Ishness! (First of 2018!)

Iiiit’s time for… ISHNESS!

Because the last time I shared one was the beginning of December, at the end of NaNo season! So it’s high time for another one. πŸ˜‰

Here are some of my ishnesses from December and the first month of 2018!

December 2017 Highlights

A lovely day in December: editing a short story, with cozy new slippers and my lovely Jayne-from-Firefly hat and bullet-journal, when it had just snowed outside, with my Tolkien collection at my feet.

  • Went on semi-hiatus post-NaNo but wrote 900 words scattered across half a dozen different stories, and had plotbunny explosions (of course; this is why I shouldn’t go on break).
  • The Siren and the Skyship decided it was a trilogy, so now I have two sequels to write as well as finish it. They’re all going to be retellings (the other two might be two each?) and I’M EXCITED.
  • A couple of my older ideas gained new titles and awesomeness (also retellings) and it’s going to be glorious. I have so many back-burner novel ideas that want my attention, but at the moment they must wait…
  • Edited and posted Tare and the Puppies! ^_^
  • I FINALLY read the much-hyped first book of the Wingfeather Saga, On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness, and really enjoyed it! SO FUN. I also saw the mini film episode thing online AND IT IS THE MOST ADORABLE THING. Seriously, go watch it if you haven’t!
  • I also read The Stroke of Eleven and alskdjfldkj MY FEELS. I need more Beaumont and Beasley! And I read a few other books, some of them actually Christmassy! (Look at me being all season-appropriate!)
  • Speaking of seasons: THERE WAS SNOW. It only came down for like ten minutes and none of it stayed, but it was sooo pretty! ^_^
  • Watched the second half of Once Upon a Time’s first season, and started the second season. Muchly enjoyable. SO MANY THINGS.
  • Re-watched the BBC Pride and Prejudice, which was lovely. I love both film versions, but hadn’t seen this one in ages, so that was fun. (I still love the book best; sorry! XD) This was one of the three rewards I promised to myself if I finished NaNo. I still haven’t gotten to the other two. *cough*
  • And, naturally, had Christmas, which was quiet and lovely. ^_^


And now on to more recent history: the beginning of 2018!


  • Started new journals! Always a highlight of the start of a new year. XD 9th writing journal (yay!). My new bjournal (which is my Nordic-ish abbreviation for bullet journal) is blue and fuzzy and I love it SO MUCH.
  • In December I won a gorgeous mythological creature coloring book, and this year I’ve started coloring for twenty minutes most days for relaxation. It’s wonderful and I love it. I’m trying new productivity techniques, which include some exercise and actually taking care of myself. (I know; shocking, right?)

  • Won a little dragon and his name is Benedict Pendragon and he’s SO ADORABLE and I love him.
  • Went out to see the Super Blue Blood Moon Eclipse Thingamy, but apparently got out like 2 minutes too late because it went behind clouds and I didn’t get to see it at all. XD
  • Was cold. (It got down to 8 degrees at one point and just — no. I live in Texas for a reason and that does not include being this cold thank you very much.)


Added 3K words to The Secret of Kedran’s Wood. A little slow but it’s the first real writing I’ve done since NaNo, so I’m just happy to be starting up again! πŸ™‚ And I’d been stuck on this chapter FOREVER. It had dibs and dabs of snippets out of order throughout it, so I finally went through and added to it and filled in the “holes” with “draft zero” writing, and basically have a completed chapter of a patchwork of snippets/draft-zero, so I just need to smooth/turn it into a first draft. But I’ve been stuck on it for a long time, so this makes me happy to have it sewn together! *wonders if any of this makes sense to anyone besides me*

This writing was largely due to my Writing Day. Each year on the 20th of January I write something; it’s a tradition I’ve kept up since 2010. So that got me to sit down and work on SOMETHING, and I’m very pleased. πŸ™‚

Also, The Secret of Kedran’s Wood is officially growing alarmingly large. I’m trying not to worry about that, and just writing, buuut… you know. XD

I also did some plotting on a few stories (including my old NaNo 2013 story, Underground Rainbow, which this month decided to chop itself up as a trilogy, effectively meaning that book one is basically done and book two started; so I accidentally more-or-less “finished” a novel without writing anything. XD).

Other Writerly Things

  • Did #WIPjoy for OHE.
  • Started my new writing journal, which now has 10 pages in it.
  • Blogged a fair amount.
  • And I did some more business-y things like a bit of freelance editing and making some plans. πŸ™‚

Not a huge amount done, but coming out of a month of hiatus, with NaNo before that, I’m slowly easing back into the writing world, and happy with what I did accomplish!


I read 15 things in January! I’m counting short stories on my Goodreads reading challenge this year, so it’s not as many as it sounds, but still. XD

Re-reads, short stories, non-fiction, new novels… quite the collection. I’m also getting back into my Tolkien hobby and this makes me marvelously happy.

