ROW80 – Time to Rock it for 2012!


I have a little confession to make:  I was a ROW80 “silent stalker” for a good bit of 2011.  The signs were unmistakable – blog visits to ROWers’ sites, the wistful sighs as I saw them cheer each other on over successes, and encourage one another over goals not met…and – ooh – the goal-envy.  Wow, look at those goals…they have achievable goals!

But still, I held back.  Why?  I guess it seemed like I’d be adding yet another thing to my never-ending to-do list.  The opportunities for weasel-ing out of goals seemed endless.  And in public, too (I’m a pro at weasel-ing under the radar, of course).

What changed my mind?  I’m convinced that it took the collision of two cosmic forces to change me from stalker to participant:  the New Year, and Jenny Hansen, writer and enthusiastic blogger of all things Cowbell.  She’s one of the sponsors of 2012’s Round 1, and I’ve had the privilege of getting to know her over the past 10 months or so.  With Jenny giving me “the eye,” I know I can expect a heap of Twitter writing sprints and overall butt-kicking from this California gal.

And Jenny isn’t the only one with enthusiasm, support, and words of wisdom for fellow writers.  Really, you can’t swing a cat without hitting a slew of ROWers who are uber-talented, supportive, and down-to-earth.  I want in!

the swinging cat...

My Goals:

1. ROW80 check ins on Sundays

2. Continue blog posting on a M/W/F schedule (I was really tempted to drop back to 2x per week, but I know that’s not a good idea).

3. Research and develop a new historical mystery from scratch in my WWBC group, a super awesome team of talented writers (and I have a lot to learn, believe me); also, provide feedback on fellow WWBCers projects.

4. Revise the plot of my original sequel and continue writing it, in light of what I’ve already learned in WWBC.

5. Continue to read books/blogs on the writing craft.

6. Continue to read fiction books in my genre.

7. Support fellow blogger/writers with visits/promotion of their sites.

8. Manage my time better, so blogging/housework/errands don’t spill over into my writing/research time:  I’m going to reserve Tues-Wed-Thurs from 10-2 (kids’ school hours) for fiction writing.  It will be a challenge to squeeze all my blog writing into Mon/Fri/weekend bits, though – I’m a bit slow when it comes to putting together a post.

9. Exercise:  Sundays 4.6 mi walks around Burke Lake with walking buddies; 2 other shorter walks per week (I’m thinking Tues/Thurs, but we’ll see).

10. Pay more attention to what I’m eating/drinking: more water, more fruits/vegs, fewer junk food choices, healthier substitutions (pita chips and hummus instead of potato chips, for example).


Okay, so let’s see how much I laugh at the naive ambition of these goals over the next few weeks!  But it’s important to aim high, right?  As Robert Browning said in his poem “Andrea Del Sarto”:

A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?


All the best to my fellow ROWers, and to all of you looking to make your dreams a reality in 2012!

Happy New Year,



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32 thoughts on “ROW80 – Time to Rock it for 2012!”

  1. Jennifer L. OliverJennifer L. Oliver

    I’ve been thinking about joining ROW80 as well. I’ve become a bit of a writing loner lately. I’m sure a group like this would probably be good for me.
    But then, like you, I’m cautious about adding another item to my own never-ending to-do list.
    Decisions, decisions…

    • Jen TaltyJen Talty

      I know how you feel about the never ending to do list. I always end up doing too much when it comes to things like ROW80, though not entirely sure what it is. Now I only commit myself to my local chapters Book In a Week challenge. Any more than that and I’m stressing, spinning my wheels and then I accomplish even less.

  2. Gene LemppGene Lempp

    Woohoo, go Kathy! You know, I had secretly wondered why you weren’t in ROW80, I’m glad Jen convinced (or encouraged) you to join in. 2012 is going to be a great year. Also looking forward to seeing what you have in store in WWBC. I have a new project coming at that as well (working on the first pieces of it tomorrow).

    Great goal choices. I know you’ll succeed 🙂

    • Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

      I’m with Kathy that you and Kerry as ROWBro’s are a force of nature. 🙂

      Totally jealous of all you WWBC’ers. I’m not ready yet, but when I get back to fiction, I’m gonna be begging for entrance.

  3. Louise BehielLouise Behiel

    good luck with your goals, Karen. It will be interesting for you to discover if public posting enhances your goal achievement or takes it the other way. Can’t wait to watch your journey unfold.

  4. Karen McFarlandKaren McFarland

    Okay Kathy, I am in awe of your goals. Seriously, your goals are amazing and I know you’ll do well. I am just putting the finishing touches on my ROW80 post. I promise you it can’t hold a candle to yours. I may have to go back and give myself more challenges.

    Congrats Kathy! Wow, you Rock! 🙂

    • Jenny HansenJenny Hansen


      It’s not about the how many (I only have 4 this round) – it’s about being measurable and having the most important goals for you. The nice thing about doing multiple rounds is that you can take a round to hit your stride and adjust your goals as you go along.

      I’m going to look at yours now, and I am positive they are fantastic!!

  5. Marcia RichardsMarcia Richards

    Fantabulous, Kathy! Very ambitious goals, but it will be a good test to see what works for you. I did the same thing during one of the rounds. I fared better than I had expected but I did make some changes part way through. Gotta give it a go and see what happens! Good luck to you and see you there!

  6. Renee A. Schuls-JacobsonRenee A. Schuls-Jacobson

    Way to go Kathy! I have to admit, my new years resolution involve creating better balance and WWBC and planning a bar mitzvah are about all the extra I can take on right now.

    I know you can do anything.

    I cannot.

    I will be posting twice a week with one guest post. I have to do this or my husband will kill me. So after June I think I’ll be more free to write the way I’d like to. Until then, I’ll look for your ROW updates! 😉

  7. Kerry MeachamKerry Meacham

    Welcome aboard, Kathy. Don’t forget that you can adjust as you go, either for a few weeks or wholesale changes. It’s part of the beauty of ROW80. Good luck.

  8. Julie GloverJulie Glover

    I’m glad you’ve thrown your hat in the ring! This will be my fourth round of ROW80, and I get better at it with each time. Best wishes with all of your goals.

  9. NatalieNatalie

    Woot woot – welcome aboard the ROW80 train Kathy! So happy you’ve decided to jump in whole heartedly. Love your goals and I have no doubt with a mass cheerleading squad, you’ll do fantastic in achieving them!

  10. Jenny HansenJenny Hansen

    I am so proud of you!! Good for you on putting these beautiful goals out. As I said, if you need an accountability partner (we call them ROWSis), I’m in. 🙂

  11. Fabio BuenoFabio Bueno

    Hi, Kathy! I’m a first-timer. Jenny Hansen, Angela Peart, and Natalie Hartford inspired me to join. Loved your goals!

  12. Stacy GreenStacy Green

    Welcome to Row80, Kathy! It’s a great group of people, and it’s been a wonderful way to stay on task AND get through tough times. Good luck:)

  13. Sherry IsaacSherry Isaac

    Rock it, KB! With my blogging partners, I’m on board for Life List Club. I am so fortunate to have writing buds who exchange our goals weekly (one of who is Gloria Richard, also new to ROW80 this month), so I understand your wistful sighs. Much success with your goals.


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