June Status Report: 2012 Goals


June turned out to be a month of realizations and adjustments. As a result, some of my goals have to change in order to compensate for what I’ve learned.  I don’t see this as a setback, but rather a reassessment of where I stand and where I need to go next.

While some projects have changed drastically, others continue to tick along at a rapid pace.  A month without a day job does wonders for the muse!

1) Submit five pieces of writing to contests, journals, literary magazines, or the newspaper.

I made some headway on this goal by submitting The Expanding Pear to the Your Story #42 competition in Writer’s Digest.  I didn’t make the final cut, but I’m still proud of the piece and myself for finally gathering the courage to submit something this year.

In addition, I entered Your Story #43.  The competition only calls for a single sentence of 25 or fewer words, but sometimes that’s more difficult than a short story.  So, I’ve decided it counts as my second submission this year.

In the coming month, I’ve got my eye on three more opportunities for submission:

Sixteenth Annual Zoetrope: All Story Short Fiction Contest (Opens July 1st)

Write It Your Way (Writer’s Digest – Summer Stories) (Deadline July 15). I’ve got a story started and I think I can finish it in time!

Wordrunner eChapbooks (July 1 – August 26). Starting next week, I’ll be setting up a few polls where my wonderful readers will have a hand in helping me decide which three poems will be submitted.

2) Finish minor changes in my first novel.

After receiving an amazing and constructive critique of my first chapter, I embarked on a little experiment.  In the critique I was asked if I’d ever considered switching the point of view from third person to first person.  I was so happy to see that question as its something I’ve kicked around in my head for a while now.

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been re-writing my first novel in first person to get a sense of whether its the right to do for the character and the story.  The first chapter is fully converted and I’m halfway through the second.  Should this work out, this means my goal of finishing minor changes goes right out the window and I’ll be taking on the workload of converting the entire manuscript.

3) Work on my second novel.

My second novel dominates most of my days.  If I’m not typing out a scene, I’m outlining, brainstorming, or listening to characters speak in my head.  Last week I punched out a huge turning point scene and I’m in the process of planning the climax.  I love this story!!

Starting word count: 53,695
End word count: 59,596
Total word count:  5,901

That 60,000 word count goal I set for the year is so close I can taste it!

4) Send out five query letters and be ready with a synopsis.

With Goal #2 in the midst of a possibly drastic change, I am putting this goal on hold.

5) Keep up with my blog.

June has the distinction of being the first month where I’ve posted every single day!  That being said, I’ve made the decision that I have to cut back if my workload increases for Novel #1.

Thank you so much to everyone who continues to stop by.  Your support is so inspiring as are your comments!  I will still be posting several days a week, so be sure to stay tuned!

6) Network more with other writers.

This month, I was better at networking with other writers in person rather than online.  This is a strange departure for me as I’ve never been known as a social butterfly.  I’ve really enjoyed the inspiration that comes from hanging out with other writers and enjoying a cup of coffee.

However, I managed to gain some increases in the online world as well.

My Facebook Page has grown from 140 to 165 Likes.

On Twitter, my followers have grown from 237 to 265.

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 I am a positive presence!

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c.b.w. 2012


I’m so honored to have been included in an interview series via mywithershins. Be sure to stop by to read the rest of the interview and explore one of my favorite blogs!


I apologize for neglecting to post this yesterday. It was all ready to just hit the button, but with everything else going on, I completely forgot. (Sorry, C.B!) Anyway, here is my interview with a fascinating blogger:

Today, I’d like to introduce you all to C.B. Wentworth. You may have seen her name on some of my award posts. I have nominated her for many awards (and I’m not the only one) because she has a beautiful blog and shares her creativity in many ways – through her literary work & poetry, her photography where she gives us a glimpse of her garden & places she has been, as well as her lovely ‘Wreck This Journal’ entries.

Hi, C.B.! Welcome to my blog! Please tell us a little bit about yourself.

I am a writer, artist, crafter, and optimist.  During the day I am a high school teacher, but after the…

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A Chuckle With Simon’s Cat


At work, I am known for sharing a Friday Chuckle.  Being the internet geek I am, I can usually find a funny picture or video to lift everyone’s spirits after what has probably been a very long week, (this is especially true towards the end of a school year).

While playing a little bit on Facebook this week, I came across a new video for Simon’s Cat that I just have to share.  It’s so cute and I hope it will signal the beginning of a great weekend.  Happy Friday!

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Be sure to visit the Simon’s Cat Channel on youtube to see more videos that are just as cute.

On a related note, I discovered simonscat.com is full of hysterical kitties, a fun-loving community and really cute Simon’s Cat merchandise.  I think I may need to get one of these:

Simon’s Cat

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c.b.w. 2012

Listening to the Wall: Part 3


Listening to the Wall is a series dedicated to showcasing pieces of student art that helped create an incarnate of the Lennon Wall  in my classroom.

For further information, please visit these links:

Reconstructing the Lennon Wall

Listening to the Wall: Part 1

Listening to the Wall: Part 2

The mad rush of quotes on this piece has always made it stand out.  This student graduated this year and I have not doubt she is going take the real world by storm.  Watch out, she’s full of energy and she’s not afraid to show it!

My favorite part about this piece is the statement this young lady makes at the bottom: And never have doubt in me, I’m capable of more than you think. She had unbelievable determination and I often wonder how far its taken her.

The “coexist” portion of this piece gave me proof that my students actually do pay attention when I’m teaching.  I showed a picture of the real Lennon Wall from a few years back (to give them a sense of how it changes) that had the “coexist” image.  This student mimicked it and added a slew of thoughts.

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The writing is small on these pieces, but you can click on the images to view them at full size.

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c.b.w. 2012