Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2014 Goal Setting Helpfuls!

Hey Peeps,

So I wanted to bring your attention to two things that may be helpful to you for setting your goals for 2014.

The first thing is an article by James Clear The Difference Between Goals and Systems

The second thing is a workbook that I purchased from Leonie Dawson. She has one available for life and one available for your business. I purchased both. I haven't gone through both workbooks yet but from what I've seen in the business workbook it helps you get organized, ask important questions, get focused and intentional! Here is the link to the workbooks!

I hope these two resources are helpful to you in some way.....

Until Next Time...
Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned!

Monday, December 30, 2013

My Year In Review 2013 (And 2012)

Image credit: maxkabakov / 123RF Stock Photo

Hey Peeps,

So I wanted to take the time to reflect on my last two years to see what went right and what went wrong. This will give me an idea of what I want and need to focus on in 2014 which I will do another post about my plans for 2014.

I'm sure I've stated this before, the last two years have been extremely challenging for me. Let's take a look at 2012.

What went right in 2012:

  • I got out of a toxic relationship....best decision ever!
  • I saved more money in that one year (by moving into a much cheaper apartment) than I had saved in all the years since moving to NY (in 2003)
  • I flew for first time SOLO....I realized that I hate airports and I know that I will need to have a private jet ha! I can never get comfortable on planes.
  • I was able to go home to ATL to visit my family
  • I finally went to the Taste of Chicago! I'd been wanting to go there for two years.
  • I finally went to Vegas! That was amazing...definitely need another trip there!
  • I spent New Year's Eve with some of my great friends from Astoria!
  • I had a fun summer for the most part going to day parties, meeting new friends, etc.
  • I published my two books on Amazon (under a pen name which I have since unpublished)! The beginning of my career!

What went wrong in 2012:

  • I left my apartment after living alone for 5 years and ended up in a much smaller cramped basement apartment that I ended up hating. I cried a lot missing my apartment in Astoria.
  • I didn't save my target savings goal
  • My book didn't sell millions so it created a lot of self doubt (I wanted an instant rise to stardom I suppose LOL)
  • I got extra unwanted roommates in the apartment that I was renting and they made my stay miserable as hell
  • I started my emotional roller-coaster feeling that I had completely lost myself.

Now let's look at 2013...

What went right in 2013:

  • I moved from that basement apartment into an apartment that was more spacious and with a close friend of mine (it's in Brooklyn and I still miss Astoria....badly ha! I think I always will miss living there; its the best place to live in NY in my opinion.)
  • I published two new books!

  • I'm actually building a career and making money from it while I'm learning! ha!
  • I went on my first cruise!! Amazing experience! Will definitely have to do it again....every year if possible!
  • I cut my hair and love my new style....it totally fits my personality and I can always change it up! Loving it!
  • I got a new laptop specifically for writing! (Don't sleep on QVC...I just learned about them this year and took advantage ha!)
  • My ex finally stopped contacting me...geez!
  • And...I met a guy that I really like hehehehe.....

Okay...what went wrong in 2013:

  • I didn't stick to my publication plans for this year. I only published 2 books and my goal was 12. I wanted to publish something new once a month (minimum). But I was battling extreme self doubt after my first two books flopped and so it took me a few months to get my writing mojo back. I slowed down but I didn't quit!!!
  • I encountered some major financial responsibilities that were both expected and unexpected which pretty much depleted the savings that I'd accumulated in 2012 and kept me from saving more this year.
  • I haven't gotten back to doing some of the things that I did back in 2011 that kept me spiritually nourished and emotionally and mentally healthy.
  • Still on an emotional roller-coaster......

What have I learned from these last two years?

I've learned that we all go through seasons and not every season is about us. My intention for moving out of my apartment and go back to having roommates was to save money so that I can travel more and eventually move from NY. Well it seems as if this season wasn't about me after all. But I believe everything happens for a reason. If I had not moved out of my apartment, I wouldn't have been in a financial position to help those that really needed me. Yes, it puts my goals and dream on hold a bit and yes, it has made me upset because the sole reason for me moving was not accomplished. But I have to remind myself that God trusts me to be in this position for a reason and the things that I'm going through, have gone through, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and financially are not in vain.

