Facebook

03 July 2018

Simon The Time Traveling Cat Freaks Out | IWSG



NOTE: Normally, we post on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays, but this post is coming to you a day early due to the 4th of July celebrations in the States.

The Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG) is a place to share and encourage, where writers can express their doubts and concerns without appearing foolish or weak. It's a great place to mingle with like minded people each month during IWSG day. The fabulous co-hosts this month are Nicki Elson, Juneta Key, Tamara Narayan, and Patricia Lynne.

Every month there's an optional question which may prompt folks to share advice, insights, a personal experience or story. Some folks answer the question in their IWSG blog post or let it inspire them if they're struggling with what to say.

This month's question is:

"What are your ultimate writing goals, and how have they changed over time (if at all)?"

Check out how people have answered this month's question, as well as the other insecurities and writing topics they may have shared by visiting the IWSG sign-up list here. If you want to see how I answered the question, have a look below.
* * *

Image via The Graphics Fairy

"Simon, what's wrong?" I asked, looking at the ball of gray fur curled up underneath the chart table on our sailboat. "Why are you hiding?"

Simon glared at me and growled. "I'm not hiding, lady. I'm napping."

As he inched further back into the corner, there was a loud noise outside. I peered up through the hatch. "Oh, look, fireworks!" I sat on the settee next to the chart table and looked up at the bright lights exploding overhead.

I watched as the colorful display continued, then I heard Simon making a strange yowling sound. "Simon, it's okay. It's just 4th of July celebrations," I said in a soothing voice. "Why don't you come sit next to me?"

He slunk toward me and climbed on my lap, shivering while I stroked his soft fur. Part of me was kind of enjoying the effect of the fireworks on Simon. He wasn't being snarky and demanding. Maybe this was a new Simon. Maybe I would finally have an affectionate lap cat who purred with shear happiness at being in my company.

I watched the finale of red, white, and blue lights streaking across the sky while I scratched behind Simon's ears. After a few minutes had passed, Simon stood, stretched, then jumped onto the floor. He stared at me and gave a loud meow. "Alright, lady. Show's over. Go get me a saucer of full-fat milk."

So much for the new and improved Simon, I thought to myself as I opened the fridge. But I guess there's always Independence Day next year.

* * *

I know how Simon feels. Sometimes, things are scary and cause you to freak out a little. Like launching my first book. There were times when I felt like hiding underneath the chart table. Probably the only reason I didn't is because I'm way too big to fit comfortably there.

But scary can be good. Scary means you're stretching yourself. Scary means you're trying to achieve your goals. And I did - I scared the heck out of myself and achieved my writing goal of publishing a book.

Publishing a book wasn't always my writing goal. In fact, I didn't have any writing-related goals for a long time, other than to blog here about the adventures and misadventures of our life on a sailboat. But over time, and in large part due to the support and encouragement of the IWSG, I set a goal to publish a cozy mystery.

Now that I've ticked that item off of the list, my writing goal is to publish the next book in the series, Bodies in the Boatyard, later this year and the third book, Poisoned by the Pier, in 2019. If all continues to go well, I'll aim for three more books in the series over the next few years.

 * * *


A dilapidated sailboat for your anniversary - not very romantic. 
A dead body on board - even worse.

>>Murder at the Marina<< is the first in a new lighthearted and humorous cozy mystery series about Mollie McGhie, a reluctant sailor turned amateur sleuth.

eBook available at Amazon (US) | Amazon (CA) | Amazon (UK) | Amazon (AU) | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Apple iBooks | Google Play

Paperback version available at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Books-A-Million

Find out more on Goodreads and add to your To-Read list. Check out my author website, follow along on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to my newsletter.

Do you like fireworks? What are your writing goals? Have they changed over time?

Thanks for stopping by our blog - we love it when people come visit! We're also on Facebook - we'd love for you to pop by and say hi!

84 comments:

  1. If we aren't a little afraid and out of our comfort zone, I think we aren't stretching ourselves enough! So true. I'm always a basket case and a bundle of nerves when it comes to my writing goals.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can relate to being a bundle of nerves :-)

      Delete
  2. After the freak out, we realize it wasn't worth the freak out. Hindsight!

