#IWSG December: Yup. 2017 is over. Here are my BIG FAILS and my wins. Most importantly: MY PLANS.

It's the first Wednesday of the month, so it's time for me to write a blog post...
BECAUSE it's time for this month's Insecure Writer's Support Group blog hop.

Man, November didn't pan out the way I'd hoped, writing-wise. In fact, all of 2017 didn't really match up to all I'd had planned. Even so, I accomplished a lot that I'm proud of, so I'll jot down the things that kept me from meeting my goals and set forth to be more productive in 2018.

November Goals:

*Write 50,000 words of novel #3 for NaNoWriMo

*Get runs in to be ready for the half-marathon after Thanksgiving

*Be a decent and participatory team member on my November Running Challenge team

*Complete all assessments, grading, and report cards for November/first quarter report cards

*Celebrate Thanksgiving with family without breaking down about missing Mom and Grandma

The November Reality:

*I wrote 13,000 words of novel #3 for NaNoWriMo (BIG FAIL)

*I revised/edited novella 1.5 for my editor and got it sent in to her... finally (Well, that makes the BIG FAIL a little better, but... )

*I ran 70 miles to prepare for my half-marathon and to contribute to my team's overall mileage (The big stressor here was that they wanted to get together for a group run, and I run solo BECAUSE it's hard enough to fit in the runs when I have a second. I tend to find a lag in my family schedule, time when my husband or oldest is home to supervise the youngest two and jet out the door for a run. I lost my team 10 bonus miles for not making it to a group run.)

*I ran the half-marathon with my cousin. It was only her second half-marathon. She ran her first eleven years ago when I ran my first. Since then, I've run at least 15, so I ran with her... slowly. It was hard, but also freeing. When I run on my own, I put pressure on myself to run fast and beat a time... even when I often don't train the way I should... not if I want to set a PR. So, while running slowly, I realized how emotional races are when I run by myself. I'm hoping that now that I know this about myself, I'll enjoy my solo races more... and set a PR. (Ha!) :)

*Most importantly, a week before Thanksgiving, I finally contacted my cousins, who contacted their mom and we learned that since Grandma wasn't with us this year, 3 of the 6 siblings were going to spend Thanksgiving with their own families and not get together with the whole group as we have since the beginning of time ;). That left my two aunts, my cousins, my hubby and kids, and my dad. They planned to go to a restaurant for a buffet. We've always, always had it at one of our homes. Especially with young ones, sitting quietly at a restaurant when we don't get together more often than holidays didn't sound appealing. I wanted to host it. My mom had always been the host. I wanted to take on that tradition and host in her honor, to make it mine now that she's gone. My husband didn't want to go to a restaurant. He didn't want to host. WE HOSTED OUR FIRST THANKSGIVING! We had six days to get our messy, unorganized, falling apart house in shape. There went a week of writing. After work each day, I worked on homework with the kids and we got them to their extra curriculars, I did laundry, and I CLEANED and I ORGANIZED and I PURCHASED "stuff" for the tables and a giving tree for my guests to clip what they're thankful for to. IT WAS BEAUTIFUL. I was too busy and too peaceful with hosting to be sad and miss my mom and grandma. It was the best thing we could have done. :)

The Truth:

I could've gotten farther in my novel #3.

I waste a lot of time.

When I sat on my laptop this past month, I spent 90% of the time not writing.

I need to disconnect our internet. I didn't even do anything worthwhile online.

I waste a lot of time.

The 2018 Goal:

I need to be more productive.

I will publish:

Book #3, Novella #2.5, Short Story #3.5, Expanded Edition, 27 Daisies, and An Illusion of Control

The Plan:

I will type up a weekly/monthly business/publishing/marketing plan with all the items to accomplish each day. I will hold myself to these daily/weekly/monthly goals and keep better track of my time working.

Last spring my husband said that writing is only my hobby, not my business. Until I keep track of my expenses vs my income, it's a hobby.

I agreed. 

I created spreadsheets and put my information in.

I did not keep up with that.

Last night, my husband said until I make more than I spend, and until I KNOW how much that even is, writing is my hobby, and not a business.

I agreed.

I spent hours printing off all my expenses, my income, and scrounging around for the in-home sales notes and etc. I'm unorganized. I'm inconsistent. 

I need to improve.

 I will set and stick to a work schedule, that includes writing, marketing (free things, like more social media presence), and accounting.


What's the biggest thing that keeps you from meeting your goals? Is it safe to say we all struggle with wasting time on the internet? Or, is there something else? Or, are you way better and being productive than me? PLEASE, share your tips and advice for me. I need some serious help before 2018 hits!

December 6 question - As you look back on 2017, with all its successes/failures, if you could backtrack, what would you do differently?

The awesome co-hosts for the December 6 posting of the IWSG are Julie Flanders, Shannon Lawrence, Fundy Blue, and Heather Gardner!