February 11, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a blog hop created by me and my sister, Erin Funk, to help writers connect. With that aim in mind, we would like to encourage participants to swing by other WUW blog posts, get to know other writers taking part, and spread some writerly encouragement around. Before you go, make sure to leave a link to your post in the widget at the end of this post. Also, please remember to link back to the host blogs and/or use one of the fancy schmancy WUW buttons provided. We'd really appreciate it! For those of you who are new to WUW, these are the headings we have been using:

WHAT I'M READING
WHAT I'M WRITING (+ WRITING GOAL) 

WHAT WORKS FOR ME
WHAT ELSE IS NEW


*You can grab one of our Winter 2015 buttons under the WUW tab above!*
WHAT I'M READING
I finished BURN FOR BURN by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian and started the next book, FIRE WITH FIRE. I liked Book 1, but so far I'm enjoying Book 2 quite a bit more. Can't wait to see how this whole thing shakes out. I'm about to dive into RUBY RED by Kerstin Gier for the third or fourth time as part of a RUBY RED Reread that I'm doing this month with Sara Biren, Rebekah Faubion, and Tracey Neithercott. You should join us! We'll be (re)reading this trilogy over the next three months.

WHAT I'M WRITING
I mentioned last week that I am taking part in #WriterRecharge. Last week's goal was to add 5000 new words to my WiP. I ended up surpassing my goal and coming in at 5500 words! What a great feeling. This week I'm aiming for 6000 new words.

WHAT WORKS FOR ME
Challenging myself.
My sister and I had one of our epic Skype conversations the other day and she pointed out something that hadn't occurred to me before: I've been setting small word count goals for so long, telling myself that the smaller the goal, the better. Well, turns out that hasn't been working. By setting a goal of, say, 1000 words/week, it was allowing me to put it off and put it off because, "I can write 1000 words whenever. No problem." But before I knew it, the week was over and I had written zilch. By challenging myself to a larger word count goal this past week, somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew that I needed to park my butt in my chair many times over the course of the week to meet the goal. Well, what do you know? It worked.

WHAT ELSE IS NEW
• We saw Jupiter Ascending yesterday, and going in with rock bottom low expectations meant I actually (mostly) enjoyed it.
• I ordered more wooden knitting needles this week, and this makes me almost as happy as buying new books. Almost.
• I've gotten hooked on The 100. Definitely gets much better after Season 1 Episode 4. It's not without issues, but I like it.
• I've been playing around with Tumblr again lately. (It's been a while.) Here's where I am on Tumblr. Let's be friends! :D


That's my week in a nutshell.
WHAT'S NEW WITH YOU?


**FRIENDLY REMINDER: What's Up Wednesday is a blog hop, which implies hopping around to other participants' posts to say 'hi' and spread some encouragement. We're all busy because LIFE, but the aim of WUW has always been to connect with other writers. We're not asking you to visit every single post each week, but please try to hop around to even just a few other blogs when you take part. Erin and I really appreciate all of you joining us when you can on Wednesdays. Thanks!**

45 comments:

  1. Hooray for the wordcount success! I find it really interesting that setting a larger goal makes you more accountable. Glad it worked out so well :) Hope this week is just as successful!

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    1. Thanks, Cole! I set a higher goal this week, but I'm thinking that might have been silly considering I'm busier this week. Oops! I guess we'll see what happens. There's just no conceivable way I could write 5000 words in one sitting without total brain meltdown, so setting a higher goal really does ensure that I'll park my butt at my computer more than once a week. Seems to be working, anyway. Have a great week, Cole! :D

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  2. Well done on surpassing your goal, that's awesome! That's a really interesting point about setting yourself a bigger goal; I'd never really thought about it like that. Perhaps that's something I'll have to try doing myself!

    I've heard a lot of bad reviews of Jupiter Ascending, but honestly I think it looks like a bit of fun. Sometimes a film comes out that you just can't take seriously, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy it for what it is. :)

    Best of luck with your writing goal this week, Jaime! ^_^

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    1. Thanks, Jess! Hope this week is just as productive, though I probably shouldn't have set an even larger goal considering I'm busier this week with other things. Ah well. Mostly I'm just happy to be writing again, big or little goal.

      I'd heard a lot of bad reviews of Jupiter Ascending as well, so my expectations were so, so low. It definitely had flaws and was totally silly at times and what was with that casting(?!), but it was kind of fun so that's good enough for me. I probably would have been happy just renting it when it comes out, but a friend really wanted to go.