    ReplyDelete
  3. And WAY TO GO! There's nothing quite like that rush of publishing, eh? Sheer insanity followed by prolonged wonder. Here's to an epic launch, and many great things to come!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sheer insanity followed by prolonged wonder - that is the perfect description :-)

      Delete
  4. Happy 4th Ellen! And Happy IWSG Day! Congrats on meeting your goals. I am still working on mine and waiting on my editor to send me her notes. Hopefully this month. But I'm still writing and revising other stories. I read your Simon adventure to my son and he loved it as much as I did. Both of my kiddos have sensitive ears and the loud stuff wears them down. Have a lovely rest of your day :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's so nice to hear that your son likes Simon's stories :-)

      Delete
  5. We wouldn't be human if we didn't freak out a little at the prospect of baring our souls (so to speak) in a book and then letting people read it... and ohmigod, waiting for them to judge it! Getting past that freak-out and doing it anyway is what sets you apart from the wannabes. You DID it! And I'm sure you'll keep doing it. And it's just as well Simon changed back to his usual self... gives you more writing time if he isn't cowering in your lap. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is a definite freak-out period involved in this all :-)

      Delete
  6. Yay! The book sounds like so much fun!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I love this part especially - "But scary can be good. Scary means you're stretching yourself. Scary means you're trying to achieve your goals. And I did - I scared the heck out of myself and achieved my writing goal of publishing a book." Good for you! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks - at times I find it really hard to believe that I did it :-)

      Delete
  8. Congratulations! I love to read a good cozy mystery. As for being scary, I agree with Madeline. When you're stretching yourself, it is always scary but oh what joy when the ride is completed and the goal has been reached.
    All the best.

    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

    ReplyDelete
  9. I recently found out that Ursula Le Guin, before she passed, wrote something of a memoir from the perspective of her cat. Have you heard of this? Happy IWSG day!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hadn't heard of this. I love Le Guin and would love to read that memoir.

      Delete
  10. "new and improved Simon." Bwahaha! How can you improve on purrfect? You have, indeed, had a scary, but exhilarating ride with your book! Very inspiring for those of us coming along.

    ReplyDelete
  11. LOL Simon sounds exactly like my cat. She'll be hiding all night tomorrow--and probably tonight too, since the festivities are starting early in the neighborhood. Congratulations on the book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So many cats and dogs have such a terrible time over the 4th. While we humans love fireworks, they can be pretty scary for our furry friends.

      Delete
  12. Maybe you should keep some fireworks on hand for when Simon annoys you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now that would be a little mean of me, even when it comes to Simon :-)

      Delete
  13. Oh, Simon. ~shakes head~ We don't do anything special for the holiday any more except make sure to put out our flag. And my writing goal has always been to have fun. ~grin~ Happy writing and best wishes on publishing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My 4th was pretty low key. Nothing like the fun we had on the 4th as kids with parades, fireworks, picnics etc.

      Delete
  14. My dogs feel Simon's pain. Since I go to bed fairly early, before everyone in the neighborhood are done lighting off fireworks, I usually end up with a dog sitting on top of my head, shivering.

    Woot for continuing the series!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Simon and our Little Bit looked at fireworks the same way. She hated them. We sure miss her.

    Have a fabulous day. ♥

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Having seen pictures of Little Bit and seen how you describe her in your blog, I can only imagine how much you miss her each and every day.

      Delete
  16. Way to go with your first book goal!!! It is super scary to write a book and launch it, but you are doing great!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Fireworks are pretty, but I do wish they were quieter. Congrats on releasing your first book and good luck with the next!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now, that would be cool - a way to control the sound on fireworks.

      Delete
  18. Happy 4th July! (Poor Simon, first time i’ve felt sorry for him.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Be careful how much sympathy you show him. He'll be sure to file that away and use it to manipulate you into rubbing his belly.

      Delete
  19. It is scary and exciting. Makes life sweat though. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm wondering if you mean "sweet" instead of "sweat" although there was a lot of nervous sweating going on during the release :-)

      Delete
  20. So happy Simon sought you out to keep him safe and re-assured all is okay. Those fireworks are as scary as launching a book. First you want everyone in the world to read the book, then there are those darn doubts that the book isn't good enough to read, so you don't want anyone in the world to read it. Hope you're over all the anxiety now because I read Murder at the Marina and loved it! Looking forward to a whole series--6 books? Wow, that is some goal there, gal. Best wishes and congrats on your first release!
    JQ Rose

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You nailed it - I want people to read it and I don't want people to read it :-)

      Thanks so much for your sweet words - I'm glad you enjoyed it.

      Delete
  21. Simon's in for a rough couple days. Congrats on your release. And smooth sailing for #2.

    ReplyDelete
  22. My dog, Schultz, hates fireworks. I have to sit in the quiet basement with him and comfort him the whole time. July 4th is a rough holiday for him.

    Congratulations on your first book! It's a sense of accomplishment when you get one published!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Poor Schultz - fireworks are so scary for so many animals.

      Delete
  23. I used to love fireworks until I had dogs. Now I hate them so very much. And congrats on the book launch. It is such a fun book and I can't wait to read more in the series.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Whoop! Whoop! And well done you for meeting that goal! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Angela and thanks for your help in getting it to this stage.

