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Jenna Patrick

The Santa Conspiracy

happy-holidaysI feel like I should write something in the spirit of the holidays, being that I’m the last bad girl to blog before our annual holiday break.  You’ve already seen the best gifts to give the writer in your life, and I wrote the funny twelve days of Christmas adaptation last year.  So this year, I decided to go off the cuff and just tell you a little holiday story.

We’re driving home from dinner tonight when my youngest daughter turns to me and asks, “Mommy, do you still believe in Santa?”

“Of course, I do,” I say.  “Don’t you?”

“Part of me does and part of me doesn’t.”

“Well, what part of you doesn’t?” I ask.

And then the tears come.  “It just doesn’t make sense to me.  I don’t see how reindeer can fly, or how he gets to all those houses every night.  And sometimes he gets me things that I don’t ask him for.”

“Magic,” I say.

She raises her brow.  “Magic isn’t real.  I’ve seen Now You See Me!

That’s it.  I have GOT to quit letting her watch PG-13 movies.

I can’t blame her, really.  She gets it’s honestly.  I’m a logical thinker and I use logic when trying to explain things to my kids because I want them to be logical thinkers too.  I don’t want them to grow up blindly to the ways of the world.  It’s why I think we should keep score in sports, and why I don’t believe that everyone should get a trophy.

But I digress, this is about a little girl believing in Santa Clause.

I’ll admit, this one took me back a little.  Here I am, a spinner of stories and make believe, but I couldn’t find the words to spin my way out of this one.  Instead, I found myself skirting around the issue, answering questions with questions, and avoiding it all together.  I don’t remember ever having the Santa conversation with my parents, and I never had it with my oldest daughter either.  So what do I do?  Do I lie – something I told myself I’d never do when the time came?  Or do I break my little girl’s heart – something I also told myself I’d never do?

So, I did what any mother would do – I waited for my daughter to get into the shower and I called my husband.

“Tell her Santa is more of a state of mind than a physical being,” he says.

Yeah.  That clears it right up.  Then I’ll pass her the peace pipe and we can sing Kumbaya.  She’s NINE, for crying out loud!  She doesn’t know what a state of mind is!

In the end, we decided I would stall a little more, and then we would find a way to talk to her together once he came home.  Luckily, by the time my daughter was finished with her shower, she had already decided Santa had to be real because, “NASA tracks his sleigh every year, and they wouldn’t waste that kind of money on something that wasn’t real.”

It took everything in me not to tell her my theory about the whole moon landing debacle.

I’m not sure if she really does still believe, or if she saw me fumbling over the question and decided to throw me a bone.  But I do know that I’m content to go with it for now.  I figure, what’s so wrong with letting her believe in it anyway?

After all, I sit in my office for hours having conversations with imaginary people.

How did you handle the Santa question?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!

christmas tree

 

 

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Tackling Tough Topics

This has been on my mind lately, as my latest WIP (okay…ALL my WIPs) combats a pretty tough topic.  How do I define tough topics?  Well, to me it’s all the things we don’t like to think about, but hear about on a daily basis.  Abuse, rape, childhood obesity, incest, a child’s passing (particularly if foul play is involved), mass shootings, murder/suicides, bullying, and whatever else makes you uncomfortable.

Even if we don’t like to think about them, these things happen.  For us as writers, they can make for some intense plots and intriguing characters when presented the right way.  But it’s a risky move that shouldn’t be taken lightly.  Here are some tips on how to walk the line between inappropriate and thought-provoking.

Know the boundaries of your genre and your audience.

Not everything goes in every genre, and what is acceptable today may not be acceptable tomorrow.  I was once rejected by a romance publisher because my heroine was involved in an extramarital affair.  Call it women’s fiction, and you’re more likely to get some bites.  The same goes for your target audience.  It wasn’t so long ago that having sex or drug use in a book intended for teens was taboo, so know your limits and re-evaluate them often.

Lighten it up, but don’t be too light.

