August Update or I’m Not Dead I Promise!

I’ve been pretty MIA for awhile, I’ll admit. I’ve been doing what I can to get out and explore the city and make friends, plus I’ve started working on projects. But don’t fret! I am planning on getting back in the habit of posting. Plus the projects I am getting involved with are kind of awesome.

So what have I been up to?

Well, I have been reading and listening to more podcasts. This week I plan on getting out a few book reviews, specifically:

  • Asylum by Madeleine Roux (and eventually its sequels, which I’m working on reading)
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling
  • This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
  • Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older

Podcast wise, I’ve started listening to some new ones — primarily comic book related ones. I’m learning ALL ABOUT the X-Men, and Panelology keeps me up to date on the major comic books of the week (primarily DC/Marvel reviews).

I do plan on doing a Season 2 recap of The Black Tapes Podcast as my Season 1 recap gets hits on a daily basis.

I can talk a little bit about some of the projects I’ve been working on, but not too much:

  • I submitted my first story  idea to a website, which took most of July for me to panic and actually write. I find out tomorrow (GASP) if it was accepted, and either way I’ll post more about where you can find/read it afterwards. …Because I do have a backup plan for it.
  • Also, research, research, research. For both books.
  • I’m going to get into podcasting — woo! It’s in the beginning stages, and we’re (myself and 5 other wonderful ladies) getting ready to record our “lost” episode – one that will never see the light of day. It is book related, specifically YA, and as it gets closer to being released, I’ll post more about it!
  • Gishwhes is…. Gishwhes.
  • I helped a friend with an episode of her podcast — I seriously doubt it’ll ever see the light of day, but man. If you aren’t listening to podcasts, what are you waiting for? There is literally something out there for everyone. And if there isn’t, you can start it yourself.

What else? If you aren’t watching Stranger Things or Scream, you should be.

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February Wrap Up, And Looking Ahead to March

I, like so many others it seems, it a really bad book slump this month! I blame Rainbow Rowell for this, as Fangirl was just too damn good. I did start a few, and I picked up a bit as the month came closer to an end and A Gathering of Shadows came out.

(If you are afraid of the hype, don’t be. IT IS SOOOOO GOOD, and I’m only 130ish pages in.)

I also started a few other books: Tell the Wind and Fire by Sarah Rees Brennan, a retelling of A Tale of Two Cities and Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard. And I have started another book, which I’ll discuss when I get to my March Plans….

February Wrap Up

Books Read

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Monthly Goals

  • Write 9,000 words [Wrote around 5,300, and edited close to 7,900]
  • Get up nerve to post fan fiction first chapter [I have posted 3! And have a 4th one started!]
  • At least 2 hikes [Only did one, but I also got sick sick super sick this past two weekends.]
  • Post more writing or writing ramblings [I posted one. But March will be better!]
  • Work on confidence [I forgot about this one. Okay, okay, March.]

Places to Visit

  • Hartford, CT [I still hate driving. But I did it in style, while listening to Gilmore Guys Podcast.]
  • Epic Reads Presents: A Date with Royalty  [Evie Frye also followed me around a bit this month.]
  • Another Broadway show [Les Misérables, with Alfie Boe in one of his last performances. I sobbed the entire show.]
  • Fort Lee Historic Park  [Well I went to the start of it. It was cold and icy and snowy.]
  • Alice Tea Cup [Not originally on the list, but a cool NYC place to check out. I tried a few other restaurants too. I should start keeping a list…]

While I didn’t read much this month (my subway rides were full of Candy Crush levels — I’m going to have to delete those off my phone. Way too distracting in life, work and….reading and writing.

Ideals of March

The structure of last month was a bit too much for me I think. I make a list of what I want to read, and then it all sounds meh as the month goes on (or I end up with more new ARCs.)