      Delete
  25. Publishing a book - definitely high on my list of goals at the moment, congrats on achieving it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Laura. It was a hard slog to get to that stage, but well worth it.

      Delete
  26. I stay home from the fireworks as bright, flashing lights against a black sky are a migraine trigger. However, my husband takes my girl's to our local fireworks and it's so close, they can walk while I stay back and watch a movie. Pretty sweet deal, especially with our nervous cats on my lap!

    Congrats on your release. That is quite the accomplishment!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, I can see how they would trigger a migraine. I get migraines as well :-(

      Delete
  27. We live on our sailboat in Mexico and the locals love to set off fire crackers. They are loud and scares cats, dogs, & humans alike. I expect to indulge in a few hours of writing & editing. Love your Simon posts. Just purchased Murder at the Marina. Hmmm maybe, I'll change my mind and read your book rather than write. Cheers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for picking up a copy of Murder at the Marina - I really appreciate it :-)

      Delete
  28. Fireworks are great when they are professionally done. When it’s the kids up the street, and they are sometimes firing them at the cars that pass, it’s a wonder someone hasn’t been killed.

    Happy Writing, and Happy Independence Day!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It always frightens me when people set off their own fireworks. Much better to go see a professional done event instead.

      Delete
  29. A big congrats on your new book. I'm thrilled for you and it sounds like an awesome read too.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Today at the pharmacy, we got a call in for a narcotic anxiety medication for a dog. The directions said "Give as needed for anxiety from fireworks". Poor pets, lol!

    I feel excited for you with you book release! I think I already added it to my TBR list, I need to check my Goodreads profile. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Poor pets indeed :-( I recently read an article saying that one of the common meds they give dogs doesn't help with the anxiety, but rather just makes them unable to move. They're still anxious, but can't do anything about it.

      Delete
  31. Congrats on the new book, Ellen.
    I love alliteration so your book titles are really appealing... and Murder at the Marina sounds like fun!
    Good luck with books two and three.
    (Poor Simon... but at least you enjoyed a bit of time minus the snark and demands)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you like the alliteration. It was one of those things I wasn't too sure about.

      Delete
  32. As a kid I liked fireworks, but now I’m not much of a fan. Our previous dogs might have to do with that. They hated the noise, so we tried to avoid them (the fireworks, not the dogs) as much as possible.

    What a goal to achieve Ellen, to publish a book. Congrats again! Your new goal of publishing a series is lofty as well. But, you’ll do it! You’ve proven that, when you set a goal, you go for it and succeed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, if only you knew about all the goals I set but never succeeded at :-)

      Delete
  33. Fireworks are cool.
    Glad you managed to publish a book and have the goal of publishing more!
    It looks like a debut book to me. If you're interested in doing an interview (free promotion for you and your book), hit me up on Twitter. @JLenniDorner I run the debut author spotlight over at Operation Awesome.
    Keep working on your goals in the meantime.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've sent you a message on Twitter - thanks for the interview offer :-)

      Delete
  34. Aw, poor Simon! I feel sad for pets scared by fireworks or thunder, but Simon has a comforting lap to curl up in during such moments. It's great when cats grace us with their attention. ;-) I love the title of book two in the series. Happy 4th!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We do live for those moments when cats decide to pay attention to us :-)

      Delete
  35. Congrats on that first book. Wonderful cover. Our dogs are scared of fireworks too.
    Happy IWSG!

    ReplyDelete
  36. Congratulations on your book release. Good cover! Dogs and cats all over are scared of firecrackers.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Happy 4th of July! Firecrackers are a nuisance to poor animals and pets. All the best on your book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fireworks are terrible for so many critters. Thanks for your kind wishes :-)

      Delete
  38. A sailboat mystery is a different twist and sounds like a lot of fun. Congratulations on your new release, Ellen!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Gwen. I was hoping that the sailing theme might be a good twist in the cozy genre.

      Delete
  39. Stepping out of our comfort zone is scary. Jumping out is terrifying. Isn't that what we do each time we release a book? Good luck with your new release. I loved it!!!

    ReplyDelete
  40. My cats are terrified of fireworks. They will run and hide under a bed or in a closet if they can get it.

    Those goals we don't plan on are the most rewarding. :)

    ReplyDelete
  41. Congrats on getting it out there! It does feel like a massive leap, but so rewarding when you get a good reception, and it's great to hear you've got more lined up.

    ReplyDelete
  42. You have done a great job with goals!

    But poor Simon. This time I really do feel for him.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Fantastic! Hope you had a great Fourth. :) I agree that when something is scary it means we are challenging ourselves. I feel that way for every book, and if I stopped feeling that way, I'd worry!

    ReplyDelete

We LOVE when people leave comments. It's so much more fun hearing what you have to say. If you have a blog, make sure you leave a link and I'll be sure to pop on by.