Time for a better-late-than-never update on the Four Month Bucket List. Tattling on myself feels like the sort of thing I ought to do on a rainy Wednesday morning such as today. So, how’d I do this time, after my solidly mediocre report card from last month?
Well, let’s see.
1. Stop biting my fingernails.
Grade: C. Still a work in progress. But, hey, it’s in progress.
Why did I put this item first? Argh! Ok, next.
2. Go on a date with my DH every month.
Grade: A! At least, it’s an A if you ask me. Mr. R and I went to see the last Harry Potter movie with a group of friends. To me, since it involved finding a baby-sitter, eating away from home, and spending money, this consisted of a date. (Mr. R said that a group date “doesn’t really count.” I’m going to assume this is because he loves me so much that he wants to spend even more time with me.)
3. Get all my photos into albums and my digital photos backed up onto DVD.
Grade: B-. I uploaded 6 months of pictures onto the Walgreens site. I ordered the prints. Aaaaand now they’re in a big pile on my desk. Also, I tried to back up files onto DVD and kept having a burn error. Still. I tried This is progress. Right? As long as I never take any more pictures, I’ll eventually get this project done.
4. Keep our plants alive.
Grade: C. I blame Mother Nature for this one. Our average high—AVERAGE HIGH—in July was over 100. And to make things extra fun, it didn’t rain at all. So that azalea plant that was “slightly crispy” last month is now “toast.” As are several daisies and a little evergreen (or should I say everbrown?).
That’s about the best I can do for this one. We’ll do some replanting in September, so maybe I’ll have a few living things in my yard before the end of the four-month countdown.
1. Plan a blog tour.
Grade: B+. This past month was a biggie for getting my marketing ducks in a row. I have a few more blog tour stops and giveaways scheduled; I’ll post all the info in mid-September so you’ll know where to click around for books galore.
So, what’s even more fun than unspecified future blog posts? Well, pretty much everything. But specifically: FREE BOOKS NOW. And woot!—this past month brought a couple ways to win those. Check out the new Contest page on the site, which I set up All By Myself withthehelpofareallyawesomescriptfromDagonDesigns. The brilliant Tessa Dare is offering her upcoming release, so give the new contest a go!
Wow, that is all wonderful news, right? So you are wondering–why the B+? Because I am a tough grader, and there is more to do. Keep workin’, Romain.
2. Read a history or research book every month.
Grade: B. Yes, fine, technically I did meet this goal, because I read Erik Larson’s In the Garden of Beasts (which: excellent, though I like his Devil in the White City even better). But I’m grading myself down because the spirit of this goal is to read something that contributes to my writing. I know, I know, last month I said good writing is always worth reading (or something like that). And I do believe that. But something more closely related to the Regency would probably spark more ideas for scenes, settings, characters, ridiculously complicated meals, etc.
3. Set a sustainable page/word count goal and meet it every week.
Grade: B. I’m still sticking with the “write every day” goal, which I mostly did despite catching the Meanest Cold Ever, which has really sapped the ol’ creativity. This past month, I’ve been revising/rewriting rather than tackling a new story, so it’s harder to judge progress in terms of word or pages. Instead, I’ve been devoting time: x hours a day, and then I can drink a Diet Coke and eat cookies. Small goals.
4. Get my TBR pile from three towers down to one.
Grade: Uh…C? I just counted the TBR and there are 34 books in it. Considering I started the month with 36, that’s not a whole lot of catching up. Of course, I did do some new-book-buying-and-reading this month that bypassed the TBR entirely, including releases from Mia Marlowe, Maggie Robinson, Miranda Neville, Meredith Duran, and even some authors whose names don’t begin with M. (Hi, Victoria Dahl!) Considering the number of books I have on pre-order, next month will probably be about the same. Still, I’d love to catch up on the TBR, because I think every book in there is going to be a good one. (Er, obviously, since I bought them and all.)
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Anyone else having trouble keeping plants alive? Got a history book recommendation? Or hate messing with photos? Please, tell me I am not alone in that.