Category: Monthly Recap

Feb 04
January 2019 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

January 2019 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Challenges, Monthly Recap 35

  My Goings On in January: I’ve been plotting my new MG novel, and I started to do a bit of writing as well. (It’s verse, so I don’t have to necessarily write it in order). My middle daughter finished gymnastics and started indoor track. (So, a new sport to watch.) My hubby and I went to see comedian John Felts at our church for a date night.  🙂 We had record cold temps around here due to the polar vortex, and school was canceled three times in the last two weeks. Last Wednesday the windchill got to -51 degrees!!! I joined a new writer’s critique group (in addition to the SCBWI group that I already attend, which is sort of a critique group, though not solely). I registered for SCBWI’s Marvelous Midwest Conference, which is coming in May. Things I watched:  I started watching YOU on Netflix. Very creepy!… Read more »


Jan 04
December 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

December 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Monthly Recap 27

  It feels a little weird to do a December wrap-up after I’ve already done a yearly one, but somehow I have this incomplete feeling if I don’t talk about what went on in December! So, here it is… My Goings On in December: I finished my rough draft of my YA novel and started plotting a new MG. I’m setting the YA aside for a while to let it percolate. (It’s sure to get better on its own if I just ignore it, right?) The new book I’m plotting is … get this … a fantasy retelling of The Selfish Giant. In verse. Am I insane? Probably. (Definitely) I attended lots of gymnastics meets. I’m surprised at how much my daughter can still do after three years away from the sport. She’s never going to be a star varsity gymnast (she wasn’t at that high of a level when… Read more »


Jan 02
2018 End of Year Book Survey (& Year in Graphs!)

2018 End of Year Book Survey (& Year in Graphs!)

Let's Discuss, Monthly Recap 46

This is a (very) modified version of Jamie @ The Perpetual Page Turner’s annual End of Year Book Survey. I’ve taken out quite a few questions and added some of my own, along with graphs (because everyone knows that pretty graphs make the world a better place). 2018 Reading Stats Number Of Books You Read: 153 Fun Pie Graphs: I thought it might be interesting to look at my reading in pie charts since I kept a spreadsheet this year and have really good stats. The first stat I compiled was how many books I read each month. As you can see, I read a lot more during the second half of the year. There are probably a few reasons for this. First off, I was still teaching at the homeschool co-op until May and then I really jumped headfirst into revising my MG manuscript. I sent it off on submission… Read more »


Dec 01
November 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

November 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 28

  My Goings On in November: I’ve been working on finishing up my first draft of the YA novel I wrote last NaNoWriMo. (This past year I focused mostly on editing the MG book I’m now querying and doing more writing workshops and study.) As of writing this post, I’m almost there. My goal was to finish in November, and I was so close last night, but I wasn’t feeling all that well, and I realized I was basically rushing so I could say “Done!” And that’s sort of silly. I hope to finish this weekend. (But this is a rough, rough draft that’s going to need LOTS of edits, so don’t get too excited for me. 😉 ) I attended my local SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) monthly meetup. This month our group leader did a talk about her picture book small print publishing company, which I thought was really interesting…. Read more »


Nov 01
October 2018 Wrap-Up and Best of the Bunch

October 2018 Wrap-Up and Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 56

  My Goings On in October: October was the month of bookish events for me! I attended (click on the links to read my recaps): The Epic Reads fall tour The Dear Evan Hansen book tour Anderson’s Bookshop’s 15th Annual YA Literature Conference SCBWI’s Prairie Writer’s & Illustrator’s Day 2018 Things I watched:  I’m almost done with The Walking Dead Season 8. I’ve heard that Season 9 gets less ridiculous—we shall see. I watched a bit more of the newest season of iZombie. My husband and I finished a rewatch of all nine seasons of The Office. (I really want to watch some of the new shows that are out, including the new Sabrina show. I hope it’s good!) Instagram: Apparently, I only posted to Instagram once in October. Oops! Features & Discussions: The recaps of the events I went to in October (I already linked to those up above, so I won’t do… Read more »