I've learned that the one thing that God is trying to work with me on is PATIENCE. This is my test which will eventually turn into my testimony. I'm grateful for these experiences. I'm learning what I don't like, what I don't want, what I'm willing to tolerate, how I prefer to be treated, how I prefer to live, what type of lifestyle I prefer to have, what career I want and what I need to improve on.

Everything is constantly and consistently working together for my good.

Stay Tuned to find out what I plan to do in 2014 to position myself for greater success and prosperity!

Stay Blessed!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Why Are You Grateful?

I received the message below in my inbox from Daily Gratitude and it reminded me that I have not been consistent with keeping a gratitude journal. I did it for a few days and then I stopped....but for 2014 I will make it an everyday practice. But not just listing what I'm grateful for each day, I will also include why I'm grateful for those things, as suggested below.

I just wanted to share that with you......2014 is indeed one of the best years of my life.....STAY TUNED!! :-)

"When I started counting my 
         blessings, my whole life 
         turned around."
                 Willie Nelson

In yesterday's message we learned that to bring
about the life we want, we need to think happy,
positive thoughts.

We also learned that the way we can figure out if
we're thinking positive thoughts is by paying
attention to how we feel.

So now, if we do that and realize that we're
actually thinking negatively most of the time, 
how do we change it?

I'm glad you asked! The answer comes to us
from famous singer and songwriter Willie 
Nelson, who has experienced the good and the
not-so-good of life.

His recommendation is doing a daily gratitude
list. Write down what you're grateful for, and 
why. The "why" is very important because it 
focuses you on the good that is coming to you
from that person, place or thing that you're
grateful for.

And don't just write, slow down and think about
your gratitudes and how your life is better as a
result of them.

This will start the process of training your mind 
to think of good, positive things. And if you 
make it a regular practice, you'll get better and
better at thinking positive thoughts.

Willie says it turned his whole life around. What
might it do for you?

All the best,


Please forward to a friend!

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issue every weekday.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Want to Win A Kindle Fire? Join this Giveaway!

Photo Collage of New Adult Books Giveaway Kindle Fire

Hey Peeps!

So I'm participating in another #Giveaway! Yay!

This is a Mega Giveaway with some of my New Adult Author Friends.

You have a chance to win a Kindle Fire, some awesome sway and a $10 Amazon Gift Card!!!

So enter below for a chance to win!!

Good Luck!!

   a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, December 25, 2013






Tuesday, December 24, 2013

New Home for Author Yolanda Allen!

Hey Peeps Happy Christmas Eve!

Just wanted to let you know what I spent my weekend doing...learning how to use Wordpress! ha!

I spent HOURS Saturday night buying a web hosting plan, redirecting nameservers, finding a suitable theme (for free ha!) and setting up the new home for all things related to my writing career. I've wanted to do this for awhile now after reading so much advice from other online entrepreneurs about the importance of having your own self hosted website. 

So my plan was to switch both my personal blog and my author site over to Wordpress.org.....ummmm after the learning curve that I had to go through...and probably will continue to go through as I build onto that site..I'm going to keep my personal blog (Yogi's Playground) hosted on Blogger. This site is the one that I update the most because it's about my whole life not just my career. But in case something happens to any public platform then it will be good to be able to reach my readers on my own self hosted site.

So check out the new home of Author Yolanda Allen at www.authoryolandaallen.com

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned!

Monday, December 16, 2013

I'M IN LOVE!!!!!

With my mascara!

Just wanted to drop a quick note for all my lovelies that like to wear mascara. A good liner and mascara is sometimes all the makeup you need to get your face a little pop!

I went to my local dollar store the other day and found L'oreal's Telescopic Mascara in Carbon Black. I was interested in the mascara because of the wand. I like that you can use it from every angle. BUT lordy mercy....when I put this mascara on...my lashes were bananas!

It really does get every lash and it's really intense. I love this mascara! I don't know how much it normally retails for, I got it for $3.99...this will be a staple in my makeup collection.

Try it out! Let me know what you think!

