Monday, December 29, 2008

La La Check-in

Way back on December 2 I found myself visiting La La Land and getting nada done. I needed focus.

That visit to La La Land lead to the creation of the December La La Goals and then the offered prize of the Licorice Lasso! Yee-haw.
So I'm checking in and filling in.
Those of you who shared your own La La goals, let me know how you did. Post here in comments or on your own blog and link in the comments.
My La La goal was: I will keep my Office Hours at The Vault (M,T,Th, F from 12:00-3:30, W from 11:30-1:30) and those Office Hours will not include email, Facebook, or blogging, but will include working to move forward with my work-in-progress.
Those of you who visit me now and again know this didn't happen. Nope. As it turned out, December was a tough...really tough...month and it wasn't even possible to be at The Vault. Could I have kept Office Hours away from The Vault? Well, probably...but it didn't happen.

I was forced to revise. Not my writing, but my writing life. And, you know? I think it was good for me. It was good for me to say to myself, "Jolie, you've been working really, I mean really, hard the last three and half months. It's okay to take a breather. To take care of your girls. To spend time with your family. To enjoy the snow and the season. Oh, yah...and to eat!"

Now, as 2009 approaches--girlies getting back to school and a schedule getting back to normal--I think I can return to my Office Hours refreshed and ready to get back to it. At least that's what I hope.
I'm sure many of you have met your La La Goals and some of you, like me, had to revise your writing life. Either way, let me know.
'Cause some one's taking home the Licorice Lasso and it won't necessarily be the person with the most perfectly matched goal and productivity.

Here are the goals that were posted:
Kjersten said: I'm going to get three new finished illustration samples in December.
CocoaStomp said: My December goal is to clean up a picture book dummy that I put aside for holiday monster paintings and send it off.

Jennifer Bertman said: My writing goal for December is to finish revisions on my novel.
Holly Cupala said: My focus is to finish my novel. Ok, to write 20K words. There. That's totally reasonable, and that will get me pretty close to finishing.
Laurie Thompson said: I am a distractoholic, and December is the easiest of months in which to get distracted, but I really must get moving. So, office hours, here I come!
Kelly said: my goal is to polish up one poetry collection to send out to a few publishers. I'd also like to submit to at least three magazine this month!
Annie said: My December goal is to get my first three chapters of my middle grade novel ready to send to Alexandra Penfold.After that, to continue with it, chapter by chapter.
S R Wood said:
If I'm serious about 1000 words a day, Monday-Wednesday-Friday and maybe Saturday, my WIP should be at nearly 30,000 words by the end of the month.
Kim Baker said: My December goal is to have this draft of my WIP together enough to let someone else read it.
Kim Baise said: I have TONS of art to complete this month.I need to complete 3 works of art for my Lullaby Moon book.I also need to finish my part of a collaboration with a textile artist....and then there's that commissioned work.
Martha Brokenbrough said: My goal is to finish a draft of my novel. I'm really close. :-)
Shelli said: I am finishing line edits on my book to send out on Jan 5th :)


Martha Brockenbrough said...

I finished!

But then there was a twist... I decided it was the wrong book for me to be working on, at least now--for long-winded reasons that boil down to voice and style.

It made for a sad couple of days.

But then there was another twist!

I started to work in earnest with my wonderful new agent, who inadvertently sprinkled good advice all over me while suggesting revisions for a picture book manuscript. I was able to take this advice and fold it into two other manuscript ideas and figure out the perfect next thing to be working on.

And so the climb begins again. Meanwhile, I have the picture book revisions to continue working on (along with another MS I wrote just for fun). While I would love to have something in sellable shape, I can truly say I'm simply enjoying the process.

Jaime Temairik said...

I posted about my goal, Madame Cuppa at

Cuppa Jolie said...

Yes...yes..yes! I loved reading these first two updates.

Martha and Jaime, you both rock the casbah! I'm so proud of you. For meeting your goals (even if it's by tomorrow) and for doing so, so much more.

I'm away from the house ALL DAY today. I'm going to be dying to check in with other updates late tonight.

S R Wood said...

Success! 34,400 words so far. Setting this goal (publicly) was a huge incentive to reach it, even more than I thought it would be. Thanks for keeping us accountable! Here's my longer update:

Congratulations Martha and CocoaStomp!

Kjersten said...

I had to revise my goal too, Jolie... I got sick sick sick and so did my little one. And then I realized that finishing my goal would mean letting go of all the crafty fun I usually partake in around Christmas. So I let it go -- the goal that is. I'm back at it now. But it was good to give myself permission to let go. And I probably still got more done than I would have otherwise.

Anonymous said...


I haven't reached my goal. Not even close.

I'm not sure about my manuscript anymore. We had a fight. It's not the manuscript I thought it was. I'm waiting for it to call and apologize, otherwise it's over between us.

This might leave me WITHOUT A DATE for the Writer's Intensive in NY. What's a girl to do?!?

Cuppa Jolie said...

SR Wood...WOW! 34 K plus in word during the month of December is mucho impressive. Congrats! Really. I'm so glad the La La Goal helped.

Kjersten...I understand, girl. I'm right with you. To give oneself permission to let something go (knowing you still will accomplish what you are driving to) is really great. I think it ended up being the best thing for me. But so glad to hear you still did produce this month. Awesome.

Kim...oh, I'm so sorry to hear about this break-up between you and your manuscript. That's a toughy. But, do keep your chin up and be open to it coming around or...OR new love. It is possible. Please don't be without a date to the NY Intensives. Even it if it requires multiple sessions of manuscript take a date with you.

Anonymous said...

Well, it all started out swimmingly, but then as the holidays approached, blizzard after blizzard hit, a house demolition date neared, and a trip loomed, it started to all fall apart. I didn't quite succeed to the letter of the la la, but I'm way ahead of where I would've been without the la la's, so--in a month of sheer craziness--I'm retroactively calling that a success. And thank you, Jolie, for the lasso at my back! :)

jenn said...

Wow, congrats to those of you who met your goals! I didn't even come close, although I made good progress in the beginning of the month. In the two weeks leading up to Christmas with two work deadlines looming before my trip to see family for the holidays, writing time got pushed to the backburner. Which brings me to one of my resolutions for 2009: find a balance between writing time, work, and personal time (quality time with hubby, time dedicated to maintaining good health, time to unwind, time for keeping up with friends, blogs, and other commitments). I've gotten back into the swing of things this week and dedicated a good chunk of time to writing yesterday and today. Two for two so far in January, and I really enjoyed the holiday season so those are good things.

holly cupala said...


That's what I've been doing - singing la-la-la through snow days and sick days and travel days and now 10-people-in-Cottage-Cupala days!

BUT I did hit about 1/3 of my original goal. Rats, I should have foreseen the mayhem and concentrated my efforts at the beginning of the month.

Yay for Martha and Jaime and SR Wood! Kjersten and Laurie, I'm right there with you. Kim, don't lose heart!

I'm renewing my goal in January - because really, I can't not finish this book. It's in the contract. It's in the planetary alignment. It's in my schedule, darnit!