Oct 02
September 2018 Wrap-Up and Best of the Bunch

September 2018 Wrap-Up and Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 34

  My Goings On in September: September was filled with swim meets for my younger daughter and general back-to-schoolness for all three kids. I’m finding that high school swim meets are a whole lot more fun to watch than swim club meets (mostly because they’re a lot shorter, there are WAY fewer kids at them, and we feel more connected to the team, so we’re rooting for them more). It also doesn’t hurt that my daughter has been improving times a lot since she’s been on the school team.  🙂 Have I bragged about my oldest’s brilliance? I don’t think I have, so I’ll be a proud momma for a second and do that. She’s a junior in high school taking Calc II at the local community college—and she got the highest score in the class on her first test. Everything she’s learning is WAY beyond me, but she loves… Read more »


Aug 31
August 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

August 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 40

  My Goings On in August: I submitted to #PitchWars! I know it’s a complete long-shot that I’ll get chosen as a mentee (they got 3,452 entries), but really that’s the way all of publishing is, so I figured it doesn’t hurt to try. Cross your fingers for me!! Things I watched:  I binged all of the latest season of The 100. It was great motivation for working out! I also watched a bit more of Fear the Walking Dead, but I’m getting a little burnt out on it already, and I’m only in season two. I just watched the first episode of The Innocents on Netflix. I’m definitely intrigued! And I watched To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before on Netflix and Ready Player One on DVD. I thought both adaptations were really well done. (I think I actually liked the movie of TAtBILB better than the book. Shhhh!) I… Read more »


Aug 01
July 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

July 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 48

  My Goings On in July: I sent out my first queries! And got my first rejection. I guess that makes me a real writer, right? I haven’t heard from the other agents I queried yet, but I’m gearing up to send out a few more. I know that this process is going to be long and difficult with lots of rejection along the way, so I’m trying to prepare myself mentally. I keep editing my book too—I’ve been getting more feedback from critique partners—but I decided to take the plunge and send out a few queries after I did my edits from the WIFYR workshop. I have to start sometime! We celebrated our oldest’s 16th birthday! It seems crazy to think that Jade is now sixteen. How did that happen? I just … nope. Can’t get my head around it. I went on vacation to the UP Michigan. This was such a wonderfully… Read more »


Jul 03
June 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

June 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 32

  My Goings On in June: I attended the WIFYR writing workshop and conference!! And I learned so much. If you are a writer, I highly suggest workshopping your book. Not only do you learn from people’s comments about your own book, you also learn a lot from analyzing other people’s work and discussing it. I LOVED the whole experience! Lots of camp (for the kids). My oldest went to iDTech camp for a week for AI/machine learning (which, for me, mostly meant lots of driving, since it was a day camp). The camp itself was great, but the class was brand new and not so well thought-out. BUT iDTech is pretty amazing because when I expressed my disappointment, they gave me a full refund (including the money I spent on lunch, etc.). Since she loved the camp itself, we’re definitely going to give it another try. In addition, my two younger kids went away… Read more »


Jun 01
May 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

May 2018 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 34

  My Goings On in May: I am officially done teaching. Even though my oldest is still technically being homeschooled, she’s taking all her classes at the local community college now, and I’m not really teaching her anything anymore. My middle child is headed to public high school next year, so I won’t be teaching her classes at the co-op next fall. And my youngest has always been in the special education program at our public school because I just don’t have the know-how or the resources to teach him. So, that means I’m done. Forever. (Well, probably—I mean, you never know.) It’s really sort of bittersweet. I watched The Rain and Fear the Walking Dead while doing the elliptical. I ended up writing a whole post about subtitles vs. dubbing for The Rain. I’m loving the series and only have one episode to go. I was happy to see they just renewed… Read more »