Until next time...
Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Sweet Romance Christmas Giveaway - Amazon Gift Cards and MANY Books

Click on each book to read about it on Amazon or to buy it in case you don't win the giveaway. Nah, you'll win! Just scroll below to enter the giveaway now! Good luck! :-)

Clarissa Carlyle - Just Like Heaven

Alesha Cary - Redwood Cove - the Series (4 Books)

Kathrine Emrick - Love Letter of the Law

Pamela Kelley - Six Months in Montana

Sarah Collins - Salvation

Beate Boeker - Stormy Times

Shawn Inmon - Both Sides Now

Yolanda Allen - One Man's Trash Another Man's Treasure

Lucy Naylor Kubash - An Uncommon Prince and Other Short Stories

Opal Mellon - His Only Hope

Kate Benzin - Diving Into Love

Dianne Ascroft - Dancing Shadows, Tramping Hooves

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, November 8, 2013

Hold On To Your Joy!!

Hey my lovelies! Happy Friday!!

I just wanted to send out a quick note to you guys to remind you that you have to hold on to your joy no matter what life throws at you. I needed to be reminded of this the other day when my boss pissed me off. I won't go into details but I allowed someone to steal my joy and my whole day was ruined. Can't do that again. It keeps me from being productive and working toward my personal goals. 

I'm also reading the book, Attitude is Everything by Jeff Keller, for the second time in the past few months. I'm reading it again because I didn't follow the principles after I read it the first time. But now I plan to follow the principles that he suggests in the book. You should definitely check it out at Amazon!

Keep your attitude right and it will help you overcome any and every obstacle that comes your way. I'm a work in progress...when I learn...I like to share. So this is me sharing!

Have a blessed day...or not...the choice is yours!

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned!

Here is a word from Joel Osteen: Don't Give Up!

Don’t Give it Up!
“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”
(Proverbs 17:22, ESV)
TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
Throughout life, there will always be something that will try to take our joy. If it’s not a grumpy sales person, it’s a family member aggravating you, traffic is backed up, your flight got delayed, or your spouse is taking too long! Don’t go the next 20 years allowing the same people and same circumstances to frustrate you. Change your approach. What’s upsetting you now doesn’t have to upset you anymore. You can choose to keep your cool and stay calm and steady. Remember, a relaxed attitude is going to lengthen your life. The next time you’re tempted to be upset, ask yourself, “Is this really worth me giving up my joy?”
If you’ll make this decision to not give away your joy, to live each day happy, God promises you’ll be strong, you’ll have better relationships and you’ll accomplish more. He says a joyful heart is good medicine! Hold on to your joy and move forward into the abundant life God has in store!
Father, today I will hold on to joy! I choose to live each day with peace and happiness. I choose to rely on Your strength and Your Word which guides my every step. I love You and thank You for loving and directing me in Jesus’ name. Amen.
— Joel & Victoria Osteen © 2013 Joel Osteen Ministries

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Joel Osteen: Attitude in Adversity

Hey Peeps!

I hope all is well with you and yours!

Last week I decided that I need to start my gratitude journal this weekend....I didn't start it lol but I will this week. I was reading last night about a lady and her manifestation box and I remembered that I had saved a shoe box a year ago to use as my Creation Box that I spoke about in this post THREE years ago! LOL

I didn't follow through with it three years ago so my plan last year was to do it....I was having so many issues in my living situation last year that I never got around to tapping into my vision for my life. But I need to get more serious about it because I'm finding it difficulty these days to continue living in mediocrity as if it's okay for me. And it's not!

I figured the best way for me to maintain sanity while I wait on my blessings is to forever keep an attitude of gratitude. When I get frustrated which seems to be daily....these people in New York will test you consistently honey....I need to remind myself that this is only temporary and my break through is coming however I have to remain faithful and grateful.

Joel Osteen touched on it in his message that you can read below. Until next time.....

