Shoot for the Moon 2017 Challenge – March Roundup


How have I got on with my writing, reading and blogging targets now that we are a quarter of the way into 2017?

• Rewrite Miranda’s Tempest
Complete my rewrite of Miranda’s Tempest in response to some very detailed advice on how to improve it by an agent during the submission process. I had intended to have it completed by now, but got seriously stalled halfway through December…
This month has seen me going through the manuscript after a fortnight’s break to ensure that after the rewrite, it all makes sense. I’ve completed a line edit and turned it over to Himself to read, who agreed the story is stronger. I am hoping my beta-readers will be able to let me have it back by the end of the month so I can resubmit it at the beginning of May. Overall, I lost 7,000 words through the rewrite.

• Publishing deal for Netted
Submit my work in a professional and organised manner.
The above target finally paid off. After entering Netted – my post-apocalyptic science fiction adventure – to Kristel Ink’s open submission, they got back to me last year and asked for a rewrite. I duly resubmitted the manuscript and at the end of January I got the brilliant news they wanted to publish it. I have had such a warm welcome from fellow Grimmie authors and during March, they formally announced that myself and Myfanwy Rodman have been signed up, with a view to publishing Netted in 2019. Yay!

• Write at least 100 reviews for my blog during 2017
I hope to continue to read and review at least 100 books, with at least 24 being by women authors previously unknown to me as part of the Discovery Challenge, thanks to Joanne Hall’s post. I also would very much like to get more of my To Be Read pile read and reviewed, so will have another go at the Tackling my TBR Pile this year with the aim of reading at least 30 books during the year from this teetering stack. I have reported about my progress with these two reading targets here.
During March, I read and reviewed 13 books, which came to just under 21,000 words, including some fabulous books, and my Book of the Month was After Atlas by Emma Newman. I was also asked by Sarah Ash, the marvellous fantasy author, to contribute a guest article for her blog, which you can read here.

• Creative Writing courses
Continue providing challenging and informative courses to assist my students to become productive, adventurous writers.
We are now into the Easter holidays and last term’s course was very successful with most of my new students signing up for the coming term. I can’t quite credit that we will be starting the Summer term in just over a week.

• Continue teaching TW
Continue delivering the customised syllabus we have managed to find and devise in order to meet Tim’s specific learning requirements.
I’m so pleased at Tim’s progress during this term – he has made several significant breakthroughs since Christmas. Next term is a crucial one as he will be sitting a couple of exams for the first time.

• Continue to improve my fitness
To continue to attend Fitstep and Pilates classes to improve my fitness and regain the strength and stamina I lost after a decade of chronic lower back pain.
This continues to go well. I’m delighted that each session allows me now to steadily push myself further, rather than just stagger through without collapsing – which also makes it a lot more enjoyable, too. On a less positive note – J was discovered to have severe sleep apnea and a pre-diabetes Type II condition. This was a huge shock, but explains his lack of energy and concentration issues. He is now wearing a diagnostic sleep mask and is due to return to the Sleep Clinic for a follow-up appointment during this month.

Another great month, with some wonderful books read and a big breakthrough in my writing career. Though J’s diagnosis was a nasty surprise, it is also a plus as we had no idea just how potentially lethal sleep apnea can be, especially as J was averaging 51 non-breathing episodes per hour, which is very severe. The good news is that using the sleep mask should eradicate the broken sleep and high risk of stroke and heart attack. It is certainly a lot more restful sleeping alongside him, now I’m starting to get used to the rather eerie silence where once there was thunderous snoring.

I wrote just over 27,500 words during the month, mostly on my blog, which brings my yearly total to just over 114,500 words so far.

15 responses »

  1. It sounds like you’re having a very productive year so far. It must feel great to have finished your re-writes and to have the book out with your beta readers. I hope you can get it submitted by the beginning of May – I wish you all the luck with it.
    It must feel amazing to have your deal for Netted and to know you have a book coming out in 2019.
    It sounds like you’re on track with your review aim too. I should probably think about making that part of my target for next year as I tend to focus on reviewing ARCs and then only review my own books if I have a gap on my blog or if I’m in the mood to write about them. I did find that when I looked at my stats for the first quarter of this year that 65% of the books I’ve read so far have been by women so I was pleased about that.
    I hope the rest of this year proves to be so productive and rewarding for you.

    • Thank you, Hayley. Yes, it’s been a great year career-wise and a bit lumpy on the personal front, though I think we were actually very lucky. As for Netted – I’m thrilled:). Yes – now I’m into the swing with Netgalley arcs, I can see how that could become a treadmill, which would be a real shame as right now my reading is a source of major pleasure and excitement. Have a great Easter:).

    • Thank you, Sara – I’m still quite shocked at how profound this change has been and how much it has affected both of us, but I’m sure that in the long run it can only make things a whole lot better.

  2. My what you have accomplished! I am very proud of you. You have helped me personally so much so far this year: putting me on to both the TENS unit and Kindle, helping me check out My Better Half for sleep apnea, and inspiring me to blog often and take care of myself health-wise. For all that just since the first of the year, Fine Friend, TY!

    • Thank you so much for your kind words – and you, too, have helped enormously. Your constant kindness, positive energy and can-do attitude has steadied me at times when I’ve been feeling a tad wobbly… And this year, especially recently, there have been wobbles! Thank you for your friendship and support – it is a constant source of wonder and joy that this technology can enable me to meet a lovely person such as yourself and bond over books and Life:)).

  3. Sounds like all in all you had a very good March. First of all, YAY for the finished rewrite, and even though I already congratulated you on the deal, here’s one more YAY! for it (because it’s never enough).
    I hope April is going to be even better and that your husband’s health troubles will pass (as much as it is possible).

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