Rekindling the Love – A Conclusion

Good news, everybody! The experiment – such as it was – was a roaring success!

Okay, stepping back for a moment… Last week I was reiterating how I had fallen out of love with my current manuscript, which wasn’t something I really wanted to be dealing with at all. Several fellow writers and bloggers had suggested to me that perhaps re-reading the manuscript from the beginning would help to rekindle that love for it, so I compiled what I had into a Word file, sent it to my phone, and spent my breaks and bus time reintroducing myself to the story.

And I must say, it really worked quite swimmingly. Within only a few pages I found myself remember how much I love these characters. Soon I found myself getting genuinely excited at the action-packed parts, getting emotional during the sad bits, and getting grave during the dark moments. By the time I was about halfway through the story I was already thinking, “Dammit, I have to write the ending to this!” But I forced myself to keep reading first, and now I’m genuinely, sincerely excited to finish those last two chapters and ship this manuscript off to my beta-reader. The re-read experiment was a complete and total success.

Now, if I could just find the time to finish those last two chapters and ship this manuscript off to my beta-reader.

Ah well. One step at a time.

Falling Back in Love…With My Novel

A couple of weeks ago, in February’s ‘Insecure Writers Support Group’ post, I talked about how I’ve fallen out of love with my manuscript recently, which is highly unfortunate considering that it’s only part one in what is supposed to be a four-part series. There’s this swirl of different emotions and feelings about the story wheeling around in my head, driving me near-mad, in fact. On the one hand, I definitely still feel that it’s a viable story that people will enjoy. On the other hand I’ve been technically working on this particular story for years (it has evolved many times and barely resembles the original concept) and I guess maybe I’m just feeling a little bored with it. Back on the first hand, I love the characters and really want their stories to be told, but on the second hand I’ve been having a difficult time keeping the main character in the emotional train-wreck state that she’s meant to be in without making her completely unlikable in the process. And, I guess, at least a little bit of me feels like I have to finish this particular project whether I want to or not, while another little bit of me is longing to do something different without actually knowing what that different is.

So I’ve decided to take the advice of some of the lovely fellow writers who commented on the IWSG post and re-read my story. As we speak I am compiling the manuscript into a readable form and transferring it onto my phone so that I can scroll through it on the bus to and from work, and maybe during my breaks as well.


Maybe by doing this I’ll get back into the characters’ lives, get back into the adventure, and find myself truly wanting to finish the last couple of chapters so that I can ship it off to my beta-reader. Maybe I’ll fall back in love with the story.

At least, I hope so, because if that doesn’t happen, I really don’t know where I’m going to go from there. @_@

Accountability Wednesdays: Week 39


Oh man…peeps, I am so disorganized this week that I almost forgot to write this post, and then I had to look up which week I’m on. So this is going to be a quick recap of the past week. Starting….now!

Goal #1: Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

I have no idea where I am on this one this week. I haven’t weighed myself, I’ve been eating neither better nor worse, and my stomach has been fairly stoic in general. I don’t even really know what to report other than that I’m still alive and kicking, so I’ve got that going for me, which is nice.

Goal #2: Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

The social media world fell apart on me this week as I attempted to squeeze a bunch of important stuff into a short period of time. If you follow me on Twitter you may have seen a few tweets about editing and the like, but that was probably it. I’ve got two new YouTube videos that I’ve yet to format and post, and I’ve been all but invisible on other platforms. Here’s to fixing that in the following week!

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

Finally, some good news to report! After struggling to get through my manuscript as quickly (and yet as thoroughly) as possible during the weekend, I finally managed to totally, 100%, for realsies this time, complete the absolute last copy of the novel file. Thank goodness I did that run-through too, because there were TONS of invisible typos. But that’s neither here nor there. What’s really important is that the file was uploaded to CreateSpace, everything checked out, and I am currently waiting on the edge of my seat for my physical proof copy to show up! As soon as I get that and confirm that everything prints fine, the book will finally be for sale! AHHHHHH!!!!!

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words.

One of these days I’m going to catch up on this one, I swear, but it won’t be today. I can tell you for sure that I wrote about 1000 words last week, but I can’t recall if there was anything aside from those 1000. I’ll catch up on it later…what’s really important right now is the whole completed novel thing. XD

Accountability Wednesdays: Week 37


Well, I’m a week into my shift, and believe me when I say that I’m ready to go home. No offense, Alberta, but your bone dry air and ridiculous temperature swings are getting on my nerves, just a little bit. I’m longing for the salty East-coast air and the not-quite-as-unreliable weather patterns. Also, I’m dying for a garlic fingers. Man, am I dying for a garlic fingers.

Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. Let’s get on with it.

Goal #1: Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

As per usual I can’t really comment on anything this week because I don’t have a scale. I can tell you that I’ve been pretty good this week for a lot of things. I’m still drinking lots of water (although I caved twice, but I don’t think two cans of pop in a full week is really so bad, do you) and I’ve been eating fairly healthy considering that I have to deal with camp food all day every day. I haven’t been able to get any exercise, because, you know…ridiculously unfit work hours…but I’ve been trying to move and stretch a lot throughout my shift instead of sitting on my backside all day every day. So there’s that, right?

Goal #2: Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

It hasn’t been too bad of a week for this one either. I posted an extra video on YouTube to review the contents of my first Ipsy Glam Bag, and I’ve been trying to make sure that I tweet at least once a day. Facebook has been a little slow, but I’m okay with that because I’ve been noticing a slow-but-steady increase in followers and interactions via the other platforms. Long story short, thumbs up for this week.

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

Guys…guys…guys…I’m getting super excited. My beta-reader recently got back to me and she had only a short list of minor issues that she thought could use addressing. I’m now in the process of compiling those issues and doing a last run-through of the manuscript to make sure there are no hidden typos. By this time next week I will be fixing those last issues/typos in the main manuscript file, resubmitting to CreateSpace, and from there it will be only 24 hours before I am able to order my proof copies. Those will take five business days to come, and assuming that they look okay, I will then be able to flip the switch, so to speak, and make the book available for purchase. You have no idea how pumped I am. In two weeks my first book could be for sale. I may never sell more than a handful of copies, but you have no idea how fulfilled I will be just to have my book actually be a book. AHHHH!!!!

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words.

Unfortunately as I am writing this I realize that I forgot to go through and keep track of what I wrote this week, so I’ll have to do that later, but I can tell you that it’s probably somewhere in the range of 2000. I’ve been taking it a little easy this week partly because I think I deserve it and partly because I know that once Nowhere to Hide is set up for sale I’ll be putting my nose to the grindstone and working hard on my next venture. So with that said, look forward to the future! There are great things on the horizon!

A Taste of Things to Come

In anticipation of hopefully, maybe, probably, PLEASEIREALLYHOPESO having my zombie novel, Nowhere to Hide, published in the near future, I thought I’d share a little preview with you today. This is an opening scene in which the main character, Nancy, and her friend, Terri-Lynn, watch a news broadcast that reveals the existence of our first zombie…although no one realizes this quite yet… Enjoy! And please tell me what you think!

“Late last night, in Spring Garden Park,” said the male reporter, “a strange altercation took place that has left one dead and one seriously injured. The affair was recorded by one of the individuals involved. That recording has been released by the police in hopes that our viewers may have some information on the assailant’s identity, which is as yet unknown. Please be aware, the following video is fairly graphic.”

Nancy leaned forward a little. Terri-Lynn’s nails click-clacked.

The video quality was pretty terrible, and the cameraman was in no way attempting to hold the shot steady. It appeared to have been taken with a camera phone. There were four teenagers in the shot, the fifth being the cameraman, all teenage boys as far as Nancy could tell. The sixth person in the scene was a middle-aged woman, and herein was the focus of the story.

The boys were mocking her, and though it was cruel and childish Nancy could almost understand why. The woman seemed to be either extremely drunk or terribly ill. Her head lolled downward, causing a mop of long, greasy hair to fall around her face. She was shambling toward the teenagers, shuffling her feet along the ground rather than exerting the effort to lift them, and her arms fell listlessly at her sides. Her skin and clothes were dirty, as though she’d been rolling around on the ground.

The boys called out disparaging comments, much of which was being bleeped out by the news’ censor; so much was being edited out that it was barely possible to tell what they were saying. One boy threw an empty beer can at the woman. It hit her square on the top of the head, but she didn’t react with so much as a flinch. Laughing raucously, a black-haired boy stepped forward and leaned down beneath her so he could look up into her face. He made a scathing comment: “Are you even alive in there?”

