May is always a crazy month for me as it signals the end of the school year. As a teacher, that means I’m in a mad dash to finish curriculum, administer final exams, close out grades, and pack up my classroom for the summer. Despite the extra workload at my day job, I managed to make some great headway on my 2012 writing goals.
1) Submit five pieces of writing to contests, journals, literary magazines, or the newspaper.
I just finished a story for a small Writer’s Digest contest. In every issue, they post a prompt with an invitation to submit entries. The deadline is June 10th for the piece I wrote and I will submit it well before that date.
I am also gearing up to comb through a gigantic list of upcoming writing contests compiled by Stephanie Smith. While most contests seemed geared towards fantasy and YA genres, there are categories for contemporary fiction that might fit some of the stories I have in my “vault.” It’s worth a look at the very least!
2) Finish minor changes in my first novel.
In April, I submitted the first thirty pages of my novel for a critique, but I learned the hard way that not everyone keeps their word. After more than a month of waiting for the promised critique, I wound up with nothing. Thankfully, the situation has since been rectified and those pages are now in the hands of someone who has very kindly agreed to pick up the dropped ball.
As a result of this little hiccup, my first novel has been on hold. I’m hoping the arrival of a critique in the next week or so will allow me jump right back in and make some great revisions. After all, the big picture goal is to make it as polished as possible for the eyes of an agent.
3) Work on my second novel.
Over the last few weeks, my muse has been obsessed with my second novel. The story is swimming through my imagination at such a fast pace, I can barely keep up. I literally keep my novel notebook and pen with me at all times because I can’t stop writing! Two of my characters in particular are incredibly chatty and have created a new twist in the plot. I never saw it coming and I am beyond excited to continue exploring this new story element.
Starting word count: 51, 381
End word count: 53, 695
Total word count: 2,314
4) Send out five query letters and be ready with a synopsis.
Last month I made the mini-goal of sending my query letter to Pitchapalooza via the World Literary Cafe. I am happy to report that I met that goal. I didn’t win the contest, but it felt great to finally put a query in the hands of an agent. The ice has officially been broken and that motivates me to send out more query letters. One down, four to go!
In addition, my new critiquer has agreed to give my query letter a line-by-line assessment. I am beyond excited to get some help on making my query as strong as possible.
5) Keep up with my blog.
Back in April I set a schedule of posting four times a week, but my muse obviously did not agree with this plan. In the month of May, I posted 29 times and my inspiration is not slowing down. Thanks so much to my readers for continuing to stop by every day. I have a lot planned for the next few weeks, so stay tuned!
6) Network more with other writers.
I’ve stepped back slightly from networking, (mainly due to time constraints), but I still managed to do enough to see my numbers go up once again. I’ll be back in full force over the summer to keep my network growing!
My Facebook Page has grown from 110 to 140 Likes.
On Twitter, my followers have grown from 211 to 237.
Thank you so much to everyone who has clicked those “Like” and “Follow” buttons! I appreciate all of you so much!
To follow me on either network, please visit my sidebar.
7) Inspire other writers to keep writing.
As always, I hope my presence is positive and inspiring.
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