One Step Back and Two Forward

It is August 31, 2021 as I write this and time for a progress report. Adapting to change is never easy. So things progress in an irregular pattern. This month has been a one step back and two forward kind of experience. But I’m happy to report some progress.

Image of one way signs fanned in a circle so they point every which direction. Following them I took one step back and two forward.

Making

I was having trouble writing the last couple of scenes in Act II, so I drove out to the actual physical location where this portion of the story takes place. And drat it all, I learned that a cool detail I used doesn’t exist in real-life. So I took a step back and two steps forward. It took a couple of days to revisit chapters that used that cool detail and wrote it out of the story. The good news is that visit filled in some details that worked really well.

The middle of the story is my nemesis. I find all kinds of plot holes and illogical moves. But I believe I’ve repaired all of those and I have finally—at long last—moved on to Act III.

One, maybe two more months and I will share the manuscript with first readers. Hopefully, they’ll find all the silly slips and cut-and-paste errors I’ve made. Then I’ll be rewriting again (but faster I hope!)

Managing

A writer wears many hats. The managing hat encompasses everything that isn’t creating fiction or blog posts or marketing.

Even in managing I took a step back and two forward. I stepped back to review my brand strategy. Forward steps included listening to some of my favorite podcasts and reading. I read Mars One by Jonathan Maberry. It’s the first book I’ve been able to read since the beginning of the pandemic. (Tell me I’m not the only one having trouble reading during this.)

Marketing

My marketing efforts remain fairly small, but they are gaining some traction. This month was mostly a tweak here and there, then sit back and watch what happens.

Home

I love spending time with my grandsons. We celebrated my youngest grandson’s second birthday, and I had some extra time with him this month. I also visited with some friends. (We’re all vaccinated against COVID and taking precautions.)

Change is happening in my home life as I am adjusting to being single. Exploring new recipes and rearranging some things and selling other things have been a large part of my activities this month.

Events

Life is full of small but important events like my grandson’s birthday and C going to middle school. Thanks to COVID, no travel and not much time outside of my home. Though, I am in the early planning stages for some travel late this fall.

What I Learned

Small steps are the theme of my learning this month. There are small steps I’ve taken with Amazon ads, small steps in creating blurbs, and small steps in improving my brand. Yes, I’m being vague. Most of you don’t really care about those details and those of you who do will be on the lookout for more information in the future.

Intentions for Making

Next month I intend to increase the time I spend writing. I’d love to finish the book in the next month. But I’ve got a few knots between first draft and current draft to smooth out. So I’m making my intention to get 2/3rds of the way through Act III by the end of the month.

Intentions for Marketing

I won’t change my marketing plans as I still need to gather more data on the changes I made this month.

Intentions for Managing

In the Managing area, revising front and back matter is a priority for next month. One project I have going on is a slight rearrangement of my office to improve my workspace and workflow. Cleaning and preparing walls for paint are also top intentions.

Intentions for Home

stack of square signs of colored circles with white letters saying Do It Your Way.

In the Home area, change is continuing. There are many things to sort out. Since there’s no rush to get those things done, my intentions in this area are to continue and get done what I can.

Going Forward

Beyond finishing this book before the end of the year, I do not know what changes I’ll make in the next few months. What I know is that I will probably have a few more months of one step backward and two forward. I’m doing it my way. And I’m okay with that.

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