Sunday Summary – March 05, 2017

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This week in writing

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As stated in my previous Sunday Summary, this week I started work on my contemporary Wizard of Oz retelling, which was titled The Yellow Brick Roadhouse until I realised that a roadhouse was not the word I wanted (i.e. for a boarding house/hostel-type thing). So now I’m title-less and have to think of another pun. I’m still finding the right voice for it so I’ve only written 1952 words this week, but it’s getting there. I’m just writing scenes as they come to me, rather than trying to write in order with this one.

this week in reading

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I finished the utterly charming A Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty on audio this week. I have already got the next two books from the library (my library’s Overdrive didn’t have them, sadly) and I plan to start them as soon as I’ve finished Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan. This is a good sequel to Unspoken in some ways, but in others, it feels like barely anything is reallly happening. BTW. my March TBR has pretty much gone out the window. I don’t know why I even bothered writing one, really.

This week in blogging

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I got back on my game of visiting all the WIPpeteers within an hour on Friday night. This is something I need to keep up as we move further into the semester, as blogging time is going to be at a minimum over the next few months. I visited the WWW participants whom I follow and who commented on my post, but didn’t visit any additional ones. It’s about quality, not quantity, though, right? I’ve got my A Corner of White review scheduled for tomorrow and I’m hoping that I’ll have one for Untold scheduled for Friday.

THIS WEEK IN STUDY

studythumbWell, I’ve made a start! And I have a to do list. I spent about four hours at the library yesterday, but wifi was not on my side, and while I had a few things downloaded in advance, turned out it was not quite everything I needed. I also got up early this morning and finished the worksheet that is due tomorrow, so I’m feeling not too bad.

This week in health and fitness

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As I mentioned last week, I’ve decided to start weighing myself on a Monday rather than a Sunday for various reasons, so I don’t have a figure for you today. But I’ve exceeded 10k steps every day this week, and reached my 5 day exercise goal. My eating habits were reasonably good but I didn’t log everything I ate every day (particularly Friday, when I had three pieces of brownie). Time will tell, thouugh, how this all balanced out, I guess!

Other Highlights This Week

highlightsthumbOn Friday I had a job interview for the position I’m acting in now (hence the three brownies). If I’m successful in this recruitment process, the position would then become my permanent one. I don’t think it could have gone much better! As far as I can tell, I gave strong answers and gave good examples for all the questions, and I managed not to ramble too much (and when I did ramble, I picked myself up on it, stopped and said, “Sorry, let me go back here.”). Hopefully that will get me high on the list of suitable candidates. The issue is not so much that I would be deemed unsuitable for this one, just that several of my colleagues also applied and are equally suitable. I don’t envy my managers having to make this decision.

That’s me for this week. How have you all been doing? ~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – February 26, 2017

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This week in writing

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This week hasn’t been a good one for writing, unfortunately. I have been exhausted by work, and on top of that became quite stuck on a scene in With Memories and Magic, so I went three nights without touching it. When I thought about it, I realised I’ve been working on this draft for about four months straight, and longer if you consider the work I did on Operation: Sugarplum before expanding the story into its current form. No wonder it was starting to get hard.

With that being the case, I decided to ditch my previous goal of having the first draft finished by the end of February and starting a new project in March. Instead, I started banging out some words on a Wizard of Oz retelling I have planned, titled The Yellow Brick Roadhouse. So far my total words for this week is only 1184, but I haven’t written yet today, so my weekly total will hopefully be a bit higher than that.

This week in reading

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I’m nearly finished The Fearless Traveler’s Guide to Wicked Places by Peter Begler. I’ve enjoyed it for the most part but I do wonder if the target middle-grade audience would find it a bit long and boring? After this, I plan to read the two books I’ve had from the library for ages, Untold, the second book in the Lynburn Legacy series by Sarah Rees Brennan and Adverbs by Daniel Handler.

This week in blogging

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I did well on this front this week! I visited all the WIPpeteers and returned all the comments from WWW Wednesday participants that I received. I also managed to reply to all the comments received on my Wednesday post.

I have a March TBR post scheduled for Wednesday and was hoping I might have finished Fearless Travellers in time to post the review tomororw, but that will be done by Friday.

