Reflecting on Goals set in January

To start the year, I set myself some goals for the year ahead.  I plan to check how I’m getting on with that periodically during the year to check I’m on track.  If you set yourself goals it is important to check on yourself to make sure you are on target and to re-focus yourself.

On Reflection

Summary:  Considering these were annual targets I think I’ve kicked off the year with a really good start at achieving them.  I’m not sure listing my goals as bullet points was the best idea, so to re-focus I shall put my goals into a table.

March 2018 goals

Blogging Goals Review

  • ACHIEVED:  I migrated both my blogs into one blog and I am using categories to split the content up from ‘writing’ topics and ‘beauty topics.
  • ACHIEVED:  I planned to post at least once a week and I have been exceeding this – posting two to three times a week.  Sometimes as often as four times.  Taking the pressure off has increased my productivity.
  • ACHIEVED:  I’ve reduced my scheduled posts on LoCal so that they only run for two weeks so if I run out of time to change them, I am not Constantly spamming people with the same things for weeks with no end.
  • ACHIEVED:  I have started including some personal posts on my blog such as my son’s World Book Day and What I’ve Been Watching.
  • ALMOST ACHIEVED:  I wanted to start vlogging.  This has involved researching how to do it and plucking up the courage.  In addition, I need the house to be quiet for recording which doesn’t happen often.  However, I have posted a video on YouTube reviewing Agent Hunter (see below) and I have a scheduled blog post about this coming soon.Wri
  • NOT ACHIEVED:  I haven’t approached any brands to see if they’d like me to represent them. However, my Instagram pics of my The Pip Box won and I got my March box free (review of the free box coming April).

Writing Goals Review

  • ACHIEVED:  I have stopped editing Drift and started querying.
  • NOT ACHIEVED:  I have not started work on finishing Glide. I have been really busy with my course at college and work.  However, I have three weeks off for Easter break and hope to re-visit this project over the coming weeks.
  • NOT ACHIEVED:  I have not started a new story idea – not that I’m not full of ideas.
  • NOT ACHIEVED:  I’ve not had time to read the programme for Felixstowe Book Festival but intend to buy tickets and go. I have decided to miss YALC this year (will explain more soon).
  • NOT ACHIEVED:  Completing a writing course is on hold until I finish my current course at college.
  • ALMOST ACHIEVED:  I have been reading more since getting my Kindle.  I have almost finished The Gender Game and will review the title and my Kindle once I have.  I am a slow reader with only a few chances to read.
  • NOT ACHIEVED:  I have not found out more about how Twitter queries work.  However, I have been networking more on Instagram and meeting lots of writers online this way.

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Goals for the year ahead – 2018

If you read my earlier post from today, you’ll know that I’ve reflected on how 2017 went.  This inspired me to set my goals for the year ahead.

Making 2018 even better


I now absolutely love blogging.  I’m addicted.  It is has raised in my ranks of importance.  Here are my goals for 2018:

  • Categories:  Currently, I am running three blogs.  One for beauty review, one for anything related to writing and books and another that shares the posts by both.  It is very time consuming and exhausting!  I shall now be migrating them all to this blog and using categories to present content relevant to the readers interests.
  • Schedule:  
    • I was trying to post two articles a week and did pretty well but sometimes it was hard.   I need post regularly but once a week is sufficient and I can schedule posts.
    • I’ve been using loCal (free online calendar) to schedule my tweets.  I was unwell in December and never updated my tweets!  Aghh!  My poor followers had the same tweets for another month *cringe*.  Setting an end date is important.
  • Personal:  Keeping to my categories has meant that when life is busy I haven’t anything relevant to post whereas if I start sharing more about me (like being a mum or working in education), I could have more content and make my life easier.
  • Vlogging:  I did my first video blog this year and I was really impressed at how easy it was. I know I have more to learn to make my videos better but you’ve got to start somewhere.  I’ve also done some ‘unboxing’ videos on my instagram.
  • Product reviews:  I need to not be shy to contact brands that I love to see if they’ll support me reviewing their product.  I hope that in 2018 I will get the chance to review more products as I really enjoyed my experience of reviewing Saal Digital’s photo book.