Some topics are pretty heavy, so be sure to relieve your readers’ emotions at points throughout your story.  One way is to add a secondary character that’s a little corky (some writers call this the jester).  His/her main purpose in the novel is to lighten the mood, but this character can also play a role in the plot.

Be careful not to make it too airy, however.  Jokes and silliness can easily look like poking fun if you’re not careful.  I walked that line in my last manuscript with a mentally ill main character.  His sickness, by nature, made him corky, so I had to be sure I wasn’t discrediting the seriousness of it with his actions.

Go All In

Don’t breeze past the hard stuff.  If you’re going to tackle a tough topic, then do it.  All in.  No holds barred. Otherwise, your reader may feel cheated, and your character won’t feel real.

The hardest scene I’ve ever had to write was a flashback to when my M.C. found his young infant dead.  As a mom, it KILLED me to write this.  But I knew I had to and I knew I had to do it well, otherwise the gravity of the situation wouldn’t be felt.

“Happy” is a relative term.

This, to me, is the problem with happily-ever-afters.  Sometimes, things just don’t end happily.  Sometimes, redemption and growth is all you can hope to get from a story.  It’s never going to be rosy and perfect for a mother who has lost a child, because she doesn’t have her child.  The goal shouldn’t be to make her happy…the goal should be to grow her into a person that can live her life despite her incredible loss.

Let your readers decide how they feel about the topic.

This one can be hard, particularly if you feel strongly about an issue.  Readers don’t want to be told how they should feel.  They want to see all the sides and form their own opinion.  You can certainly lead them to a path, but make sure they’re the ones who choose to step on it.  Otherwise, you may lose them.

Remember, no matter how careful you are or how hard you try, someone is still bound to get offended or decide not to buy your book.

Same goes for agents and editors.  I once queried an agent who rejected me because she couldn’t bring herself to read about a child dying.  Doesn’t mean I didn’t present it right, or that it wasn’t a great book.  It just meant that this particular agent, for whatever reason, couldn’t read about that topic.  Perhaps she had been through something similar, or was pregnant at the time.  On the flip side, maybe your book will convince a parent to spend less time at work and more time with their child.

Bottom line, tough topics are harder to write and harder to get published, but the payoff can be huge if it’s done right.  Hopefully these suggestions will get you on the path to making it great.

What are some other strategies that have worked for you?

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Apples to Apples

Let’s face it, it’s human nature to compare ourselves to others.  Our society encourages us to do it, day in and day out, with the commercials and magazine ads and impossibly perfect women on that t.v show you love.  There’s the monetary comparison:  Why can’t I get a new Lexus for a Christmas gift?  You know, because so many people do.  There’s the self-image comparison:  Does my skin look as perfect as that chic on Game of Thrones?  Which is why I watch The Walking Dead, by the way.  I’m BOUND to be better looking than a dead chic with no eye, right???

And if that’s not enough to make us feel like a pile of manure, we as writers subject ourselves to a whole slew of other comparisons in which, more often than not, we come out on bottom.

So, when you’re feeling down because your critique partner just landed your dream agent or you BFF was nominated for the grandest of writing awards, here are a few things I tell myself before digging into that gallon of Chunky Monkey…

Compare apples to apples

I’ve fallen into this trap many times, traveling with my bad girlz to conferences.  Still do, actually, as much as I hate to admit it.  They’d come out from pitching, all jazzed because an agent wants to see the book they pitched and the four others in their closet, and I come out with an unenthusiastic 50 page request.  And while I was truly ecstatic for all their good news, I did start to wonder why I wasn’t getting the same vibe.  Was my story not as good?  Did I suck at pitching?  Should I have worn the red heels instead of the blue?

The answer to all three is no, of course.  I’m not subpar, I’m just different.  Turns out, agents and editors at romance conferences are actually looking for romances.  Crazy, right?  It seems like a no brainer, but I have to work at constantly reminding myself that things are always going to be different for me because I have to adhere by a whole different set of rules in a whole different market.

The measurement of someone’s success is not a measurement of your failures

ruler

It’s easy to feel like you’ve failed when you see others sitting where you want to be, but the truth is you just haven’t arrived yet.  So you didn’t make the best sellers list with this one – doesn’t mean your next won’t.  There’s always another story to be written, always another chance.  The only way you can fail at this business is to stop writing.

