Oz, Part 2

In Part one we discussed how Oz fails at making anything not about it’s protagonist.  It’s not just that everything the women do is focused or affected by Oscar though.  The worst part for me was the absolute fawning over Oscar’s womanizing.

In the beginning, Oscar decieves three women.  The ‘magician’s assistant’ the strongman’s assistant (off screen), and the girl he let get away.  He’s shown to be playing with the two assistants, and actually cares for the other girl, enough to let her go.

Aw.

Not.

Because then he shouts, as the Tornado is sucking him in “I can be good!  I can change!  Just give me a chance!!”

And then he gets to Oz and he seduces Theodora with no intention on following through, first thing.

Great change there, bud.

It somehow manages to get worse.  Oscar’s seduction of Theodora was inelegant at best, but ok, sure, maybe she was taken in.  I’ll accept it.  But it just never lets up on that tangent.  Evanora uses his deception as a base to trick Theodora into the apple (I’ll give this to the creators, the little nods to Fairy Tales were nice).  Then, when Theodora realizes that she’s been tricked and misled, her sister is the evil one, is the one that was hurting the people she professed in the beginning to care so much for… she decides to hate Oscar some more?

Priority issues.

Excuse me, what?  Ok, sure I’d still be mad at the misleading bastard, but wouldn’t burning all the love out of you mean you no longer had loyalty to your sister who just fucked you over and turned you into a horrible creature?  I mean, shit, this was the part of the movie where even my mother, who doesn’t automatically deconstruct these movies like I do, went “Wait.  What just happened?” and I had to admit that I had no idea.

And then to top it all off, at the very end, when Oscar has sent the sisters running, and Evanora is defeated by Glinda, and hooray!  Just as Theodora is flying off on her broom, he says, all solemn like “I know this evil wasn’t of your own making…” and is all extending the olive branch of peace.  When it was his deception that hurt her, and his running off that set her off, and his duplicity with seducing her and then being all happy with Glinda that made it so easy for Evanora to fuck with her sister.  Evanora provided Theodora the apple, but Oscar might as well have hand fed it to her.

And at the end, he has the audacity to say “This evil was not of your own making”?!

What.  The.  Fuck.  

Damn right it wasn’t of her making!  It was yours!  And there is nothing to indicate he takes responsibility for it.  In essence, Oscar pulls the same shit (after promising to change, no less), but instead of learning his lesson, he’s rewarded.  

In character, yes, Oscar doesn’t know why exactly Theodora turned.  And neither does Glinda.  Which is probably why she gives him the traditional Hero’s Journey kiss at the end (fuck my life -.-) instead of telling him to fuck off when he invites her into a back room.

But just like Riddick, we’re not talking about the characters while they are in plot.  We are talking about them in a meta fashion – a magnifying glass through the fourth wall.  Oscar in the end, is a terrible character not only for what he does, but for what he doesn’t do.  Who is he at the end that he wasn’t at the beginning?  What growth does he actually demonstrate?  Worst of all, what does Oscar’s absolute lack of punishment for his deception of Theodora, thus creating a terrible villain for Oz to deal with later, and indeed, even being rewarded for his vanquishing of the villain he made say?

Nothing good, I hope we can all agree.

Now, you could try to argue this from the point that the movie was actually a warning about warring over a man.

Wait.  No, you can’t.  Because Oscar won, the day was saved, and the protagonist got the girl and learned that he was stronger than he ever believed.

Why?  Because he’s the good guy.  Duh.

Did this annoy you as much as it did me?  Sorry about all the cursing, but this is seriously skewed, and I figured it could benefit from a little strong language.  Part 3 will discuss what we can do with this amazing lack of self awareness in the story.

Quick Bites: Little

Be careful.  Little is one of those words that you write it and you’re trying to imply something, or take away from the shock of something, or you aren’t even thinking, and then you look back and you’re like “Wait, what?  That makes no sense at all.”

Let’s go through the reasons I use the word ‘little’ and then why it’s a bad plan.

1. I want to imply that the action is happening, but it’s not in a huge way.  

Example: He jumped up and down a little.

Why it’s bad:  The word ‘jump’ means, by it’s very nature, that you take your feet off the ground.  There is nothing little about it.  It just can’t be a little action.  If I am jumping a ‘little’ what am I actually doing then?  It’s way better to use a word which more accurately described what ‘he’ was doing.

Fix it! He bounced on his toes.  

2. To soften an action which I feel might be too dramatic for the text.

Example:  He screamed a little, backing away.