My dream is still to be published and I still would love to go down the traditional route but not found an agent (or publisher) but some of that is my fault as I don’t query enough.

  • Drift/Jewel of the sea:  Stop editing and start querying!
  • Glide:  I know how this story ends and I need to finish it.  Readers who loved Drift (on Wattpad) want to read the next book in the series.  I have had so much support and encouragement and one user even sent me pictures of Scotland to help me.
  • Start a fresh new story:  I don’t want this to distract from the above goals but I’ve got lots of new story ideas and I really need to start something fresh.  I hope to make a start on this later in 2018.
  • Conventions: I love attending YALC and Felixstowe Book Festival last year and I would love to be able to go again.
  • Writer courses:  I’m very busy at the moment with a course for work but once that is out of the way I’d like to continue my studies with Write Story Books for Children and Write Romance fiction.  I’m enrolled on both these courses ready to complete when I have time.  I also would happily do another Curtis Brown Creative course online.
  • Reading:  I got a Kindle at last!  I plan to start reading more in 2018 and hope to discover some amazing reads to review on my blog (and Good Reads).
  • Twitter queries:  I need to learn when these are running so ~I

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Reflection on 2017

The year began by creating my first Word Press blog.  At the time, I had no idea what I was getting myself into but I’ve really enjoyed my crash course in learning to use the site.

Making 2018 even better.png

Here is what I learnt:


  • Schedule posts/tweets: You can schedule posts so can write ahead of time and space posts out.  Use LoCalendar to schedule tweets (but make sure you set an end date so you don’t spam people).
  • Make it visual: 
    • Canva is a great site to create images for blog titles and other social media sites.
    • Google Drive Photos is an app you can download onto you phone and it  backs up images you have taken. You can then access these online from wherever  you are working to use them.
    • Instagram links can be added into articles and enables you to share pics from your own account and other users images.  I’ve used this to share professional brand images when I forgot to take a pic of the product I’m reviewing before it got all grubby.
  • Support others: 
    • You can share other people’s blogs on Word Press via the reader.  This helps support them and improves your content.  Follow people who write on similar subjects.  Can help when you are busy and hit a dry spell to keep your blog current.
    • As mentioned before, you can share pics by others posted to Instagram.  The image will have a link to their account so if a reader likes their pic they can choose to follow them.
  • Categorise posts:  It puts posts into collection of subjects and helps readers navigate your site or enables you to create pages.  I still have more to learn on this but I think I will be utilizing this in the new year.
  • Brands:  
    • Review brands you love to demonstrate the market you are interested in and to gain support.  Follow their social media accounts to be aware of blogger offers.
    • Offer to review brands you are interested in and you may strike lucky.  This year I got a free photobook from Saal Digital in return for my honest review.  I love the product and will cherish it forever – so happy!


  • Do courses:  If you can find time to do a writing course they are really good.  I did the Curtis Brown – Starting to Write your novel course.  This covered a lot of stuff I already knew but made me think about it again.  I really improved the start of two of my novels using what I learnt. See my review from earlier in the year here.
  • Enter competitions and query:  Take time to put your stories, poems or manuscripts out there.  Even if it is just a friendly competition – I won a few awards on Wattpad and it got me more readers and valuable feedback. I managed to enter one national competition but I am annoyed I missed the deadline for the one I really wanted to enter because I was taking too long editing – I edit too much!
  • Don’t over edit:  Guilty!  I am so guilty of this. I am my worst critique.  Every time, I think I am done editing… I start again.  I don’t even enjoy editing.  I must stop myself.  I wish I could afford an editor to do it for me.
  • Make time to be creative:  living a busy life can make it hard to find time to write but if you make time and do a little a day (even if it’s just plotting or researching), then you will keep making progress towards your goals.  I try to make sure I sit down at my PC/Laptop at least once a week to actually write.
  • Don’t force it:  If you force yourself to write you can cause yourself to burn out.   I think this was a side effect from NaNoWriMo.  I feel the writing bug coming back – phew!

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