The woman’s head moved upward, very slowly, and a pair of dark, empty eyes stared through the curtain of hair to look at the boy’s face. Nancy felt a chill go down her spine. Christ, she thought. Those eyes…

And that’s when it all went to hell. The thin, dirty arms rose, reached for the teenager, and clamped around his left wrist. For a moment he actually laughed, likely expecting her to either vomit or slap him or beg him for money. The reality was much, much worse. She opened her mouth, revealing two rows of disgusting, rotten teeth, and bit into the flesh of his arm with all her strength.

At this point the video got too dizzying to watch. The cameraman and the remaining teens rushed forward to help their friend, who was now shrieking in alarm and agony. Before the camera was dropped and the scene disappeared from view, Nancy saw a brilliant spray of blood. The boy’s scream made her chest go cold. Terri-Lynn’s tap-tap-tapping nails froze as she gripped the remote control so hard that the cheap plastic covering creaked in protest.

There was a lot of crying and shouting. The camera phone had fallen in a tuft of grass, momentarily forgotten by the owner. Nancy stared at the peaceful green strands as she listened to the sounds of struggle. Somewhere was the crash of a beer bottle being smashed in half. Nancy’s hand flew to her mouth as a second crimson spray of blood splashed across the camera’s screen and the innocent grass. A moment later the woman let out an inhuman screech that made Terri-Lynn wince and turn away from the TV.

The news broadcast cut back to the reporter, who now looked almost comically green in the face. For a few seconds he said nothing, then he cleared his throat and swallowed. “The young man was taken to hospital where he was treated for major lacerations to the arm and throat, and is being held in critical condition. The woman, whom police were unable to identify, was also taken to hospital where she was presumed dead due to trauma to the head. No charges are yet being placed. Any information that could identify the woman in the video is being requested by the police immediately.”

The channel cut to a commercial advertising the wondrous world of the most recent Disney film.

Accountability Wednesdays: Weeks 34, 35, and 36


Can I start out this post by getting a little weepy? Don’t worry, there haven’t been any more deaths in the family or anything like that, but I have another reason to be a bit teary-eyed today. You see, as this post becomes live my daughter – my only child, by the way – is taking part in her first ever class of kindergarten. For the rest of the year, three half-days a week, she’ll be taking part in a “school” program for 4-year-olds, making new friends, learning new things, and getting used to what it means to be in school with teachers instead of home with parents. I know that she’ll do great, and I know that it will be very good for her, and I’m not worried at all about her…but I can’t help being just a little bit sad. My baby girl isn’t a baby anymore. How does that happen? And how can I stop it? *cry*


Okay, okay…I’m okay. Let’s move on to other, less teary things.

The past few weeks have been rough, and you may have noticed that as a result I missed two accountability posts in a row. So this week will be a bit of a conglomerate of the past three weeks.

Goal #1: Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

I’m currently back out West again, so I can’t quote any numbers, but I can tell you that I’m currently experiencing a bit of an up-and-down period. Before the weeks that I missed, I’d been cutting out all beverages aside from water and tea, as well as trying to eat less in general, and that was going well. By the time I got home from my last shift I’d lost almost four pounds. But, as you know, the weeks that followed were busy and stressful. I had a couple of nights drinking (and eating, like, a metric ton of food) with family, followed by a shopping trip that involved a lot of poor meal choices, punctuated by a few days of flat-out refusing to do anything at all because I was so tired. As a result of all of that I’m fairly certain that I’ve gained back at least half – if not all – of what I lost. But I’m not letting that drag me down. I’m back on to the water and tea, and I’m determined to get a decent amount of sleep while I’m at work this shift. Wish me luck.

Goal #2: Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

This goal has taken a back seat recently, since I’ve been so busy and stressed out, but it’s not all bad. I’ve had a difficult time keeping up with the blogging community because that involves so much reading, but I’ve been more active on Twitter, and I’ve been continuing to post videos on YouTube (please check them out…my handle is toreshitobinable). I even recorded a new video from my camp room last night, though it’s not been posted yet. All in all, I think I’m managing pretty well considering how busy I’ve been of late. This goal could definitely use more work, but I’m satisfied that I haven’t been screwing up too much. 😛

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

Awesome, awesome, awesome news on this one! I didn’t get to talk about it two weeks ago, but I completed my mini-goal of finishing the final edits on the manuscript by the end of my last shift. I then shipped off the finished manuscript to my beta-reader for a final run-through, for which I am currently awaiting word on. But the best part? While I’ve been waiting for her, I fixed up my book cover, created a rear cover with a summary, and went through almost every step to self-publish on CreateSpace. My files have all been approved and I literally just have to hit “Print!” As soon as I get word from my beta-reader I’m going to go through the manuscript one more time to check for hidden typos and the like, and then it’s off to the printers! I’m so excited! I am seriously, genuinely almost there! AHHHH!!!!!!

