Sodaro's Stories

December 31, 2014

Looking back

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 11:09 pm
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2014 has been an amazing year as an author, a teacher, and a woman. It has been all about finding more about who I am and who I want to be. I have loved the progress and growth I have experienced throughout the course of 2014.

As an author, I published my third novel, Arianna’s Destiny and have absolutely loved the response I have gotten from my third “child” out into the  world. It has been a matter of streamlining the process and loving every minute of being an author. It is a beautiful process from start to finish and I have finished the first draft of First Down which will be my next novel. I have made progress on Driven West which is now 26 chapters in. I have also made progress on Seducing Cupid which is now about 45% completed. Stealing Second is also coming along nicely. I love my author life.

My life as a teacher, has been a complex roller coaster for the past 18 years. I have loved my students and lost some. I have helped some and have not been able to help others. I have cried at every graduation, and I have smiled at every student who has said I helped them accomplish their goals. It is a constant amazement and humbling experience that my students appreciate what I do.

As a woman, on this 39th year on the planet, I have realized more of what I want in my life, and what I don’t. I have realized that I want love, a real love, and that I am ready to put myself out there again. I am more aware of what matters to me in my life, what I want, what I don’t want…what I will compromise for and what I will not compromise for. I have become stronger than I have before and have learned to look at myself as more beautiful…and more worthy of love and happiness. This is the start of an amazing chapter of life, and I am so ready!!!!

Looking back over 2014, it has been a beautiful journey. Looking forward to what the new year brings. Stay with me, friends.


December 3, 2014

Starting out Behind

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 1:20 pm
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I love the beginnings of months. It always feels a bit like a fresh start…little mini blank slates (the ultimate blank slate of the calendar of course being in…oh look at that, just a few weeks now). And I always have so many plans for each month, things I hope to get accomplished and make progress on. Among that list is the novels I am writing, exercising more, getting my budget under control, etc. etc. etc. Some months I make more progress than others…and usually, I make the most consistent progress on my novels, figuring I can always exercise and get my spending under control next month, but I need to write RIGHT NOW!!!!

Right now I am feeling very behind. I am looking at my 2014 resolutions and I am looking at the days left in 2014 and I can’t help but notice my remaining to-do list is longer than there are days left in the year. I am behind on EVERYTHING…well, my job is where I am closest to not being completely behind (could I put more qualifiers on that sentence)…but that is because, it pays the bills I am behind on. The nature of my job, though (which I love and which has helped me love teaching again) is to never be completely caught up…there is always more to do…one more assignment to grade, paper to write, discussion to respond to, etc. etc. etc. So there is no sense of “done” (for those of you who know me, you know how much I like to mark things off my list as done…so this is an adjustment. 😀

I did get Arianna’s Destiny published this year, which I am extremely proud of and happy about…but I didn’t get any of my other planned novels out. I didn’t get any of my first drafts completely edited…need to get my covers made…need to get drafts finished…need to get so many things ready…set…go.

It’s hard for me to feel like I’m behind at the beginning of any month, but more so this month because the next new month is starting off 2015 and I really want to accomplish a lot of things in 2015…and I want to start off caught up, not behind…

So it looks like I have some work to do to finish out 2014 and start 2015 strong. 😀

December 1, 2014

Reflecting on my 1st successful NaNoWriMo

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 1:31 pm
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I did it! I put 50,000 words in order for chapters 1-24 on ONE novel…I did it!! I worked (mostly) on only one project for the entire month of November. This was my 3rd year participating and 1st year that I made it! I did it!!! As with other years, my novel can’t be verified because I write out all of my novels longhand and count up my words to know where I am and where I need to be…but I know I made it…and that is enough for me. (I have the pages and pages of word-filled notebook pages if anyone doubts me :D). I got Driven West through chapter 24 and while it will probably end up with 16 more chapters as it grows, I got the 50K in 30D and that was a major accomplishment for me.

I got my novel past the chapter 12-20 where it’s all rising action, but not too much…have to save some for later…and develop those characters and move the story along…okay, go faster, okay now slow down a bit….get it just right. This is a major pit for me and where most of my novels end up on the back burner. (I don’t even want to count up how many back burners I have with novels stuck around chapter 15).

I know where Driven West is going and I know how to get it there. I will continue to add to this novel a bit here and there…it is not going to be my next published, and my attention needs to go back to my Lucky Charms series (a fact that woke me up a few times in the night with my characters who have been relatively patient during the month of November, reminding me that it was now December and I needed to get back on track.

I had a co-worker ask me, if I could write a first draft in 30 days, why didn’t I do that all the time…and I know his question was meant in a supportive manner…my coworkers are fantastically supportive…but I just kind of got this blank expression on my face when he asked…50,000 words in 30 days is an amazing accomplishment, but being a full-time teacher and a full-time writer, that word count pressure is a bit difficult of a pace to keep up with. Plus, I already have a bunch of rough drafts that need to be worked on 😀 But it did make me think of what I can do 😀

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