Don’t measure your success against others.  Measure it against yourself.  Everyone has different circumstances, different responsibilities, different expectations.  Work to be a better writer than you were the day before, with your own pace and your own process, and don’t worry about the others.

Don’t change into something that you’re not

I’ve spent hours listening to good advice from my critique partners on how I could change my writing into something that would sell.  I mean, I’ve tried everything.  And while they were all insightful ideas, in the end I had to decide who I am on my own.  It was changing my voice and my whole purpose for writing.  It felt like I was constantly battling between who I am and who I thought would sell easier.

But here’s the thing – I don’t want to write my next forty books that way.  I want to find an agent and an editor who love my writing the way it is.  Maybe in a different story with different characters and a different setting, but still my writing style and voice.

And I will, eventually.  I just need to keep writing and keep looking.

How do you deal with those dangerous comparisons?

 

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Why the Hell NOT You?

Wow, it feels like forever since I last blogged last.  First, let me just say how excited I am for our new blog lineup!  I mean, seriously, have you checked these ladies out?  They are nothing short of dynamite, and I am truly honored to be blogging with them.  Every single one of them, both new and old less new (can you tell who has a birthday coming up?)  Our readers are in for a treat in the upcoming year!!

So, I’ve been a busy girl the past few months.  I quit a job, took a month off to write, and started a new job.  I made it through another compulsory season of gymnastics for one daughter and am heading toward another season this coming weekend for the second.  I fumbled through the chaos of the holidays and dug out last year’s New Year’s Resolution list, clenching my jaw as I changed the 4 to a 5.  Things were chugging along, business as usual, and 2015 was looking to be a repeat of 2014.

And then this happened…

Many of you know I am a HUGE Buckeye Fan, so this has been a very exciting couple of weeks for me.  And whether you like football or not, this season has an amazing story that we all can learn from.  So let me break it down for you…

A week before the season opened, we lost our Heisman Trophy hopeful quarterback to a shoulder injury.  Most fans will admit (myself included) they tossed 2014 out the window at that point.  But then something happened…our backup quarterback grew into his own and ALSO became a Heisman Trophy hopeful who would lead us to the Big 10 Championship.  Until he broke his ankle in the last regular game of the season against our rival Michigan.  Again, most fans tossed out the rest of the season.  But then, here comes the third string quarterback leading the team to a shut out win in the Big 10 Championship Game against Wisconsin and then onto the playoffs where they beat Alabama AND Oregon.

**Churns a little butter while humming the OSU fight song**

I swear there’s a point here.  I’m not just gloating…

For me this was more than just a football game – it was an omen promise that 2015 is going to be a kick ass year.  It wasn’t a perfect season by any means, but the Buckeyes found a way to overcome all the odds and shut a lot of people up who’d simply said it couldn’t be done.  And it taught me a very valuable lesson as well.  When the Buckeyes took the trophy home on Monday night, I crossed all the crap off my New Year’s Resolution list and replaced it with one single question…

2015-motto

No, seriously.  Why NOT me?  Why NOT you?  Why NOT anyone who has the determination and the will power to push through and beat the odds?

Why NOT?

I get it, I do.  It’s more comfortable to look at this as a long shot so that the failures don’t hurt so bad.  If you don’t expect much, you can’t be disappointed, right?  But don’t sell yourself short.  You are just as capable as the next guy.  You have your own little special talents and you have all the potential in the world at getting them discovered.  And you WILL get them discovered.  You will.  It’s not a question of IF, it’s a question of WHEN.  You might just be the third guy in line on the bench who winds up in the biggest game of the season and KICKS ASS!

That’s not to say it goes without hard work.  Maybe not blood and sweat (unless you’re into that sorta thing), but there are definitely going to be tears.  Lots of tears.  But as my daughter says, tears are just weaknesses leaving the body.  Let them go, look in the mirror, and ask yourself…

Why the hell NOT me?

Let’s ROCK 2015!

