january-monthHAPPY NEW YEAR, my fellow writer-badasses!!

January is always the most exciting month of the year. We’ve celebrated the end of the year with lots of presents, foods, booze, and partying. We’ve learned valuable lessons and have re-strategized for the next leg of our journeys. We feel enthusiastic, refreshed, and ready to kick ass for the new year. Resolutions abound, and energy’s high. I. LOVE. January.

The best part for me is testing out new systems to see how they play out against my goals. Having said that, I’ve got some really encouraging creative updates for January and am pretty damned proud of my progress. Check it out below!

January 2015

1. Hit the halfway point on the first draft of the Ghosts of Koa pilot!!! And man, does it need work. Lol! It’s already way too long for one, the action needs to be cleaned up, as do the scene headings and camera shots, and the dialogue needs to be completely re-worked and subtextualized. STILL, it’s being written and that’s half the battle, so this is huge for me. Next month will be about finishing and cleaning up this pilot and starting the next one, entitled “At His Right Hand”.

2. Started working on the first draft of the first episode of “World War i” web series! I’m about 10-20% through it, which is significant because I’d love to start shooting my web series in the Fall of 2016. World War i is a survival horror series (w/ an interesting twist), and there will be 12 episodes. Each episode is about 5-10 minutes long, so it’s nice to be able to break these down into nice bite sized chunks and get this written over the course of the next year or so. Next month will mostly be about finishing this episode and then writing the next one. I’m not going to start re-working the episodes until about June or so.

3. ADDED a fifth volume toThe Final Page, The Second Book of Ezekiel“! And while the book is getting way more interesting, it’s still not at it’s tip-top form. Still, it’s a hell of a lot better and more coherent than what I’d originally written, trust and believe. The next month will be about re-working this first volume while trying to write as much for the next three volumes as possible.

SealGoldBlk4. Officially decided that I’m going back to school for Film & Electronic Arts at Cal-State Long Beach. I only pray that I get funding to do this, as I already have 2 degrees under my belt, lol. But I really want a structured environment wherein I can train myself in the industry of which I want to be a part and wherein I can FOCUS. Plus, uni provides so many opportunities, including on-campus work ops, that I’d love to get back into. So we’ll see what happens, but I’m hoping for the best!


How about 60,000 words a month, EVERY month, instead?

5. Made some great progress on my other creative goals by staying on my production schedule! So I’ve decided to put this board up every month to keep track of the projects and goals I’m working on this month. Each month, I take on one pilot, one spec, one feature, one web series, and one novel project. Whenever I make progress on any of these projects, I update the page or word count to reflect my work. (From this point on, too, I’ll keep track of where I started each month and where I ended each month, so that I can look at my average word count / page count per month and adjust my goals accordingly.)

I also keep track of my progress at the Game Design Uni, my marketing efforts for my writing career, the number of blog posts and freelance articles I churn out, and my contributions to the Scriptwriter’s Network. I do all of this using a dry erase board that Ijanproductionschedule keep on my fridge door. I have to say, it’s SUPER helpful being able to see both my goals and my progress laid in front of me like this. It not only keeps my projects clear and fresh in my mind, but it gives me inspiration to see that day-by-day, I’m moving towards my goals. Then I can celebrate when I’ve reached a significant milestone!

I really recommend that you guys create a production schedule (whatever works for you), and post it somewhere you can see it. Use whatever system you like. You can also use Joanna Penn‘s system, wherein she writes in her daily word count on a calendar, and anytime she hits 2,000 words or more, she gives herself a special sticker for the day! I have a calendar that I’d love to do this with, but I need to get to the dollar store to get my congratulatory stickers, lol! Anyway, without further ado, here’s what was on my slate for January, and how much progress I’ve made!


The Iron Maiden, Volume I of IV of The Final Page: FINISHED
The Final Page (0verall), 80,964 words out of projected 160,000

Ezekiel, 31 pages

Scandal, 5 pages

Ghosts of Koa, 10 pages

Episode 1 of World War i, 1 page

Game Institute: finished Math Primer chapter
3D Game Programming All-In-One: finished Chapter 1
Finished first 30 pages of The Film Production Handbook!
Bought a WaCom Tablet, Adobe CS6, and started learning Photoshop w/ online classes

2 out of 8 books read
2 out of 8 books reviewed on blog
Other great stuff I read: 139 Essential Resources for Screenwriters (AWESOME, by the way)

7 written articles / reviews
1 podcast recorded; needs to be back posted!

0 articles of 15 articles finished

Blog kept up-to-date until Jan 23
New covers for Ghosts of Koa, Volumes I & II commissioned; then rejected (lol)
Kept commitment to posting / engaging on social media at least 1x a day
Daily push of my #amwriting guerilla warfare hashtag
Daily push of the #amcreating guerilla warfare hashtag
Completed mini-marketing training w/ Nick Stephenson!

Kept commitment to weekly meeting with new partner
Tracked down (and still tracking) potential funding sources for company
Brainstormed more fundraising ideas
Snagged the 2014 city-state tax incentive spreadsheet for filmmaking
Finished 50% of the working budgets for Rebel Ragdoll Press & Productions, ChickRogue Studios, and Miscellany! (more info forthcoming)
Created Rebel Ragoll shot list template

All events attended and on-site duties fulfilled
Got some great notes from the seminars!
Maintaining remote duties as long-term volunteer & Member Associate

So I know that I could have gotten WAY more done because not every minute was used as efficiently and judiciously as possible. So next month is going to be about being as efficient as possible, and it might even include some major environmental changes such as no email, phone, or internet until after 5:00 PM every day!