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Wednesday, January 3, 2018

#IWSG and Chrys Fey's Flaming Crimes Blogfest


It's the 1st Wednesday of 2018. Happy First Insecure Writers Support Group Day of the year. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. And thanks to this month's awesome hosts:  Tyrean Martinson, Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor, Megan Morgan, Jennifer Lane, and Rachna Chhabria!


January is named after the Roman god Janus. Note that he has two faces, one for looking back and one to look forward. Isn't that what we do at this time of year? We look back at what we've accomplished and look forward to what we want to do this year. 

In 2017, I wrote two novels and two short stories. The novels were published, one in April (The Case of the Meddling Mama) and the other in early December (Romance Rekindled). One short story became my entry into The Rose of Prose Holiday Collection. The other is a free gift for subscribers to my newsletter. Considering I had houseguests (Son & his family) for two months, I'm proud of what I accomplished.

So what about 2018? My plan is to finish a romantic suspense (needs 20k words) and write two more novels (together 150k). That is such a daunting goal. Then I broke it down to the number of words I needed to write per day. Thanks to my handy-dandy calculator, 170k words divided by 360 days (I figured I'd need a few days off) means I need to write 475 words per day. Now that doesn't sound daunting at all. Yesterday, I wrote 779 words. I'm ahead of my goal already. (I didn't write on Jan. 1; one of my free days.)

This month's optional question: What steps have you taken or plan to take to put a schedule in place for your writing and publishing?

I just told you part of my plan, writing at least 475 words/day. That is as far as I've gotten in my plan. I need to set up the months I want to have each story completed so I can line up my editor and cover designer. I also need to get Romance Rekindled into print, something left over from last year. 

How about you? Have you set forth your plan for 2018?

Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today. 

And now the 2nd part of today's post. Chrys Fey is one of our members and I'm happy to participate in her Flaming Crimes Blogfest. 



Prompt: What is something ridiculous you would save if there was a fire?

Chrys said what I write about shouldn't be something that everyone would save--family photos, passport and other documents, etc. It should be something that means something to me but that others would think ridiculous. I've had over a month to think about this. Did I? Nope. As I look around my living room/dining room/kitchen, I see my nutcracker collection on top of bookcases, the china cabinet, curio cabinet, and the kitchen cabinets. With over a hundred, I have a lot to choose from. My eyes keep going to the ugliest nutcracker I've ever gotten. My decision is made.



So why would I take that? Every year, Hubs works hard to find an unusual nutcracker, one I don't have in a thirty-plus year collection. Last year, he found the wolf. (I think it's a wolf.) I would take that one because it represents not just my collection, but it represents all Hubs' efforts to find that different nutcracker each year.
 





Series: Disaster Crimes #4
Page Count: 304 
Digital Price: 4.99 
Print Price: 16.99
Rating: Spicy (PG13) 

BUY LINKS:

BLURB: Beth and Donovan are now happily married, and what Beth wants more than anything is a baby. Her dream of starting a family is put on hold as fires burn dangerously close and Donovan becomes a victim of sabotage.

Donovan escapes what could've been a deadly wreck. Their past enemies have been eliminated, so who is cutting brake lines and leaving bloody messages? He vows to find out, for the sake of the woman he loves and the life they're trying to build.

Amidst a criminal mind game, a fire ignites next to their home. They battle the flames and fight to keep their house safe from the blaze pressing in on all sides, but neither of them expects to confront a psychotic adversary in the middle of the inferno.

Their lives may just go up in flames…



About the Author: Chrys Fey is the author of the Disaster Crimes Series, a unique concept blending romance, crimes, and disasters. She’s partnered with the Insecure Writer’s Support Group and runs their Goodreads book club. She’s also an editor for Dancing Lemur Press.

Author Links:


Diane's note: I've read all of Chrys' Disaster Crimes books. They are riveting. Beth and Donovan have survived so many disasters. Each time, I'm on the edge of my seat hoping they'll make it. I can't wait to read this one.

