Goodreads Reading Challenge 2015: Will you commit?

Photo Credit: Flickr by Moyan Brenn

Photo Credit: Flickr by Moyan Brenn

I signed up for the Goodreads Reading Challenge last month. Accountability is a personal motivator, so this should help me keep track of my reading and encourage me to read more. I set my goal for the year at 30 books, but was aware of the larger numbers some folks were throwing around. The temptation to raise my number to be more competitive was hard to ignore, but I managed to stand my ground. I’ve set myself up to fail before with stellar expectations that require sacrifices and unnecessary stress. So while my goal does not seem too lofty, it seems doable. And that’s a good starting point.

( And reading serves as an opportunity to learn as well as an opportunity to escape. I find myself thinking about specific sentences… their structure and efficiency… as well as the nuances of the plot and identifiable traits of the characters. I don’t want reading to become a chore. Chores take the fun out of everything.)

So far by mid-February, I’ve made progress.

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Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, Remote by Lisa Acerbo, and Take Me There by Carolee Dean complete my list as of now. Next, I have plans to tackle the many books I added to my kindle… whenever I find my kindle, but that’s a topic for another post.


Want to join in the challenge? Go to Goodreads to get started.

Monday’s Motivation: What’s your number?

The start of a new year offers scores of new resolutions made to help people achieve goals they’ve set. But in setting those goals, you must acknowledge the chance of failure. It’s inevitable.


Photo Credit: Flickr by Mr. TinDC

Photo Credit: Flickr by Mr. TinDC

Persevering is key if you’re going to succeed.


Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell, was rejected by 38 publishers before it was printed.

Chicken Soup for the Soul by Jack Canfeld and Mark Victor Hansen was rejected 140 times before begin published.

Henry Ford went broke five times in failed businesses before founding The Ford Motor Company.

None would have found success if they’d stopped and didn’t give it one more shot. They didn’t know how many tries it would take. They simply refused to give up.

So, what’s your number?

There’s only one way to find out.


“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
― Maya Angelou

Motivation Monday: Resolution check

{Due to Fall Into Fantasy Book Tour, I’d suspended the Motivational Monday.}

Gearing up for New Year’s forces me to think about last year’s resolutions (which I’ve recycled several times). It seems I’ve been working toward the same goals and at the end of the year, I have fallen short…again. I suppose that’s not a bad thing to try to improve but miss the goal, but I’ve been using these same resolutions for so long that their value has diminished. And that’s not a good thing.

Photo Credit: Flickr by Bossi: An Albert Einstein quote

Photo Credit: Flickr by Bossi : An Albert Einstein quote

Well, enough is enough.

Instead of creating a litany of all the things I need to improve or endeavor, I just need to focus on one or two areas to which I can pay closer attention and challenge myself.

I revisited aspects and events of this past year.

Photo Credit: Flickr by Prathima

Photo Credit: Flickr by Prathima

Combing through the  year was a personal gift.  Yeah, I fell short some of the time, but at other times, I reached my goals. I found balance in the mix of emotions. And hope for 2015.

Whether you make a list of resolutions for the next year or not, I hope you find time to reflect on 2014 and find moments to celebrate, reasons to believe, and peace.

Happy Monday.


Daily Word Goals for Writers

Articles fill the web either preaching the benefits or warning of the detriments of assigning a number to your productivity. While setting a numerical goal for your word count is a personal preference, many of us do. (Check your twitter feed and various blogs.) We think in numbers. We quantify success.

This week, I’ve been participating in the monthly “Book in a Week” challenge hosted by the Heart of Carolina Romance Writers. Each participant creates their own goal and reports their progress daily. In the past, I’ve created word count goals that were too lofty and I ended up more frustrated than productive. This week, I set a more manageable goal for myself and have exceeded that goal every day. The positive environment and the camaraderie of the group has given me an added boost.

What about you?

Do you set daily goals?

Do you set weekly goals?

no eXcuses

no eXcuses

Change, whether it is associated with your virtues, your accomplishments, or your abilities, does not magically appear.

Change occurs as a result of action.

Photo Credit: Flickr by Live Life Happy

Photo Credit: Flickr by Live Life Happy

 It’s Monday. Make no excuses.

Carpe Diem.

Quotes about eXcuses

Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anyone else expects of you. Never excuse yourself. ~Henry Ward Beecher

There is no such thing as a list of reasons. There is either one sufficient reason or a list of excuses. ~Robert Brault

We have more ability than will power, and it is often an excuse to ourselves that we imagine that things are impossible. ~François de la Rochefoucauld

Difficulty is the excuse history never accepts. ~Edward R. Murrow






I’m Recycling… Again

I’m a huge recycler. HUGE. Plastic bottles, aluminum cans, chip board, paper bags. Anything that has the potential for a second life, I try to put back into play. It’s important to me. And, if I’m being honest, I can be a little obsessive…I even recycle on vacation.

So, it comes as no surprise that here I am, at the end of the year, ready to dust off last year’s resolutions and reinstate them as the new goals for the upcoming year. Yep, I’m recycling my resolutions.

I’m not embarrassed to say that I’ve had the same list for a couple of years. Life’s an ongoing battle to improve one’s self. And having the same list either means I’ve discovered what’s important or that I’m a horrible failure. I choose to believe I’ve discovered what’s important. But it’s interesting how the goals remain the same while the challenges associated with reaching each individual target changes.

In 2014, I’ll take another crack at those standing resolutions. And if I don’t achieve them, I’ll just recycle. Again.

Happy New Year. (And good luck with your resolutions, new or recycled.)