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HELLO 12 x 12 in 2015 Participants!! WELCOME to your first monthly check-in. This is where we share whether we wrote or revised this month or made any other progress in our writing. I go first, then I ask you.

But remember, as one of our participants said on the Facebook Group yesterday, if you didn’t get a draft done this month, it’s okay. Really. This challenge is about motivation, not self-flagellation. Even if all you were able to do this month is get your bearings in the group and absorb, through osmosis, all of the energy and positivity in the group, you are on your way to a great year!

As for me, I did get both a January draft written and another one revised. My January draft was a re-write of a story I lost after my iPad shattered last November. But since I had to recreate the whole thing from my imagination once again, I counted it. 🙂

Now tell us about you. Did you start the new year by completing a draft and/or revision? Let us know in the comments and in the Rafflecopter. Remember, one lucky 12 x 12 member will win a picture book critique from the fabulous Tara Lazar. May the odds be ever in your favor.

Here is what you need to do to check in for a chance to win a Picture Book Critique from Tara Lazar:

  1. See the Rafflecopter widget at the end of this post that says “Picture Book Critique from Tara Lazar” at the top.
  2. Click on the “Comment on Tara’s Blog Post” button. It will reveal the task, which is to comment on the featured blog post. Commenting on the featured post is mandatory and gets you one point even if you didn’t complete a draft in January. If you haven’t yet commented, click here to do so. Then click ENTER on that option in Rafflecopter, which will then open the next two options.
  3. Click on the “Wrote a PB Manuscript” button. This will ask if you completed a PB draft in January. If you did, click ENTER, if you did not, move on to the next step.
  4. Click on the last “Revised a PB Manuscript” button. This will ask if you revised a PB in January. If you did, click ENTER. If not, move on to the next step.
  5. Submit your entry. Rafflecopter will track your points.

You have until midnight Eastern on February 1st to enter your results. Rafflecopter will draw a winner and I’ll announce it on the blog on February 2nd.

We’ve got a great year of writing ahead of us! You can do this!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This Post Has 120 Comments

  1. Shazam! Been an excellent month for me, with 3 new drafts (one with half a dummy finished), and two revisions. Glad to hear you got your draft back together, Julie, maybe even better than the original, eh?

  2. Wahoo! Great to be back here amongst friends. Happy to report that I drafted and revised PB mss and also revised a dummy and many illustrations for my portfolio. Very productive month! 🙂

  3. Thank you 12×12! This is my first month as a member of this talented crowd, and it’s been great to meet all of you online writer (and illustrator) friends. The webinar was inspiring too. And YES, I wrote a full draft (which needs revising!) and I completed a revision, which I submitted . . . so, yay!

  4. I didn’t revise anything (unless I do that today!) but I wrote two new drafts so I think that counts as a good start to the year!

  5. January has been a month of learning and fun! I revised seven mss in Meg Miller’s ReVIMO and completed a new ms. I am thankful for the inspiration and support of fellow writers.

  6. Enjoyed the kicking off of this year’s 12×12 and excited to have completed a new ms as well as revised another! Great to be around so many inspiring and enthusiastic writers!

  7. A little down time in December must have given me a burst of energy! In January I wrote a new draft and did revisions on three other “marinating” mss. I hope the energy stays with me!

  8. Having just joined, I haven’t written a new story’ but, I organized my story ideas in an attempt to decide which ones I want to focus on this year. And I used a tip from a link in 12 x 12 to begin revising my current project.

  9. Looking forward to a challenging year and learning about writing children’s books from successful authors like Tara Lazar.

  10. So happy to be starting the year with this amazing group!!! Thanks to Jon Bard for spreading the word! I completed my January draft, a fiction PB that I started last November. It’s been revised several times now, and will continue to be tweaked as I use my newly-learned tips from Emma Walton Hamilton–yaaaaa!!!! I’ve started my February draft, an alphabet book on space themes (close to my heart and personal history) which may incorporate a fictional MC to carry it through. I have a feeling it could take me on a wild, learning adventure!