THIS WEEK IN STUDY

studythumbSemester one for the year has commenced! And I’ve done absolutely nothing so far! But I have some good news. I only found out this week that I received some credits from undergraduate course, meaning I have only seven (possibly eight, I’m waiting for confirmation) courses left in my MA. As I had already decided to attempt doing two courses per semester again, this means I could be finished by halfway through 2018, rather than 12 months after that, which was the previous best-case scenario.

This week in health and fitness

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This week has been another bleh one, but I’ve got my partner serious about our health again this week, and we’ve got healthy meals prepared for the  next week or so. As a result, I’m hoping to see some serious change.

I’ve also decided to start weighing myself on a Monday morning from March, rather than Sunday. I don’t  know if it will make much difference, but in theory I’ll have been to the gym at least once in the two days preceding that, so I might see a bigger change.

That’s me for this week. How have you all been doing? ~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – February 19, 2017

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Fun fact:
this is my 650th post on this blog. And I received my 5000th comment on Wednesday’s post. Crazy talk!

This week in writing

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I had a write-in with my writing group this morning, and finished up the week with 3703 words. I’m on the downhill run with the first draft of With Memories and Magic now, which is really exciting! At first, I hadn’t been sure that I would complete the first draft in February, which was my goal, but I am on my way to doing just that. In March, I’m going to work on a short story I have planned, then come back to edit this in April.

This week in reading

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I’m finally making headway through my ARCs! I finished both Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton The Mesmerist by Ronald L. Smith this week and I’ve started The Fearless Traveler’s Guide to Wicked Places by Peter Begler. So far I’m enjoying it; I think it’s going to be a really good whimsical, dreamscape-type fantasy.

This week in blogging

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I posted my review of the Mesmerist on Friday (read it here) and I have my Traitor to the Throne review scheduled for tomorrow. I’m just finishing up visiting WIPpet Wednesday posts in a few other tabs in my browser right now.

This week in health and fitness

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February has been a hard month on this front. Between the heat and just feeling crap, I’ve done less exercise than I would have hoped to, and have eaeten a lot more junk than I should have. As a result, today I’m sitting at about 200g above the weight I was at the end of January. This is after some fluctuation over the last few weeks. I’m still hopeful that I can get to my goal weight by April 1, I just need to get serious about it again.

Other Highlights this week

highlightsthumbToday a group of friends and I went to our local cinema to see the filmed production of the musical Newsies. It’s been one of my favourite musicals for a few years, but I’d only ever heard the soundtrack. It was so great to finally see how it was performed. ^_^ Here’s a bit of a glimpse of how it looked, though it doesn’t really do the full show justice.

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – February 05, 2017

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This week in writing

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An exciting announcement! I finally have a new title for Operation: Sugarplum, one which I think really fits the story it has become. It is now called With Memories and Magic, and I’ve also found a pre-made cover which I think is perfect. I’m going to purchase that asap so that no one pips me at the post.

I only wrote about 1500 words on WMAM this week, and then proceeded to delete about 2000. The scene was causing more trouble than it was worth, so I’ve gone back to the beginning of it and started again with something simpler. Doing that definitely hurt, but it will be better in the long run.

This week in reading

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Blergh, it’s been such a slow reading week. The release date for Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton came and went and I am yet to finish reading my ARC. I actually haven’t been feeling in the mood for it, so I started The Mesmerist instead. I have a couple of issues with the writing but it’s more the sort of thing I’m in the mood for at the moment, so I think I’ll keep going with it then return to Amani and the Rebellion later.

This week in blogging

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I haven’t actually visited this week’s WIPpet Wednesday posts yet, but it is on my To Do list. I plan on getting to it tomorrow. It also completely slipped my mind to write and schedule a book review for Friday, so the next one won’t be up until tomorrow.

This week in health and fitness

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This week was a hard week. It was hot and I was tired after managing eights days straight of exercise the previous week. As a result, I was snoozing the alarm every morning, and I was also picking up chocolates at work to try and perk myself up. Having said that, I managed to just remain at the same weight, rather than gain, so that’s something! This morning I was at 8000 steps by 9am, so I’m hoping to keep that sort of pace up this week!

Other Highlights this week

highlightsthumbI decided to mention this down here rather than under writing because I’ve been having such fun with it. I am participating in Faith Riven’s Fictional Flashback February challenge on Instagram and Twitter, and also carrying it over here to the blog. I’ve been having a lot of fun, with the images as much as the writing. You can check out the category for the full list of posts.

