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I’ve had to let my writing go just a bit. I have two proofreading jobs I’m working on right now. I’m about 3/4 finished with the first one, and I’m a little way into the second one. I hope to wrap up the first one by the weekend. I just can’t do all three things at once.

I probably wouldn’t have to set my writing aside, but I have a bunch of things going on besides the proofreading. I went over some of these in my last post, so I won’t bore you with all of that. The only change is that one of our church elders who was very sick has now passed away, so there will be a funeral tomorrow night. Life just gets all kinds of crazy.

I interviewed someone yesterday to replace my assistant, and I really hope she takes the job. This will be the first time in a long time there’s been another female besides me working here if she does. I guess I’ll have to share my bathroom. The upside is, she seems to be very organized, and none of the guys here are, so I’ll have a kindred spirit in that respect. *keeping fingers crossed*

I really hope life slows down some. Not the proofreading jobs. though! I want them to keep coming! :)

I almost didn’t post at all. I’m so overwhelmed. But I know that keeping a routine is always good. Here’s what’s going on.

1. I got a book I was supposed to proofread late, so now it’s bumping up against another proofread.

2. I’m trying to keep up with two pen names, which means writing two books, maintaining two Facebook profiles, maintaining two websites, checking yet another email and trying not to mix everything up. (This doesn’t include my personal FB and email.)

3. One of the elders where I go to church is at death’s door, and it’s really sad.

4. The father of one of my best friends is very sick.

5. A person on my husband’s side of the family is being abusive to another family member, and we’re having to deal with that.

6. I’m teaching Vacation Bible School in June, which hinders the proofreading and the writing. I envision a lot of late nights.

But…

1. I’ve started drinking Shakeology shakes which have a bunch of awesome ingredients, and I already feel like my energy level is up. (I hope it’s not just the power of suggestion.)

2. My blood sugar is down, and I’m hoping this is a good sign for me trying to get off my insulin by the end of the year.

3. I’ve lost a couple of pounds.

4. When I don’t feel like writing, I’ve been making myself sit down and write anyway, promising myself it’s just for at least 500 words or so, but I’ve ended up writing more.

5. My husband is awesome and understands that when I have a lot to do in my proofreading and writing business the housework might have to wait (and he does it).

6. I’m teaching Vacation Bible School in June, and it’s a very rewarding and uplifting experience.

7. I have proofreading jobs, for which I’m very thankful.

8. Even though book sales for Lauralynn are in the toilet right now, the Catherine pen name is doing well.

9. I have the most awesome friends in the world.

Writing is still going pretty good. I’m still on target for my monthly word count goal.

Here’s the whining part, so don’t say I didn’t warn you.

We are so far behind at work. Farther behind than I realized. We had an employee die about three weeks ago, and now they’ve taken away my assistant and put him in that position. It’s better for him but awful for me. Now I’m even more overworked. I went into the other office and found just HOW far behind stuff is. And I’m the only one who is available to do it except our truck driver who SOMETIMES comes into the office and helps me. I’ve had a headache all week by the time I get home in the evenings. My acid reflux has been acting up the past two days, even though I’m on medication for it. I’ve been on the verge of tears for days. Part of it is because I’m missing the employee, a good friend, who died. But part of it is the frustration of trying to do the work of about three people. I hope all this stress doesn’t seriously impact my writing.

/end of whining

On a more positive note, I’ve joined a FB group started by a friend who is a coach for Beach Body. I signed up for a free membership on the website. I’m seriously thinking about using their meal replacement shakes (Shakeology) for one meal a day. There’s stuff in this shake that’s not in any other, including a BUNCH of super foods. It’s expensive, but if it replaces lunch AND my vitamins/minerals, then it’s actually saving me money. I bought a sample pack with one of each flavor to see if I like it. It’s got so much good for you stuff in it, it can’t taste THAT good. LOL

Writing is still going well. I finished the novella for the anthology under the Catherine pen name. It’s not due until late summer, so I’m going to set that aside a little while, then go back to it for editing later. I might add a scene or two at that time, depending how I feel about it after letting it simmer.