      Hope you have a great week, Jess! :D

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  3. You and I have gone in opposite directions with our "What Works For Me" post today. I'm glad high word count goals are working for you, but I really hope low word count goals works for me this week. Good luck this week! I've got my fingers crossed for both of us.

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    1. Normally, smaller goals work for me, but I've been trying to get back into a writing routine for so long now that I needed to ensure that I was going to have to sit down multiple times a week to facilitate that. A smaller word count goal only fed my issues with procrastination and laziness. That's just me, of course. We'll see if I'm able to maintain this, though. This past week might have just been a fluke. (Hope not.) Have a wonderful week, Melanie! :D

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  4. I'm told Jupiter Ascending is so terrible it's amazing, so I'm not sure I'll be seeing it! :P

    I tend to work best with larger writing goals, because I have less of an excuse to procrastinate. Good luck this week! :)

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    1. I had read so many bad reviews of Jupiter Ascending that it couldn't possibly go anywhere but up. I credit that for the fact that I enjoyed it. It definitely has some issues and some silly parts, not to mention a completely lopsided casting choice, but overall is was kind of fun. I would probably advise most people to just rent it rather than pay to see it in the theatre.

      As for larger writing goals, you've hit it right on the head with procrastination. Yep, yep, yep. It's too easy for me to put off small word count goals until it's too late. Bigger goals mean I have to whittle away at it. The whole point for me is to get back into a writing routine, so this seems to be working so far! Have a wonderful week, Emma! :D

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  5. WHOA 5000 words. Go you. Good luck with your goal this week. Also, I really want to see Jupiter Ascending. It looks it will be so bad it's good. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thanks! That's definitely not the norm for me these days, but I would sure love it if it was! Here's hoping I'm just as productive this week. Jupiter Ascending really does kind of fall into the so bad it's good category. Definitely fun despite its flaws. Have a great week! :D

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  6. 5000 words. WOW! Go Jaime!!!!! I wanted to see Jupiter Ascending but then heard all of the awful reviews. SIGH. I just want an awesome space epic - is that so hard to ask for? um…apparently yes! ;-)

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    1. Thanks, Rachel! I really hope I can make a habit of this again. I used to be so good at writing regularly. Fingers crossed this works! I heard all of the awful Jupiter Ascending reviews, so I went in with really low expectations. It was fun even if it was sort of ridiculous in some ways. The casting choice, for instance, was particularly odd. I would suggest renting it rather than paying theatre prices to see it. Awesome space epics are the best, so I'm with you on your wish for more. Have a great week! :D

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  7. Congrats on surpassing your goal! You are so right about setting bigger goals for yourself...sometimes we need that challenge to get us moving!

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    1. Thanks! Right now my aim is to get back into a regular writing routine, so setting a large word count goal means I have to whittle away at it over the course of the whole week. That means butt in chair multiple times this week. I hope it works! Have a great week, Mere! :D

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  8. Way to go on surpassing your goal! I bet that feels great!
    I've wanted to reread the Ruby Red Trilogy but my TBR is always too long for rereads. I've told my oldest daughter to read it though because I think she'll really like it.
    Have a great week!

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    1. Thanks! It really does. :D
      My TBR is ridiculous too, but I couldn't resist revisiting the RUBY RED books. (Note: I have very little self control lol.) It's especially bad when you consider just how many awesome books I have that I really want to get to. Ah well. If this is the worst of my problems, I think I'm doing okay. ;-) I hope your daughter likes them!

      Have a wonderful week, Melanie!

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  9. Glad to hear Fire with Fire is better; I liked the first one pretty much, and have the second on my shelf from a book fest.

    Also, I am all about setting realistic but challenging goals. Why not go bigger? For me, it doesn't work to set the goal to write every day, though I have been productive that way. It just doesn't last. But if I set wordcount goal, then I can plan ahead how many days and hours I have to set aside with writing. I think in terms of sessions to write and try to stick to those.

    My hubz saw Jupiter and said it was just OK; he's basically fiendish for anything sci-fi, so a lot of it he really liked, though he said the storytelling was the weakest part. I love that we can talk about story concepts and character arcs :)

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    1. I liked BURN FOR BURN, but I can tell this one is going to be even better. I'm dying to find out about this ending to the trilogy that people are talking about. Guess I'll know by the end of the month.

      You're so right about realistic but challenging goals. For me, I know it's entirely possible to write 5000 words in a week. I used to write a minimum of 1000 words at least 5-6 times a week. This is all about getting back into a similar routine because I've been too lazy for too long now. Like you say, setting a word count goal allows you to plan ahead for busy days and days you'll have more time to whittle away at it. I'm really hoping it works!

