Monday 30 November 2015

December goals

Friends, I have so much to tell you. And so many goals this month. This episode of FG is going to be jam-packed!
Let's get right on it, shall we? 

First, let's take a look back at  November's goals.

Participate in Liz's gatherings photo-a-day challenge. 
I did - for exactly 12 days. Then the attacks on Paris happened, and somehow we all lost momentum. It was great though to take more photos again, and I've been trying to keep the habit going.

Write my CT exam.
I did! And I passed. :-) My final mark is 89%, which I'm super happy about.

Finish my book and find a publisher and/or research self-publishing. 
Okay, that's where I'm at right now: About 90% finished, with every intention to get this baby done. If for no other reason than proving to myself that I can finish it! 
The good news is that I did some research about publishing options, and I have found two that are both appealing. 

1. Thought Catalog 
I have published several articles with Thought Catalog before, and I find them easy and pleasant to work with. What I found out about their book publishing process is this: You submit your manuscript as a word document via email. They prefer word counts between 7,000 - 30,000, which works out perfectly for me, since I anticipate my finished manuscript to be around 27,000 words. 

If they decide to publish it, it usually takes less than a month before it's out in the world. They take care of everything: Editing, cover design, distribution, marketing, etc. In exchange for that they keep 60% of the revenue and you get 40%.

Advantages: If accepted, you don't have to do anything, Thought Catalog does it for you. Your book gets edited for free, it will be exposed to a huge market, and you have the satisfaction of knowing that someone in the publishing world believed in it enough to support you.
Disadvantages: It will most likely remain an ebook - only a select few or exceptionally high sellers get printed. 
You may feel that 60% is a lot for them to keep.

Which brings me to the second option:

2. Self-publishing with Blurb
With this option you are the boss. You decide everything: The layout, cover, length, content. There is no editing on Blurb's part whatsoever. I downloaded their app Book Wright which helps you make professional looking books. So far I find it confusing to use, but I'm confident I will be able to figure it out if I decide to publish with Blurb. 


Advantages: What's great about this option is that you can create print- and e-books. They can be sold through BlurbAmazon and other online retailers, or the Apple iBooks store for ebooks. 
Blurb prints on demand, which means they will print a copy of your book when it is ordered, which usually takes about a week. Blurb also handles shipping and customer service.

Disadvantages: You pay for the service. However, from what I have seen it is very reasonably priced: Depending on the options you choose, between US$2.00 and US$3.00 per print book.
Ebooks are either  US$9.99 for a fixed layout for Apple iBook, or you pay 30% in royalties for Kindle Direct Publishing
The main disadvantage for me at this point is that it is all very overwhelming. But if you are more experienced with self publishing, or not afraid of the challenge, this may be an ideal option for you!

My game plan is to submit my book to Thought Catalog first, in the hopes of being accepted. If they don't, I will tackle Blurb! Most likely I will print one book for myself regardless, because I would get such a kick out of it to have an actual book on my bookshelf with my name on it. I will keep you updated!  

This was more or less a lengthy introduction to my  

December goals:

Submit book. 
No further explanation necessary.

Write in my gratitude journal daily.
One of my favourite yoga bloggers, Allie, recently published 12 Ways to Be Grateful Every Damn Day. Her 12 tips are so, so good, check them out! One of them is to write in a gratitude journal every day. I had heard of that before, with glowing testimonies of how effective it is. Three days ago I opened a journal I had bought not too long ago, for no other reason than liking the cover. It had been sitting on my desk, waiting for a purpose. Now it has one! 
I have written some thoughts down every day since Saturday, and it is astonishing what a difference it makes to your day. Starting a new day with gratitude sets the tone for the rest of the day, it's amazing! I have a feeling this may become a lifelong habit, so my goal for December is to write in it every morning to help it become one. 

Scrapbook October and November
For the first time ever, I have been scrapbooking this year. I love it and look through it often. However, November was pretty chaotic for me, which means I never got around to scrapbooking the previous month. My goal is to do both months, and then write another post about it and show you some of the highlights of this year!

Enjoy the season
With all the pesky studying out of the way, my main goal for December is so simply enjoy it!
My birthday is coming up, we have tickets for Cirque du Soleil (so fricking excited!!), and there are Christmas parties, dinners with friends and, of course, a family Christmas on the horizon. 
I have a feeling my gratitude journal will be full by the end of the month. ;-)

So many good things are all around us, and I'm just so grateful for my life. I hope you feel like that about yours, too. 

Have a happy December! 

I'm linking up again with the lovely ladies MariahEstherLindsay and Shannon to #clearthelist. 

Clear The List

What are your goals this month? Link up and tell us!


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