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned

Attitude in Adversity
“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.”
(Habakkuk 3:17–18, NIV)
TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
We all face challenges, difficulties and times when things don’t go our way. God doesn’t send these storms, but He will allow us to go through certain things in order to shape our character and prove our faith. Really, it’s in our times of difficulty that we grow and develop.
God wants to use the tough times in our lives to do a work in us. He wants to strengthen and develop us. Our attitude in times of adversity is the evidence of our maturity. Are we going to treat people right even when we’re being mistreated? Are we going to stay full of joy even when the bottom falls out? Are we going to be faithful even in the dry seasons of our lives when we don’t see anything good happening?
It may take more effort. You may have to work harder to keep a good attitude, but remember, attitude and faith in God is the key to your promotion. As you keep that positive attitude of faith and expectancy, even in times of adversity, God will deliver you and move you forward into the destiny He has prepared for you!
Father, I want to grow spiritually and be more like You. I choose to trust You in times of adversity knowing that You are working things out for my good. Renew a right attitude in me by Your Spirit in Jesus’ name. Amen.
— Joel & Victoria Osteen © 2013 Joel Osteen Ministries

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

5 Things Super Successful People Do Before 8 AM

According to Forbes Magazine I'm not behaving like a successful person. In an article recently, 5 Things Super Successful People Do Before 8 AM they rattled on about the things you should do in the mornings before work that could lead to a successful and healthy lifestyle. I'm just going to list them 5 things below but they go into more detail in the article.

2-Map Out Your Day
3-Eat A Healthy Breakfast
5-Make Your Day Top Heavy

The first problem I have with this whole thing is the fact that I barely get up in time to make it to work by 9am. I am a night owl have always been a night owl and love being a night owl. The only reason why being a night owl is an issue for me is because I've always had freaking DAY jobs! ugh! I set my clock 20 minutes before I'm supposed to get up because my intentions are to spend that time praying and become alert. Well let's just say I haven't stuck to that routine in over a year. I do have to admit that when I was following that routine I felt much better starting my day.

I don't exercise at all asides from walking daily. In New York, you can do a lot of walking without even trying to. I love to walk. Absolutely....in nice walking weather of course. I actually have a walking exercise DVD that I should start back using. I plan to but I know it won't be before 8 AM during the week!

I barely eat breakfast because I normally wait until I get to work. Sometimes as soon as I walk in the door my boss has me running around fetching stuff for him that by the time I'm able to think straight it's already 10 or 11am. I normally eat fruit sometimes I may grab a muffin sometimes it's nothing sometimes it's junkfood....for awhile I was doing green smoothies but I realized that they should be drunk at home vs. traveling with it 40 minutes after making it to drink at work. The flavor wasn't the greatest by then so I 86'd that idea. I love green smoothies though but I would either have to drink them before coming to work or drink them when I get home from work.

I don't map out my day because let's face it...my day is so routine I really don't need to map it out. Get up, go to work, run errands, go home. Rinse and repeat Monday through Friday.

Visualization...I normally do this at night before bed or during my commute to work, or while I'm walking from the train to work, or while I'm at work when I'm just sitting in my boss' office while he's sorting through papers on his desk. LOL I love to pretend that I'm somewhere other than where I am. Sometimes when I'm walking to work I pretend that I'm only up that early because I have a business meeting with Tyler Perry to discuss turning one of my books into a movie. LOL hey faith it til you make it, right? :-)

Number 5 doesn't apply to me. 

If you are a morning person more power to you...if you are a night owl like me...and you want to do the things listed in that article in hopes of being more productive and successful then I'm sure you can train your body to be a morning person. We can train our minds and bodies to do just about anything we want by creating those habits. I for one would much rather create the work environment that corresponds to my body's natural way of being. And naturally my body loves sleeping in without an alarm clock so...what does that tell you...I need to create a work environment where I get up on my own schedule and allow my body to get up organically. THAT my friend will help me to be more productive and successful because I'm not being forced to behave in a way that my body naturally disagrees with. IMO.

Go read the article: 

5 Things Super Successful People Do Before 8 AM

Stay Blessed....Stay Tuned!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Joel Osteen-Choose Blessings For Your Future

Hello Everyone!

It's been a minute since I posted last. I just want to fill you in on what's been going on. Well a lot of personal drama has been going on in my family that I won't go into details about but let's say they were major distractions however we are continuing to overcome all obstacles placed before us by the Grace of God.

As far as my career, I'm still writing. The last book I published was in September. I was going over some notes that I had written down a year ago when I first started writing back before I had published my first book. I had the idea of writing my stories as webisodes in book format, what most would consider a serial however I was not planning to publish each episode weekly but publish as a season each having about seven or so episodes. I abandoned that idea and started publishing novellas.

