Writing Update

When it comes to writing, I’m currently working on three projects. Two of them are due to be finalized this upcoming week. One is a 50k book and another is a 10k short. I’ve written 40k and 5k, respectively. The third project is a 65k book. I’ve only got 3k down so far.

To date, I’ve only written 13k in February. That’s not enough for me to reach my goals. I have to do better in March and I’m aiming high. To help me do that, I’m joining the #March100kChallenge. I’m hoping the challenge will inspire me to stay on track.

I’m on track to publish my first book, A Sword of Fortune and Fate, in May 2017. I want to ensure that the series continue to be released as scheduled. For that to happen, I have to write, write, write!


What are your writing goals for March?

The Number 1 Rule of Self-Publishing

As an aspiring author I routinely search for self-publishing advice. Today, I stumbled across a Kboards post asking, “What is the #1 rule of self publishing?”

While most of the things stated seem to be common sense it was interesting to see what each person thought the #1 rule was. There are many components to creating a successful self-publishing career. Each one plays a vital part in building an author platform.

Start somewhere:

Have an objective of what you want to achieve, and then make a plan that will get you there.

-Ava Red

If you do nothing, nothing will happen.

-Keith Soares

Don’t talk about it, do it.

-Patty Jansen


Focus on creating a quality product:

Write a good story.

-H.C. Harrington

Hooky book.

-Rosalind James

Write a good book.

Without that, no other advice matters.

-Elizabeth S.


Approach the whole endeavor as a business.

-Patrick Urban

Effective habits and hard work matter more than talent.

-David VanDyke

To make it, you need to persist over the long haul.

-Eric Thomson

And when it comes to your work, remember:

Develop a thick skin – reviewers can be merciless.

-Jan Hurst-Nicholson


What do you think is the #1 rule of self-publishing?

Goodreads 2017 Reading Challenge

Earlier this year I set myself a Goodreads Reading Challenge goal of 50 books for 2017.

I decided on 50 books because last year I chose 150 books. It was a mistake. I constantly felt stressed about reading whenever I saw the Goodreads widget tell me I was behind. I actually read less because of it.

That’s why this year I chose a simple 50 books would work for me. I knew from past years it was an achievable number and it wouldn’t pressure me unduly.

I didn’t take into account that I would go on a reading binge in the first six weeks of the year and reach 86% of my goal.


With that in mind, I decided to recalibrate and reset my goal for 100 books. As you can see, I’m at 43% of goal now with 29 books ahead of schedule.


I’m confident I’ll reach this goal, without adding undue pressure on myself. There are a lot of amazing books coming out this year from some of my favorite writers and I can’t wait to read them all!

What’s your 2017 Goodreads Reading Challenge goal?

Year of the Rooster

The Year of the Rooster begins in January 28th. As a Rooster, I was interested in finding out what my year looked like. I had no idea that, “according to Chinese astrology, the year of one’s birth sign is the most unlucky year in the 12-year cycle”.

Nevertheless, I thought this would be a nice reference to have and compare against.

Here it is in full:


In the Year of the Rooster, people who happen to born in the zodiac year will be out of luck in most respects of life. Either setbacks in work or crisis in relationship bothers them a lot. Fortunately, opportunities and socializing talent help them to defuse the bad luck. In general, the prediction for them is pleasant in June and December, but in August and September everything goes down.

Rooster Fortune in 2017

 Note: The Chinese zodiac horoscope prediction is according to the Chinese lunar calendar. The months shown below are lunar months, with Georgian dates marked (month/day/year).

 January (01/28/2017 – 02/25/2017)

Roosters’ luck in the first lunar month is quite average, even with potential disasters. It would be hard for them to gain remarkable progress during this time. Their relationship develops steadily, but wealth and career are stuck in depression. They need to strive hard to prevent things from becoming worse. In this month, activities like rock climbing and bungee jumping should be avoided.

 February (02/26/2017 –03/27/2017)

After a stable period, people born in the Year of Rooster will suffer a series of turbulence though their general luck doesn’t plummet much. As long as they stay cautious and careful, they can avoid the unanticipated accidents. Furthermore, the financial expense may go beyond their budget, which would bring anxiety. However, they could expect a favorable change in love and relationship. For single Roosters, they get chances to find their soul mates.

 March (03/28/2017 – 04/25/2017)

According to Chinese zodiac prediction, they will pick up their luck again in lunar March. Concerning career, their hardworking and efforts are well recognized by their leaders and bosses. The prediction for wealth is very nice, and they would better make a detailed budget. When doing some labor work, they are apt to get injured, and the health issues of family members will also arouse their anxiety.

