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2021 August Wrap-Up

Hello and happy Wednesday!

I’m back again with a summary of the past month of my life – with writing progress reports, reading accomplishments, and general updates!

Though it’s been very humbling to look back at previous months and see all the goals I haven’t met, sharing my progress each month has also motivated me to keep as on track as I possibly can. And maybe someday it’ll help me be more realistic with the goals I set.

So without further ado . . .

General Update

In my July wrap-up, I mentioned that August looked to be less full than the rest of my summer, and that I’d hopefully get to catch up on some more things at home – including writing. That ended up being partially true. I did get to catch up on some things at home and also get a head start on some projects for the fall, such as figuring out a general blog posting schedule/content calendar for the rest of 2021 and creating a street team.

As always however, it was far from laidback. In addition to blogging and launch prep, I was blessed to attend a friend’s wedding, serve at a local food pantry, continue to help with youth group prep for the coming school year, work more hours, prepare materials for and teach the first day of a high school fiction writing class, and clean up and submit one of my novels to a writing contest (though with far less editing than it needed . . .).

As always, God’s continued to help me with each and every step. I’ve tried and am continuing to be extra intentional about spending time with Him daily, because I know that one of my first tendencies when I feel overwhelmed is to procrastinate prayer and Bible study. But it’s so important and I’m always so glad to have that time to recharge and draw closer to Him. I’ve never once regretted the peaceful moments alone with Him.

Fiction Writing

It’s interesting how I can be quite productive, and still not get to half the things I wanted or planned to, haha. Such as fiction writing. Though my fall is certainly not going to be empty, I’m excited for the chance to set aside dedicated writing time and be more intentional about actually reaching my fiction goals again. I miss immersing myself in stories!

Fiction writing goals for September are mostly the same as August’s:

~ Rewriting (2nd draft) my Cabin Girl prequel – probably about 70,000 words
~ Actually finishing Cabin Girl edits and formatting
~ Outline a side medieval-genre project

On the Blog

My posting schedule on the blog is starting to pick up again! I published six posts in August (just click on the titles to read them). Moving forward this fall, I’m planning to move back to my twice-weekly posting schedule, aiming for 8-10 posts each month. That said, I’m also not going to stress if life pulls me back to a few less than that. We’ll see how it goes!

~ Jolly Genre Jubilee Tag
~ All About You Around the Blogosphere Tag
~ Never Have I Ever – Writers Edition – Blog Tag
~ 10 Quotes About Putting God First
~ 5 Wellness Tips for Writers
~ Join My Street Team!

Reading List

I didn’t have an abundance of time to read in August, but still managed to finish a few books. Something about curling up with a good story at the end of the day is just such a good way to unwind (provided it’s not a terrifying story . . .).

The books I finished:

~ Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
(I wish I could recommend this one. Parts of it were insightful, and Hollis’ writing style is infectious and upbeat, but her message of happiness being the ultimate goal in life is just not something I agree with. God’s perfect plan often does not make us happy on earth. )
~ Daylight by Grace A. Johnson
(This is a short story, and one that I get the privilege of spotlighting on Friday! Though I don’t typically read romance, I really enjoyed this sweet, emotional story, and look forward to interviewing the author for her blog tour on September 3rd!)
~ Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick
(I thought this looked like an intriguing dystopian survival story, but didn’t realize at first that it’s essentially a zombie book. Because I was already so invested in the characters and worldbuilding, I finished it, but I don’t plan to continue the series due to far too much gore and other content I’d rather not fill my head with. I can’t recommend it for those reasons.)
~ Six O’clock by Grace A. Johnson
(Another short story by Ms. Johnson! This one was disorienting at first and the prose more flowery than I usually care for, but it still drew me in and I ended up enjoying it. The author’s note at the end also cleared up any confusion, and ended the book with a hopeful tone in the midst of its heavier subject matter. I’m glad I read it!)

I’m still working on the the books I listed in July (Eragon, Beneath a Scarlet Sky, and No Wonder They Call Him the Savior), because my attention span when it comes to reading is notoriously short. But I will hopefully get to them soon!

Looking Forward

Ah, autumn. I’m definitely looking forward to the approach of fall – my favorite season! My schedule and obligations are changing a bit as the summer comes to a close, but I know I’ll stay busy. It will be interesting to see how everything works out, and what opportunities come up in these next few months.

Some highlights approaching for September include: starting to help with the next school year of my church’s youth group (including playing live worship music for the first time, which is both exciting and very intimidating), beginning a child care job with three precious little ones, working more, continuing to teach that fiction writing class, hopefully spend some extra time with friends and family members, and of course, writing.

Specific writing goals I’d like to reach include a lot more fiction! I miss working on my stories, and I’d love to get to do some more of that this month. I also want to dive back into Cabin Girl‘s publishing process. It got set aside during the craziness of the summer, but now I’m ready to recap what I’ve done, figure out exactly where I’m at in the process, and create a set timeline for finally sharing it with the world. I’m incredibly excited to do so!

What was YOUR August like? What kinds of things did you get to do? If you have a progress report on something, or books you read and would like to share, go ahead and let me know in the comments! And while you’re at it, feel free to include what you’re looking forward to and/or hoping to accomplish in September! As always, I’m excited to hear from you!

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