All in all, a bit of a mixed bag week this week. How’s your week been going?

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – January 29, 2017

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This week in writing

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My total word count this week is a bit over 2000 words. I ran into a couple of curly plot holes that stopped me from really getting on a roll this week. I think I’ve worked them out; this will be something for beta readers, I guess.

I’ve discovered that getting up a bit earlier and doing beta reading while I eat my breakfast is a good way to ensure it gets done! I am making progress on my friend’s manuscript and hope to have it finished in another few weeks.

This week in reading

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I finally finished The Creeping Shadow, Book 4 in the Lockwood & Co. series by Jonathan Stroud, and gave it 2.5 stars. The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron, however, got four because I absolutely loved the characters. I am just about finished Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan. At first, I thought it might be my first 5* read of the year, but my thoughts have become a bit more mixed as it’s gone on. Still definitely enjoyable, though!

This week in blogging

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With Thursday being a public holiday, I got around to all the blogs i intended to. I also have managed to keep to my review schedule of Mondays and Fridays, and I’ll definitely be continuing that into the current week. I also have a February TBR post scheduled for Tuesday, as I have quite a lot on my reading plate at the moment!

This week in health and fitness

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I lost another half kilo this week, which takes my total weight loss for January to 1.6kg. Not much, but pretty much exactly ono track to lose 5kg by the end of March, which is my goal. I’ve managing this gradual loss while still eating a fair bit of tasty stuff, so I could probably even lose a bit more if I tried. But I’m all about everything in moderation, so I’m probably going to keep it that way.

Other Highlights this week

highlightsthumbWith all the stuff that’s been going on in the world lately, I decided to look into some volunteer work to try to make a difference in people’s lives. I’ve ended up putting an expression of interest in to run a choir at an aged care facility, and I’ve also got some other work in mind for a bit down the track when I’ve got more time. Watch this space!

That’s it from me for this week. How is your week going?

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – January 22, 2017

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I missed last week’s Sunday Summary due to having my mother visiting and being generally not on top of things. I’ve been in a bit of a funk the last couple of weeks and that has shown in my progress (or lack thereof) in various areas, but I think I am finally pulling myself out of that.

This week in writing

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My total words for the week ending last Sunday was only 1845. Once my mum left, I found myself feeling stuck with Operation: Sugarplum, so to try to get some words down, I started brainstorming a short story based on a prompt I found on the NaNoWriMo Adopt a Plot forum. It’s a contemporary Wizard of Oz set in Hollywood. I pretty much have that set out, but since I was finally inspired to plot out a significant chunk more of Operation Sugarplum, I continued with that. I haven’t yet done any writing today, but my total words for this week currently stands at 2329, including planning. Not enormous, but better than nothing.

My aim is to have the first draft of Operation: Sugarplum finished by the middle of February. The story is in 3 parts and I have decided to make a fairly big change to Part 2, which will require some fairly drastic rewriting, but it is for the best (though it does mean no more Australian Christmas scenes 😦 ).

This week in reading

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I’ve been reading quite slowly this week. I’m in the middle of three books, two paperbacks and an audio, and I’m not really feeling any of them. This is particularly disappointing, since one of them is The Creeping Shadow, Book 4 in the Lockwood & Co. series by Jonathan Stroud, whose writing I usually really love. The other two are Heart of Brass by Felicity Hall and The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron. Hopefully I’ll make more progress in the coming weeks.

This week in blogging

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I had Thursday off work, so I had plenty of time to get around to both the WWW and WIPpet Wednesday participants. I must say, that felt very productive! I’ve also realised I can use my Google+ login to comment on Blogger blogs, even though I literally don’t use that profile for anything else. So that makes me feel a bit better, now that I’m not having to skip people! This coming week,  Thursday is a public holiday so I should be able to have the same success this week.

This week in health and fitness

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Only a small weight loss this week, which was to be expected, as I was not really treating myself as well as I could have been. Still, a loss is a loss!

I had one of those epiphanies again this week, the ones where you go “Wait, eating well and keeping active makes me feel generally better in all aspects of life?! What a surprise!” My aim for the next few weeks is to stop snoozing the alarm and get up and do some exercise first thing of a morning. It’s much easier to get it out of the way then, rather than fight for the TV (while the weather’s hot, my exercise is primarily on the WiiFit) in the evening.