Well about a month or two ago I was listening to the Self Publishing Podcast on YouTube and Sean Platt, one of the writers of the Yesterday's Gone Serial, mentioned that they were changing their delivery method for their serials to publish seasonally vs publishing per episode weekly. So hearing him say that and finding my notes from a year ago I decided to go back to the idea I originally had.

My idea was a good one I just didn't execute it but now I have confirmation that I should do it. So that's what I'm working on now. I found an app for my phone last week called Kingsoft Office. I absolutely love it. I can now work on my writing on my phone on the train as I commute to work and even at home when I want a break from being in front of a computer. In the 30-40 minutes that I'm on the train I can get a good 600 words done and it's so easy to drown people out because I'm so focused on my story. It's better than reading on the train because sometimes when I read with that long of a commute I'm sleepy again before I even get to work.

So my next story is called Mr. Yummy Chocolate. It's a romance serial. I think it will be about 42 episodes so approximately three seasons. I will probably do paperback versions of these books since they will be the length of short novels (40K words each).

SO that's what you can expect from me as far as my writing goes, more serial style writing. I love writing this way. I see the story in my head clearer and I think I pace myself better. My goal is to do two episodes a day, so approximately 6K words daily minimum 3K, with weekends off unless I just want to write on the weekends. If I can keep this writing schedule up weekly, I can have a good number of titles up each year. Minimum 6 new titles.

Ok...enough about me...on to why I started this blog post. I'm a little stuffy today and I rarely get a cold. So everyone is like you have a cold? I'm hesitant when I answer because I don't want to say I have a cold. I just tell them I'm a little stuffy. But even that isn't good enough. What my answer should be is, I'm getting better. I don't like to say that I'm something when I actually don't want to be that. Meaning I don't want to keep saying to everyone that asks, Yeah I have a cold. Because guess what, I will keep experiencing the effects of a cold to agree with the words that I'm speaking over my situation. This coincides with the message that I received in my inbox this morning from Joel Osteen. I will share the message below.

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned

Choose Blessings for Your Future
“I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.”
(Deuteronomy 30:19, NKJV)
TODAY’S WORD from Joel and Victoria
Your words have creative power. With your words, you can either bless your future or curse your future. If you want to know what your life is going to be like five years from now, just listen to what you’re saying about yourself today. Too many people go around saying, “I’ll never get well. I’ll never get out of debt.” “It’s flu season. I’ll probably get it.” “This marriage is never going to last.” Then they wonder why they don’t see things turn around. It’s because they’re calling defeat into their future. They’re calling in mediocrity. Don’t let that be you!
When you wake up in the morning, no matter how you feel or what things look like, instead of using your words to describe your situation, use your words to change your situation. Make a declaration of faith by saying, “This is going to be a great day. I have God’s favor. He’s directing my steps.” When you do that, you are choosing to bless your future. You are calling in favor, increase and opportunities. You are opening the door for God to move on your behalf so you can live the abundant life He has for you!
Father, thank You for the blessings You have prepared for my future. I submit my ways and my words to You. Help me to speak what You speak and keep me close to You. I give You the glory in all things in Jesus’ name. Amen.
— Joel & Victoria Osteen © 2013 Joel Osteen Ministries

Saturday, September 21, 2013

New Release: One Man's Trash Another Man's Treasure (Bundle)

Hey Peeps!

Quick announcement....Get two books for the price of one!! Yay!!!

Books 1 & 2 of the Musicology Series (Diamond and Ryder)!

Okay....off to write!

Have a blessed day...and as always,

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned

One Man's Trash Another Man's Treasure: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Available Now at following retailers:

Saturday, September 14, 2013

New Release: Another Man's Treasure

Hey Peeps!!

Book 2 of the Musicology Series is now available on all your local eRetailers!!

See Diamond and Ryder's love story unfold from his perspective!!

Happy Reading!

A special shout out to all my fans!! Love you much!!

As always,

Stay Blessed....Stay Tuned!

Another Man's Treasure: New Adult Contemporary Romance Novella
Available Now at following retailers:

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Key To Making It As A Writer!

Everybody wants to know the key to success!

Well I've been listening to a few people lately...messages I've heard before but sometimes I need a reminder.