Why it’s bad:  You can’t have it both ways.  I know that it’s kind of scary to have complete control, and sometimes you want to soften the blow to your characters, give em a break, or maybe you’re worried about being labelled as melodramatic.  But at the same time… you’re a writer.  Your job is to create drama.  Softening that drama just means you’re slacking on the job.  

Fix it! He screamed, backing away.

3. To take the place of ‘a small bit’ or show that something is a small amount.

Example:  He adjusted the pillow a little to lay flat.

Why it’s bad: This is the easiest.  Frankly, ‘little’ is filler here.  No really, take it out.  “He adjusted the pillow to lay flat”.  Exact same sentence; because you’ve already implied the small amount of effort taken by using the word ‘adjusted’.  

Fix it!  He adjusted the pillow to lay flat.  

Hope this helps!  If you have a word you’d like me to analyze for quick bites, feel free to leave it in the comments!

Quick Bites: To

As I am editing ‘Sword’s Blessings’, the sequel to ‘Pandora’s Ring’, I am thanking my editors for teaching as well as editing.

‘Pandora’s Ring’ was easily edited at first flush, but when you looked deeper it was kind of a mess.  There were a few reasons for it, none of them plotting/pacing/character problems, but just tiny little grammatical things which kept cropping up.

One of those was with the word ‘to’.

You see, ‘to’ can be used in a directional sense, as in “from there to here.”  or “give it to me.”  but it’s also part of the infinitive form of words, and that’s where the problem lies.  I have a tendency to use infinitive form in the wrong places. When you use the infinitive form of a word, you sometimes end up implying that what was going to happen… didn’t.

See here:

She turned to give him the paper.

I would guess that half of you read that just as I would read it.  As in she turned around and gave him the paper.  But I would also imagine that some of you were like “Ok… she turned to give him the paper… but what happened?  What stopped her?”

You see the trouble?  Half of your readers will understand exactly what you meant, half will be like “But WHAT?!  Why didn’t she just give it to him!?”

Therein lies the trouble.  Don’t kick your readers out of the narrative like that.  A 50% keep rate is not ok, so while directional ‘to’ and ‘to infinitive’ which is, in fact about to be followed up by a ‘but…’ are both ok… try and pare down on them otherwise.

Got it?  Great.  Michael will be on tomorrow with Tidbit Tuesday!

Top 5 Strategies for Marketing Your Book Online in 2013

Hey guys!  I’ve got a few guest posts lined up for you, and here is the first.  Now, quite a few people have asked – whether on the blog, twitter, or facebook, how in the world to get a book marketed.  What do we do?  How do we do it?  When the writers over at how2become.com proposed this article, then, I was quite happy to let them have the floor.  Now, this is a really basic list of things to do, and some of you who read this blog are all over it.  But a basic refresher course can give us new direction.  For anyone looking for more in-depth tips, stick around, I’ll be expanding on some of these in a week or so!

Without further ado, How2become!

For most people who have written a book it is a dream come true. Writing a book is hard work and you should be proud to have accomplished such a magnificent feat. This achievement can change your life, and could even make you rich. Yet, all of your work could be for nothing if no one knows about it. You must have identifiable book marketing strategies if you want to sell books.

There are 5 basic strategies you must embrace if you expect to sell your book:

Target Your Market

• Promote on Social Media

• Start blogging

• Create a newsletter

• Create a Video

To successfully market your book you first must determine who will buy it. First, break down your reader audience by country, two at the most. If you reside in the UK it is likely this will be your primary market, but do not limit yourself because we live in a global economy and e-Books are becoming the norm. It is also essential you market to the right age group, and gender may be important too. Know the median education level of your readers and market accordingly.

Social media is all the rage these days, and if you have written a book you must embrace it. Make it easy for your readers to contact you via social media by providing your Twitter and Facebook links right inside the book. This is especially important if you intend on selling via the Kindle or Nook. While many people use Facebook for fun, authors need to have a separate profile to engage their readers, and do not forget to link your book’s sales page to all of your social media accounts. Having a book signing? Announce it on social media.

It seems everybody has a blog these days, for good reason. Blogs are a great way to keep book readers up to date regarding your books. Those that subscribe to your blog have probably read your first book and are waiting for you to write your next one. Still, there are readers searching the web every day for books that interest them, and if they land on your blog this is your chance to sell them a copy. Blogs are inexpensive to start and some services can be used at no cost.