Here's a list of others who are participating in Chrys Fey's Flaming Crimes Blogfest:


49 comments:

  1. I'm not sure what I'll do. I want to write but can't seem to get motivated at all. I'm bored with the whole enchilada...writing, promoting, etc. I've ordered Donald Maas's book on Emotional writing and have another...think I'll get back to basics and see where that takes me. Great post! Good luck and God's blessings. PamT

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    1. Thanks, Pam. A writer friend said she followed Julia Cameron's The Artist's Way when her motivation was down. I heard Maas speak at a conference. His advice is great. Best wishes on getting your mojo back.

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  2. Best of luck with your plans. I too have books I hope to finish this year. May we both accomplish our goals.

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  3. Aww, that's a cute nutcracker. I love anything furry.

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  4. That nutcracker is adorable - I'd grab that too :-)

    Your plans sound really ambitious, but your track record from last year and how you break down your word count shows that it's incredibly realistic for you. You're my planning hero :-)

    All the best for the New Year.

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    1. Thanks, Ellen. I get so overwhelmed by large projects that I procrastinate and don't do anything. I figured breaking it down into manageable bites might help.

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  5. Good luck with your goal! 475 words per day isn't bad at all. I'm doing the 365 challenge again and will hope to meet my goal of 600 words per day. We'll see how it goes.

    LOL love your Nutcracker. It is unique for sure, but special since it sounds like your hubby put a lot of effort in finding it. A good thing to take.

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    1. I don't know about the 365 Challenge. I'll check it out. That nutcracker is getting a lot of likes. LOL I have to share with Hubs.

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  6. Amazing how much you've done and what you'll accomplish in 2018. I have no doubt you'll succeed. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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    1. Thanks, Anna. With encouragement like yours and others in IWSG, I have to succeed. :)

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  7. Well...after saving those things that everyone would save. ;)

    We both said a nutcracker! That is really funny. I forgot to take a picture of mine, but he's a little shy because he's missing his nose and feet. And his beard. :P

    Thank you for participating in my blog hop!

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    1. Chrys, that is so funny. I love the pic of the nutcracker on your blog. Wishing you much success with your new release.

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  8. Love how you take a monster goal & break it into manageable pieces, Diane! You've proven you can do it! I'm going to revisit my writing schedule & see if I can incorporate your method into it. X amount of words a day doesn't sound so daunting. Happy New Year!

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    1. I am such a procrastinator. When a project seems too big, I dog around and never get to it. So I hope this helps me accomplish my goal.

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  9. Such modest goals. ;) Honestly, it sounds fantastic and fun. I wish you luck in all your endeavors.

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    1. LOL, Ryan. I'm retired from a day job, so I can write all the time. I don't, of course. I'd rather play with the grandkiddies. But if I don't set goals, I won't do anything.

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  10. Love the nutcracker! Not sure what I'd save either. Good luck with your writing goals, I'm trying to focus more this year. I was very specific last year with goals and it was too much pressure for me.

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    1. Thanks, Maureen. Another vote for the nutcracker. LOL When I don't have goals, I procrastinate. I also give myself permission to goof off when pressure starts getting to me.

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  11. That's pretty cool that your hubby makes a new nutcracker every year. Can't say I've ever seen a wolf one!

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    1. I think he found it at Walgreen's. He did make me penguin nutcracker several years ago, and I almost chose that one. Being my usual procrastinating self, I had a picture of the wolf and not the penguin, and I had to get the post up. LOL

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  12. That is an awesome nutcracker! I love it!

    Best of luck with your writing goals. I like that you broke the word count down. 475 words a day seems manageable to me. :)

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    1. Thanks, M.J. Awesome, huh? Not your typical nutcracker. Hubs starts looking around Thanksgiving for something unusual.

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  13. I love your pick for the fest! That nutcracker is awesome. :D
    You had such a productive 2017, it's wonderful. I feel sure you will meet your 2018 goals too. Good luck!

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    1. Thanks, Julie. i hope I meet my goals, too. Good luck on yours.

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  14. You did good in 2017, especially considering the house guests. :) Your word goal for 2018 sounds very reasonable and low enough that an ambitious catch up day now and then should cover any lapses. Onward into new projects!

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    1. Thanks, Jean. I'm sure I'll need that catch-up day.

