Saturday, September 24, 2016

Monthly Summary: September 2016

I've dubbed this month Survival September, because it's mostly been a whole lot of work, a lot of stress, and not enough writing. Work pretty much ate my life. Believe it or not I had September scheduled as a month to relax originally, but it's been the opposite. I'm glad it's over. 

What I did:

1.) Writing progress has been much less than I wanted. I have the Red Hood proposal finished, the Subsapien: Biomech proposal almost finished, Subsapien: Biomech feedback almost finished, and a query half finished. I was hoping to get all of this finished so I'd have October just to NaNo plan, but it seems some of this is going to bleed over into October. I have gotten a teensy bit of NaNo planning done this month too, which makes me feel a little better. 

On better news, one of my Geekdom House articles got selected to be published in their print magazine called Area of Effect! They only pick the best of the best of the site for this issue, so I'm so honored to be chosen. If you're interested in purchasing a print or digital copy version of the magazine you can on Magcloud. I'm on the first page! When you purchase the magazine, you help support me and other writers financially on the site. 

2.) Offline life mostly included working, working, and more working. It was really difficult working two jobs (not including my online job) when the second job decided to all of a sudden bump up its hours, so I've been working full time between two jobs when I only wanted to work part time. Money is great, but I feel like part of my soul has been eaten because I've had to partially neglect writing, any kind of writing. I'm surprised I kept up with the blog this month. I ended up resigning from my first job to focus on my new job, which suits me better in all shapes and forms, so that's a huge relief and it gives me more time to NaNo plan--and sleep. 

The funnest part of this month was when I got to visit my siblings the Sunday before Labor Day. We went swimming on a friend of their's property then we hiked up to an abandoned coal mine. Later on, the property owner took us around on his Ranger and we got to go to a natural spring and drink fresh mountain water. There was even a place nearby where Indians used to grind their food like a built in mortar. 

I also get to go apple picking tomorrow. I've never been apple picking before. I'll update with pics. 

A little fuzzy caterpillar we saw on the journey to the mines

Aren't they the cutest little muffins ever?

The mines.

Inside the mines.

A wall of crystals!

The pond we swam in.

Riding on the Ranger

Pretty mountains

Indian mortar

Fresh water spring coming from a cave. It was so cold there. It felt like air conditioning was spouting from it.
3.) I read Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas (because the library didn't have the first Harry Potter in so I had to get something), A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness, and A Time to Speak by Nadine Brandes. I liked them all. ^ ^

4.) I didn't manage to do much drawing because work. -_- But I did do a Rouyn shoulder-up. I tweaked his design a bit to make him more mature.

5.) Surprisingly I did a lot of posting this month. I wrote about my Star Fleet Academy Experience in NYC on the Fangirl Initiative and Geeks Under Grace. Oh! Also I will be doing a monthly segment on the Fangirl Initiative for a Fandom of the Month Club unboxing. The service sends me a surprise box of geeky goodies every month! And I did a post for Girls Geek Week about Suki from ATLA. I also wrote a piece about Jurassic World and control and one about Ultron and creation for Geekdom House. 

The artwork for my Ultron piece called "A Monstrous Child" by Sandara
The Geeky Department:

1.) I watched the second season of Daredevil, Black Butler III, and Jessica Jones. All threee are good. I have some qualms with some, but they were still really good. I binge watched them after work to stay sane.

Yes I did watch Jessica Jones partially for David Tennant. 
2.) I played some Portal 2 earlier in the month. Cave Johnson is something else. XD

3.) I finally watched the Boy and the Beast. Really good movie. I watched Project Itoh: Empire of Corpses, which is a really weird anime film, but so many plot bunnies, and then I'm seeing Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children at the end of the month. Yays!

What I Learned:

1.) If both jobs aren't consistent it's nearly impossible to do two jobs - So last month I mentioned I picked up a second job. I really like this second job, much better than my first. The whole reason I get a second job was because my first job didn't give me enough hours. Then I get a second job and my first job starts giving me more hours and working me on days I thought I didn't have to work which starts impeding my other job. It was nuts, hence why I decided to quit my first job and focus on the second job. Two was just too overwhelming and my second job suits me far better. Moral of the story unless the two jobs stick to the same patterns it's no bueno. 

2.) When times get stressful you just have to take a day a week to do whatever the heck you want - This month got so stressful I just came home from work one day and cried on my bed for a half hour. I tried to be productive on the few off days I had, but I just got into a slump. I ended up having to just take a day a week off to do whatever relaxing thing I wanted whether that be a craft or binge watch Black Butler. I just had to do it to keep my sanity. I felt a little ashamed, because I thought I could just be spending all of that time writing, but I needed to keep my mental health together. It's okay to take off days. There's no shame in it. 

3.) There Are A Lot of Really Cool British Foods - Working at the Queen's Pantry, I've discovered a lot of cool foods I didn't know existed like squash or cordial which is a concentrated juice you mix with water. Another one is rusks which are South African really hard biscuits you dip into tea or coffee to soften. It's crazy just how much food is out there that people thought up. This upcoming Friday as a reward for the end of Survival September, I'm making an authentic British breakfast with foods from Queen's Pantry such as Irish bacon, Irish bangers, and scones. I'm excited!

