12 Days Of Christmas Challenge: List of Successes

Children’s author Julie Hedlund, challenged participants of her 12 Days of Christmas for Writers series to post SUCCESSES (rather than resolutions) on our blogs this year. She believes the way New Year’s resolutions are traditionally made come from a place of negativity – what DIDN’T get done or achieved in the previous year.  Instead, she suggests we set goals for the New Year that BUILD on our achievements from the previous one. I decided to participate in this Anti-Resolution Revolution! Here is my list for 2019.

  1. I got chosen for a mentorship with author Anika Denise, and worked really hard on my craft during the three month mentorship.
  2. I started this website and I’m really proud of how it turned out.
  3. I revised several manuscripts.
  4. I attended lots of writing workshops and two conferences.
  5. I connected with other authors, agents, and editors.
  6. I made time for me and my writing on a consistent basis.
  7. I wrote some new PB drafts.
  8. I worked on my novel.
  9. I read a ton of mentor texts.
  10. I put my work out there in writing contests and submissions.
  11. I got an honorable mention in Kaitlyn Sanchez’s Fall Writing Frenzy contest.
  12. I got a request for more manuscripts from a mentor during Tara Leubbe’s Writing with the Stars contest.
  13. I found what feels like a good balance between my work, writing, and personal life.

On Day 2, Julie also challenged us to write down our “surprises,” which unlike successes are not things you set out to achieve, but good things that just happened to you unexpectedly. These serve as a reminder that good surprises await us in the coming year, too. With gratitude, I’d also like to note my surprises here:

  1. I found not just a mentor but a friend and cheerleader in Anika.
  2. My friend Nancy took me under her wing and recommended one of my stories to her editor at Charlesbridge, a kindness I’m not sure I could ever repay.
  3. Justin Colon added a showcase and submission opportunities to the #PBChat mentorship, which were a welcome and unexpected surprise.
  4. I met my friend Ana on Twitter, and she invited me to join Las Chicas Latinas – a critique group full of amazing ladies who are excellent writers and critiquers, great new friends, and offer me special insights and help with my bilingual stories.
  5. More than one person told me they remembered (and liked) my stories from previous critique and connect groups I had been to.
  6. I felt so welcomed, included, loved, and even respected by other members of the writing community at conferences and connects this year.
  7. Debut authors asked me to review their books on my website. What a compliment!
  8. Many writers offered me encouragement, friendship, kindness, and insights into the business, … often just when I needed them most. Thank you!

So here’s to 2020, and may you encounter many delightful surprises and successes on this beautiful journey.


10 thoughts on “12 Days Of Christmas Challenge: List of Successes

  1. Very nice… it’s been wonderful for me to watch part of your journey! May this year be even better!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Wendi! You are such an inspiration and encouragement. Thanks for all you do in organizing the connects and sharing your wisdom with newer writers.


  2. Love love love this! So many AMAZING things. I’m so happy thr Fall Writing Frenzy made the list and how wonderful of Anika and Nancy; they’re the best! So happy we met and can’t wait to Cheer on more successes of yours next year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Kaitlyn! I am really glad we met, too!


  3. Great achievements and thanks for accepting my invitation to our group. Your feedback is so creative and you are amazing at adding humor to my stories. My agent loved your idea of finding a puddle of water in the bathroom and no witch. Genius!!! And you know I love you train story. Keep on working hard.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Ana. You inspire me every day with your tireless work on your writing and your fearless revisions. So glad you invited me to join Las Chicas!


  4. Fabulous, Rachel! Glad we got to spend time together during Letters and Lines, and I look forward to connecting in person and in writing in 2020!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Laura. I’m glad we did, too! Happy new year!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Happy New Year! Say hi to your sister from me.

        Liked by 1 person

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