Jenna P

20 Comments

The Balancing Act: One Writer’s Struggle to Get it Together

You may (wishful thinking) have read my blog post in which I pleaded to all my fellow bad girlz of the world for help on getting through a rough writing patch. And I mean ROUGH.  Well, I’ve been taking some time to reflect on all the wonderful advice I received, and try to get to the root of the problem.  I began a mission to figure out where it all went wrong.  Why wasn’t I able to write 5000 words again, at the kitchen table, the TV blaring, the kids fighting, and my husband giving me the stink eye?  Where was that Jenna P when I needed her to help me kick my writing drought’s ass?  I kept searching and searching for her, trying to figure out where she went.

But all I found was more stress.

Rather than successfully ignoring the mess around me, it compounded my stress.  I became frustrated with my family because they needed me to be a mom and a wife – imagine the nerve!  I became agitated with anything extra that popped up, because it was stealing away my writing time.  I resented anything that reminded me that I couldn’t do those things anymore.  And then by the time I actually had time to write – I was so worked up I couldn’t think straight.

And then…I’d do it all over again.

“They say the definition of madness is doing the same thing and expecting a different result…”

From the song, Try It Again, by THE HIVES

 Well. Just call me The Hatter.

Suddenly it all made sense. Maybe it wasn’t getting better because I kept trying the same old things.  Maybe the same old things didn’t work anymore because I wasn’t the same old Jenna P.  Maybe I wasn’t the same old Jenna P anymore because my life required a different Jenna P.

Maybe it was time to rebalance my life.

So I literally sat down and began to make a list of all of my chores, commitments, interests, and wishes. And then I opened EXCEL and began trying to fit it all in to my calendar (Why, yes.  I AM an engineer!).  After this little exercise, two things became abundantly clear to me.

  1. It didn’t all fit.
  2. Thank God the old Jenna P was gone, because she wouldn’t have been able to deal.

Life is dynamic. Things change.  Our family’s needs change.  Our psyche’s change.  Our interests change. WE change.  What worked for us before might not work for us now.  No, the kitchen table wouldn’t do – I needed an office.  No, I couldn’t write in the evenings – I needed to write in the mornings.  No, I couldn’t write for hours straight anymore because I’m old and need to stretch my legs more.  No, I shouldn’t kill myself throughout the week to have Friday’s off to write, because I end up doing the laundry, housework, and errands I avoided in doing so.  No, I shouldn’t compare myself to my other writer friends, because our lives are completely different as are our commitments.

So, I created my own space (which we’ve moved a couple of times, but I think I finally found the most comfortable place). I started looking for a new job, which I think has been the biggest root of my issues.  Until that happens, I decided to work Fridays and go in at 9 instead through the week so I could write in the mornings (optimizing my time by eliminating rush hour traffic!).  I devoted my evenings to my family, so that I don’t feel like I’m constantly running behind.  I decided I simply couldn’t keep up the pace with many of my friends, so I needed to find a pace that worked for me.  And most importantly, I scheduled downtime, because nothing zaps creativity more than exhaustion.

Maybe I can’t write 5000 words a day anymore, but I’m okay with that. The important thing is that I’m writing, and if all I have time for is an hour a day – so be it.  Because that’s who I am RIGHT NOW.  When things change, I’ll figure out who I need to be THEN.

Jenna P.

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If You Can’t Laugh at Yourself: A Funny, Serious, and Somewhat Embarrassing List of My Newbie Mistakes

When we first came up with the idea to give our former selves writing advice, I thought, how on earth can I limit it to just one thing?  I’ve learned so much over the last five years about myself, my writing, and the industry.  How can I pick the most important?

Well, I can’t, so I’m not gonna try.   Instead, I’m going touch on all the things (or at least most of them), and hope my former self realizes she needs to do her research!

Dear poor, clueless Jenna P,

So…you want to write a novel, huh?  It worked for that Stephenie Meyer chic, so why can’t it work for you?  You’re smart, good at grammar, have one hell of an imagination, and won a bunch of creative writing contests when you were younger.  You’ve got this in the bag!  Piece of cake.