That’s it from me for this week. How is your week going?

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – January 08, 2017

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Given this was the first week of the year, I think I did pretty well on all the goal fronts! I’ve still got room for improvement, but plenty of time to make it.

This week in writing

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My total words written for this week is exactly 5000, taking my grand total to 25k. I’m really happy with this total. I’ve mentioned before that I’d rather take the pace a bit slowly and have less to revise, rather than try to keyboard-smash out a large amount that ultimately get cut anyway. I’ve nearly finished Part 2 of Operation: Sugarplum, then I will need to work out exactly how the climax is going to work out. I’m giving myself about five weeks to finish this draft.

This week in reading

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I have already read one book this year, The Natural Way of Things by Charlotte Wood.  I’ve since begun The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, which should only take a couple more days to get through.

This week in blogging

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I’ve literally just gone through and commented on the WIPpet Wednesday posts for this week. Better late than never, right? I visited a pretty good slew of WWW participants on Wednesday night, and I think most of the comments on mine were people returning the favour, so I didn’t need to do much catch-up there. I’ve returned to book reviewing, and am getting back into the routine with that.

This week in health and fitness

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I lost 900g this week! I’m really pleased, especially as I was still polishing off Christmas goodies in the first part of the week. Now to just keep that momentum up for the next few months. I got back to the gym yesterday, attending the first BodyAttack class of the year (still a bit sore from that) and then doing some general cardio today. I did have a bit of an indulgent day today, but as long as I’m good for the rest of the week, I think I’m okay.

Other highlights this week

Today was in theory my writing groups first meet up. It ended up just being me and one other person, but I do enjoy the atmosphere of sitting in a cafe, drinking hot chocoalte and writing. The friend who was there is hoping to make this a proper every-second-Sunday event, which I am totally down for.
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That’s it from me for this week. How is your week going?

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – Special 2017 Goals Edition

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Happy 2017! I think I am far from being the only one who is glad to see the back of 2016. This will be a slightly different Sunday Summary post, in that I’m not going to sum up the past week (which can basically be summarised as “I laid about and read a bit and was a bit productive but not really”), but rather look forward to the coming year.

2017 in writing

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Ideally, I would really love to have Operation: Sugarplum published this year. It is doable. Watching the progress of some of my blogging friends over the last six months has inspired me on this front. I hit 20k yesterday, which was a nice milestone to hit on NYE. I estimate the first draft probably has about the same again to go. If I put my mind to it, I could have that done in a month or six weeks. Especially as I don’t have any uni or rehearsal commitments just yet.

2017 in reading

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In 2016 I read 94 books (though GoodReads only has 93, as one of them had no record on the site and I was too lazy to add it 😛 ). I figure I will probably read at around the same rate again. I have chosen not to do an official GoodReads challenge this year, and instead just create a shelf for everything I read this year. I am going to do the 2017 Beat the Backlist challenge, though, and I will of course, be participating in the Australian Women Writers Challenge again this year.

2017 in blogging

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Not much is going to change here. Wednesday will still be my biggest blog day, with both WWW and WIPpet Wednesdays. Book reviews will still go up on  Mondays and Fridays (starting back tomorrow) and the occasional book tag on Thursdays. I want to try allocating an hour on Thursday evenings to visiting other Wednesday blogs. I’ve done this before and it worked quite well.

2017 in study

studythumbAt the moment, I’m still just looking at doing one subject each semester again. I have considered dropping down to four days a week at work to allow myself time to do extra study, but due to various things, I don’t think we’re quite in the financial situation for that at the moment. Hopefully that will happen at some point, though, otherwise this degree is going to take me until 2022 to complete!

2017 in health and fitness

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As cliche as it is, my partner and I have both committed to healthy eating and regular exercise in the new year. I currently weight 78kg and have set a goal of losing 5kg over the next three months, which works out at about 400g a week, a completely doable goal! I just have to keep that will-power muscle in good working order!

So that’s what I’m working towards this year. Have you made goals for the year? What are you aiming for? 🙂

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – December 11, 2016

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This will be my last Sunday Summary for 2016. I don’t really have any goals for the next couple of weeks, as I’ll be on holidays as of Thursday (I’m counting down the days). so this post is more a recap of last week without the looking forward.