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words.

You know what? I don’t even care about this goal right now because I’m so excited about my novel! AHHHH!!!!

Okay, okay, I do still care, but I can’t really report because I haven’t been keeping proper track of everything the past couple of weeks. I know that the first week I missed I had something like 7000 words, then the second week I wrote effectively nothing, and this past week I wrote probably about 3000 worth of subscription box reviews, so let’s just call it about 10,000 over the past three weeks. That puts me in around 200,000 words so far this year. That’s very far behind, but once I get the self-publishing bit out of the way I’ll have nothing left to do but write, and oh boy, have I got some stuff in my head that’s ready to get down onto paper. 😀

And on that cheery note, I’m going to dance off into the metaphorical sunset where my internal editor can live happily ever after. ❤

Accountability Wednesdays: Week 31


Before we get down to it this morning, I have a quick review for you.

I had long resisted the concept of the Roomba iRobot Vacuum system. Being totally honest, I thought it was ridiculous. I couldn’t see how it would possibly work well, and the price tag on them just seemed astronomical to me. My husband even asked a couple of times if I wanted to get one and I said no because I could think of hundreds of other things I’d rather spend that money on.

Recently, however, I’ve been getting very cranky about the state of my floors. We have hardwood and tile throughout the house, so everything is visible – every hair, every crumb, every tuft of cat fur. Add to that the fact that one of my biggest pet peeves is stuff sticking to my bare feet, and I was starting to get super, super, super cranky. So it was that my husband brought up the possible purchase of a Roomba again, since there was one on sale at Canadian Tire. We hadn’t actually spent any significant money on ourselves for our anniversary last month so I thought, screw it…I’ll give it a try.

Now, the model that we bought is definitely not top-of-the-line. It’s about mid-range on the Roomba scale. But let me tell you, I’ve been thoroughly impressed. It’s a lot louder than I was expecting it to be, but then again, it is a vacuum, so I can’t complain too much about that. It comes with a “virtual wall” to keep it from going down the stairs, so I can put it on any floor in the house and just let it go. And go it does. The little dude just wanders around, poking around, following walls and furniture and swirling around in the middle of the floors, and it actually gets the floor clean. Ladies and gentlemen, this is genuinely a revelation for me. I’m seriously considering buying two more so that I can have one on every floor in my house. If you have the money to be able to afford a Roomba – even one of the lower-end ones – it is totally worth it. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Goal #1: Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

I have terrible, horrible news for this goal this week. I’m finally in a position to weigh myself in time for my accountability post, so I did so, and the results were extraordinarily depressing. I knew that I hadn’t been doing very well on this goal, but I figured that the worst case scenario was that I hadn’t lost anything. Oh no. It’s much worse than that. Ladies and gents, I’ve actually gained more than five pounds. I have to say that I am totally, totally disgusted with myself. I’ve had a terrible year so far when it comes to being healthy, and now I find that I’ve actually turned myself in the opposite direction. I need help. Seriously. Please, help me.

Goal #2: Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

The success of this goal this week depends on which aspect of social media you are looking at. I’ve been pretty active on YouTube (I uploaded three more unboxing videos, if you missed them), but I’ve been pretty quite everywhere else. Something that I definitely have to focus more on this week is browsing the blogosphere. I always talk about community, but I’ve been a pretty quiet neighbor of late.

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

I didn’t get as much done this week as I had hoped I would, but I did go through and do a final re-read on the chapters that I had deemed “done”, and that re-read helped me pick up a few typos and word repetitions, so it was worth doing. I hope for this week to be a lot more productive too, especially since I bought a new battery for my laptop (the old one would die after five minutes of being unplugged) in anticipation of taking my laptop out West with me for a run. I hate traveling with my laptop because it’s enormous, but I think that one good shift with it out there with me and I should be able to bang out the final edits for this goal. Wish me luck!