Most of us subscribe to newsletters. We eagerly await the next issue of our favorite newsletter to be delivered into our e-mail inbox. All newsletters have one thing in common, they have something to sell, and authors can make good use of this effective marketing tactic. This strategy works hand in hand with your website or blog. Simply display a subscribe button on your blog and you will begin to have your readership waiting in earnest for your newsletter. You will need to have your newsletter set up with an auto responder, which automates the process. Auto responders are inexpensive and when used correctly it is a very effective way to sell more books.

Video is an en vogue method to market whatever you are selling. Authors can make a video describing their non-fiction book and how it benefits the reader. If your book is athriller, you can describe how readers will be on edge while reading your book. Then, you simply upload your video to You Tube. Millions of people are on You Tube, making this a very effective way to promote your book.

Richard McMunn, is the founder and director of the UK’s leading career website How2become.com helps people prepare for and pass recruitment process in order to acquire their dream job. The website offers a wide range of books, dvds and courses for those who want to take their preparation to the next stage. You can also connect with How2become on YouTube

So what do you think?  Any other tips and tricks, weird little widgets you use?  Next time, I have a new author for you!

Because Darn It, I Like It!!

Towards the end of Nanowrimo, I was needing words, and thus began to write a scene which I knew would never in a million years make it into the book which would come out of the editing.  The character is handed a sheet of questions and writes the answers down, one by one, thinking about the various ways he could answer them and how those answer impact him.

And truth be told, it’s a boring, unmarketable scene.  It’s not saying anything new, and to be honest it’s rehashing a lot of stuff we already know.

But here’s the thing: I loved writing that scene.  It was so much fun.  I was writing the first question out when I realized that this scene had no movement whatsoever.  But the answer to that question was already in my mind, and I really wanted to see what all would come out of this character’s mouth/pen.  So I kept writing.

Now, putting aside the fact that Nano goes for quantity and not quality, I still would have written this scene, solely based on the fact that I was having so much fun writing it.  I actually do it a lot – little outrigger scenes that get stuck in my head, contribute nothing to the story I’m writing, but give me the giggles.  So I’ll write entire pages because darn it, I like it!  My motto is that no word is ever wasted, no sentence a complete throwaway.  Why?  Well…

#3 Practice with putting words together

No scene is wasted, because as soon as you are putting the words to the page, you’re practicing your writing.  You are reminding your neural pathways how to type, how a sentence is structured, a certain word spelled.  This is more important than you might realize, because it’s easy to get rusty, even on something as deeply ingrained as writing.  Maybe not “I DON’T KNOW HOW TO SPELL ‘YOU’ ANY MORE, HALP!!!” but your writing can definitely lose a bit of flow with a month or two of not practicing.  Your voice might be a touch jilted, or you just plain don’t have the focus to write (which is definitely part of practicing writing; practicing focus).

#2 Character or World Development

With the scene I was describing above, the main character was not a stranger to me.  But despite that, he still thought a few things which surprised me; how he felt about his brother, how reluctant he was to disclose his situation.  These are things I had an inkling of, I mean, the character is in my subconscious  but I had not yet had the chance to write those vague thoughts down.  This gave me that chance.  The other important thing the ‘useless’ scene gave me was the questionnaire which every student entering the Institute is given upon entrance.  Given that a good 50%-75% of the story revolves around this institute, and nearly every character has been a student there at some point in their lives, it’s kind of a good thing to know.  While I may never use the scene itself, I will very likely use that information some time in the series.

#3 That ‘useless’ scene might surprise you!

The biggest reason to keep writing on a scene that you feel is useless is that the scene you are thinking is never going to see the light of day, might darn well.  I once wrote a scene between two characters just for the heck of it.  Their dialogue was in my head and darn it, I saw a scene I liked and wanted to write down.  So I did.  Now it turns out, that scene is going to be an important part of one of the later books of the Athele Series, introducing and grounding a few new characters who have an impact on everything.  That useless scene I just wrote for fun turned out to be pretty useful after all!

So go ahead.  Write that supposedly useless scene.  It might surprise you!

Sometimes Your Gut is WRONG

I had an interesting experience with the second book of The Cinereal Series.

You see, book 2 did not write itself nearly as easily as book 1.  Book 1 was a breeze.  It tripped off the tongue.  It just laid itself down and all I had to do was put it in a straight line.

But book 2 was hard.  You see, I wrote Book 1 thinking it was a stand alone novella, so I didn’t really plan, and I didn’t do all my visionary stuff of “Oh, and that’ll come back to bite them in the end!!”  I just wrote, and wound up with a handful of characters and a plot that was done but not finished.  There was still something going on, beneath the surface.