But what I am planning on doing is using the writing books I own to start structuring my writing process. I feel a bit weird saying that, but my brain tends to be sporadic and unfocused. This will hopefully help! Sooooo:

WRITING CONTRACT
Agreement made this 29th day of February in the year 2016 whereby I, Meghan Griffin, do hereby committee myself to writing a minimum of two to three hours a day, every day, for ninety consecutive days, no excuses. The work will begin on the date I set forth in writing below.
I pledge to work diligently and habitually, even when I’m tired, hungry, cold, grouchy, or lonely, or have to get up early or stay up late, and/or even when I’d rather be doing something else. I am entering this agreement with myself because I recognize that the only way to write a novel is to dedicate myself to the project and to put in the necessary (solitary) time. I may or may not enjoy the process, but I also know there’s a little bit of agony in writing. The pain I inflict upon myself shall be my own.
I will begin my novel on March 1, 2016 and expect my first draft to be finished on July 1, 2016*, approximately ninety one hundred and twenty days later. No penalty shall be found for failing to meet this mandated deadline, but the reward for meeting it shall be the satisfaction of having written my own novel. I call blame no one but myself for the delays along the way.
This pledge is made with my full consent and awareness, and under no obligation to anyone but myself.
MGriffin

*From the reviews I’ve read, the writer’s plan does not actually work in ninety days if you have a job or want to get in depth enough. And writing does not pay my bills currently.

So look forward to me actually posting more writing ramblings. Or pictures of me pulling out my hair (and not just the grey/white ones…)

January Wrap Up / February Planning

Oh January. I had to finish up my editing job in January, so every time I debated doing something fun, I had to (sometimes begrudgingly) do my editing stuff. And now I am staring at the hours, knowing I have to log them….but I am glad it is done!

So here’s a break down of my January:

Books Read (That Were Planned)

  • 5th Wave by Rick Yancey 5/5 Moose
  • The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey 4/5 Moose
  • Carry On by Rainbow Rowell 4.5/5 Moose (It was originally 4, but then I finished Fangirl and bumped it up a little bit. Review to come this week.)
  • Broken by Susanne Valenti (ARC) 3/5 Moose
  • Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker (ARC) 3.75/5 Moose
  • Cranky Ladies of History – Short story compilation (Still Reading)

Books Read (That Were Not Planned)

  • Saga Volumes 1-5 [I didn’t write up a review because I haven’t read enough graphic novels to judge them, but oh boy. So good!]

Podcasts I started and recommend

Projects to Work On

  • 85 lines of my 4th Doctor scarf
  • Presents for Grey
  • Hats for a friend’s daughter

I worked on stuff for Grey, but I haven’t finished anything yet, ugh. February will definitely have more crochet time.

Monthly Goals that I listed to accomplish

Monthly Goals that I didn’t list but accomplished

NYC Places I meant to Visit:

  • National History Museum [See notes above]
  • Flophouse Screening [I had a bout of agoraphobia the day of this, and kind of regret not going.]

NYC Places I Visited:

  • Butter, as in from Gossip Girl

February’s Books To Be Read

  • A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab (to be released February 23)
  • The Last Girl by Joe Hart
  • After the Apocalypse by Maureen F. McHugh
  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  • The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan
  • Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
  • Cranky Ladies of History

Projects to Work On

  • 170 lines of my 4th Doctor scarf
  • Presents for Grey

Monthly Goals

  • Write 9,000 words
  • Get up nerve to post fanfiction first chapter
  • At least 2 hikes
  • Post more writing or writing ramblings
  • Work on confidence

Places to Visit

  • Hartford, CT (and maybe swing over to Washington, CT to see the original Stars Hallow?)
  • Epic Reads Presents: A Date With Royalty
  • Another Broadway show (but mostly because Hamilton started their Digital Lottery again!)
  • Fort Lee Historic Park

Planning January – Updates

It’s the middle of January, so it’s time for a small update to make sure I am staying on track!

