Checking in with My Goals: The Debra Elise Edition
Hi everyone, Debra Elise here. I write contemporary and romantic suspense and my debut novel, Saving Maverick, a sports romance, just released on April 4th. (pssst, there’s a giveaway link at the end of this post in celebration of its debut.) My good friend, Asa Maria Bradley, Ms. Double Rita Nominee, and my favorite Viking Warrior author, is taking this month off to concentrate on her hand waving and acceptance speech writing. She graciously offered me her spot on SJP this month. Who was I to turn her down? Thank you, Asa!
So, I love this month’s topic, Re-vamping your New Year’s Resolution(s): Checking in with your goals, because really I love setting goals, making awesome graphics to go along with them (see below) and then forgetting them until five, six months down the road when I suddenly remember oh yeah, I should have added this or that or, how could I have forgotten about wanting to try pilates?
However, since I’ve been pursuing a writing career, I’ve been a bit better at the follow through. But, and this is a BIG but, this year I didn’t put in anything pertaining to my non-writing life on my list of goals. And I should have. Not the usual you know loose ten pounds in a month or learn a foreign language; although I’d love to do both. No, what I should have been paying attention to all along—balance. Specifically, how I was going to achieve it in all areas of my life.
Home and work balance may be easy for some, but when your home is also where you work, the logistics become wonky. For me I was comfortable in my many hats, wife, mom, chef, laundress, dog walker, chauffer, chief bottle washer and monster-under-the-bed-catcher, and be able to have a clear goal in mind for each. But this new hat, the one where I’m an honest-to-goodness professional writer who now has contracts and deadlines; now that’s tricky.
I’d somehow fooled myself into thinking working from home would be a piece of cake (or a sour cream lemon pie-yum). This year what I failed to take into account was that in order to achieve the goals I’d set for myself as a writer, it would be next to impossible if I didn’t draw a line in the sand, hallway or door to my office and not let my “home” life intrude.
I wish I’d been better at structuring my time between work and non-work time and giving myself a break, figuratively. I now have to choose between time with family, friends and dedicate time to my job. It also became harder to view my writing as a job when I could wear yoga pants, go without makeup and walk twenty feet from the coffee pot to my office chair. Lines blurred, doors remained opened and children didn’t see me as anything other than a food source and stain-getter-outer.
A mere two months into 2016 push came to shove and my well thought out work goals became unattainable. I’d begun to put my writing second and sometimes third in line on a daily basis thinking that I could somehow make that lost time up. But what happened in the end was that I had to scramble to finish my second book to meet my deadline. I’d once had ample time to work on it had I not treated it like a hobby instead of my career and hopefully one day, a college tuition revenue stream.
Once the big, bright light bulb went off, I set myself some new goals and scheduled sanity breaks and a concrete writing schedule to follow. Meaning my home office is where I work. From ten am until I pick up the kids in the afternoon, and if I had to step away from it, I would still need to meet my daily word count after the kids were in bed. And I need to do all the other life stuff, outside of work hours. Just like I did when I had an office across town to go to. So far it’s worked; for one week (last week). This week I’m on a business trip. And next week? My planner is all set with clear goals for each day. Balance scheduled—work and non-work hours.
How have YOU been doing with your 2016 goals? Good, not so good, or I never set goals because they drive me crazy?
Thank you for reading!
Maverick Jansen and Kelsey Sullivan fall into a complicated game of PR strategy by day and searing passion by night where they both find a new meaning to fast and hard.
He needs someone like her …
Rand ‘Maverick’ Jansen has what it takes to be the star pitcher of the Idaho Outlaws—talent, talent and more talent. Trouble is, since his younger brother’s death in a car wreck, a mysterious ‘injury’ to Mav’s throwing arm has him sidelined. And trying to find solace in a series of all-too public drunken parties isn’t aiding his cause with the league, or the team’s owner. If Mav doesn’t accept help to work out his grief and repair his reputation, he may end up in the dugout for good. He just didn’t expect that help to come from a gorgeous little spitfire in sexy stiletto heels.
She needs to stay far away from guys like him …
Kelsey Sullivan is a publicist, and a good one. She’s not a big fan of bad boy baseball players. But when the owner of the Outlaws, a close friend, asks her to take his star pitcher from media strike out to home run, she has to say yes. But she’d rather eat her favorite Chanel purse. Mav Jansen is everything she’s spent her adult life staying far, far away from—a sports celebrity who seems to consider the world his personal playground. She just didn’t expect him to be quite so gorgeous and irresistible.
When life throws them a curve ball, is it too late to learn that love can save them both?
Saving Maverick is available at these retailers:
Debra Elise lives with her husband and their two sons in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She loves to read, nap, write, and watches entirely too much T.V. (Blacklist and Mr. Robot are two of her current obsessions). She also enjoys hanging out with other author-type individuals and teasing her three ‘boys’ into displaying their killer smiles. Most days find her carpooling, avoiding laundry and daydreaming about her characters and how to make them come alive for her readers.