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words

As previously discussed, this goal is going to go by the wayside for a little while as I focus my attentions on goal #3, but I still managed to squeeze in a few words this week via my unboxing video posts. The grand total was 1572 words. Not exactly thrilling, but some words are better than no words, right?

In conclusion, this week I invite anyone reading this to offer me advice on banging out some real work toward these goals, particularly #1. Motivate me, people! Please!

Accountability Wednesdays: Week 30


I take back what I said last week. This is definitely the most exhausted I’ve felt in a long time. By the time you’re reading this I’ll have (hopefully) had a good night’s rest in my own bed, but at the time of writing this I am in the process of traveling home from my fourteen-day shift and I am straight-up knackered. I want to spend some time taking the little missy to the beach during my days off, but I’m also kinda hoping that we have a few really rainy days so that maybe I can convince her to snuggle up in bed and watch movies with me.

Ouch. I just yawned so hard that my jaw cracked. Ouch, ouch, ouch.

Okay, that’s enough of that. Let’s get down to it.

Goal #1: Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

If I wanted I could wait to post this until the last minute so that I could weigh myself first, but I can’t be fussed, and I’m pretty sure I know exactly what the scale would read anyway. I got real sick of apples, bananas, and grapes this week and instead found myself resorting to muffins, cookies, and the fudge that one of my coworkers keeps foisting on me. God dammit, don’t these people know that I have negative 10% willpower? So yeah, it hasn’t been a great week.

On the guts side of things, I’m still wavering on whether or not I think the meds are helping. I’m definitely having more good days that bad days lately, but I don’t really know if that’s because of the meds or because of one of about a dozen other things that could be affecting my innards. Either way, I’m definitely doing better, but I’m definitely not perfect or anything.

Goal #2: Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

Somehow, between work ours and everything else I’ve been doing, I managed to keep up with blog comments this week, which is a huge plus since it’s one less thing I have to deal with when I get home. There were also a few tweets, and a few Facebook status updates. It’s been pretty good all around.

I did also try to screw around with StumbledUpon this week, but it mostly wound up being an aneurysm-level frustration. You can’t submit a page via the iPhone app, and when I try to do it on the website (via the phone), it won’t let me choose any other category but Paranormal for some reason. After way too much effort and quite a lot of profanity I gave up and decided to wait until I get home so I can try and screw with it on an actual computer. Wish me luck.

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

You all know what the deal with this one is, but there’s good news: Operation Get-Blogging-Stuff-Out-Of-The-Way-First was a huge success. I managed to get so much planned out that I only have to worry about Accountability posts from now until the end of my next shift out West. Booya. So, therefore, I can put all my energy (whatever little there is left after the little missy takes her share) into getting through this on my days off. Ideally I would like to finish the second round edits this month so I can send it off for a final beta-read before I go back out to work again, but realistically I’m aiming for that much to be done by mid-September. Then, presumably, I’ll put all my energy into turning it into a purchasable book by Halloween. That’s my ultimate goal.

Speaking of turning manuscripts into books, does anyone have a good tutorial on how to turn a Scrivener file into a Kindle e-book format? I was trying to figure it out one day and I just kept winding up with this messed up file that only showed about fifteen words per page.

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words.

This week wasn’t as good as last week because I allowed myself to relax a little once I saw how far I’d managed to schedule ahead on the blog. Even still, I managed to push through the sleep deprivation to pound out another 7036 words. I’m behind where I should be for this time of year, but I’m catching up, and if I can get goal #3 out of the way I expect to have a truly spectacular NaNoWriMo this year.

So, to wrap it up, I’m terribly unhealthy in a great number of ways, yet strangely on top of things for a change. I’m calling that a win.

Accountability Wednesdays: Week 28


It’s another week and I’m back out West, working my 15-1/2 hour days and trying to figure out how I’m going to get anything else accomplished over the next two weeks. Fun times! Thank goodness I’m making good money, because otherwise my head may have already exploded.

On the upside of things, I did manage to record my two Nerd Block unboxing videos and get them uploaded to YouTube before returning to work. I’m not the most comfortable person in front of a camera, but I don’t think I did too badly. My only concern now is that now that my husband knows that I’m recording I’m going to have to find a way to lock him out of the room so he doesn’t torture me mid-taping. 😛

(Shut up, Jason, you know you’re going to do it.)