  11. I didn’t actually plan on writing a new draft this month. I planned to focus on revisions. But saw a picture on Twitter and BOOM, out came a draft. So one new, and two revised. I still have spontaneity. 🙂

  12. i don’t know how that is, Julie, but sometimes, the crazier life is, the more we can get done. I’m so glad that you were able to write a draft AND revise, in the midst of 12×12 registration and everything else you are doing. 😉
    This month has been extremely productive for me…I did write a new pb draft…and submitted it to RYS and to all of my crit buddies…revised it a million times, and then sent it in to the Highlights contest. I also revised two other pb stories and sent one to an agent. I wrote two poems (not for kids) and submitted those to the Reader’s Digest Poetry Contest and the Rhymezone Poetry Contest. Meg Miller’s ReviMo was really helpful in getting me in the revising mode. I’m excited for Kristen Fulton’s Mini-Wow coming up in February…I need 9 non-fiction ideas for that.
    There’s an awesome vibe in 12×12 this year – so much energy and enthusiasm – and the kick off webinar with Emma Walton Hamilton was brilliant – so many important takeaways that I will try to incorporate into my writing! Thank you, Juliie. 🙂

  13. I’ve enjoyed 12 X 12 this month. Besides my other projects I’ve revised two picture book manuscripts: Steady-by-Jerks-like-a-toad-a-walking, and Dancing with Orcas. I’ve also written first drafts to two other possible stories. I’ve especially enjoyed the critique portion of 12 X 12. The process helps me look at my own writing in a different way.

  14. I did get a January draft written and another 5 and many revisions. 12×12 is an excellent tool to motivate and educate <3

  15. So pleased that I joined 12×12! Completed draft for one PB and did multiple revisions. Determined to keep the pace. Absolutely loved Emma’s webinar and Taras interview. Thank you, Julie!!!!

  16. I’m so excited to be participating in 12×12 for the very first time. During this first month I took Susanna Hill’s amazing writing course, Making Picture Book Magic. So i was able to complete my first official picture book draft and also revise it! I’m looking forward to a very productive 2015, full of many new experiences!

  17. I completed a draft of a story I’m super excited about, got great feedback from my critique group, and have begun to revise. I’m hoping this story will be ready for submission in a few months! Thank you!!!

  18. January has been a good month, writer-wise, in between trips to hospital and dentist’s office for my husband’s bladder cancer surgery and 19 extractions for his new dentures. In addition to 46,00 words and counting for my first novel, I revised a PB manuscript and submitted to a publisher. Another publisher is still holding one of my PB manuscripts, so fingers crossed. In December, I received copies of my brand new PB, The Not So Secret Life of Nimh-A Dumbo Rat, so I’m eager to start sending more mss to agents in 12 x 12 this year.

  19. Didn’t find out about 12 x 12 until mid Jan., but it helped motivate me to finish 1st draft of a PB ms I’d been working on. Inspiring start to a new year of writing!

  20. I revised one manuscript (which needs more revisions) and wrote some incomplete drafts that I’ll polish off at some point! I’m also working on a middle-grade novel. Thanks for the inspiration and encouragement!

  21. 1 new draft in January. It is revised but will go to my brand new 12 x 12 arranged writing group in February.
    Also, 1 existing draft revised. Thanks for this wonderful space to obsess about picture books.

  22. I am so excited about completing January with 3 of 3! It’s the first month in a long time that I have written a new one (thanks to the idea from PiBoIdMo) and revised another! YAY! I’m really curious after watching the video though, who all the names were for writer blogs to follow besides Tara’s? Anyone know what post she was talking about?

  23. I’m so glad that I didn’t miss this check in! I seemed to miss them all last year. I’m kind of excited about this one. I’d love Tara to review one of my manuscripts! It would make me so happy even if she hated my story (which she would not, but still). ^_^

    Is anyone else almost sad to see January go? I didn’t get all the things done, but I made a big effort this month. I want to continue making big efforts all year round. I’m moving this coming month, so I know it will all be crazy, but I’m going to fight for every minute I can get to write and draw!

    Carol I can’t remember the video, but I think all the writer’s blogs to follow are under resources! I’m sure more will be added as they find more resources. There are such great resources there!

  24. I’m hopping in to tell you guys that I did great. I enjoyed the interview about BUNNIES. I revised. I wrote a darling little draft of 108 words, the shortest I’ve done that makes sense. Now of course I’ll have to read it tomorrow morning after a couple cups of coffee and see how I did. It feels good to feel accomplished.
    Onward.

  25. I hope I entered that correctly. I wasn’t sure if I commented in the right spot on the blog, but I did enjoy the interview. I feel like I’m in college again. Which is actually a good thing for me, I loved college. I was able to write one draft that I’ve been hoping to write for about 4 years, received very helpful feedback and I was able to revise it once. I’m excited about my second revision on this story, but I will have to juggle that with February’s new challenge.