Will Smith-
"There's no reason to have a Plan B because it distracts from Plan A."

My Plan A: Ultimately, to live a life of freedom working from home full-time supporting myself easily and effortlessly as an author  & if I can add "New York Times Best-Selling Author" after my name that will be a bonus!

Every step I take today and the many days after will lead to my ultimate plan. 

Tyler Perry (I love this dude he's a true inspiration to me)-

With my 100% commitment to being the best storyteller I can be and by God's grace and favor I will succeed!

Hugh Howey- My Advice To Aspiring Writers

"The key to making it as a writer is to write a lot, write great stories, publish them yourself, spend more time writing, study the industry, act like a pro, network, be nice, invest in yourself and your craft, and be patient. If you can do all of these things, you’ll earn some money. Maybe enough to pay a bill every month. Maybe enough to get out of debt. Maybe enough to quit your job. Thousands of writers are doing this, and we are welcoming all comers with open arms."

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Focus On Becoming A Better Storyteller!

So I mentioned that I started a new year in my writing career. I've decided that I need to focus on improving my craft and creating content. I need to spend less time on promoting because that's a major distraction that takes away from my writing. Especially for a new writer like myself who don't have a lot of product and who needs to create better writing habits. When I released my last novella I was so focused on spreading the word that I haven't even started writing my next book yet.

This may not be an issue for most people but I recognize my shortcomings and weaknesses so I need to work on perfecting my craft and building a better work ethic and getting more inventory. I honestly think that I get better with each story that I write.

So my ultimate goal for the next 12 months is to focus on becoming a better storyteller!

I follow the blogs of Dean Wesley Smith and Hugh Howey. They both suggest doing what I'm going to focus on for the next year.

Hugh Howey- My Advice to Aspiring Writers

"When I finished my first novel, I was on a complete high. This is when you think your book is the shit and you wonder why Oprah hasn’t called. You’re gonna be rich!
This feeling lasted a few days. That’s when I started writing my next work. My father at the time wondered why I wasn’t spending all of my time promoting that first book. I told him I had my entire life to promote my works. I only had now to write. I stuck to that principle for years, writing and publishing several novels or short stories a year. 
....My father now agrees with this approach and sees the value of having a dozen titles available. This is going to sound strange, but you are MUCH better off with your 10th work exploding than your 1st work. You’ll never have quiet time to crank out quality material ever again. And when your backlist matches the growth of your first breakout, you’ll do very well for yourself. Be patient. It’s been said by many others, but I’ll repeat it here: self-publishing is a marathon."

Dean Wesley Smith- Maybe You Wrote A Good Book

"It really is that simple.But putting the responsibility squarely back on the writer’s shoulders to write better stories is scary. Especially to new writers who really don’t understand what it takes to write a quality story that hundreds or thousands or millions will want to read. New writers don’t even know what they don’t know. They just don’t have the study or the practice or the words under their fingers yet.Writing good stories is a skill that takes time to learn. It can be learned. It’s not a talent, it’s a craft that can be studied and learned with enough effort and drive and practice.But writing and learning need to be the focus.So if you are out promoting your third novel and wondering why it’s not selling, maybe your time would be better served to learn how to write a better story. Just maybe.Just saying…"

So other than announcing on my blogs, Facebook, and uploading to my different author platforms, I won't be going hard in promoting. I'll focus on producing great content  and building relationships with my readers and other authors (which I'll do on Sundays). I started a small group on Facebook where we help each other promote our books so of course I'm always going to help my fellow authors promote their work and they will do the same for me but once I make that initial announcement.....I'm off to writing my next book!

Stay Blessed...Stay Tuned!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year!!

Well to me it's a new year!

Back in June I was talking to a friend of mine and I mentioned that I wish it was the new year already....this year hasn't gone as well as I expected it to go so I was ready for a new year already. So she told me, "Why wait for the calendar to say that is 2014...you can start your new year whenever you want."

So as of July 1, 2013, it is now a new year for me. Whenever we start a new year it's like a chance to start fresh...to start anew. In my case, that's with a new mindset and starting anew in my writing career.

My goal for 2013 was to produce a new novella per month. If I had stuck to that goal I would have 7 novellas produced instead of only 2! So I decided to just start fresh. Start a new year! I can't go back and change what I haven't done and I can only go forward.