This week in writing

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As expected, once I started writing completely new material, rather than editing and copying and pasting a lot from my previous work, my weekly word count went down quite significantly. That’s okay, though! I am really enjoying writing Part 2 of Operation: Sugarplum, which is set in our world.

I am also trying to think of a new title which fits the story better, but no luck on that front yet. I hate titles!

This week in reading

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Still slow-going with both Letters to the End of Love by Yvette Walker and Pyramids by Terry Pratchett. I’m hoping to power through Letters on the plane home on Thursday. I’ve also started a completely charming audio book called The Finding of Martha Lost by Caroline Wallace.

This week in blogging

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I pretty made it to all the WIPpeteers and WWW Wednesday people who had visited this blog by yesterday. A couple of people have commented since, and I will try to get to them. I don’t necessarily like doing the tit-for-tat method, but sometimes time is of the essence and it’s the easiest way to go.

This week in health and fitness

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Ergh. I’m feeling a bit down on this one. According to WiiFit this morning, I only lost 200g over the last 2 weeks (I didn’t get to do a weigh-in last week). With Christmas coming up, it’s unlikely much is going to change in that regard, though I hope to eat healthily most of the time, only indulging on Christmas Day.

I bought my FitBit nearly a year ago (I got it in the post-Christmas sales), and I’ve made no noticeable progress in my weightloss since then. I got into the South Pacific chorus (more on that below), which means I have six months to actually get to a point where I won’t be self-conscious wearing a bikini or some such onstage (I have no idea what the costumes will be, but I’m working on that assumption), so hopefully not being able to shift the goal posts on that date will be the motivation I need.

Other highlights this week

highlightsthumbIn last week’s Sunday Summary, I mentioned auditioning for South Pacific, and as you saw above, I made it into the chorus! It’s not actually one of my favourite shows, but i have worked with the production team before, and they are very good, not to mention I’ll be with some of my best theatre friends again. Rehearsals start up in February, so that’s something to look forward to.

As I won’t really be posting again until the new year, I hope you all have a wonderful, relaxing holiday season and come back fighting fit in the new year. Love to all!

~ Emily

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Sunday Summary – December 11, 2016

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This week in writing

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Today I finished “Part 1” of the new Operation Sugarplum. It’s about 14k in length, and took me about two weeks to get through. Things are likely to slow down now, though, as i will no longer be doing a lot of copy-paste from what I had already written in November but writing completely new material.

I’m enjoying only recording my word counts on a Sunday. It’s much less stressful.

Goal for the week: Write every day! With a possible exception of tomorrow, when I have something on in the evening, but definitely every other day!

This week in reading

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I finished a number of things in time for Wednesday’s WWW post, but since then, reading has been a bit slow. I’m trying to read Letters to the End of Love by Yvette Walker, but I’m considering starting Pyramids by Terry Pratchett. I think I’m more in the mood for witty satire than literary romance.

Goal for the week: Find at least half an hour every day to read. Even this means being really unsociable on lunch breaks.

This week in blogging

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I replied to all comments on my own blog and reciprocated comments on both the WWW and WIPpet memes. I’ve also got two book reviews already scheduled for this week. On the ball with this one for once! 😀

Goal for the week: Visit all relevant blogs, and also write review of The Two by Will Carver.

This week in health and fitness

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i didn’t actually get a chance to weigh myself this morning, as my partner presented me with breakfast in bed, which I consumed before thinking about getting up and getting on the WiiFit. I think I will just skip the week and weigh in next Sunday as usual. I think if I have lost anything this week, it will be a small loss at most. I have kept active this week, though. I think there was only one day I didn’t reach 10k steps.

Goal for the week: Get a full week of “make through the day without snacking” daily ticked off on Habitica! (This was my goal last week, but then I entirely forgot to make it a daily).  Also get back on the bike at least 2 days a week. (this was also a goal last week which I never got around to).

Other highlights this week

highlightsthumbYesterday, I auditioned for a local production of South Pacific that is taking place next year, as well as performing in my choir’s end of year concert. I was already wired up because of the audition, but didn’t have time wind down because I continued to be nervous about my solo and the trio I was singing as part of. However, it all went very well, and we raised $1500+ for the charity we donate to! I was hoping I might have a video of my solo to share here, but that will have to wait til next week, as a friend ended up having to do it on her phone, rather than my video camera.

That’s it from me. How are your weekly goals going?

~ Emily

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