79,000 words. April has been my best month to date with 22.6k words written, and of course Feb, the month we moved to Texas, was the worst. Considering we packed for two weeks straight then drove for five days I’m glad I got any work done at all in Feb.

For a little bit of comparison, in 2017 and 2018 I wrote a total of just over 100k words each year. That’s all twelve months, including my attempt at NaNoWriMo which I failed both years. This year, and it’s only the first week of June, I’m already at 80k, and I should hit the 100k mark by end of month. Most of that writing has been since March so I’m on track.

My average daily word count has gone up from 300 to 900 words a day. It fluctuates, of course, but I try to get at least 500 on the days when we’re busy with things, like moving. So far it’s worked. The goal is to get to 2k a day by the end of this month. Eventually I’d like to get to 5k a day, but that’s going to take some stretching of the muscles.

These averages are written words on days that I write. I try not to skip days, but there are always days when you’re inundated with other things, like doctor appointments, travel, sickness, or the like. That is why I want to keep getting that average word count up, because I know days off happen and I want to offset them. I’ve set a monthly goal of 20k words at the moment, but I want it up to 30k soon. I’ve got to keep stretching. Keep working harder.

I haven’t done a lot of marketing. Right now my boyfriend and I agree that I just need to complete novels. Marketing can be so much easier if you have that back log of books to go through. Plus my strongest suit is in writing, not marketing, so if I have a lot to work out I will feel like I can take some time off writing to figure out the marketing bits with less issue.

I’ve also been posting a lot of artwork over on Redbubble as stickers, mugs, and things like that, as well as posting a bit more on instagram. Drawing has always been a way for me to relax and have fun, so I will be continuing to do that. I even have a coloring book out.

Summery: I’ve written a lot over the last few years, but this year has been a great increase and I’m working to get even more done. Also look for those free short stories on the weekends going forward, and a few new ones to be added.

Birthday Fun

For my birthday we went to a dinner and a movie. For dinner we had a show, too, since we went to one of the Japanese grills nearby where the chef cooks on the table in front of you. He was really good, and pretty funny. And the food was delicious.

Overall a great day.

This month has been crazy with the second move this year, a published book, and cleaning up and posting a bunch of my artwork on redbubble. But we are getting settled in and I am back to writing again. Onto the next book. I want this one finished in a month! I can do this!

 

 

 

Covers, all the covers!

 

I am expecting edits back soon for the first book in the new novels, and I’m tweeking the covers a little, but I have a finished draft.

I am so excited for this series. It’s the first time I’ve done anything like this, and I’m really happy with how it’s come out. I’m sure that the edits will make things shine! Plus book three is already half finished so I’m pretty confident it will be out in December.

Steel Soul: Jupiter and Cas log into the nerve gear for the first time and take on their first quest, rescuing the mayor. But things aren’t quite what they seem!

Steel Heart: The roads aren’t safe, and there’s more than in-game death at stake.

Steel Line: The Hub… and that’s the only hint you’re getting for that one till December. 😉

For the covers, the figures were all designed by Abi Grey. I did the backgrounds and typography.

Really, I can’t wait to get them out there. It’s going to be a lot of work once I get the edits back, but so worth it.