I'm not setting a publication goal but a production goal. If I produce 12 novellas in a 12 month period or 6 novels in a 12 month period then I have reach my goal for that year.

The reason I say production instead of publishing is because I use beta readers to read my work before I publish. I like to have two other people read over my work so when I publish will depend on when I can have two betas read them for me.

I'm not setting a sales goal....lord knows if I could control that I would be selling millions of copies right now! ha!

I'm choosing to focus on what I can control and that's production.

So I mentioned mindset as well. Well that is a work in progress and my mindset right now is mainly centered around my career or lack thereof. If it was up to me I would be a writer full-time right now but I have to pay the bills so I work a regular 9-5. Because I work a 9-5 and have a steady income coming in every two weeks I have not been treating writing like a career but more so like a hobby. Since it's not producing the same salary as (or better than) my current "bread & butter" job, it's been easy to put it off if I'm not "feeling" it, or not meet deadlines that I set for myself or to go months without writing at all.

I have to change my mindset to look at writing as my career, my job, my way of life, my bread & butter. If I keep treating it like a hobby I won't take it serious enough to reach my ultimate goal of becoming an author who makes a living telling stories easily and effortlessly on a full-time basis.

I have to get disciplined....create a strong work ethic. I have to write to quota as suggested on the Kill Authors Zone blog.

My goals for the new year (I've faulted on these goals this month but I did really well in July when I created the goal so I did start my new year off right :-D)

1. Write to a quota
I learned that I can produce 4K words a day if I give myself at least 4 hours of writing time and if I know what I'm going to write. Minimum goal per writing day is 1K words. I plan to keep a spreadsheet to track my word count per week.

2. Write six days a week
I plan to take Sundays off to catch up on networking, blog reading, reading books, hanging out with friends, watching movies, promotion etc. (I slacked off this past week so I will be working this Sunday)

3. Produce a new novella once a month or a new novel once every two months
I met that goal for July. I can meet that goal for August even though I slacked off for an ENTIRE week...smh there are no excuses I just didn't make it a priority. But that has to change.

4. Read a new fiction book once every month (or every two months)
I love reading. Reading also helps with writing. So I have to make sure that I'm getting that in as well. I've been reading some non-fiction too. Currently I'm reading Think & Grow Rich. (look for future posts on that too)

5. Don't compare myself to others and trust the process
I've read countless stories about authors hitting best-sellers list with their very first book....I'm not that author although when I first started writing I hoped to be that author. But God has mapped out my road to success a little different. Although I'm not that breakout novelist with instant stardom it doesn't mean that I should stop writing. My path is my path and I have to trust the process. Everything happens at an appointed time. Which leads me to point number six....

6. Never give up!
I've tried giving up....lol I'm not lying when I say I tried to give up on this journey. I didn't write for four months. I wanted to give up. I didn't want to want to be a writer. I didn't want to like telling stories. I wanted to give up because the journey hasn't been as smooth sailing as I wanted it to be. I wanted EASY...I wanted Instant Stardom....I wanted to quit my day job like yesterday....LOL well that didn't happen and when it didn't, I was like oh..so that means that I must not be meant to be a writer so let's just put this to the side.

I've published to two novellas since then. Something inside of me won't let me give up. What does that mean? I don't know exactly what it means. I just know I choose to not give up. No matter how many books I don't sell or how many negative reviews I get....I'm going to continue on until the Lord says that it's time to quit.

I have a certain lifestyle that I want to live and working for myself has always been one of my goals. Having a creative job has always been one of my goals. I started writing poetry when I was 14 and love to do it...but life got in the way and I stopped. One thing I have to work on and overcome is ALLOWING life to get in the way. 

I'm determined to live the life of my dreams. There are plenty of people in this world living the life of their dreams and some of them looks a little like what I've described my ideal life to be so that tells me it's not impossible. I have proof that it's possible. If it can happen for them/to them, then it can do the same for me!

It's okay to start over whenever you feel you've gone too far in the wrong direction....it's never too late as long as you are alive and in perfect health....so Happy New Year to me and to anyone else that just need a fresh start!!!

Stay Blessed and Stay Tuned!