If you’re interested in Nerd Block, or if you just want to see how awkward I am on camera, please check out my unboxing video for the original Nerd Block for June:

…and my unboxing video for Nerd Block Jr (for Girls) for June:

And now on to the usual stuff.

Goal #1: Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

I’m just gonna go right ahead and say it: I’m failing miserably at this goal for a number of reasons (some of them good reasons, some of them bad). The upside is that my bad habits haven’t actually caused me to gain any more weight, but of course the downside is that I have effectively accomplished nothing toward this goal in over six months.

It’s a combination of things, but the major contributing factor is that this just isn’t as much of a priority to me as it should be. Blogging is very important to me. Writing (and, to a lesser extent, editing) is very important to me. Spending time with my family and taking small opportunities to relax are super important to me. Losing weight and getting healthier should be important to me, but they’re significantly less important than the other things I listed, so this goal continuously gets thrown on the back burner to slowly burn away into charcoal. I eat crappy food because cooking healthy takes time and energy that I use on other things that are important to me, and I avoid exercise for the same reason. It’s terrible, but it’s the truth.

So with that in mind, if anyone knows how I can somehow either double the hours in the day, or make it possible to function without sleep…feel free to let me know any time.

On the positive side ofthings, I’ve been using an iPhone app to remind me to take my stomach pills and thus far it seems to be helping. I actually think these meds might really help if I can continue to remember to take them properly. Further updates to come.

Goal #2: Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

I’m calling this one a win for the week. I wasn’t overly active on Facebook or Twitter, but I did become a member of the International Bloggers Association, and I also set up my new YouTube channel for subscription box fun. I think that counts as pretty productive as far as social media is concerned.

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

Unfortunately I didn’t manage to find the time during my days off to work on this. Just as unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to print off anything to work on while out West. So this is going to be a bust for a couple more weeks. On the upside, my next days home shouldn’t be nearly as busy as the last ones were. My revised mini-goal for the next fourteen days is to get as much blogging scheduled as possible between now and then so that when I get home I can focus entirely on Goal #3. Since that means trying to blog around my 15-1/2 hour work days, please send me good luck (and lots of caffiene).

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words.

Unfortunately (which is becoming my most-used word), I can’t give you a real report this week because I forgot to make a copy of my spreadsheet before coming out West, so I have no idea what my numbers are. I can tell you that I believe it to be somewhere between 3000 and 4000 words. I hope to put that number to shame this following week, but again…15-1/2 hour days…so don’t hold me to it, okay? Ha ha…

As a final note before I sign off today, I’m just going to mention that to avoid diluting my weekly schedule any further, future subscription box reviews are going to be posted on the weekends as they pop up. Look forward to them! ❤

Accountability Wednesdays: Week 24


Before we get down to the accountability today, I have a few things to talk about. The first is a bit of an excuse for why this week’s post is going to be a little doomy and gloomy. As I’ve mentioned previously, I recently started a new job. Something about that new job that I didn’t know until less than a week ago is tht the camp (where I live while I’m on shift) is an hour’s bus ride away from the site. Another thing that I didn’t know right away is that said bus ride does not overlap at all with any of my 12-hour shift. And yet another thing that I actually didn’t find out until I got here is that we don’t get paid for our lunch break, so my 12-hour day is actually a 12-and-a-half-hour day. When you work in the bus rides plus the time it takes to gather my gear and lunch in the morning, that means that for the 14 straight days of my shift I’m working 15-hour days. That leaves nine hours a day in camp to have dinner, shower, do anything that might need doing (like laundry), and sleep. To make a long story short: unless I plan to give up a great deal of sleep, I’m not going to be getting a whole lot of anything done during the time that I’m out here. So go easy on me, will you? I wrote a large chunk of this very post on my iPhone during lunch break. -_-