  26. Still easing into the swing of things, but feeling like I’m gaining momentum! Next step is to be more active on the forum and to find a critique group. Onward!!

  27. A rough draft and editing needed, started last year, completed today. Sketches in the works. Also I need to create a new website, current one is an embarrassment. It has lagged unattended due to a heavy work load.
    Would love to have days that are 30 hours long! 😉 I could accomplish anything.

  28. Exciting start to an New Year. Really feeding off the enthusiasm of the 12 X 12 Challengers.
    Revised my manuscript Fly, Ignacia! Fly! Heading into February feeling encouraged.

  29. I wrote a new manuscript and revised one. Already I’m doing better than I did last year. Thank you, Julie! I think your 12 Days of Christmas helped me set some realistic goals AND meet them. Off to a great start! I’m so inspired by this group. Thank you, everyone!

  30. YAY! I did it. I wrote my January MS, (ok, it is a tad over 1000 words, so I might need to do a bit of cutting), but I did it. I also revised another PB, but after I looked at it today, I need to go back to the drawing board. I also started 2 other PBs , and dug some other ones up from the cemetery for stories. I also am working on my voice for my YA novel. AND I am back in the forum!!! YIPPEE! Hope to see many of you in New York. I can already hear Frankie Boy singing…

  31. First month as part of 12×12 and I have accomplished more in one month than I have in the past 10 years LOL This is just great! Loving it. I revised a PB I wrote a couple years ago, including finishing off the illustrations for it AND I wrote another PB that goes with the first!! Even if they never get published I still feel SO accomplished!! 😀 😀

  32. Happy to be among such a great group of writers and illustrators. I joined in January, began and posted a new manuscript, and revised another one. My goal is 12 in 12 and I find everyone to be an inspiration to continue working diligently. Thanks.

  33. Feeling committed. Realizing I like writing the more I write. This month, sketched out a half dozen ideas, wrote two drafts and revised the first one after comments from my critique group. Thank you 12×12!

  34. I had a great month. I finished a draft, started a second one and finished the 15th revision on an older piece.

    Enjoying 12 x 12.

  35. No new manuscripts this month, but I did come in under the wire with an inspired revision! Determined to make space for 12×12 in my life this year!

  36. Talk about under the wire! Wrote my very rough draft in the bathtub tonight! Have been mostly working on website copy and marketing, thanks to Julie’s How to Make Money as a Writer (which I highly recommend!). Hope to do better in February.

  37. Fun first month: wrote a first draft for a PB, met a friend (and 12 x 12 member, Jenn Larsen) at Local bookstore to talk about newly published PB and watched a great webinar lasts Wednesday!

  38. It’s been a busy month, but I managed to revise a PB manuscript and have begun to plot out a new story. My goal is to make that a complete ms by the end of February. This challenge and the forum have been great so far — I’m looking forward to the rest of the year!

  39. This being my first check-in, I wasn’t sure if the widget was working properly. It didn’t ask me anything or to submit my entry. So I selected “revised” to get to the submit step. Except that there was no submit step. And I didn’t revise. And now I can’t change it. Urg. Was I just supposed to only click on the ones I did and leave the last one unclicked? That is my newbie problem of the night.

    The good news is that I did complete one draft and I have a rough outline for another story. So yayy progress. Thank you!

  40. I’m so glad to be getting back into the swing of things. I was able to get two manuscripts revised and one new draft done. AHHHH! And there’s still so much more to absorb in learning this writing business…but for now, I’ll celebrating this month’s accomplishments with a glass of my favorite sweet wine *or is it kool-aid* and some chocolate! 🙂

  41. This has been a very hectic month, but with so many exciting things like joining 12×12 and finding a wonderful new critique group! I’m enjoying all of this very much. It helps keep me focused and dedicated =)

  42. I’m HYPED. I did get a WIP revised, a picture book draft written, AND took Renee LaTulippe’s Lyrical Language Lab this month. (Took some nighttime coffees, but hey.) It all dovetailed together, and a short poem from one of my lessons expanded into a PB draft. Yep, Black Beetle and his friend Cricket inhabit a rough cut story that does, by all counts, need some deliberate revision, but it has a good beginning-middle-end. So I’ll be working on it and some others, as February is my first submission month. HOORAH–working for this kind of success every month this year.