 April (04/26/2017 – 05/25/2017)

Their fortune will continue rising up stably. Due to their nice personalities, most of their friends are willing to give Roosters assistances helping them to start a new career. Thus, more care should be paid to interpersonal activities, and they need to maintain a win-win relation with partners or colleagues. The trend seems to develop in a better direction, but they should bear in mind that it’s wise to keep in low profile in a competing arena. Their health condition is worry-free.

 May (05/26/2017 – 06/23/2017)

The luck in money remains as pleasant as before, but there are some changes taking place in their interpersonal relationships. They do not like to share when they achieve the profits, which might offend people around them. In this month, they are supposed to behave modest and smart. Otherwise, there will be troubles caused by their tongue. When their opinions diverge from others’, they must avoid any direct conflicts.

 June (06/24/2017 – 08/21/2017)

In the sixth lunar month, people with the zodiac sign Rooster will have the best luck in 2017. Many opportunities are provided to show their talents, and it would be a good time for them to make breakthroughs. Accordingly, their efforts can gain handsome income. Behind those flourishing scenes, there are potential crisis in their health. Anyway, there is no need to over worry about these ailments for they can be diminished with regular exercise.

 Note: June is leap month in 2017 according to Chinese lunar calendar, so the period is about two-month long.

 July (08/22/2017 – 09/19/2017)

The luck of wealth starts to fall from this month, and they would face new challenges in their work field. Thus they need to make good preparation for all the sudden changes, especially make detailed work plan. The income is stable, but the expense is far beyond that. Never make large investments indiscreetly as it is not a right time for high profit.

 August(09/20/2017 – 10/19/2017)

Roosters year born people are still stuck in their awful luck in this month, which may gravely affect their mood and emotion. Upset about the current situation, they tend to be more sensitive and fragile. They are likely to have squabbles with colleagues and partners if they stick to their principles. However, their love and relationship develop as they expect, and they gain support and comfort from friends and families.

 September (10/20/2017 – 11/17/2017)

Their luck hits the bottom of the year in the ninth lunar month, and they would better stay far away from any disputes. More efforts should be paid to their work. As long as they adopt an optimistic attitude towards life, they would regain another turning point. Their fortune in easy money is prosperous, so it is ok to try their luck in lottery or high-risk investment. Avoid putting large amounts in new fields in case of unnecessary losses.

 October (11/18/2017 – 12/17/2017)

The luck takes a turn for the better in this month, and their social relationship will get bright change. However, it doesn’t mean that they get relief from stress in work. They need to perform well to keep everything from being worse. When having talks with others, they should restrain themselves in high profile. The outdoor activities would be beneficial to their health.

 November (12/18/2017 – 01/16/2018)

Comparing with previous months, their fortune seems to be good in the lunar November, with less trouble and better mood. In the period, people with Chinese zodiac Rooster sign need to struggle hard to make breakthroughs in work, and their income will also increase accordingly. It is unwise to seek quick success and instant benefits, but put the stability in the first place. They could maintain a worry-free financial status so long as smartly managing their money.

 December (01/17/2018 – 02/15/2018)

The prediction for the last lunar month indicates that their luck goes up. If eager to make big progresses in career, they need to devote more time and efforts. When doing investments, choose the familiar and expertized fields. Cut some unnecessary expense in eating and dressing but invest in learning, which will surely reward you with unexpected surprise. During this period, they may suffer from some ailments, but don’t worry, for doctors will cope with that.


Source: TravelGuideChina.com

Artist Appreciation: Judit Mallol

I love this piece of art. I use it as my display image across all my social media platforms. I’ve had a lot of people compliment it.

The artwork was commissioned and completed by the ever-so-talented Judit Mallol. I first shared the artwork on Twitter and Facebook. Since then I’ve received a few more commissioned pieces but I haven’t shared them publicly yet.

Judit is a wonderful artist and creates beautiful illustrations. I’m in awe of her talent.

You can see more of Judit’s work in her portfolio or here.

You can also purchase some of her beautiful work here.





2017: Writer Resolutions

There are several things I hope to accomplish in 2017 as a new writer. Here are my top five:

1. I will publish at least one book (I hope I publish my planned 10 books).
2. I will blog at least once a month (I hope I blog at least once a week).
3. I will start a newsletter and have at least 1 subscriber (I hope I have at least 50 subscribers).
4. I will make 1 sale (I hope I make at least 50 sales).
5. I will help at least 1 fellow writer (I hope I build a solid network of writer friends).

I will continue to read. I will continue to work on my craft. I will continue to learn.

Those are my writer goals for 2017. What are yours?