This month was a struggle, as November almost always is. Between getting a lot of papers and work to grade, the time change, anxiety, and holiday stuff, I feel like I did not get as much done as I would have liked to. I’m trying hard not to beat myself up over it because I did the best I could with what I had in my mental reserves. This might also be a bit of a wake-up call to me [again] about making sure to refill the creative well instead of trying to steamroller forward even when I’m mentally exhausted. I also got into a minor car accident (got cut off and popped a tire running off the road), which made my anxiety skyrocket at the end of the month. If this is my “worst” month this year, I still think I did pretty damn good. Anyway, let’s see what my goals for November were.
- Read 8 books
- Blog weekly and put out the monthly newsletter
- Keep marketing The Reanimator’s Heart
- Word count goals for “Flowers and Flourishing”
- Minimum- 10k
- Intermediate- 12.5k
- Stretch- 15k
- Shop for majority of the Christmas presents
- Actually work on that spring class’s lesson plans
- Do something relaxing- not sure what exactly but video games, drawing, crafts count
My goal for November was to read 8 books, and I read 8 books.
- The Ancient Magus’s Bride Vol. 16 by Kore Yamazaki- 4 stars, I like that we’re finally coming to a head with the antagonist in this arc. It could be its own manga series with how long it’s been.
- The Stand-Up Groomsman (#2) by Jackie Lau- 4 stars, loved this one. The MCs don’t hit it off initially when standoffish meets high energy comedian, but the way they truly see each other is *chef kiss*
- Even Though I Knew the End by C. L. Polk- 5 stars, demons, angels, and collected souls in 1920s Chicago with a queer cast? Yes please. Very short but very good.
- A Gathering Storm by Joanna Chambers- 4 stars, loved the disability rep with the MCs voice issue and [potential] neurodivergence along with the interweaving of spiritualism and grief.
- Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell- 4 stars, a fiction/nonfiction interweaving of Shakespeare’s dead son, Hamnet, and his character Hamlet where the supernatural infuses the essence of the family’s life. Really interesting, definitely edges into lit fic stylistically.
- The Solstice Cabin (#4) by Arden Powell- 4 stars, magical 1920s Canada where one MC follows the other nearly to the ends of the earth for love.
- Skeleton Song (#7.7) by Seanan McGuire- 4 stars, a short story showing how Christopher fell into Mariposa and met the skeleton girl.
- What the Dead Know by Nghi Vo- 4 stars, fake psychics get more than they bargained for when putting on a seance at an all girls’ magical school.
- Marketed The Reanimator’s Heart a lot during the month
- Sent out more audio review copies of Kinship and Kindness
- Made a temporary cover for Flowers and Flourishing
- Made a Goodreads page for Flowers and Flourishing
- Wrote the blurb for Flowers and Flourishing
- Did the majority of my Christmas shopping (very happy about this scrambling in December stresses me out)
- Graded so a shit ton of papers *laugh sob*
- Got a new tire put on my car because I got run off the road (yes, I’m fine, just freaked out)
- Made email adverts for the class I’m teaching in the spring semester
As a side note, I did not touch my lesson plans for next semester at all. It has been pushed back once again. If I get through half of my plans in December, I’ll be happy.
- October 2022 Wrap-Up Post
- The Truth About Critique Groups
- Introducing Flowers and Flourishing
- On Autistic (Un)Masking
- Why I Never NaNo
- November newsletter
How did writing go? Badly, lol. The sad part is that the words were good. The vast majority of what I wrote won’t require major edits or rewrites. It’s just the quantity that went wrong. As mentioned in my blog post on NaNoWriMo, I hate November. It’s the month when my brain nosedives due to seeing high NaNo word counts, the weather/time change, and all the grading I’m doing. I had wanted to write at least 10,000 words. Instead, I wrote 8,000 words, and the process was torturous. Luckily, I’m writing a novella, so I’m really not that behind at this point and will have it out on time as long as I don’t totally tank in December.
- Week 1- 0 words (6 day week)
- Week 2- 4,000 words, 571 words/day, (didn’t write for 2 days)
- Week 3- 1,300 words, 186 words/day (didn’t write for 3 days)
- Week 4- 1,300 words, 186 words/day (didn’t write for 3 days)
- Week 5- 1,400 words, 467 words/day (3 day week, didn’t write 1 of those days)
Hopes for December
- Finish writing Flowers and Flourishing
- Edit Flowers and Flourishing
- Read 8 books
- Blog weekly and send out my December newsletter
- Finish Christmas prep
- Have 6 weeks of lessons prepped/outlined for next semester
- Set goals for Q1 of 2023