Highlights of the month are DEFINITELY The Last Motley, which I got for review and is my favorite thing I’ve read this year (releasing tomorrow!) — simply STELLAR fantasy; and the first Ranger’s Apprentice book, which is precious and I love Halt. πŸ˜€

watching highlights

  • Once Upon a Time: Season 2 — Just a few episodes of this. Still enjoying it. I think I liked the first season better, but it’s definitely still intriguing. πŸ˜‰
  • Persuasion (1971) — I’d seen two film versions previously, but this one was much longer, and I really enjoyed it! I enjoyed them all, actually, and can’t pick a favorite. πŸ˜› This might be my least-favorite version of Captain Wentworth, but it was my favorite version of Anne, so…? Anyway, ’twas enjoyable. ^_^ Anyone else seen this one?
  • Re-watched some The Deputy episodes (one of my favorite buddy-stories!) and re-watched Zorro (1975) which is my FAVORITE Zorro thing of all time, I think… though I love pretty much all Zorro things to bits. ❀


  • Brittany Jean’s new album, Wander with Me, has been one of my main listening things lately. I got it for review and it’s lovely! Review to come. ^_^
  • Kyle Robert Shultz started a podcast for writers, and while I’m very bad at keeping up with podcasts, I did make sure to listen to the first 3 episodes, and enjoyed them very much. Some great advice. πŸ™‚
  • And in general I’ve been listening to beautiful calming music while coloring/exercising in the morning; it’s been splendid and so relaxing.

Upcoming Plans

Awesome things going on in the next couple of months are February Fantasy Month and March Magics just around the corner… I hope to take part in both to celebrate fantasy and Diana Wynne Jones, two of my favorites!

There are reviews and other posts coming up on the blogs… I’m also doing a couple of hashtag games on Twitter this month: Jenelle’s #FantasyMonth and also #StoryWarriors.

I still have many projects I’m in the process of working on, including some of my writer dreams I shared last month, so we’ll see how those go.

I need to pick a WIP to focus on, but keep thinking about Kedran’s Wood, The Other Half of Everthing, and the (untitled) Siren and the Skyship trilogy, as well as being vaguely aware I have some short stories to write, and other stories popping in to my attention from time to time as well. I just can’t seem to settle on ONE!

Life looks like it’s going to be very busy for the next few weeks (isn’t it always), so I’m mostly just hoping to get through that and still focus on some of my creative pursuits and keep up with my oh-so-many online commitments too! A little overwhelmed right now; wish me luck. XD

So there you have my ishness of late! How about you? How was your January, what have you been up to, and what are your February plans? Can you believe we’re already a month into 2018?? Talk to me! Thanks for reading. ^_^

20 thoughts on “Ishness! (First of 2018!)

  1. I find your post inspiring! I enjoyed reading about all your highlights and plans, and now I think I might write a similar post on my own blog. I also love the idea of having a “draft zero.” Usually stories come to me in scenes, totally out of order, so I have a lot of trouble writing a straight-up draft chapter by chapter. I’m definitely going to try your “draft zero” technique. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. No I cannot believe it’s already the second month!!! It is officially crazy.
    Sounds like you’ve been pretty busy, so that’s all good! πŸ˜‰
    And ONCE is a lot of fun. Glad you’re getting into it…. frankly, the story dynamic really picks up as soon as Hook comes on the scene, so keep going! πŸ˜‰

    By the way, what month do you think is the best for releasing book 3 in Fia’s series? I need to line that up, and might as well have a good reason for the date picked!!! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s sooo crazy. O_O *is in shock we’re nearly halfway through February*

      Thanks! And yes, ONCE is definitely keeping exciting!

      Hmm… wow… I’m not very good at knowing these kinds of things. O_O Maybe pick a month in the summer, far enough out that you know you can get everything lined up without too much stress, but soon enough to generate interest, and then maybe announce it on your blog or newsletter? But I don’t know as to a good date… I’ve noticed books often release on a Tuesday but I don’t know why. XD Sorry I’m not more help! I hope you can figure out when to do it! πŸ™‚ Sounds exciting. ^_^


  3. I recognize that hat. It makes me happy. πŸ˜€

    Benedict Pendragon is an adorable name for an adorable dragon. I think I’m in love. Also, I am sorry that you had such cold weather, both because it’s horrible for you and because I like to dream of Texas as the ideal warm-and-sunny place.

    I like your idea of a writing day. It’s clever.

    Have you read Ranger’s Apprentice before? I could’ve sworn you had . . . anyway, yes, Halt is the Absolute Best.

