High Five! The First Round Results Are In

High five joyful businessmanWhat do you get when an immigration officer attends a séance?

A big boost of confidence, apparently!

Remember my short story, Point of Entry, that I mentioned entering into the short story challenge back in January? Well, the results from Round One are out and my story made it to the top five for my group!!!

Oh my goodness!

I didn’t actually think it would, but you have no idea how excited I am right now. Out of over 2,000 original participants, I am one of 300 advancing to Round Two.

Oh boy!

I’m terrified about advancing, but it doesn’t even matter what happens in Round Two because all I really wanted was to make it this far – and I did it! I consider this a huge success and it came at a time when I really needed it. I was letting myself get buried in too much self doubt and even though writing is what I love to do, I had convinced myself I wasn’t good at it.

Well… okay, one round of one contest. It doesn’t make me Shakespeare or anything. But it does make me feel like I have something in me worth hanging onto.

So, yay for the small victories in life!

Sometimes they  mean the difference between quitting and hanging on a little longer.

I’ll post my short story soon! Point of Entry – An immigration officer mourning the death of his wife gets a taste of his own medicine when he confronts an illegal alien during a séance.

And stay tuned for details about my Round Two assignment….



Why Hello There, February. How You Doin’?

White Love Hearts with Ribbons and Bow for Valentines Day GreetiLove is in the air…. or maybe it’s sweat mixed with tears? I don’t know. Either way, it’s February and the first draft of Rise of the Angerroots is complete. (Can I get a whoop, whoop?) I won’t lie to you, it’s a mess, but then, aren’t all first drafts? During the month of February I will be dedicated to pulling it all apart and fitting it all back together again. Rewrites. Yay. Can you hear my enthusiasm? I’m kicking myself for not using scrivener software for this one.

All kidding. aside, I am excited about it, really. It’s been a while since I have written something from start to finish that I feel actually has potential to become a good story. Yes, I completed NaNoWriMo back in November but that one … well, let’s just say it won’t be seeing the light of day anytime soon.

Plans for the next book are already underway and I’m eager to get plotting. My time will be split between the rewrites for Angeroots and starting the novella that will set the stage for the entire series. While each book will stand alone, I thought it would be fun to dive a little deeper into the world I created and see what happens. With a bit of luck, we’re looking at a May release date.

In the month of January, I wrote 48,543 total words. Heck, that’s like nearly finishing NaNoWriMo in January! I accepted the challenge of writing at least 1,000 words per day (or 365,000 words for the year) and I’m holding myself accountable to that. I’ll keep you posted on my progress at the start of each month.

The NYC Midnight Short Story Challenge is also underway. I received my first round assignment on January 23rd – to write a story of no more than 2,500 words using an immigration officer and a séance in the suspense genre. I submitted my story on Friday so now I wait with fingers crossed. There are so many participants in this challenge, I don’t expect to win, but I do hope to be one of the top 5 in my group to advance to round 2 in March. If I do, I will share my short story, Point of Entry, on my blog. If I don’t … Well, I will take into consideration the feedback I receive from the judges and try to make it better. Then perhaps I will share it. 🙂 Either way, I’ll share the contest results in a future post.

Remember ‘The Ghosts in my Attic’ last April? That was my theme for the 2015 A to Z Blog Challenge. I didn’t manage to complete the 2015 challenge but I’ve signed up for 2016 and this year I’m in it to win it. I’m still up in the air over a theme, however. Any suggestions? All your ideas are welcome. As much fun as it would be to revisit those ghosts, I kind of feel like that might be cheating. You know, been there, done that. I would love to find something as equally unique though. Hmmm…

Anyway, have a cup of hot chocolate to celebrate the beginning of a new month, keep warm, and stay tuned for more. Until we meet again… un beso.