I’ve written a couple of scenes in the second Hemlock Ridge Mysteries series under the Catherine name. I actually started that novella with pen and paper since I was at a diner with no laptop with me. Wow, now I remember why I love my computer.

I’m going to try to write the Hemlock Ridge novella and the sequel to Soul of a Vampire simultaneously. I’ve tried to write books that way before and have never been able to. But I love a challenge, so I’ll try once more. I really need a book for both pen names.

I have FOUR proofreading jobs coming to me soon. It’s going to be challenging to write every day while that’s going on. My deadlines on these jobs are going to be tighter than I’ve had to deal with before. What I’m going to try to do is, during the time I’m proofreading, only write about 500 words per day. That will take me 20-30 minutes, and I’m going to take that time if I can. I can’t put my writing completely aside while proofreading like I’ve done in the past. I have an hour at lunch and somewhere around three hours at home (unless my eyes give out sooner). That will leave me about an hour to spend time with my husband. As long as I use my time wisely, I think I can pull all this off. You probably won’t see me online at night for awhile. And housework? Forget it!

That’s about it. I’ll be overwhelmed for the next month and a half, but I’ll get through it. This might just be good for me. :)

ROW80Logocopy

I feel like I’m really accomplishing things this month. 19% of the month has gone, but I’m at 29% of my monthly goal, so that’s good. I’ve written 3653 words in the past three days. Also good. I’m almost done with the novella I’m writing for an anthology, so it will be off to editors/beta readers soon. Then I can concentrate on the other two books in the queue. I really think it’s possible I’ll make my 150,000 word count goal for 2015!

By the way, I broke a rule in one of the sentences in that first paragraph. Who can tell me what it was? ;)

Just a really quick check-in before I get ready for church this morning.

I finished April off with about 4,000 words over my goal for the month. So that’s good. I took the last two days off from writing to do other stuff. Yesterday, I walked over 4 miles in the Juvenile Diabetes walk. Then I went to a Mother’s Day banquet yesterday afternoon hosted by my mom’s church. Sometimes there are other things we have to do besides write.

I’m kind of stuck in the plotting for my second Hemlock Ridge Mysteries series written under my Catherine Lynn pen name. I have the basic plot, but there’s some important stuff I’m not getting. I’ll probably go ahead and start writing, because a lot of my ideas come WHEN I’m writing instead of before. That’s why I like pantsing better. I think better during the process of writing than the process of plotting. I’m trying kind of a combination of both. I know the basic things I need to know for the plot, just not all the details. Does that make me a “plantser”? Hmm, a new word.

I want to look again at my long-term goals for this check-in and see where I am.

This year, I want to have published four things under my Catherine Lynn pen name and one under Lauralynn. I’ve accomplished two of these so far. I have one novella in a two book anthology with Ruth Ann Nordin (writing as Barbara Joan Russell) which is through Parchment & Plume Publishing, and I published Brewing Up Murder (which is doing surprisingly well right now), the first in the Hemlock Ridge Mysteries. I’m about 2/3 into a novella I’m doing for an anthology, so that will be done soon. My next projects will be writing the second Hemlock Ridge novella and writing the sequel to Soul of a Vampire. SoaV was a little complicated to write, and I think the sequel will be equally so. I’m going to give myself plenty of time to write that one. We’re only four months into the year, so I think I’ll be able to write it.

Another goal for the year is to write 150,000 words. This might not seem much to you, but with what little writing time I actually have, it’s a lot for me. So far, here’s what I’ve done. My nifty spreadsheet (you can find them HERE) divides the 150K into monthly goals based on how many days are in the month.

January – Goal: 12,740, Written: 12,890
February – Goal: 11,507, Written: 10,454
March – Goal: 12,739, Written: 1,779
April (so far) – Goal: 12,329, Written: 14,776

As you can see, I got way behind in March. But I’m at 120% of goal for April, so I’m slowly making that up. I’m still 9,416 words behind for the year. If I can just keep up my momentum, I can reach my yearly goal. Can you tell I love spreadsheets?

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