Not.

Sure you can do this.  I truly believe that.  But in no way will this be a piece of cake, so let me save you a lot of spilled milk and give you a few ingredients of advice before you begin.

Don’t be ashamed of your writing — it’s a gift and there are others out there just like you.  The first chance you get, join a writer’s group.  You’ll meet some of the best friends you’ve ever had, and you’ll learn lots of stuff too.  Like what a mimosa is, what POV and GMC stand for, and that head-hopping is NOT a good idea.  You’ll learn that 160,000 words isn’t a romance novel, it’s an epic, and just because you have a suspenseful scene doesn’t mean you write romantic suspense.

Oh, and while we’re on the topic, you don’t write romance.  You write something called women’s fiction.  So read it.  A lot of it.  You’ll see what I mean, I promise.

Get comfortable because this adventure you’re on will be a marathon, not a sprint.  I know you hate that because you’re as impatient as they come, but this is something you can’t control.  There’s a lot to see along your path, so keep your eyes open and enjoy the journey.  And be sure to pace yourself, or you’ll burn out before the end.  Along the way, people will pass you and the finish line will seem to get farther away, but don’t stop.  Keep going even if you have to crawl.

What you write will take longer to produce, be more difficult to reduce down to a query, and be harder to sell, but don’t take the easy route.  You’ve got something here, and your main goal is to share it with the world.  Keep that in mind when the rejections start coming in, because they will.  You’ve got to pay your dues because you’re not going to be the exception to the rule, no matter how much you think you will be.

You’ve never been a jealous person, but be prepared:  Writer jealousy is inevitable, no matter how hard you try to look the other way.  Your friends will get more requests than you at times, some writers will get signed after only a few months of trying, and you might just be the last one to make it.  That’s okay; doesn’t mean you’re any less of a writer.  This business is a lot about luck and market, and it might just mean you weren’t in the right place at the right time holding onto the next hot genre.  Being a great writer sometimes just isn’t enough.

Don’t use the word quite quite so much.  Watch out for waist/waste and peak/peek.  Don’t let anyone talk you out of your oxford comma.  Find a better way to describe your protag than through a mirror.  Don’t open up your book in a dream sequence.  Skip that last drink at your first M&M banquet.  And for goodness sake — don’t send that query the minute you type THE END.

Oh, and hey – fiction doesn’t need a table of contents, dork.

Your future self,

A much older, wiser, and few pounds heavier,

16 Comments

The Bad Girlz Blitz Halftime Report

Okay.  Time for raw honesty, here.  I don’t mean to be a Debbie Downer, but I’ve never been one to sugar coat shit — it’s still shit.  So here it is.

It doesn’t look good for the home team, folks.

I started out with such high hopes, a kickass game plan, and the stamina to make it through a three month journey to writing a manuscript.  And here I am at halftime with a big fat goose egg on the scoreboard.

Yeah.  I suck.

So what went wrong in the first half?  What didn’t I account for in my brilliant plan?  If I’m going to make any adjustments to my defensive line, it’s now or never.  Right?  We can still turn this thing around.

Only…there’s a slight problem.  My opponent is fierce and relentless, and smiles at my measly attempts to take him down.  What I need to adjust is the one thing I CAN’T.

THE DAY JOB.

Sure, I thought about it.  I cut down to 3 days a week and planned on using some vacation time here and there to make up the difference.  Seemed like an okay plan, until I got hit with an impossible deadline and watched my 2 days off get pried from my cold, bleeding hands. *cue violins*

I tried to fight through it, but after doing math for twelve hours straight there’s just not a lot of room left for creativity.  I am exhausted, busy, and I am flustered.  So exhausted that I don’t feel like doing anything but lay around re-cooping on my days off.  So busy that I can’t even manage to read and comment on my fellow badgirlz blogs.  So flustered that I’ve been having my seven year old daughter make my to-do list, because I can’t seem to remember to pick up the Combos I promised her from the convenience store.

