New Year’s Resolutions

Happy New Year everyone! I hope this year brings us all joy and success!

It feels good to be posting again. I didn’t spend quite as much time as I would have liked on blog planning, but I did do a lot of reading. I also spent some time entertaining my in-laws and making sure my husband, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, took it easy all week. I have been lurking on everyone’s blogs, but have no fear, my commenting will resume now that we are back to our regularly scheduled programming.

As far as the blog is concerned, I have a few resolutions I would like to work on for 2011.

1)  Get on a schedule.  I’d like to have some set days so readers know what to expect, and so I have added an “Upcoming Posts” gadget to my left sidebar in order to keep readers informed on what I have coming down the pipeline.  For now I plan to try and post reviews twice a week (probably Tuesdays and Thursdays), and participate in the Follow Friday and IMM memes (on Friday and Monday, respectively).  I’m going to post on my writing activities or other writing news on Wednesdays and post fun stuff on Sundays (see below).

2)  Post more on my writing.  I didn’t set out to have this be solely a book blog.  That was part of the reason I bought my own domain and didn’t name the blog “Super Awesome Challenge Accepter” or “Reading. Challenged.”  I want to have this also serve as a sort of professional networking tool, and in order to do that, I need to post more about my WIPs.  This will also help motivate me to keep working on said WIPs.

3)  Join a book tour, wrangle up some author interviews, and attend BEA or another major conference.  I’m still new, but by the end of the year, I’d like to have grown this blog to the point where I have some good contacts with publicists/agents/publishers.  That way I can host giveaways and contests and other fun stuff.

4)  Lighten up!  I really am a silly and funny person, but I tend to be a bit restrained when I write.  I don’t want to be so serious all the time.  This is my way of giving myself permission to act like a goofball sometimes.  I think one of my weekly events should be Silly Sunday, where I post on things that make me laugh.

Where my writing is concerned, I also have a few goals.  I want to have a polished novel by the end of the year.  If I can’t have the whole thing ready to go, I’d like to at least have a few solid chapters that have been workshopped, critiqued, edited and worked into a semi-good place.  Ideally, by the start of 2012 I will have something that I can use to start the query process.

What are your goals for 2011? Do you have any suggestions for things you’d like to see on my blog?

Three more challenges

I can’t help it. I am the challenge accepter. I am helpless against the draw to challenge myself, particularly when the challenge is to do something I like to do anyway (like read). So I am signing up for three more reading challenges.

Steampunkery & Book Reviews

First up is steampunkery & book reviews’ Morbid Romantica challenge. I will be participating in the Lost Romantica category, reading one book in each of the twelve themes. Each month the challenge focuses on a different theme of paranormal romance, such as zombies, selkies, dark gothic fantasy, tortured heros, shifters and other fun stuff like that. You can read any of the themes in any month. I’m excited to stretch outside of the normal themes I read and expand my horizons a bit.

Next up is Stalking the Bookshelves’ YA Series Challenge. I’m going all out on this one and joining Level 6 – Addicted and Loving It. This means reading 23-30 YA books that are part of a series with at least 3 entries out by 2011.  There are a LOT of series that I am trying to get caught up on, so this is a perfect challenge for me to get some of that old reading out of the way.  I’m planning to read The Mortal Instruments, Vampire Academy, Iron Fae and Wicked Lovely series, among others. I can’t wait to get on the bandwagon with these!

The last challenge is to read 100 books this year.  Tabitha at Writer Musings is hosting this challenge where you comment with a link once a month to check in on your progress, and every month she does a giveaway to participants. You don’t have to commit to 100 books, you just have to link to your reviews or other proof that you’re reading.  Considering the vast number of books I want to read this year, I’m going to try to match Tabitha and read at least 100. That will truly be a challenge!