Sodaro's Stories

January 1, 2018

Happy New Year!!

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 3:30 pm
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There is something magical about a new year. New fresh calendars, new journals, new goals. Like we get a fresh start, a clean slate, a tabula rasa.

This year I am going to get 4 books out. Last year the goal was 4, but the before, during, and after of a move had me changing plans to maintain some semblance of sanity.

I also plan to conquer my trepidations about making audio books and have my novels having that third format to join the paperback and kindle formats.

I plan to read, review, and promote more of my author friends.

I plan to let go of all crushes I held on to…fresh slate. Distraction free.

I plan to have more fun…as soon as I figure out what they means.

Make this year amazing. Climb your personal mountain. Fight your personal demon.


May 2, 2017

No Guarantees

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 3:04 pm
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7 years ago there was a shiny game plan. It has taken me longer, having to do it “alone” instead of as it was originally planned…as part of an amazing duo. I put “alone” in quotes, because I am not now, nor have I ever truly been “alone” as I have an incomparable support system, both physically here or spiritually present. It has taken me longer, but I got there. I quit teaching and am working a job which allows for writing to be full time.

What I learned from losing Trav was there are no guarantees in life. We are, none of us, promised the chance to see tomorrow. Anyone who has lost a friend or loved one can attest to the fragility of life, plans or no plans, so you have to cherish every moment and memory you get with people.

What I also learned was that we have to live our lives the way that makes sense to us…not to other people…not societal expectations…just us. Because there are no guarantees that we will get another chance to make it right or different or better.

You have this moment — right now — and that’s as close as we get to a guarantee. Live your life. Follow your dreams. Accomplish your goals. Get it done.

May 31, 2016

Saying bye to May 2016

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 10:53 am
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Well this was a rainy rainy month…I could definitely use some sunshine…please, and thank you.

I worked out 23 of the 31 days, which considering I had a weekend in Chicago and then a weekend of the sick, is a pretty damn good ratio…especially given how my knee feels about rain. I used  to laugh a bit when people would say their knees knew when it was going to rain. Not laughing anymore…because wow…that is a unique kind of pain.

I started the edit of First Down and have the entire Lucky Charms series printed out and ready to edit and make even stronger (though I have to say…it’s pretty strong right out of the gate.

I ended my part-time job this month…am looking for something else to bring in some extra cash, but am limited by my knee and my unwillingness to sacrifice too much of my precious writing time…so we will see what the universe has up its vast sleeves. Everything happens for a reason.

I have read 8 books so far this year…which is a deplorable average, but I am cutting myself a bit of slack given everything else that is going on.

I have slipped a few days on my goal to write every single day, so June that gets put back on the front burner.

I am making progress on multiple projects to keep myself and my muse from getting bored.

I have queried 6 agents so far and have the next ones ready in case the ones I am currently waiting to hear from are not my future home.

I have figured up my budget for the duration of 2016 and have figured that I can publish Redeeming Trust and Lucky Charms this year (though two of the 3 for LC may be more realistic, time wise).

I am being kind yet strict to myself in accomplishing my goals, knowing that nothing in my life will change if I don’t get things done.

Doing pretty good!

May 23, 2016


Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 12:55 pm
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So today I paid off one bill. One tiny step closer to financial freedom.

Today I also did workout 23. I was even able to breathe through my nose for part of it (over the weekend I had some sort of sick going on…I took naps…NAPS…as in plural…)

This weekend (in between naps and Dayquil) I wrote a chapter, got the next agents information to send my novels to (I am going to send them out as soon as I hear back from the current agents I have queried or June 6th, whichever comes first).

This weekend I also wore a skirt…in public…by choice. And it was not as uncomfortable as it has been in the past…yeah workouts…this is motivating as the number on the scale is not as low as I think it should be with as much as I have been doing…

I also made notes on 3 different projects, did some very profound reflecting on my teaching career, and read half a book (I have been on a self-improvement book kick lately, but really am craving some good old fiction).

I made plans for my blogs and made cuts in my daily routine so that I could have more balance between my work life and my author life.