      Jupiter Ascending was not stellar (hardy har), but it was fun. I would definitely say that the storytelling was the weakest part. And maybe casting choice as a close second. I have the hardest time seeing Mila Kunis as anyone but Jackie in That 70s Show, so I really had to suspend my disbelief there. Weirdly, Channing Tatum was decent in his role. Anyway, it was fun even if it wasn't amazing. And it is definitely awesome that you can discuss story concepts and character arcs with your hubs!

      Have a great week! :D

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  10. Aah! Your friendly reminder! There was a week last month where time totally got away from me and I didn't visit any WUW posts and I felt awful. I doubt (I hope?) that reminder wasn't for me, but I promise I will never do it again. :-)

    Anyway. I'm so, so happy that you got so much writing done over the last week -- you're totally rocking your Writer Recharge goals! Also, I'm glad you're liking the BURN FOR BURN books. I can't wait to hear what you think of the third. You MUST email Tracey and me when you finish reading because we've had some serious discussions about the outcome (our opinions totally align) and I love hearing if others are on the same page. Best of luck with your goals this week, Jaime!

    Oh, and is your Etsy shop open yet? I can't wait to check it out!

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    1. You are an awesome commenter, Katy. No worries there. ;-)
      This past week was just all-around good for reading and writing. Finished a book, wrote 5500 words... I think Writer Recharge came along at the perfect time. I'm really hoping this gets me back into that writing routine I've been talking about for ages now. It's been far too long! As for the BURN FOR BURN books, I'll *definitely* be emailing you and Tracey when I finish. I'm super eager to find out about this ending. You ladies have really made me curious.

      The Etsy shop still isn't open. *sigh* I need to get knitting! Have a great week, Katy! :D

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  11. I've been eying up the BURN FOR BURN series for a while now, so I'm looking forward to hearing what you think of the rest of the series.
    I'm totally the opposite when it comes to word count goals, small goals are the way to go for me (or at least at the minute they are) because I find larger goals to be too intimidating. But I can totally see what you mean about procrastinating :P
    Ah Jupiter Ascending! I still can't decide whether or not to go and see it because I can't decide if it looks like the best or worst thing I will ever see haha.
    Glad you are having a lovely week :)

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    1. I've heard great things about this series, so I was more than happy to dive in. I love when a second book is better than the first too. That isn't always the case. As for word count goals, sometimes smaller goals work for me, but lately I've just been lazy. I think setting a larger word count goal is going to ensure that I sit down almost every day to write even a little bit. So far it's working. There will be times when that's not going to work, though. Mostly I just really want to get back into a writing routine, and I think this is helping.

      Re: Jupiter Ascending...I thought the same thing! My expectations were low, so I thought it was mostly fun. I'm not sure I would send people to the theatre to see it, but I maybe rent it instead??? Hope you have a great week, Laura! :D

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  12. The 100 is such a great show! And so addicting. Love it! Congrats on getting to 5,500, that is amazing. And I think I need to start setting higher goals for myself as well. Have a great week!

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    1. I watched the first three-ish episodes of The 100 last spring and was only so-so on it. But then someone mentioned that it gets better after episode four, so I thought I'd give it another go. Glad I did! It really is addicting. It feels like a mash-up of a bunch of things, in most cases things that I love. There's kind of a Battlestar Galactica vibe at times, which I love. As for writing, I'm really hoping I can keep up this high word count thing. I need to get back into a writing routine and I think this will help by forcing me to whittle away at it day after day. We'll see. Hope you have a wonderful week, Prerna! :D

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  13. Way to blow right past that goal! I appreciate reading about your success with just sitting down and writing. Sometimes it's so hard to just get still and do that. I'm starting to get back into my habit of fiercely protecting my writing time. I hope you have a great week!

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    1. Thanks, Adrianne! Just sitting down and writing has been so hard for me for so long. I recognized that a good deal of the issue was my own laziness, so forcing myself to whittle away at a larger word count goal over the course of a week seemed like a good idea. It definitely meant getting my butt in that chair multiple times during the week, so I think it's working! We'll see, I guess. Hope you have a wonderful week! :D

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  14. Wow! You must be getting pretty close to the end on your WIP! I hope the words keep flowing!

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    1. I'm actually much closer to the start of my WiP. I write out of order, so it's kind of hard to tell. I've just been so lazy about working on this story for so long now. It feels good to be writing chunks of the thing now. Have a great week, Niki! :D

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  15. I'm glad you're enjoying The 100. My favorite character has to be Bellamy. And I cannot stand the parents. They annoy me so-so much. Ha! I want to see Jupiter Ascending but I don't know if I want to go to the theater. Maybe I'll see it when it comes out on DVD or maybe it's better on the big screen? Good luck with your writing goals this week!