So, not only do I suck at blitzing – an idea I came up with – but now I’m a disgruntled employee, lazy wife, horrible friend, and even worse mother (how did I forget the Combos??)

See where I’m going with this?  It’s like a freaking snowball, getting exponentially bigger as the days go on.  How can I write with all this crap going on?  Where would I find the time if I could?

I always hear people say you need to find a way to write through it all, but how?  HOW, when there aren’t enough hours in the day?  HOW, when you’re creative mojo is being sucked away by deadlines that your bills depend on?  HOW, when you’re trying to write a family saga but feel like the world’s worst mother?

I’m all ears, folks.  I don’t want pity, I just want some ideas.  Help me get back in the game!!

Hope you’re blitzing better than I am!

Jenna P.

13 Comments

Bad Girl Nominee from Jenna P: Ms. Fiona Gallagher

It wasn’t easy for me to narrow down my long list of bad girlz, so first I came up with a list of criteria that emulates the very definition of bad to me.  And here it is….

  1. A bad girl must speak her mind, even if it’s the unpopular thing to say.
  2. A bad girl laughs in the face of those who tell her she can’t.
  3. Leather skirt or ratty jeans — a bad girl rocks it because her attitude is what makes her be noticed.
  4. A bad girl knows exactly who she is and isn’t afraid to be that person.
  5. A bad girl recognizes her weaknesses, and then stomps all over them.
  6. A bad girl could survive on her own, but realizes a party is much more fun with friends and loved ones.
  7. A bad girl does what she has to do.  Period.

So, it’s my pleasure to nominate Ms. Fiona Gallagher from Showitme’s hit — SHAMELESS as my Honorary Bad Girl!

fiona1For those of you who don’t watch SHAMELESS (which — SHAME on you, because it’s fantastic!), Fiona is played by Emmy Rossum.  As the oldest of the 6 Gallagher children, she’s been dealt the task of raising her brothers and sister because her alcoholic father won’t do it and her bipolar/drug addicted mother abandoned them.

fiona-family   fiona-family2

Fiona’s not rich.  She can’t afford the best of anything.  In fact, Fiona’s family is about as white trash as they get.  But to me…Fiona has class.  (There’s two things I thought I’d never say in the same breath!)

fiona-fuck   fiona-beer

 She drinks.  She smokes.  She curses like a sailor.  But she loves her brothers and sister, and will do whatever necessary to make sure they survive.  Whether it be working at a bar, shoveling the shit from broken sewer lines, or selling marijuana from an ice cream truck.  She’s given up every one of her own dreams so that her family can eat.

fiona-bury      fiona-cashfiona-L

 And it’s not easy.  Her pride is her biggest obstacle.

fiona-cry   fiona-argument

But she finds a way to survive, just like we all do.

fiona-door    fiona-friend

Even finds a way to smile every now and then!

fiona-steve

Bravo, Fiona Gallagher!  You are an Honorary Bad Girl!

 

 

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It Takes All the X’s and O’s

If you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m what you might call a “pieces” person. I see things broken down into their tiny parts, all turning together to make a monstrous machine work its best. It’s how things make sense to me, in all aspects of my life. If I didn’t break everything down, I would surely get overwhelmed by the mountain of To Do’s I have. So when I sat down to write my #BGBlitz Game Plan, I approached it in the same piece by piece method.  All the X’s know what O they’re going after, and that QB is going down!

Jenna P.’s #BGBlitz objective:  To write my next manuscript in ten weeks.

X1. Perception, perception, perception.

I’m not gonna lie; this seems like a hopeless feat.  Ten weeks?  It took ten months… times two…to write my last manuscript.  How the hell am I going to pump out 95,000 words in ten weeks?

I’m going to trick myself into thinking it’s not that bad.  Write an entire manuscript in 10 weeks? Highly impossible. Write 10,000 words a week? Unlikely. Write 1,500 words a day? Definitely doable.  I got this!

X2. Stick to the schedule.