Slowly but surely…step by step. I am making progress. GO ME! Yeah Sodaro!

February 22, 2016

Nod to the Dreamers

I was thinking, this weekend, about the dreamers…those people who continue to pursue their goals despite the negativity and naysayers. Singers who continue to put songs out there, despite the critics of their style or person…the students who pursue their goals despite the lack of support system…those person who try for a job that others mock or try to dissuade them…I think this would was built on dreamers.

Whenever I talk about my full-time author life, I usually get one of two reactions…there is either skepticism and doubt or support and belief. And whether the former is due to them not having a dream they want more than anything so they don’t believe such things can happen, or they don’t believe in me accomplishing this dream specifically, I saw…watch me! This is going to happen with or without your support and if you would just kindly get out of my way, and I will get on with the steps I need to take. Because ultimately — I’m going to get there with or without you — and you can bet I’ll remember your skepticism and doubt once I’ve made it.

To the other half — those who either believe in me as a person because they know I accomplish my goals or they believe in me as an author (or both…I like both :D) because they have read one or more of my books (Whatever you Make of ItArianna’s HonorArianna’s DestinyBroken Trust, and soon soon soon Redeeming Trust) and think my stories and characters are as amazing as I think they are. I thank you and appreciate you from the bottom of my heart and I can feel your support and hear you rooting for me and I will remember you when I have made it as well…trust me this will be the better side of my memory.

January 27, 2016

Grandiose Plans

Filed under: Uncategorized — michelle sodaro @ 12:30 pm
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I always have the best plans and intentions and goals…and perhaps I am a little too optimistic (although sometimes I think the world in general could use a little more optimism, but I digress).
My publishing plans for 2015 were Broken Trust, Redeeming Trust, and First Down of the Lucky Charms series. I also planned to publish articles about education or writing. Of that list, I made a lot of progress on all of those things, but only Broken Trust made it out into the world…not blaming or making excuses but sometimes plans change because the universe is putting new things in play and we just have to ride the wave and see where we end up when the storm settles.
My publishing plans for 2016 are Redeeming Trust, First Down and Stealing Second (of the Lucky Charms series) [which as a side note means I will get to fill in my book tattoo and get my 4-leaf clover tattoo!!!!] I also plan on making more progress on my nonfiction projects (no tattoo plans at current for those). I am settled now in a comfy place to call home and can start making some progress on the huge pile of debt I am carrying around with me. My teaching job is solid and I am doing all I can to keep that strong. (My part-time teaching is also going well and I will continue that quarter by quarter, as I am able to do so.)
Seasonal Affective and a slight general depression (when I feel all alone or when I feel that the pile of debt is on top of me rather than beside me) have made my December and January productivity slow to a crawl, but I am fighting it and even though it is at a turtle’s pace, I am still putting one foot in front of the other and making what progress I can while also allowing for some much needed healing and regrouping. So I am “behind” in my plans, but I am still fighting the good fight, and I’ll get there. Bet on it.

December 26, 2015


Filed under: Uncategorized — michelle sodaro @ 12:48 pm
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I read an interview with an author who said she didn’t have time to read. I haven’t read another book by her since then. Stephen King says he tries to read at least 80 books a year, and my respect for my idol grew.
I make a goal to read 40 books a year. I am currently at 24, so it is unlikely I will get 16 books read between now and midnight, 31 December. This year has been an odd one to be sure, but I will keep my goal at 40 for 2016 because I know it is achievable even with my full-time teaching job and emerging author life. It averages out to 3.33333 books a month, and my life is much calmer now and much more full of time for me to take care of myself and my goals.
The best way I know how to be a stronger writer is to read and write every day.
Reading helps you see how words play together…how dialogue sounds…how characters and setting are developed. It shows what plot paths work. (It also does the opposite — shows you the awkwardness words can have…dialogue that sounds forced…characters that don’t seem comfortable in their own skin…plot paths that have too many holes or short cuts
Stephen King also earned bonus points when he said it was okay to not finish every book you start reading. I used to feel too guilty (and my OCD of liking to finish what I start would pipe in) and I would plod through every book I started. Now, I know there are too many books I want to read (and write) for me to waste my time with something that just doesn’t work for me.
So the writer part of me needs to read…but even more importantly, I need to read to escape, to grow, to heal, to…just for a little while…forget reality and just be entertained.

