Well, we’re a full month into 2017, so as tradition entails, I shall share the success-or-failure concerning the goals and aspirations I set myself for this particular year. And I’m warning you in advance: it’s not gonna be a happy tale.
I hate to sound so dismal with the first ‘goal review’ post of the year, but January was just a really odd month. I’ve felt very strongly like time is being swept out from under me on a momentary basis. Even as I’m typing this, I feel like it was only two minutes ago that I was looking at the clock and growling, “When did it become 10 o’clock?” and now I’m looking at the clock on my laptop to see that it’s only a few minutes away from 11. How is this happening?
But for now let’s set aside the concern that I may have been cursed with some kind of mystical time-stealing spell, and get into January’s review.
#1. WRITE WRITE WRITE WRITE WRITE.
Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…You know when things are so bad that all you can really do is laugh? I wrote about this yesterday for the monthly Insecure Writers Support Group post, but I’ll reiterate in shorter form: I’ve had the worst kind of writer’s block that I could possibly imagine. Literally every time that I’ve sat myself down and tried to write, I’ve just stared at the screen for an hour or so before closing the program. Nothing wants to come to my brain. I am a blank slate. I’m a crappy desktop computer sitting on the blue screen of death. I’ve got nothing, and it has been one of the most frustrating things I’ve ever experienced. I need to rectify this in February, but I’m not even sure how because I’ve never actually experienced a complete and utter inability to write anything before. Literally the only writing I actually did was the two blog posts at the beginning of the month.
Mini-Goal #1.a. Publish more erotic fairy tales.
One of my unspoken mini-goals for January in particular was to publish the second fairy tale, which I already had 90% written. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen, due to the above-mentioned inability to write. You’d think, if anything, complete and utter smut would be easy enough to write, but nope…I couldn’t even do that. So this goal had a 0% accomplishment rating for January.
Mini-Goal #1.b. Start writing blog posts again.
HA. This was actually suggested to me as a way to maybe work my way into writing again, but it definitely wasn’t on my mind in January. It was a busy month, and as I previously mentioned, any time I did find to write I foolishly spent staring at a blank Scrivener screen. Maybe I should have tried to blog instead, but it genuinely never even occurred to me because I was too busy staring at those blank screens. That said, I promise to keep this in mind for February if I continue to be completely and utterly incapable of writing fiction.
Mini-Goal #1.c. Find ways to promote the book.
I will honestly say that I did, in fact, attempt this one in January. Unfortunately I just didn’t figure anything out. 😐 There are a million ways on the internet to promote a book, but you’d be amazed at how many stipulations there are to keep people like me from being able to use them. For instance, many free promotion sites require your book to actually be free, which is an option, but not something I really want to do since I’ve already done free e-book promotions multiple times and gotten absolutely nothing out of them. Other sites want you to pay to be promoted, and the cost far outweighs the likely return. Other sites require that you have a certain number of reviews on Amazon before you’re even allowed to apply. I could go on, but I think you get the point. So this one just continues on, I suppose.
#2. Get healthier.
I’m not actually sure what to say about this one. There were definitely moments throughout January that worked toward this goal – I went for a couple of runs, made a point of standing instead of sitting where I could, got my first eye exam in (no joke), 27 years, and have been making a point of trying to drink more water (although I can’t give up my coffee and tea). On the other hand, there’s been a lot of eating of bad foods and sugary crap, and at this point I can’t tell if I’m tired because there’s genuinely something wrong with me, or because I’m actually sleeping too much in an attempt not to be tired, or because of some other issue. Straighten up and fly right, body! GEEZ. On the upside, at least I haven’t gained any weight lately. 😛
Mini-Goal #2.a. Walk/run 10k steps per day.
Another laughable one! According to my records I accomplished precisely two 10k-step days in January, and my average daily steps was 7050. My FitBit even cheekily suggested that I reduce my daily step goal to 8000. I’m not even joking. And I did it; I let FitBit tell me that I’m fat and lazy and need to make “more reasonable” goals. Henceforth, until I learn how to not be fat and lazy, this mini-goal will be changed to “Walk/run 8k steps per day.”
Mini-Goal #2.b. Take daily “me time”.
This one is debatable. Since I haven’t been actually tracking it like I did last year, I’m not really sure exactly how well I did because I’ve been too busy to really be able to remember. lol I think I did half-decent on this one though. There were days I had hot baths, days I sequestered myself away and played stupid phone games, and days I curled up on the couch with my cross-stitch project for a few minutes. There were probably a couple of days when I was absolutely non-stop from dusk ’til dawn, but I think for the most part I did take at least a few minutes a day for myself.
#3. Work on my online presence – specifically, YouTube.
I’ll give myself at least a few props on this particular goal, although, as usual, most of the props should be given to Jason. In particular he made a “promise” on our social media that we were going to do a video-a-day for the week of our 1-year anniversary as “Tracey’s Basement”. So I was kinda forced to do it. But I did still do it, so I’m taking my accolades, whether I deserve them or not.
Seriously though, above and beyond the videos we did at the beginning of the month, we filmed and published 8 vids in 7 days during our anniversary week, and only one of them was a major pain in the ass. Slowly but surely I’m learning how to speak better, flow better, keep my volume up, and all those other little things. So yay for me.
Mini-Goal #3.a. Learn to respond immediately.
There’s not much that really needs to be said about this, although I will say that I am getting better. I’ve been responding to most social media/comments/etc immediately. My weak point is emails, because they take longer, so I tend to consider them as something that can wait, but then I forget to get back to them, so I’m still working on that one.
Mini-Goal #3.b. Focus more on daily social media.
This is an uphill battle, but I do think that I’m getting better. Some things are harder than others. Tweeting is something that can be done fairly easily on a daily basis, but I often don’t know what to do with things like Instagram (for which Jason takes most of the channel-related pictures) and Facebook (which is basically just a place to repost the Instagram stuff), and most of the time I just forget that SnapChat even exists. I’ve been trying to encourage myself to do more by making all four platforms part of the daily checklist in my planner, but I also often forget to even look at the planner, so it hasn’t been helping as much as I thought it would. lol Twitter though? I’m doing okay on Twitter.
Mini-Goal #3.c. Come up with new video ideas.
This last one, I’m not really sure what much to say. I guess it’s going okay? Jason and I filmed a few different things in January (mostly different styles of collectibles, which has been a long time coming anyway), and I managed to convince a few different companies to send us stuff to review, so I suppose that counts as “new video ideas”. And we’ve also been working on trying to set up some gameplay videos via a program that should sync the gameplay and webcam footage so that we don’t have the delay problems we had way back during the last ones we did, so that’s a distinct possibility for the new future. So, yeah, okay…I’m gonna say that this one went well for January.
So that was January. There were a few good points, no doubt, but overall I mostly feel like I blinked, and the month was gone, and I’d accomplished next to nothing. Hopefully things will perk up in February; I’m hoping for a little more sun, since dreary weather seems to exacerbate time slipping away from me.
Here’s to February! Oh, and I just wanted to remind you all that if anyone figures out how I can subsist on 2-3 hours of sleep per night, I’m still patiently waiting for that very important information. 😛
How was your January?
One thought on “Goals and Aspirations in Review – January 2017”
My January was pretty decent. Finished the first draft of my novel/novella and was able to recruit a few betas to critique. One had to reluctantly back out halfway through but gave me some good feedback, which was a minor blog to the ego. Funny how good feedback from a fellow writer can be a downer but ultimate is sorely needed if you want to improve as a writer.