What the heck was wrong?  As I read through again, I realized that I’d set myself up for a sequel before page ten.  Way to go, me.

However, trusting my own subconscious  I started to write on the second book.  And at first it tripped off the fingers just like book one.

And then promptly ground to a halt.  What in the world was I doing!?  How did these characters know each other?  Where was this character going to come in use?  What was this character’s motivation and this one’s issue, and where was I GOING with all of this?  ACK! It was maddening.

I went back to book one, labored on because despite all the confusion I knew I had a good story brewing somewhere, but it came in fits and starts and I kept having to go back and check my information, my skeleton, and my inspirations, as well as research some of the character’s backgrounds before finally, creepingly, writing.

It came, and it came slowly.  Like molasses   In a freezer.  In the arctic.  At least, that’s how it felt: in reality whenever I sat down to write I made a respectable 1000 words.  But it felt SO HARD, and every time I thought about it or looked at it all I could see was the jumble in my head and thus, all I could think was “this is such a mess.”

Now, let me pause here to assure you that I’m not whining here.  I’m trying to get you into my head, or back into your head so that you’re in this feeling with me.

Finally I handed the manuscript to Michael and just said “oh it’s awful but you’ll tell me how to fix it.”

He read it.

“So, did you read it?”
“Yeah.  It’s fine.”
“What?  How?  No it’s not.”
“No, it’s fine.  Maybe a few sentence mishaps with wording, but it’s good.”

And that’s how that conversation went.  I didn’t believe him, so I went back, intent on ‘fixing’ it.  Only, I couldn’t find anything to fix.  The plot flowed one thing to the next, everyone had their motivation, everyone had their arc.  But my gut still said “SOMETHING IS WRONG KEEP LOOKING.”

Thankfully, my finely tuned Nanowrimo editor security measures, plus Michael’s continued assurance that “it all makes sense, duh.”  Stayed my hand long enough to enlist the help of my mother, who reads more than anyone I’ve ever met (burning through all five Game of Thrones books in 2 weeks) to tell me what was what.

I was shocked.  She liked book one, but told me, plain and simple, “Book 2 is better.  Like, way better.”

Say what?  Even now, my gut is going “GAH NO YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG.”

The point of this post is two fold:

#1 If you are NOT a beginning writer, and you have written something you hate, before you do anything drastic, get a first reader.  A sentence here, a paragraph there, no biggie.  But switching plot points and slash/burning pages might get you confused, or worse, losing really good material.  Ok, first readers are ALWAYS helpful, and maybe you’re too embarrassed to show your ‘this is terrible’ work to anyone.  Fine, at least take someone to coffee and run it by them before completely trashing it.  Give the idea a chance.

#2 Sometimes your gut is wrong.  After THREE people have given me a raving review of this second book, I’ve finally figured out that in reality, I’m getting a false reading.  As I said, there is NOTHING wrong with the piece.  I know it’s strong plot wise, I know it’s got the happening, I know it’s pretty awesome on the big reveal and darn it, I love the main character.  But if I’d followed my gut instinct, I would have trashed, or horribly twisted, the story and I don’t really think I could have done better.  So be suspicious.  Not dismissive.  Just suspicious.

Now, I’m bringing you this post because I have gotten the final confirmation that my gut was wrong: that being a shiny new contract with Lyrical Press to Publish Book 2 of The Cinereal Series, ‘Sword’s Blessings’.  Hooray!

Has your gut ever been ‘Just that wrong’?

A Quick Analogy

I’m sorry to have been away for so long, but between a sudden influx of work (holidays, marketing and advertising job, you get the idea) and moving for the second time in as many months, I’ve had to stick mostly to quick bits on twitter, and have only the time for a brief update today.

I wanted to draw a quick analogy between moving house and writing a story.

First, you have the house/apartment itself.  It is bare, but it has structure, compartments, walls, and all the necessary rooms.  This is akin to the brainstorming of a story.  You sort of see the rough outline in your head, get a vague feeling for the world, and maybe think up some of the major plot points and themes.

Second, you move the furniture in.  These are similar to the characters.  They are the players in your grand scheme, your structure.  They might all match up, or they might be different as the sun and a rock.  If you got your characters from Wal-Mart you might have a rather peculiar story (though watching this video I would believe it if you ever have gotten a character from Wal-Mart.)  but if your furniture is from there it’s cool too.