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  15. I'm always writing. I can't keep away from it right now, and I feel so lucky that -- as of now -- the words are flowing! Normally, I have to make myself write one scene per day. And, to answer the other question, I would save the Texas flag that flew over the capitol the day I graduated from high school.

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    1. Does it feel great when the words flow? I love that feeling, and then when I realize how much I've written and I'm totally geeked. That is so cool about the Texas flag. That sounds so special.

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  16. Good luck with your goals! I think 475 is a reasonable word count for each day.
    I love that you have a nutcracker collection! And that your husband tries to find you interesting ones. Very cool.

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    1. Thanks, Sarah. That collection started when my MIL got me a nutcracker one Christmas back in the 1980s. When she saw how much I liked it, she got me one (or more) every year afterward. I had to tell my family not to give me anymore. Except Hubs and he's only allowed to give me one.

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  17. Ah I love it. That is an unusual nutcracker. Great choice. Like your plan for 2018 too. Happy 2018.
    Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

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    1. Thanks, Juneta. Unusual is right. LOL Best wishes for a great 2018.

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  18. Congratulations on a very successful and productive 2017, Diane! Based on your (word) calculations for this year, how do you schedule in reviews and second (and third?) drafts? Are those just easy edits for you, or do you end up adding more words/material? I am truly amazed at how much you get done in a year. Fantastic!! I have been trying to finish my memoir for two years. Maybe 2018 will make that happen. :-)

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    1. Thanks, Liesbet. Since I can write more than 475 words per day, I (sort of) factored in the edits/rewrites. I also go over what I've written and tweak as I go. By the time, I finished the 1st draft, it's in pretty good shape. Good luck on your memoir. I think that's different from writing fiction. I'm sure there must be a "template" for writing memoirs, as there is for writing something like adventure stories. I use Christopher Vogel's Hero's Journey base on Campbell's. It's almost instinctive now.

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  19. Hi Diane, congratulations you have had a very productive 2017. I'm very impressed, 2 novels and 2 stories in one year. That's just super.

    Rachna Chhabria
    Co-host IWSG
    Rachna's Scriptorium

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    1. Thanks, Rachna. With the exception of the 2 shorts, those other stories were started in 2016, then finished in 2017. Thanks for co-hosting. I hope you have a great year.

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  20. Love this post! I had a goal to write more, as I always do, but the way you broke it down makes it so much easier. I'm going to give that a try. I'm also going to try to master Scrivener and see if that helps. thanks and best of luck!

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    1. Thanks, Alicia. If I didn't break down a big project into smaller tasks, I'd never start it. Too intimidating. Setting an accomplishable goal gives me the boost I need when I make it.

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  21. 475 words/day sounds manageable. I wish you every success in meeting your daily allotment, Diane! Your funky nutcracker is adorable! I can see why you'd want to save it from flames. Keeping to a schedule is a challenge for me. Something is always interrupting it as soon as I get it down on paper. But a bright and shiny new year has me in an optimistic mood. All the best to you!

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    1. Thanks so much. I have the same problem with interruptions. Granted, I could find another (quieter) place to write.

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  22. I like your daily word count as a goal. It makes your overall goal so much affordable. Once I can get more consistent in writing for myself vs. my job, I may try a word count per week or a certain number of hours to write per week. Good luck with your plans!

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    1. Hours work, too. But I'm amazed at how much I can write in a shorter amount of time. Whatever works, right?

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  23. Thank you so much for stopping by my blog. Happy IWSG and blog fest day! Thanks for the bit of history. 400 words a day sounds quite doable. Best of luck with your 2018 goals. I can totally understand trying to save your Nutcrackers.

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    1. Thanks, Toi. We're taking down the decorations today. I'm going to miss seeing the nutcrackers.

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  24. Great post, Di! Looking behind and ahead. An inspiring thought. You're more than up to the task. I'm cheering you on. And I love Chrys's choice of rescue object.

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    1. Thanks, Nancy. Making work manageable works for me. I hope you're feeling better after your surgery. Just call us bionic women.

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  25. I've set an ambitious schedule for 2018, and I'm already behind. Thankfully, I gave myself much longer than needed to write each book. Well, a little longer than needed.

    Best of luck on achieving your goals this year, and congrats on your two releases last year.

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