August 17, 2015

Fight Song

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 7:42 pm
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“This is my fight song — Take back my life song

Prove I’m alright song. My power’s turned on.

Starting right now — I’ll be strong

I’ll play my fight song.

And I don’t really care if nobody else believes,

Cuz’ I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me.” “Fight Song” Rachel Platten

Okay — disregard my pet peeve of when words are rhymed with themselves. It’s annoying and yet catchy enough in this song to not bother.

Lately, I have been struggling..finances, feeling alone, teaching at a job I love but still struggling to get enough writing done to make progress on projects, letting go of some parts of me and holding tight to other parts, wanting to be more active, limited by pain…just struggling as we humans tend to do. Just struggling. And of course I will be victorious, I have been every other time, and really, what otehr option is there? So I know it’s temporary, and that it will all work out, but today, I am struggling.

Every time I hear this song, I do a little bit of a Rocky-esque victory dance. If I liked ringtones, I would make this mine for right now. (as my phone is always on vibrate or silent, this would, of course, be silly)

I love the balance and power that writing gives me. I have gotten distracted this past two months and my writing has been rather sporadic and all over the place. My life has gotten off track — I took my eyes off the goal and allowed other people’s lives to come before my goals. As it happened any other time I have put writing on a back burner, I lost a bit of my sense of self and fell down.

Now I am fighting my way back to utmost productivity and proving to myself that I still have a lot of fight left in me. Proving to myself that I can get back to where I was and then go farther than I ever thought I could.

August 2, 2015

August Goals

My biggest goal for August, is of course, to get the 2nd draft of Redeeming Trust done. I have some chapters to add and some details to flush out. Need to give it an ending worthy of Ali and the others. And since this set definitely only has the 2 books (Broken Trust and Redeeming Trust) the ending really has to stick the landing (and that completes the entirety of my gymnastics knowledge). So getting this sequel to a solid 2nd draft is goal number one.

My second goal is to get Stealing Second (of the Lucky Charms series) to Chapter 25. (I have just barely started Chapter 20, as a point of reference).

I am going to start water aerobics and go back to no (or very very little) pop.

Finances need some help as well. Fell off my budget a bit and need to fix some things.

I am going to start sending Broken Trust off to some agents, because if I don’t ask, the answer will always be no.

I wrote a short story about Sam and Ali that I will polish up and send out to magazines.

I have two nonfiction projects I want to make some progress on for publication later on this year.

I want to live more fearless and put myself out into the world more…but don’t worry. I will leave a trail of gummy bears to find my way back and not get lost.

May 31, 2015

40 years of Fabulous

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 9:24 pm
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Yesterday was my 40th birthday and from beginning of day until day’s end, I had an amazing day. I started my day with writing and ended it with drinking with friends. So Happy 4th decade to me!!

I am so excited about this new chapter of my life. I have learned so much about so many things in the time I have spent teaching, writing, living…and I am POSITIVE the lessons of all my yesterdays will continue to shape and play a role in my present and future.

I am not who I was 10 years ago…I’m not who I was 5 years ago…not even one year ago. I have a clearer view of what I want in my life as well as what I can and will do without.

With the exception of what I write in my novels, I am drama free as much as I possibly can be and still be around people. As much as it is humanly possibly to do so, I avoid overly dramatic people. This goes for negative people as well.

I am actively pursuing my author life, which IS my future. People can support me (which so many do, and I thank you from my toes to my forehead) or they don’t have to support me, but my future plan is set.

I am on the tail-end of my full-time teaching career. I love where I teach and they respect me and the job that i do, while also supporting my goals.

I have absolutely no problem walking away from something or someone unhealthy for me. Life is too short.

I will continue to get myself healthier physically, emotional, and financially. There is also a game plan for this. Just like my first novel, life is “Whatever I Make of It,” and I am going to make this decade even more amazing than my 30’s were.

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