Books TBR

  • 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (went on the list because I finished it Jan 2)
  • The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey (Read, just haven’t reviewed yet)
  • Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  • Broken by Susanne Valenti (ARC) (Currently Reading)
  • Teen Frankenstein by Chandler Baker (ARC)
  • Cranky Ladies of History – Short story compilation (Currently Reading)

Projects to Work On

Okay, I haven’t really finished any of these yet. But I have been working on the presents for Grey! 

  • 85 lines of my 4th Doctor scarf (I’ve done the math, and it’s 1004 lines total. I should have it done and ready for next year)
  • Presents for Grey
  • Hats for a friend’s daughter

Monthly Goals

  • Fix/Redo my Bucket List – it’s a bit old and outdated
  • Get out and do a 2nd hike (weather permitting — won’t be fun to do all the 52 hikes from May-August now!) It’s been too cold and I’ve been fighting a crappy cold. But hopefully I’ll find a day this month.
  • Write 9,000 words
  • Get back into yoga Currently working on – I am doing DailyBurn’s yoga program. 

Other Things

I decided on my yearly reading challenges! I am doing Bustle’s Reading Challenge, which encourages reading books by women and writes of color. I need to sit down and assign a book to a spot, but I’m excited. I am also doing Modern Mrs. Darcy’s reading challenge, which is 12 books in 12 different categories. As I finish books in either challenge, I’ll be sure to denote it on my reviews.

I also cleaned up my 30 Days Challenges and made a list of hiking places to check out near the city. I still need to make a list of things to check out in NYC.

December Wrap Up

I think I am going to start doing monthly wrap ups and projections for the month. Seems like a fun idea, no? But it’s also a way I can keep myself on track. Especially as I work on my New Year’s Resolutions, which one of them is to stay more organized! So let’s see….

Books Read

I definitely didn’t finish as many books as I wanted to, so a few will end up on my “To Be Read” list next month. But here’s what I’ve finished for December:

  • Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
  • The Night Before Christmas by Scarlett Bailey 3/5 Moose (I can’t bring myself to review this chick-lit book.)
  • Santa Maybe by Scarlett Bailey 3/5 Moose
  • Married by Christmas by Scarlett Bailey – DNF My first DNF. That’s sad.
  • Secondhand Souls by Christopher Moore 3/5 Moose
  • Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan 4/5 Moose (Review will probably come out tomorrow.)
  • 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (about 17% in the book and LOVING IT. I hope it stays this good.)

Projects Started/Finished 

  • Blanket and baby things for Grey Hudson (started)
  • 4th Doctor scarf (started)

Words Written

I wrote two starter ideas, and then restarted sketching my main book idea. This is here because a NY Resolution is to write more obviously.

Monthly Goals

  • Visit High Line – did not do (weather and drama)
  • Unpacked all my boxes (done! Though there is one more box to move down to the garbage.)
  • Organize kitchen (done! Thanks to my mom’s wonderful Christmas present)

Places to visit in my new city 

  • High Line
  • Museum of Mathematics  Visited – definitely for kids. Disappointing!
  • National History Museum – oh my god. the line?!
  • 9/11 Museum – Visiting with my mom today.
  • Union Square Holiday Market – Loved!

 

Back to it?

I didn’t keep up with this site – I don’t keep up with much of anything when it comes to writing. Nonetheless, I’m trying to turn over a new leaf.

In July I wrote over 20K words of a story for Camp NaNoWriMo. I haven’t really touched the story since. Almost immediately I went into Gishwhes, which was amazing this year. Work had a new project, plus a stupid summer cold — there is always an excuse, right?

I’ve started planning my November NaNoWriMo story, but I’m never going to be able to do the amount of words necessary if I don’t start exercising my muscles now.

I added a new page for my crochet projects as they are completed – there will be posts of them of course. It’ll also be where I’ll list my projects that I need to finish (because I have super been slacking off on those.)

So expect my ramblings about writing, reviews of books or series or tv shows or whatever… and potentially postings about work? Either way, expect my ramblings as I try to get back on track with my writings.