The Plan: Week Three

How did it go? Did I accomplish my goals? Were they good goals?

Day 1

I did find several potential publications. The goal was three per day, and I found six. However, I was also supposed to write a first draft of a sample article, and I just couldn’t make myself.

I think this research is good, but I need more. I need to read these publications to get a feel for where I’d be a fit.

And I need to learn how to write articles.

And I need to practice researching for articles.

Should I start doing that now or later?

Day 2

It’s okay to do research this week and not as much writing. This week my priority is to experience joy in my relationships, specifically with my family. I’ve had some disappointments recently, and nourishing my soul with family time is one way that I’m recovering.

Writing is another way that I’m recovering. And maybe I’m not doing EVERYTHING to be a writer right this second, but I’m still making progress. And my heart and my health matter most.

Still. I did write a first draft of an article today. It needs refinement. It needs a little research. But it’s exactly what I set out to do, write a first draft.

Day 3

Last night I read a couple articles on how to get freelance gigs writing articles. This morning, I added some publications to my list by following the advice I found.

I was worried on Day 1 that I wouldn’t be able to write a first draft of an article each day. But, I wrote one yesterday and one today!

I think the fact that I’m tempted to keep going, to write more articles and start pitching before I’m ready is a good thing. I’m truly following a passion.

Day 4

I am traveling (safely, I promise!), and I thought I’d use some of my commute to write. But instead I created a new schedule for myself to follow next month. And I watched Season Three, Episode One of Westworld.

Day 5

Today I did not do my writing. I did dye my hair lavender.

Day 6

Today I read an article on The Write Life (because I subscribed to their newsletter) called 23 Online Writing Groups on Facebook You Don’t Want to Miss.

And I joined over half of them. In one group, a woman shared a Google Excel sheet of writing opportunities. Score!

I also wrote a blog post today. I realize that a good goal this week would have been to write four articles and three blog posts.

Day 7

The negative way of putting this is that I fell of the wagon with my writing habits.

I made being present with my family a big priority today. And I’m trying to make sleep a priority, too.

It’s late. Tomorrow I will assess my successes and failures for the week and adjust my plan accordingly.

Going forward

Week Four: Write act outlines for my short stories to turn into novels. Write one act outline and a blog post each day, or two act outlines in a day. Ideally, I will have three act outlines done for each story idea by the end of the week. The first half of the week might be a bit slow, and that’s okay.

Week Five: Research how to write better articles. Write and Rewrite articles for freelancing. Write one blog post or one draft of an article on alternating days. Brainstorm people to review/revise/edit what I’ve written.

Week Six: Start writing on my novel(s).

Week Seven: Start developing relationships or cold-calling to write articles. Research how to write better articles and revise and write articles for pitching. Start reading publications I want to write for. Start writing pitches for publications.

To Ponder

Rest: Right now, I’m trying to write every day. And I got burnt out a bit during week three. There are other factors, of course, but that makes me wonder if I should take weekends off. Then again, even though writing takes work, it is a source of joy and relief for me. During a time when I am not traveling, perhaps I won’t need to take a break from writing. Another difference is that writing fiction is more nourishing to my soul than writing articles. Perhaps during a week where writing nonfiction is my goal, I take the weekends off, but during fiction weeks, I don’t.

NaNoWriMo: Do I want to participate in NaNoWriMo this year? How will I incorporate that into my plan? Will I save one of my novel ideas for that?

Sequels: All of my current stories could have sequels. When should I start outlining those?


What do you think about the things I’m pondering?

What topics would you be interested in seeing me write an article about?

5 thoughts on “The Plan: Week Three

  1. I like the new hair.
    I would also recommend to publish articles. I know Mark Huntley Parsons, a writer married to a more famous children’s author Wendelin Van Draanen. Both very nice people. Mark makes his writing money by writing articles, mostly for music magazines (he’s a drummer, among other things). He talked about the lovely break his fiction is while the grind of the articles makes him a few bucks. Both he and Wedelin stressed how they make very little money from their fiction in general, even with a major publisher. Though, Wendelin has had many things turned into movies and TV shows, so that’s nice. Mark just got his second book deal with a major publisher. Yes, I’m super jealous, but they did this the hard way, year after year until they broke in. He’s got an interested blog about balancing all aspects of life
    Just thought I’d share.


    1. Thanks!
      Wendelin Van Draanen wrote one of my all-time favorite books, Flipped! And the movie almost does it justice. I will check out her husband’s blog.
      I had looked into Medium a while ago, and it’s on my list. I set up an account, and when I feel more ready and polished, I’ll publish there so I at least have writing samples available.


      1. Great! Wendelin grew up in Lompoc, and lived and taught in Santa Maria for years. She and her husband still live on the central coast. Both have spoken at the Nipomo CWC group and we have all done local book events together. Of course they are in another league than myself, but super down to earth and very open with their process and lives. His first novel Road Rash is pretty good YA fare. She vlogs and his blog is great. Best of luck. Happy 2020!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the things you’re pondering. And, yes, I want to see so much more of your new hair, its amazing!!!

    I think you’re thoughts and musings are really important, but I also want to honor how you’re taking care of yourself right now. You are prioritizing family in a time where connection is hard to come by. Kudos to you.

    I am also amazed at how open you are to modifying your plan to fit where you are in your process! Yes, I think taking the weekends off is a solid idea. I think research and networking on Facebook is a great game plan. (Maybe hold off on sequel planning if you get overwhelmed but, if not, GO FOR IT!)


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