Five Things I Didn’t Know August Was The Month Of…

Howdy, howdy!  It’s mid-August and I have no idea what to write about, so I decided to look up and see if August had any interesting “month of” or “day of” things to celebrate.  You know the ones.  Like when your friends post on social media that they’re eating waffles because it’s “national waffle day” or whatever and you just want to know who decided that and why you never knew about it.  Those things.  And apparently August is much more than the month of stifling heat and increased mosquito attacks.  So, I decided to make a list of five things that I didn’t know August was the month of.

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And it’s almost half over.

1. August is “happiness happens” month.  According to its description, the Secret Society of Happy People (which is a real thing, surprisingly) wanted to dedicate a day to the concept of choosing to be happy despite whatever problems may be making that difficult.  Since its inception, it has grown into a month-long thing.  It’s not about ignoring the bad stuff and negative feelings, but about trying to find the good things in life even when you’re overwhelmed.  Life sucks, but I didn’t die!  Or work was horrible, but I saw a butterfly at lunch.  Or whatever.  Positive thinking.  That kind of stuff.  It also encourages you to share your happy moments, to talk about them.

2. August is “romance awareness” month.  This one is about taking a hard look at your romantic relationship(s) and acknowledging whether or not you’re putting in the energy to maintain it(them) correctly.  It’s not about grand gestures and all that crap you read in romance novels, but it is about the small things.  Encouraging notes on hard days.  Holding hands.  Just the little things.  It all depends on how you and your partner(s) express your love.  Don’t forget the little gestures.

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3. August is “national brownies at brunch” month.  Why?  Because someone wanted an excuse to eat more brownies.  But I don’t eat brunch, so I’ll have to eat brownies at some other point during the day.  I’ll also need someone to bring me brownies.  They aren’t something we keep around.

4. August is “national sandwich” month.  It’s also “national panini” month, which is just a toasted sandwich, so it’s kind of redundant.  But I’ve already had at least three sandwiches this month, so I guess it’s kind of fitting.  Four if you count hamburgers as sandwiches.  And now that I’ve been thinking about food, I’m hungry.  I wish I had a brownie.  Or an ice cream sandwich.

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Bacon, tomato, grilled cheese from Panera with a cup of tomato soup for dipping. Mmm…

5. August is “Spinal Muscular Atrophy awareness” month.  Despite being diagnosed with SMA type 2 for years (my diagnosis changed to UCMD a while ago), I had no idea it had its own awareness month.  SMA is one of the more well-known Muscular Dystrophies and they’ve been making a good effort to stop its progression.  I haven’t looked into it lately, though, so I don’t know how well the treatments are working.  But SMA is a thing and you should be aware of it.

So, yeah.  I didn’t know these things existed.  What about you?  What are some weird “month of” or “day of” things that you’ve discovered?  Which ones do you celebrate?  As usual, feel free to share of them here or on my social media pages!

August Goals!

Howdy, howdy!  Can you believe it’s already August?  I feel like I’m still stuck in June.  Time just keeps getting faster and faster.  Am I alone in this feeling?  Yeah?  Well, okay then.  I don’t really have much to talk about at the moment, though I am trying my hand at some revision techniques that are new to me.  If they work out, I’ll probably talk about them more next week.  Anyway, since this Wednesday actually falls on the first, I decided to simply share my August goals with you.

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It’s a pretty picture.  That’s all.

So, without further ado and in no particular order, I present to you…

August Goals:

1. Submit stuff 8 times (2 every Monday) to semi-pro markets or higher.  This is one of my goals for the year (submitting two stories to magazines or anthologies every Monday) and I’ve been doing really well with it.  I haven’t missed a week yet, though I do believe I submitted stuff on Tuesday a couple of times.  Sometimes, I’ve dreaded submitting or felt like I’ve submitted everywhere I possibly could, but I pushed through it and found new places anyway.  Hopefully, I’ll be able to keep it up!

2. Write 50+ words OR revise 1+ pages EVERY DAY.  I’m back to the small goals every single day thing.  It’s just really helpful to me when I feel like I’m between projects.  In my head, I know I’m prepping for in-depth revisions on LR, but if I don’t keep track of words or pages, I don’t feel productive.  This goal might change once I find my rhythm with LR.  For now, though, it’s good for me.

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George R. R. Martin

3. Read 2 books.  This is another one of my goals for every month this year.  Honestly, I’ve kind of lost track of how many books I tend to read in a month because some overlap months and others I deliberately read over a longer period of time (almost always craft books).  But I do know I’m up to 18 books this year (thanks to GoodReads tracking feature), so I’m ahead of schedule.

4. Make time for people.  I’ve been a bit reclusive recently, though I still try to answer every message I get.  I just don’t initiate as many conversations as I should.  This is nothing new.  It’s something I struggle with all the time (as you know if you’ve read earlier posts).  I’m just far too comfortable not talking to people and stalking them on Facebook instead.  Yes, I’m creepy like that.  My friends know this and many of them do the same.  But I really do want to be better about socializing.  I swear.

5. Finish timeline for LR.  This is one of those new-to-me techniques I mentioned earlier.  There’s about one more day’s worth of plotting before I have a timeline that I can work with (I’m plotting it on the computer before I write anything out).  I even bought a bunch of Post-It notes in pretty colors to make everything easy to differentiate.  I just have to figure out where to stick them that’s easy to see.  Then, I have to recruit Dad to do the sticking.  I bet he never thought my novel writing would include work for him.

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That’s a lot of Post-It notes.

6. Work on revisions of LR.  Hopefully the timeline will make revisions go more smoothly than usual.  It’s already given me ideas for new scenes and how to rework some old ones, so I’m cautiously optimistic.  I should have some updates on this in the next couple of weeks.  Wish me luck!

Those are my goals for the month.  What about you?  What are you hoping to accomplish before September?  Feel free to share your goals or thoughts here or on my social media pages!