Ouma Rusks

What I'm Going to Do:

1.) I'm going to finish my Red Hood query and my Subsapien proposal and finally do some more serious NaNo planning. 

2.) Next month is going to a far more enjoyable month. I'm going to my cousins wedding in South Carolina one weekend, so I'll see lots of family. Then at the end of the month, I'm going to Walt Disney World to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween! Squee! I haven't been to Disney World since I was nine. I'm so stoked to go again!

Mini self hugging Pooh Bear at Disney World way back when. I may do this again with absolutely no shame, because I freaking love Pooh okay?! 

3.) I want to finish A Time to Rise and finally read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

4.) I'm hoping to draw much more in October, since I barely did any at all in September. Perhaps some full body poses. We'll see.

5.) I definitely want to keep pumping out articles for Geeks Under Grace and Geekdom House. It's so fun to write for them. ^ ^

Last Month on Stori Tori's Blog ...

This month's books:

A Book Review of The Giver by Lois Lowry

This month's writing tips:

The Pros and Cons of Different Types of Point of View for Your Novel
So Your Character Has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Featuring Liz @ Out of Coffee Out of Mind
So Your Character is From Peru ... Featuring Robb M. Mendivil & Maria Jose
Writing Lessons from Movies: 9
How I Do Betas: Tips on Efficiently Testing Your Book on Willing Test Subjects

My stories stuff:

Questions for Rouyn!
Beautiful People #21: Silanoc

Other stuff:

The Bookshelf Tour Tag & the Totally Should've Book Tag

Coming Soon to Stori Tori's Blog ...

October 1 - Why a Writer Should Travel: Quell Your Fears and Embrace Inspiration - I have Bilbo-grade wanderlust and in this post I'm going to talk a bit about what traveling has taught me and why you should give it a shot if you get the chance.

October 4 - So Your Character Has Synesthesia ... Featuring Liz Brooks @ Out of Coffee Out of Mind - Another post featuring the awesome Liz Brooks! This one focusing on the phenomenon of synesthesia which is when someone's brain connects senses like hearing colors.

October 7 -  Beautiful Books - I'll be telling you guy's a little more about Starbloods in this year's Beautiful Books! 

October 8 - So Your Character is From China ... featuring Alyssa @ Devil Orders Takeout & Shania Siu -  These ladies will be talking about life in Hong Kong, China!

October 11 - A Book Review of A Time to Rise by Nadine Brandes - Nadine's newest book releases in October and I've got the pleasure of having an ARC to review on the blog!

October 14 - Six Character Questions Challenge - Sara Letourneau gave me permission to swipe this tag from her blog and seeing as I'm doing NaNoWriMo soon. More character questions the better!

October 15 - So Your Character is From Slovakia ... featuring Simona @ Girl with a Cloudy Head - Simona is going to be sharing about life in this Eastern European country!

October 18 - So Your Character Has These Various Injuries - I'm going to be talking about some various random injuries I've had that could be useful for writing. This will be slightly comedic because it will be me talking about various stupid things I've done to get these injuries. Warning: I will be showing some pictures, because I took pictures of some of these injuries to keep for reference. Is that weird? Some of the things I'll be talking about is poison ivy, a severe allergic reaction, and severe bruising.

October 21 - Interview with Silanoc (Starbloods) - Silanoc's interview will go up on this day. ^ ^

October 22 - Writing Lessons Movies: the Jungle Book (1967) versus the Jungle Book (2016) - I'm doing another versus post to show why I believe the live action Jungle Book was far better executed than the original Disney film. Don't get me wrong I like both, but I believe the new Jungle Book film outranks its predecessor.

October 25 -  A Book Review of A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness - I've finally gotten around to reading this book and I get to share my thoughts with you about it!

October 28 - Quote Challenge & The Bloodstained Searchbar Tag - I know I said I was going to do these last month, but I'll be doing much more NaNo prep this month and I found it more appropriate to do this month.

October 29 - Is that Point of View Necessary for Your Novel? - I spoke about different types of point of view this month, but this time I want to talk about ruling if a point of view is important for the overall story. I've read too many books where I feel like the point of view of a certain character wasn't needed.

Elsewhere ...

One Fantasy Writer’s Secret Weapon: Archery Lessons by Sara Letourneau Guestposting on The Writer's Guide to Weapons - Sara shares some of her insight about archery!

My Minor Mushroom Mania ~ Guest Post by Abi Ellison on Sunshine Scribblings - This post may seem totally random but it gave me lots of plot bunnies!

Chronicling The Craft: Battling Writer’s Doubt and Regaining Your Confidence by Sara Letournea at her Website and Blog - Definitely needed this post this month.

In Defense of YA // Part #2 by Liz Brooks @ Out of Coffee Out of Mind - A ranty post defending YA. 

How About We Don't Bully Authors (Or Anyone Else, For That Matter) by Liz Brooks @ Out of Coffee Out of Mind - Another great ranty post by Liz. XD

I'm really glad September is over. It was a rough month. Several days at work, I was almost to the point I just wanted to walk out of the store and quit right there. But I made it and I feel a little proud of myself for that. I'll feel better when I get the paycheck I earned. ;) Here's to a good October with cooler weather, weddings, and Disney!

How was your month? What did you do? Are you looking forward to any of the upcoming posts?

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