    If you can’t settle in one WIP, could you alternate? Say that you’ll work on X project on THIS day and Y project on that day, or that you need to work on X, Y, and Z this week?

    Loved hearing what you’ve been up to.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I THOUGHT YOU MIGHT. XD The hat makes ME super happy too. πŸ˜€

      Thanks! I’m so glad you like li’l Benedict Pendragon! ^_^ Heheh, yes, that’s only in the summer. πŸ˜‰ And then it’s usually way too warm for comfort! We actually have quite a range of weather often… I think you’re thinking of Florida for the ideal warm-and-sunny place. XD But I love TX…

      Thanks! I’m obsessed with calendar dates and things like that, so. XD

      Nope! I had never read Ranger’s Apprentice before a couple of weeks ago! One of the MANY oft-hyped fantasy books I’ve been meaning to read for ages and never had… So I finally met Halt, and he absolutely IS the Absolute Best!!! πŸ˜€

      Hmm… I shall have to think about this idea of setting times to work on different books… I may have to try it. Thanks for the idea. πŸ™‚

      Thank you! I’m so glad! And thanks for reading and your loverly comment! ❀


  4. I just love your Ishness posts and getting a full overview of your month! ^_^

    Your December sounds like it was so pleasant! I’m loving the picture of you editing with all your Christmas goodies and TOLKIEN COLLECTION. That depicts the good parts of a writer’s life to a T and makes me happy. ^_^ And all the lovely things! Writing and more book ideas (MORE S&S STORIES!!! <333) and The Stroke of Eleven (MEEP) and OUAT and SNOOOOOW!!! Such loveliness! (Except you're making me miss December. Tehehe.) But January had lovely things as well!

    I'm still so ecstatic about you writing in KW2. EEEEEEEEP!!!! Plus ALL the wonderful story ideas you have! Like UR being a trilogy! (I still love how you literally finished a book without doing anything. It's so great. xD) And reading your #WIPjoy posts for OHE was SO FUNNN! And and and YOU DID FREELANCE EDITING. You did so much awesome in January!

    15 books??? WHOA. I read…2 and a few short stories. xD I just don't know how you do it! But it looks like you had some really great reads and I looove how you're immersing in Tolkien things again, plus allowing yourself some rereads and nonfiction. You're reading habits are so inspiring!

    I have not seen ANY of the Persuasion adaptions even though I've been meaning to since I read Persuasion like…2 or 3 years ago! I just keep forgetting. I've got to do that!

    ANYWAYS. You got so many awesome and productive things done in December/January. I do so hope your February is an absolutely AMAZING month! ❀ ❀ ❀

    (But hoooooowwwww is it already February?!?!?!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank youuu! And I’m so glad you’re excited about more S&S stories — that makes me happy! Yep, there were a lot of good things! I kind of miss December as well — sorry! XD But it was also crazy busy so I’m okay with a new year instead… πŸ˜›

      Aww, you’re making me feel so good about my writing things! THANKS! I definitely need to keep going with KW2… (And yes, it was splendid being basically done a book all at once. XD)

      Well… many of those 15 “books” were short stories too, so it’s not nearly as many as it looks like, honest. XD I actually only read 6 novels (one was a re-read), 3 non-fiction books, and a short story collection — the four latter of which I spread out over the whole month in bite-sized readings, which is why I was able to do those. YES TO MORE TOLKIEN THIIINGS!

      I’ve now seen 3 Persuasion adaptions and enjoyed aspects of all of them! πŸ™‚ You should try some. ^_^

      Aww, thank you so muuuch! I hope you have an amazing February too!!!! ❀


  5. It sounds like you did a lot despite just coming off of hiatus! Concerning writing, I’m working on rewrites for one of my books for the sixth time to try to resubmit to publishers who request the changes. XD

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I thought the eclipse was Wednesday NIGHT… so I kinda slept through it accidentally. Wed morning I was all bummed when I realized I’d missed it, but then also realized it had been snowing all night and cloudy and I wouldn’t have been able to see it anyway.

    One of these days, I’m gonna get out there and see something cool in the sky… but it might have to wait until my kids are older… sigh.

    Anywho… sounds like you had a lovely couple of months reading and writing all the things!

    I love Benedict Pendragon!!! He’s so cuuuute!

    Also, new journals are the best. nods. I need to get a new church journal, because I just finished mine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve heard several people say that! I’m sorry you missed it… But yeah, it actually made you able to sleep and I probably should have just slept in anyway because I didn’t get to see it even though I got up absurdly early — silly clouds. πŸ˜› I feel like all the cool sky things are always hiding in clouds, so you’re not alone. XD

      Thanks so much! And I’m glad you think Benedict Pendragon is cute!

      I LOVE new journals! They make me happy. πŸ™‚ How cool you keep a church journal — I hope you were able to find a new one!


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