Next, you take your boxes of stuff and get them in there.  These are the complications, complexities, flaws, idiosynchracies, challenges, trip ups, flares and flounces, tone and aura of your story.  They are what will make your home, and your story, undeniably yours.  Everyone has furniture.  A bed and a chair of some kind; whether you have a mattress on the floor or a nice canopy bed makes no difference, you still sleep in it.  Not everyone has a Tachikoma in a tiny fascinator hat  sitting on their night stand.

There is a good chance that I am a Ghost in the Shell fan.

Finally, you take all that stuff that you’ve gathered together over the years, and you put it all in it’s rightful place.  You neaten.  You decorate.  You Feng Shei if that’s your thing.  But the point is that you make it work, all together, within the frame of your apartment, and not just hilly nilly chilling in the boxes like about half of my stuff is still doing (sigh).

What’s your favorite analogy to writing a story?  Feel free to steal the idea and blog for yourself, I’d love to see it!

Why Diversity in Fiction Matters

In college I wrote a story from the perspective of a black girl in 1950s America.  It was a 5k word story about a girl whose town was racist and having troubles.  It ended with some folks beating up her brother, making her drop her milk and watch it pool on the extremely dry dust, wondering if the two would ever meld.

Ok, it wasn’t the best story, but I liked the ending and submitted it to be work-shopped in class.

We spent the vast majority of my time debating whether I, a middle class white girl in 2007 going to a private college, had the right to write this story.  One person admitted that they weren’t sure they could take my story seriously, not because of the writing, but because they were looking me in the face.     I took that conversation and said “well ok.  I guess maybe I didn’t have the right.  So I’ll stick to writing what I know.”

And I did.  I wrote a story about two white guys in the Vietnam war which was received much better, and didn’t go much further.

Fast forward several years.  Back in June, a friend of mine from way back linked something on facebook.  It was called “Gee, I Don’t Know How To Write Characters of Color Tastefully

Hey now!  That’s me!  Quite shocked, I started to read.  “Write What You Don’t Know.”  “Writing Characters of Color” “Writing Outside Your Experience

It was about then I realized that I had made a major, major miscalculation.  Several of them, in fact.

#3 Regardless of my experience with other cultures, those cultures still exist.

I grew up in middle-class white Nebraska.  While my group of friends were predominantly white (with a few exceptions), I was well aware of other cultures.  A playground friend was a refugee from Bosnia.  When Sudan and Ethiopia began to get bad, refuges poured into my community.  We spent an entire month learning African dance in elementary school, and Omaha has a very strong Native American history (hello, Council Bluffs!).  The Mosque had an open house my family attended after September 11th.

However, my in-depth experience with these cultures was pretty pathetic.  I never lived in those communities.  I was a huge nerd in school, and my path stayed really, amazingly white.    It wasn’t until I came to Korea that I started branching out, researching, travelling, and experiencing the amazing, astounding diversity within this world of ours.  It’s one of those things that I knew the answer to (of course the world is huge and there are many different people in it!), but just didn’t understand.

The point does not rest with the theme of your story.  You can have a story making a statement about the role of trees in a boy’s life, set in the most white-bread corner of America, completely culled of any diversity whatsoever.  Your characters can be all blonde blue eyed beauties.  But that does not change that beyond the fence of your story, beyond the confines of your words, there is a world.  There is a world with brown eyes, blue eyes, green, gray, purple, one hazel and one speckled-black-and-brown-who-blinks-too-much.  There is a world with wrinkles, laugh lines, short, tall, tan, taupe, khaki, mahogany, so-dark-your-eyes-can’t-help-but-look skin, and that lovely shade of sun soaked sandstone.

As an author, you gain nothing by shutting it out, so you might as well let it in.

#2 In trying not to insult people by not touching their culture, I am insulting more people by completely writing it out.

We are all aware that history is written by the victor.  But what isn’t so obvious is that fiction is being written by the victor here as well (so to speak, at any rate).  In this analogy, I am a white girl of privilege with not-all-that-much experience.  Therefore, I have a blindness.     Yes, I am working to remedy this, but the fact is, I’m oblivious, and therefore I overlook that obvious bit of “hello, there’s people that look different than you in the world.”  I know this, but I am not aware.  

