February 12 x 12 Check In — and a GIVEAWAY!

Another good month in 12 x 12 Land! This is certainly keeping me on my toes. I decided at the beginning of the year that I really need to treat my writing as a job, and work at it steadily, even though “going to work” means simply going to my home office. 12 x 12 is helping me do this.

12 x 12 has also provided me with the opportunity to join a fabulous online critique group made up of other 12 x 12ers. This is my first experience with a critique group, and I couldn’t be with a better group of women. Thanks to all five of you!

To read about my writing progress in 12 x 12 and for details of the giveaway, read more…

This month, I exceeded my goal of one rough draft per month.

I have one draft, based on an idea from PiBoIdMo (Picture Book Ideas Month back in November) that’s been through a couple of revisions, and will get more polishing before it gets its turn with the critique group. For wordy Beth, it was quite a surprise when even the first rough draft came in at just 343 words. It’s a total departure from any picture book manuscript I’ve written before, and it is definitely fun to write.

I’ve also written another draft based on a PiBoIdMo idea. I’m not sure if it’s a picture book, or a short story. It has the potential to be a picture book, albeit a wordy one. It’s intended as my entry into a writing competition for children’s stories no longer than 1500 words. So I’m not trying to cut the wordcount down as much as I normally would. It, too, will receive a great deal of revising, editing, and polishing in March.

It feels good at the end of the month to look back and see definite progress!

And now, to celebrate the end of February, a GIVEAWAY!

I have an extra copy of the 2012 Guide to Literary Agents and an extra copy of The Writer’s Digest Guide to Query Letters. They came with a package-deal I ordered. I already had purchased my copies. SO it seems logical that I share these books with my fellow writers.

If you would like your name entered into the draw for these books, simply say so in the comments on today’s or tomorrow’s posts. Indicate in your comment whether you’d like to have a chance at Agents, Query Letters, or both books. Comments will close at 1:00 a.m. Eastern Time Thursday, March 1.  On Thursday morning, random.org will help me choose a winner for Agents and a winner for Queries.

Note: Each time you comment (for example, if you comment on each of the three posts) your name will be entered into the draw. Winners can be from anywhere (preferably on this planet).

28 thoughts on “February 12 x 12 Check In — and a GIVEAWAY!”

  1. I’ve been treating writing more like a job this year and am pleased with my results, so far. Congrats on the drafts. 343 words! Nice! You can enter me in the drawing. I’m late reading several blogs. I read your Monday posts on Monday, but failed to comment. I wish it were easier to comment from my iPhone. I read blogs on the phone, but it can be cumbersome to post from the phone apps.

    1. Not to worry about being “late” to post — you posted in the time frame that worked for you. Here’s hoping that apps catch up with the blogging world!

      Thanks, Stacy!

  2. Such a generous offer. I don’t have either book so would love to be entered in both.
    Thanks Beth. I enjoy your insightful posts.

  3. I love hearing about the progress people are making in 12X12. It’s very inspiring. And I agree – having 12X12 is very helpful for focus and discipline. I am not good at setting specific, attainable goals for myself – they tend to be too broad/vague/out of reach – so having the plan of at least one PB ms per month has been great for me and I find I’m exceeding it. Thanks for sharing and good luck with your continued progress!!! 🙂

    1. I am finding so much more focus and discipline within myself, and I know that’s at least partly due to 12×12. Thanks, Susanna, and I’m glad to hear that you’re exceeding your own expectations. Good for you!

  4. Nice reminder, Beth, that the month is wrapping up. With all that is going with my broken little house, I actually forgot the mont is almost gone…thank goodness I wrote my February PB at the beginning of the month! ;0)

    Yes, I would like to be considered for both books but my first choice would be the Literary Agents book.

    Thanks for all you do for the writing community!

    1. I sleep, I just don’t have family responsibilities or other obligations, so I have more time than most people. Thanks, Pat!

  5. I am so happy to hear you are completing drafts, way to go. Sadly, I am not able to be as productive yet. Still looking for the balance. It is a pleasure to be in the same critique group with you. Look forward to reading more of your stories.
    Yes, I am still interested in both books.

    1. With a young family and a regular job, you have a lot on your plate as it is, Darshana. I could not achieve a third of what I do if I had those things to deal with. I’m so glad to be in the same critique group as you. Thanks, Darshana!

  6. Congrats on completing your drafts! And a 343 word count? Outstanding! I am wordy too 😀 It’s cool to hear you like your critique group. I haven’t joined one yet, but I’ve been tempted. Not much time to spare though right now for me.

    I am interested in both books.

    Thank you!

    1. I’m still astonished at that draft’s word count! I urge you to join a critique group if you can find or make the time. It is such a good experience.

      Thanks, Loni!

  7. Beth, 12 x 12 has been a godsend for me too. I treat writing as my work now too, and give it priority. As soon as the boys go down for nap, I start working on my writing to-do list: researching, writing, revising, querying, reviewing my critique group’s drafts. I may only get 2 hours a day, but I’m working! It’s made a big difference in my writing and my vision of myself as a writer. Oh, and I would love to be entered in the drawing for the Query Letters book. Thanks!

    1. That attitude switch really makes a difference, doesn’t it? It certainly does to me. I’m glad your self-discipline is paying off, in both your writing, and in the way you view yourself. Good for you!

      Your name has been entered.

  8. Thanks Beth! Both of those books sound great! I am still in the polishing stage and the I’m-in-school-and-working-so-I-write-when-I-can-stage, but I know once I’m ready I will go full steam ahead! Great to hear about your 12 by 12 progress…I’ve got a few this month too! I think when you have it on your radar, you are just more likely to do it! Thank you for always having interesting things to read on your blog…saves me some always knowing I’m going to learn something from your blog!

    1. Thanks so much, Kathy. People like you who juggle so much and still manage to write productively are to be applauded. I wrote for the last several years of my working-outside-the-home life, but never got anything to the publication-ready stage then.

      You’re in the draw for the books! Stay tuned.

  9. Congratulations on two drafts, Beth! I’m still trying to find that elusive ending for my draft, and I was going to participate in the marathon – sigh. Oh well, I’m determined to finish my February draft tonight.

    Would still love to be in both drawings. Thanks!

    1. I can’t even imagine participating in that marathon! As for finishing February’s — you can do it! (and if it spills into the next month, just call it February-plus!)

      Your name has been entered.

  10. Elizabeth McBride

    Beth, what a nice offer! I would especially be interested in the Agents Guide, but know I could use either!!! I have been trying to do the Picture Book Marathon this month also, and we have had unbelievable things happening in our family. Last year i did it, but I don’t know if I can make it this year. Soooooo disappointed to let myself down if I don’t. We are really our truest advocates as artists, so when I don’t keep my promises to my writing, that is sad! Maybe tomorrow will allow me the moments I need to pull it out! One of the best things I learned last year, was to tuck myself away to keep my writing appointments with myself. Also – to use even the smallest increments of time for work I was doing. I knew I could get fifteen minutes in during my lunch hour and it quickly became a great habit with surprising results. When you are used to writing at a certain time and in certain kinds of situations, you are nearly priming yourself to write, so it comes easily and quickly, without much warm-up time required. Best of luck to you – Elizabeth

    1. I don’t know how anyone manages that Picture Book Marathon! Take care of yourself and your family — that’s the most important thing. Your name has been entered for both draws.

  11. I don’t know how you’re doing it!!! That’s so wonderful that you completed two drafts. And 343 words is amazing for a first draft…kudos on that!

    Thanks for the chance to win the 2012 Guide to Literary Agents or The Writer’s Digest Guide to Query Letters. I would love either one :•)

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