On a lighter note, I have recently discovered the world of “subscription boxes”. In case you don’t know, a subscription box is a service where you pay a fee each month, and each month the company you’re dealing with sends you a mystery box full of goodies that (presumably) has a retail value that is significantly higher than what you paid. I kinda knew that these things existed, but I never realized how many of them there really are, or how many of them would actually appeal to me. Believe me when I say that it has taken a great exercise of willpower to keep myself from signing up for about a dozen of them. The one that I did decide to take a chance on is Nerd Block. This particular subscription is aimed at nerds, and is all about geeky merchandise and collectibles. There is an “adult” block, two kid blocks (one for girls, one for boys), and a “horror” block for nerds who love stuff like zombies and horror movies. The adult and horror blocks always include a t-shirt and several collectibles, all foro $19.99 plus shipping and handling (for myself in Nova Scotia it comes out to about $32). The kids’ blocks are all toys and collectibles, at a cost of $13.99 plus shipping and handling (for me, about $21). At first I was a bit iffy about whether the price after shipping (goddamn it costs a fortune to ship anything to Nova Scotia) wouldn’t be worth it, but then I started watching review videos and I was impressed with the amount (and quality) of items that came in each box. So I thought, hell…I’ll give it a try. I ordered a girls’ box for my daughter, and an original adult box which will – depending on the items – be divided between myself, my husband, and my daughter. But don’t tell either of them…I’ll probably hold on to the items until their birthdays or Christmas…shhhhh….(my husband totally doesn’t read these accountability posts and this is how I’m going to prove it).

The reason i’m explaining all this is because I plan to do an unboxing/review of the blocks when I recieve them, and I wanted to get my readers’ opinions on something. Should I write the reviews and just include pictures, or should I do a video? I have to admit that I thoroughly enjoyed watching other peoples’ unboxing videos and I thought it might be fun to do my own. But then again, my skill has always been in the written word, not the spoken one. So I’m going to leave it up to you guys: would you rather see a well-worded written review with photos, or an unboxing video in which I’ll probably stumble over myself and say, “Ummm…” a lot?

Okay, now on to the accountability….*gulp*

Goal #1. Lose ten pounds and become healthier overall.

This, just…yeah. As I explained, my new schedule pretty much allows me no time to do anything besides work, eat, and sleep. In fact, I’m losing sleep in order to finish writing this post, and I’m probably going to be very mad about it in the morning. I did manage to get one run and one strength exercise session in before I came out here, but now that I’m here it’s pretty much all over. There is literally no way that I can fit in exercise without giving up sleep, and since I already require more sleep than it is possible to get out here, that’s not going to happen any time soon. I am extremely POed about it, I don’t mind telling you. But that’s all there is to it.

On the eating side of things, I’m not really sure what to say yet. I do tend to eat more while I’m living on camp, just because there’s so much food to be had, but I also tend to eat more better things like fruit and boiled eggs and the like. I guess the tell will be whether I end up gaining or losing weight while I am completely and utterly unable to exercise.

On the upside of things, I think the meds my doctor gave me for my stomach issues may be helping. I’ve been having a hard time remembering to take them, because it’s a three-times-a-day kind of thing that I’m not used to, but I think I have a system down now and I’ve actually been feeling pretty good. More to come on that after I’ve had another week or so to test the waters.

Goal #2. Be more active on social media and work hard on my author platform.

I’m a bit up in the air about whether this was a good week or not. It kinda feels like it was, but that may be because I spent so much time conversing with a coworker on Facebook. Something that I can comment on is that I’ve been getting lots of random shares, comments, and retweets, so that’s pretty awesome.

Also awesome? Remember that silly picture I made up for 9gag about Robert Downey Jr’s inception-like role in Tropic Thunder?


That totally wound up on RDJ’s Facebook page. I was totally stoked. I mean, I’m not silly enough to think that RDJ himself found the picture and was like, “This is so cool! I’m going to post it on my Facebook!”, but the fact that it wound up there in any way is pretty cool. Go me for actually doing something humourous that people enjoyed. 😀

Goal #3: COMPLETE my zombie apocalypse novel, Nowhere to Hide.

I’m certain you know where I’m going to go with this one. Right off the bat, I don’t have my manuscript files with me because (as I’ve mentioned before) I don’t take my laptop out West with me and it’s impossible to work on those files via my tablet. Second, even if I did take my laptop or could use my tablet, I wouldn’t have the time. Again: losing sleep just to write this post.

Goal #4: Write 500,000 words.

I made a boo-boo pertaining to this goal: I forgot to make a copy of the file where I keep track of my word count to bring out West with me. Thus, I have no idea what my total is for this week. I’m almost positive that I had about 4000 words written before I left, and I’ve somehow managed to scribble out something like 3000 words in between orientation courses and bumpy bus rides, so we’ll just go ahead and say that it’s about 7000. I expect that number to go down significantly by next week since, again…no goddamn time.

And now, with all that said, I’m going to prove how desperate I really am for sleep and go to bed. -.-zzzzzZZZZZZZ