Shoot for the Moon 2017 Challenge – July Roundup


How have I got on with my writing, reading and blogging targets?

• 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…
Done. I managed to complete the line edit of Miranda’s Tempest aided by my new purchase of Dragon Naturally, which now dictates my manuscript back to me in an English accent. This makes it far easier to listen and stay focused so I can line edit for longer. I have now sent my rewrite back to the agent who kindly provided me with such helpful advice and had an acknowledgement within the hour that she had safely received it.


• Edit Dying for Space
Edit Dying for Space after receiving advice from my beta readers on the second book of The Sunblinded Trilogy, in readiness for self-publishing the series.
I was able to power through this final edit of the second book in The Sunblinded Trilogy and make a good start on Breathing Space, the third and final book. At this rate, I should be able to get started on the first draft of Bloodless before the end of the summer.



• 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.
During July, I read 16 books and reviewed 15 of them. This brought my yearly total of books read by the end of the month to 106. As for book of the month – oh my word – this is a painful choice as there were so many marvellous books. I think it is a tie between Margaret Atwood’s Hag-Seed: The Tempest Retold and Artemis by Andy Weir.


• Creative Writing courses
To continue to deliver my courses to the best of my ability.
The One Day Summer Surgery writing course was a lovely day, though very hot. However, everyone took full part in all the writing exercises and contributed throughout the day, making it a delightful teaching experience. A fitting end to a wonderful year – and I am now starting to plan next term’s course notes.


• Continue teaching TW
Continue delivering the customised syllabus we have managed to find and devise in order to meet Tim’s specific learning requirements.
We received the marvellous news that Tim has passed his first external English exam with flying colours. The final weeks of the term were taken up with working on his film script in readiness for the cast to go away and learn their words over the summer. They also rehearsed and prepared all 13 songs and went into a professional recording studio to record them. The resultant CD of Tim’s own compositions and words is wonderful to hear. I am thrilled at the progress he has made this year – it has exceeded my wildest expectations.


• Continue to improve my fitness
To attend weekly Fitstep and Pilates classes to improve my fitness and regain the strength and stamina I lost after a decade of chronic lower back pain.
I have not been able to attend all the Wednesday morning sessions as I’m now in major granny mode. But I am thoroughly enjoying them and have one more class before the summer break.

July was a really productive month on the editing side and I am also a bit taken aback at just how many books I managed to read. Once I start writing again, I expect those stats to take a tumble. It’s been a month of extremes – very busy and successful on one hand – and yet, very stressful and difficult due to issues at J’s work. At last there looks to be some resolution ahead of us, which is a relief.

14 responses »

  1. Sorry to hear things have been stressful at Himself’s job. :/ And isn’t it often the case, that everything – both the good and the undesired – seem to happen all at once? I know both feelings pretty well.

    The progress you’ve made on all your projects, though, Sarah… It’s astounding. I don’t know what else I can say except that I applaud you. 🙂

    • Thank you, Sara:). It’s been a real roller-coaster – more so as my sister was unexpectedly taken seriously ill and rushed to hospital on Saturday with head injuries. She is now back with us having had several days of being closely monitored with treatments and will also need to undertake further investigations. We also have the grandchildren staying… It has been stressful, though I am very relieved as it could have been so much worse.

    • Yes – it’s a relief to be out of editland for a while:). I highly recommend Artemis and look forward to hearing your thoughts on it – I’ll be reviewing it on or about the publication date.

  2. My how lovely how you set important goals and then meet them. My responsibilities are overlapping, not a good thing. No time for personal projects, not good either. IF I ever teach summer school again, it will be the twelve week course not the five week mini courses. Teaching at that pace is a physical impossibility in a writing course. It was hard on the students and hard on me!

    • Yes… I did wonder how you were going to tick all the boxes in such a short time:(. I hope you get a chance to recharge your batteries before the end of the summer, Rae.

      • I have a week, which will also involve getting ready for my university class and preparing for a new and different (easier) class at the college. It will be the first time in a long time I have taken on two classes: the university class has 23, as does the college class….oh my!

  3. Wow! Look at your accomplishments, Sarah! Two novels edited is a real achievement. 🙂 And you were staying on top of other things too. I really like your “shoot for the moon” posts, because they remind me that steady hard work gets things done and I should follow your example.

    • But I think you do ‘steady hard work’. Your daily writing targets are very impressive. I regularly look at what I’ve done and shake my head and think I should be working faster/smarter but at the end of the day, we all work within our capabilities and at our own pace. I think your output is impressive – I just wish I was writing more and editing less!

      • I look at you and think the same. I feel somewhat bad about lowering my daily writing goal to 500 words, but in the end, it was a good move. Left me with some breathing space.
        And I second your wish: I wish I could write more and edit less! 🙂

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