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    1. I had started watching it last spring, but didn't get very far. Someone mentioned that it keeps getting better, so I thought I'd give it another whirl. Glad I did! I'm with you on the parents. They're so annoying and keep trying to take control when the kids quite clearly know better. I mean, they were on Earth longer! I didn't love Bellamy at the beginning, but now he's my favourite character. Love that guy! As for Jupiter Ascending, I would suggest renting it when it comes out. I enjoyed it, but I'm not sure I would send people to pay theatre prices for it, you know? That said, anything space-related looks pretty spectacular on the big screen. I'm still kicking myself for not seeing Gravity in theatre.
      Have a great week, Amy! :D

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  16. Hooray for meeting your goal! 5,500 words is wonderful! Excellent point about setting goals that push you. I've been setting goals that are pretty piddly, simply because I need a win and a goal I can actually meet. But you are totally right, goals should be something you reach for.

    And also, aren't wooden knitting needles lovely? I love how they feel and I even like the sound they make. I am not nearly as talented a knitter as you are though. (Takes me *years* to finish a sweater...even in a solid color)

    I haven't read Ruby Red. It sounds like I must rectify that pronto. Hope you have a glorious week with much knitting and kitty snuggles. :)

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    1. Thanks, Kris! I'm pretty surprised that I actually met and surpassed my goal. I definitely think there might be something to setting higher goals. I guess we'll see this week. I think I've been letting myself off the hook too much lately, and it's not because I'm busy--I'm not--it's because I'm just being lazy. There is absolutely no reason why I can't churn out this many words minimum on a weekly basis. Well, unless my brain refuses to cooperate. That happens more often than I care to admit.

      My wooden needles arrived yesterday! I already had *amazing* birch straight needles, but needed circular needles to do a lot of the patterns I've been eyeballing. Can't wait to try them out! And as for finishing projects, I've been really bad at that lately too. LOL

      Hope you have a wonderful week, Kris! :D

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  17. Glad the writer recharge helped. Hope setting new goals does too.

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    1. Thanks, Jana! I really hope I can replicate the productivity of this last week! :D

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  18. Your word count is amazing and you are killing your goals! I need to be more like you! :D Confession, I kinda want to see Jupiter Ascending now that I've seen all the ridiculous reviews for it, haha. Glad you enjoyed it (mostly)!

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    1. Thanks, Alice! I'm about halfway to this week's goal and *really* struggling with motivation to finish the rest. I suppose being productive two weeks in a row is its own motivation though, right? We'll see how it goes. As for Jupiter Ascending, it was definitely a fun movie, any issue with plot/casting/whatever aside. I would recommend seeing it, if not in the theatre, then when it's available to rent. Have a great week! :D

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  19. That's a really good point about setting higher goals if you're more than able to manage them. It reminds me of how I was pretty much the only person who read ahead in most books in English class, reading several chapters instead of only one a week, because I was enjoying them so much. Why do only a little when you're capable of doing much more?

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    1. Yes, absolutely! My thoughts exactly. I was trying to explain this "aim for doing a bit more" thing to a group of grade 6 kids I was teaching yesterday. Still don't think they got it. I guess you can't force this kind of thing on anyone. Anyway, it's about time I adjusted my thinking on this when it comes to writing and goal-setting. :-)

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  20. The 100 is in my Netflix queue - one of my guy friends told me I'd like it b/c it had teens in it (hah). Hopefully I'll get around to watching it in the next few months.

    Have a great week with ALL THE WORDS!

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    1. The 100 is so much better than I initially thought. I'm really enjoying it and am kind of bummed at the prospect of catching up to the current episodes that are airing. (I love binge-watching TV shows.) You should definitely check it out! Hope you have an awesome week! And good luck with your own writing. :D

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  21. Setting a small word count a day, like 1000, is a good idea though. By the end of the week you'll have 5,000 - 7,000 words added to your WIP.

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    1. I used to set a 1000-word goal, five days a week and that worked really well for me. I got out of the practice of doing that and it has been a struggle returning to a writing routine ever since. By setting a weekly goal right now, I'm allowing myself to write more on certain days and less on others in order to meet it. So far it's working well, and I can already sense a return to a routine on the horizon.

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    2. (And writing every day absolutely doesn't work for me these days, so a weekly goal is preferable.)

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  22. I'm glad you are liking FIRE WITH FIRE more than BURN FOR BURN.

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    1. BURN FOR BURN is good, but FIRE WITH FIRE is just so much better, in my opinion.

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