Some people can’t survive without their to do lists, and I can’t survive without my schedule. I think this is another perception, really. If I can show myself that there are, in fact, enough hours in the day, then I have no excuse to fail. So, I’ve charted out the hours, figured out my summer work schedule, planned for the summer gymnastics hours, asked my family to make a few sacrifices, and I’ve got something I think will work!  I won’t bore you with the details….but it’s a work of art.

X3. Accept that the bed might not get made.

I’ve made myself a promise: For ten weeks, I’m not going to feel guilty about the house not being perfect. I’m going to set a few chores for my kids, talk to my family about expectations, and called in a few favors to get by. We will survive.  Dust bunny’s, defeated.

X4. Sacrifice a personal day or two.

As doable as 1500 words a day sounds, I know how easy it is to fall behind. If that happens (and I’m sure it will), I’ve given myself permission to take a “me” day to get caught up. I have plenty of time banked, and am fortunate enough to work in a career that allows me some flexibility.  Now is as good a time as any to use it!  Besides, writing is kinda like a vacation anyway.

X5. Limit my querying/internet/twitter stalking to two days a week.

I once spent fifteen minutes zooming in on a picture an agent had uploaded to Twitter that happened to have her computer screen in the background JUST to see if they manuscript she was reading was mine.

Admit it…you’ve done it too.

Besides the glaring fact that this is borderline obsessive, it’s a waste of time! What would I have done if it would have been my manuscript?  Nothing!  So as hard as it is for me to “turn off the porn,” (A little FRIENDS reference for you all there) I gotta do it. It’s a heavy distraction.

So there’s my game plan!  Not glamorous by any means, but like I said – I need to see the pieces.  All my X’s and O’s are gunning toward the QB.  Let’s DO this thing!

What’s your #BGBlitz game plan look like?

Keep Writing! – Jenna P.

6 Comments

Oh, it’s On! It’s On Like Donkey Kong!

I don’t know about you, but the school year is a busy time for me.  The added tasks of being an elementary school parent nowadays can cause quite a lot of stress in my household.  In addition to my day job as an engineer, evening job as a gymnastics mom, and whenever I can find time job as a writer, the school year makes me a Homework Helper/School Lunch Fixer/Reading Listener/Assignment Tracker.

And I have a feeling I’m not alone in this.  Am I?

So, what do you say we make this summer count?  I mean, big time.  What if we pick that one goal that we seem to keep putting off and make it the focus of that freed up time?  Think we could do it?

Introducing…

The Bad Girlz Summer Blitz

For those of you that aren’t into football, a blitz is defensive strategy in which extra players are sent in to rush the quarterback at the same time.  Basically, the defense throws everything they can spare to try to sac the quarterback or disrupt his pass.  That’s what we’re going to do.

Over the next few weeks, I challenge you to define your quarterback.  What task do you want to tackle?  What goal can you never seem to put to rest?  It can be anything.  Maybe you just need to get a manuscript pumped out.  Maybe you want to get a new book plotted, or perhaps develop a new method for plotting.  Maybe you’ve just finished editing your manuscript and your goal is to write and send out 100 queries.  Maybe you really need to establish or increase your online presence.  Maybe you just need to clean out a room in your basement to have some place to write undistracted.  We really don’t care what the goal is, as long as you need to get it done.

After you’ve got your eyes set on the target, develop a game plan.  Does it have phases?  Deadlines?  What is your plan of attack to make sure it gets done?  Then MEMORIZE it.  I mean, write it down, put a sticky note on your mirror, pin in on your dashboard, whatever it takes.  Live, eat, and breathe your target in much the same way that a defensive end carries around their playbook wherever they go.  Keep it in your face so you can’t ignore it.  No excuses.

 

VarsityBlues

 

Then starting June 1st, it’s GAME ON.

Stifler

Over the next couple weeks, some of the bad girlz will be sharing their goals and game plans.  We will also keep you up to date on how we’re doing through June, July, up until the very end of August when it’s GAME OVER.  We hope you’ll share your game as well and let us be your cheerleaders (we promise not to drag you around by the helmet)!  Comment on the blogs, post to our facebook page, and follow/tweet the hashtag #BGBlitz.

Let’s do this!  Let’s make this summer count!

Jenna P.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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