Therefore, the whitewashing of my fantasy isn’t a favor but an insult.  Artists privilege is one thing, but an author is never in a position of enough privilege to simply snip away that much reality.  It would be akin to saying “hey guys, this fully functioning world eats nothing but wheat and water”.  Ok, sure, for the sake of the story, some readers are going to roll with it and see what you’ve got.  But lots of others are going to start at your text going What!?  But there’s a cow!  Right there!  And your main character grows lettuce but doesn’t eat it?!  Whatever!  

I’ve been ignoring this weakness in my writing for awhile.  But perpetuating my own blindness is not only bad for me, but insulting to my reader’s self and their intelligence.

#1 Most importantly, for every person discounting me because I am not what I write, there are hundreds more waiting for just that.

This was the one that got me really thinking.  The same friend who linked me to that list of links is working hard to write an epic fantasy.  I asked her what her goals for the story were, the themes.  She said (Paraphrase) “I’m not sure yet.  I just know that I wanted to write a story for people waiting for a character to identify with.”

And that was about the moment I realized I was really lucky.  My childhood heroes, Alanna, Daine, they looked quite a bit like me.  Sure, Alanna was short, but she still had a similar figure and the same skin, and hair that was the same texture.  It was really easy to put myself in her place.  Heck, I could cosplay as Daine with a minimal amount of work.

It was a little bit of a revelation to realize that not everyone’s that lucky.  

So, what do you think?  Have you read anything on this topic?  Was this something which was always obvious to you, or did you have to learn it the hard way like me?

Stay tuned, I will be posting more on this topic later this week.

Friday Fictioneers

I was determined not to miss this one, but on Friday night I was busy busy planning a vacation.  Hooray!

Here’s the picture for this week.

The fog was thick, persistent.  It made ideas difficult to grasp.  Far away, she could see outlines, looming silhouettes, but they did nothing to calm the clamoring notion that something was terribly wrong, nor could they break her free of the endless, muffling grey.  

She waited.  Waited for the moment when the fog cleared and she could see clearly and work out where she was, where the fog had come from.  When the moment came, she wished for the looming shadows again.

“Well sweetie, looks as if they forgot your medication this morning.  Let’s get that taken care of.”

 

Vacation Goals Wrap-Up

Here is my quick post to all of you, to prove that I am human, and talk about goals again.

You see, I really dropped the ball on some of those lofty goals I set last week.  Let’s take a quick look at them.

  1. Update blog at least twice a week while working full time, three or four times while not.
  2. Make at least three to five useful tweets per day.
  3. Write at least 10,000 words over summer break.
  4. Edit Sleight of Spirit for continuity and extraneous words over summer break.

There was a #5 but it didn’t pertain to vacation.  So here’s the breakdown:

1. This was a bit of a fail.  While there were three posts put up in that week, I hardly looked at the blog other than that, and I skipped Friday Fictioneers.  I hate skipping Friday Fictioneers, because it’s so much darn fun, but by the time I realized I had skipped it it was Saturday afternoon.

2. Yeah, not so much.  Being free of my computer meant that I kind of forgot twitter entirely, aside from being a place I could share the goofy shirts I see around my Korean town.

3. Destroyed.  In fact, I more than doubled this goal, I’m around 22k words for the week now.

4. Sort – of – fail.  You see, instead of doing this, I evaluated where I was in editing and decided that now was the time to hand Sleight of Spirit over to a few trusted (and botherable) first readers.  Thus, I’m waiting for them to finish so that I can take them to dinner and pick their brains about things to change.  So while I didn’t edit or anything, I did make progress.

And there you  have it.  Two half-fails, a more than double, and a “yeah, whoops, that didn’t happen.”

But you know what?  I’m flexible, and I’m still calling the week at a success.  Book 2 of the Cinereal Series is going to be about half-drafted, and the first interim book of The Athele Series has a really strong start.

And that’s the other part of goal-setting that you have to understand.  In those three types of goal, there are also subsets.  Rigid and Fluid.  

Rigid goals must be met, exactly as outlined.  Goals for work fall under this kind of sub set.  They are non-negotiable, they must be done.

Fluid goals can be changed as you get into them.  They are guidelines more than rules.

Sometimes some goals really take off for you, and you can go way beyond them.  Some goals just fall flat, and you have to sacrifice time and significant brain power to get them done.  The only failed goal I’m really kicking myself over is twitter, but I think it’s a matter of still not being accustomed to the platform as a marketing tool (even after what, nine months of membership?)  But hey, it’s not the end of the world, and I’m really happy to have made so much writing progress!

So what goals have you been flexible on lately?  Do you keep your goals rigidly, or fluidly?