Finish That Book! July’s 30-Day Challenge

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We are officially halfway through 2019, and time is flying by faster than ever. Back in November, I decided that NaNoWriMo was the bootcamp I needed to finally write my book, at least in a format that didn’t suck. Today, eight months after that challenge began, it’s only four months until the next round of NaNoWriMo. It’s time to buckle down and finish that book!

Welcome to July’s 30-Day Challenge! This month, I’m focusing on getting my book critiqued, edited, and a cover created.

If you’re interested in book updates, please head over to colleenmitchell.co, which is my author website! There, you can sign up for exclusive peeks into the book, publishing timeline, and information about getting on my launch team. 

Recap of June’s Challenge

My challenge for June was to 1) do something active every day, a.k.a. “Daily Fit”, and 2) do a digital detox. 

Daily fit was almost trivial. I’m already running three times per week and rock climbing twice, as well as a Saturday activity—either hiking or biking. It felt easy to add a walk for the extra day or two per week. I think what made this part “easy” was building up to it first with the commitment to rock climb 2x/week, and then adding running in with C25K 3x/week. Baby steps!

The digital detox primarily looked like foregoing all social media interaction for 30 days. I had some ground rules: no Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, or Twitter—automation took care of any posts on those platforms. Any overwhelming urge to check my phone was a signal to redirect my attention to my Kindle or back to the task at hand. It also helped to set the Forest app for up to 2 hours and shove the phone in a drawer.

My biggest takeaway?

It’s easier to find time to exercise, work on my book, my blog, and even video gaming when I’m not spending hours on social media!

Who knew?

I’m honestly astonished I actually had time to play Cities Skylines and Skyrim again! Those are two of my favorite video games, up there with Assassin’s Creed.  

Intentions for July

Now it’s time to refocus on my book. In mid-June, I sent out emails to some close friends who I thought might be interested in helping me critique my book. I’m hoping to have all their thoughts by July 14th, when I can fully incorporate any changes I wish to make.

Ideally, this month I will have done three things:

  1. Completed all scenes and self-edits post-critique 
  2. Researched and hired an editor
  3. Created a book cover

I’m lucky to be part of a self-publishing community on Facebook that can offer support, guidance, and insight to this process—and also guide me when I’m stuck.

I also signed up for Jesse Tevelow’s course, The Bulletproof Bestseller’s Launch, through the Write Publish Profit 2.0 course bundle that recently went on sale. 

Why This Challenge?

I’m honestly really proud of myself for putting in the time and effort to reach over 100,000 words—and then realize that it would end up being longer than that, anyway. But there’s only so much time I can spend on “perfecting” it before moving the publishing process along. I need to stop waffling—and actually finish that book!

If I want to reach one of my three big goals for this year, then I need to focus some energy on actually getting the ball rolling on self-publishing before November.

I’ll do my best to continue exercising every day, though—even if it’s just a short walk around the park. 

This whole year has been an experiment in habit-building. Baby steps building upon baby steps in order to climb the mountain by the end of the year.

I encourage you to take a look at where you are right now. It’s not too late to make a 6-month plan for your goals and start knocking them out, baby step by baby step!

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