  43. I have the bare bones of a new story and have started revising another. Hoping to join a critiquing group.
    Jodi Moore’s words were encouraging and inspirational.

  44. I’m happy to say that I drafted a fun story this month and I can’t wait to share it with my critique group and get started on a fresh one for February.
    (Passes out at January finish line.)

  45. I wrote and, thanks to the Revi challenge, revised manuscripts. A successful month spent more in the dark than not. Now, what does this Rafflecopter look like and when will it be landing or hovering or buzzing or whatever it does?!

  46. A great start to the year! I completed 2 drafts (although I have to admit the second one needs aton of work!) And revised a ms I wrote towards the end of last year.

  47. Woo Hoo! Just under the wire. I thought I’d only earn 2 points in January, but I just finished a first (rough!) draft of a new story too!

  48. I revised several picture books and I wrote a new one. I also subbed to some agents and revised two short stories. It was a busy but successful month

  49. Thanks to ReViMo , I completed 2 major revisions (one was a complete overhaul!) and I have a complete first draft for Jan!! Feeling pretty happy, I am now undergoing 2 more revisions..

  50. I love the pacing of 12 x 12. write one, revise one isn’t too overwhelming, and there is always the option of doing more. I wrote one, and revised two.

  51. Just joined last week. I’m on vacation this week but have been inspired to make some revisions on a favorite manuscript. What a great start for my first year of 12 X 12. Excited to start writing more when I get home.

  52. January was great. Finalized one polished PB draft. Wrote the cover page too. Just waiting to submit in February. Set-up my twitter & linkedIn. Organized my working space. Wrote draft one of another PB. Gathered more research for a novel. Read books on writing. Attended three webinars.

  53. This was an excellent month for me! I just hope I can keep my momentum up next month! I wrote three new manuscripts and revised at least five! I can’t thank 12×12 enough!

  54. The volume of work staggers me! I am determined to have at least one draft completed this month. I have some ideas so I just need to pick one and start. Very impressed with the joy reflected in following your hearts.

  55. Feeling very thankful to have joined 12×12. Jan was a great month and the enthusiasm of the group along with the Webinar helped provide motivation. During the month, I completed a short story which was entered in a competition (keep my fingers crossed) and was my very first entry. A leap!
    Also, have worked up two new drafts of series PB and researched another PB work in progress.
    Staying strong…

  56. I’ve got one draft done, one revision done, and I’ve been brainstorming a great premise and just need to figure out how to turn it into a draft for February. Yay everyone who had a productive January!

  57. January has been a great month! I wrote 1.33 new manuscripts and worked on revising. I’m really looking forward to a great year here with the 12×12 crew. I’ve wanted to join for the past few years and finally took the plunge! YAY!!!!

  58. Yeah, this will be my third year participating in the 12 x 12 challenge. I feel very productive at the end of this first month of 2015. I took an old story and gutted it to the point that it really became a new story, revised it and then submitted it to the Highlights fiction contest. I have another one that I revised that is getting close to submission ready. I’m also working on a wordless story and I’m fleshing out the layout of the book and illustrations. I think in all, it has been a great month. 🙂 T

  59. I was so busy with work in January, that I didn’t think I’d have time to write a new PB, but then bam! Wednesday night, one just came out! Yea! Also, did some revising on an old one. So happy to have joined 12 x12!

  60. Revised two manuscripts and drafted two new ones. Looking back, I am surprised I got that done considering I’ve also had fun connecting with everyone in the forums and Facebook groups. Great start to my rookie year of 12×12 and looking forward to the year ahead!

  61. I drafted a manuscript that I am not terribly excited about-but at least I wrote one, right? I revised a pb that I’ve been fine tuning and tweaking. Here’s to all of us having successful months ahead!

  62. I wrote a draft, revised a draft, and hope I can repeat the same next month. I couldn’t do it without the support of this caring community everywhere I look! One of my kids even got married this month, so I wrote and revised all this week! Whew!

  63. I Wrote a draft and revised an old draft! most productive I’ve been in months. Though, I didn’t see this blog post until 7 days too late (doh!)

  64. I wrote a manuscript but I registered late to make it to the February check in. However, I am excited to join this group and is looking forward to share my stories with all. The night is young and ideas kept coming and most important of all, tomorrow is another day.

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