Handbags, Books...Whatever

Handbags, Books...Whatever is the website of Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction. Handbag lover. Avid Jazzerciser. Mah jong player. Yoga practioner. Movie fan. Book devourer.Choc-aholic. Best Mom ever. And adores Handsome.


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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Diana Cosby on Setting Goals and her new book, His Conquest - October 29

Diana Cosby is back for an interesting discussion on goals and dreams. AND posting an exerpt from her latest book, His Conquest. Welcome, Diana!

I think it's so imperative that each of us have direction, understand exactly what we perceive as goals to be able to achieve them. How can you understand what you truly want until you define it? How can you achieve what you have not defined?

I have complete clarity of my vision. My personal goal in life is to help make a positive difference in others. My writing goal is to become a NYTimes Best-Selling author. I've made a marriage of my personal and writing goals by combining them in that I give 10% of my royalties to a charity of my choice. So, the better my books do, the more I can help others via financial means. In addition, I enjoy hands on help with one of my favorite charities being Habitat For Humanity.

This past year I saw the fruition of one of my goals dear to my heart - starting a scholarship at a local high school. Other goals with the 10% of my royalties is to buy a working dog for a local police force, buy a fire truck for a local fire station, and my personal favorite, sponsor an entire home for Habitat For Humanity."

Questions:

What makes a good goal? How is that different from a dream? To me a goal is a clear decision of what you are trying to achieve with steps broken down to achieve it. A dream is a wish without a plan.

Should goals be short term or long term? A goal is personal and can be both. You can have a large goal with smaller 'goal' steps broken down to achieve the larger goal.

How does one know if a goal is realistic? I believe a realistic goal depends on the person, their capabilities, drive as belief in self. I tell people if someone has achieved the goal you want, then it's attainable.

What if goals conflict with one another? You must prioritize goals, decide what you truly want, then focus and persevere.

Should all goals have a due date? I firmly believe that setting goals as deadlines gives you a stronger focus as motivation.

What if one gets discouraged?  Becoming discouraged is normal, this includes doubts of self, life situations or just being plain tired. It happens, and to me it's important from the start to acknowledge that you'll have discouraged moments. For me when those doubt-filled times come, I stop, review my goals as what I've so far achieved, then regroup and push forward.

What if goals change? As we grow, I find that our goals, what's important to us, changes as well. So, if you find your goal changing, stop, reevaluate if this is indeed what you want and best fits your life, break down the steps, then persevere.

How does one stay focused and avoid procrastination? By planning steps forward toward your goal, setting deadlines, and using what best motivates you to propel you forward. For example, when I'm writing new pages, I can't check mail until I've written a new pages. A small but effective reward for reaching a goal. :)


So what are your thoughts on Goals and Dreams?


Teaser alert! Here's an exerpt from His Conquest:

Through the carved window, Lady Linet Dancort scanned the midnight sky battered by hard, spring-fed rain. She must hurry. With a steadying breath, Linet pushed back her hood and stepped into the torchlight. A slight scrape sounded as her slipper touched the stone floor.


The Scottish rebel whirled to face her.

Lightening split the sky. Thunder snarled in its wake. Lord Grey's eyes, feral like a wolf's, locked on hers.

A tremor rocked her as potent as the next blast of thunder. Her body commanded she retreat. Linet refused. Like the air pulsing with energy, her every sense became charged with awareness.

The urge to shield her face from his unapologetic glare stunned her. Throughout her life she'd been given the freedom to study alongside her peers. Her father had encouraged her to speak her mind. Never had a man's presence, much less his gaze, incited her interest to a mind-spinning degree. It was illogical this prisoner could make her feel anything by a mere look.

But standing paces away, with his warrior's dark gaze burning into hers, her body trembled. She owed her reaction to nerves. And rightly so. By the rebels formidable height, scathing look and arrogant stance, there was little safe about the Scot. And with orders for Seathan MacGruder to be hung at first light, he must be desperate.

As was she.

Head held high, she stepped to within a hand's length of the cell door. Lightning illuminated the chamber, exposing he'd shifted his body, his feet now braced in an aggressive stance.

"I have come to set you free." Thunder rumbled, this time closer, an ominous backdrop to her quiet offer.

The earl remained silent, his expression raw with distrust.

The rebel doubted her. She'd expected as much. God forbid if he discovered Lord Tearlach, his sworn enemy, was her brother.

30 comments:

Jeanna Thornton said...

Wow, a twist to cap it off...not enough that the prisoners eyes were feral. Loved it! Goals are so important to stay focused and I like how you define personal and professional and try to blend them! Diana, good luck...I plan to take your good advice! :) jink

Diana Cosby said...

Good morning Vicki,
My sincere thanks for having me on Handbags, Books . . . Whatever! I love visiting along with your fun questions. ^5

Diana!

Diana Cosby said...

Jeanna Thornton said...
Wow, a twist to cap it off...not enough that the prisoners eyes were feral. Loved it!

~Thank you so much, Jenna. I had a blast writing His Conquest. Seathan and Linet are both very intense characters. :)

Goals are so important to stay focused and I like how you define personal and professional and try to blend them! Diana, good luck...I plan to take your good advice! :)

~If anything helps, that's what it's all about. I appreciate your stopping by. Enjoy the Halloween weekend, and I wish you every success! ^5

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

crys said...

Oh, you inspire me, Diana! Aside from your writing and books (wow!), you do so much for others and lead by example.

I need a Pocket Diana! (iDiana?) That would keep me inspired and balanced! *hugs* Love you!

VB said...

Hi, Jink! Thank you for coming to the blog.

And Diana, you are always welcome. Many good wishes for you and your writing.

I believe at my first RWA Conference, Debbie Macomber was the speaker. She had us write down our goals on an index card and own them. Handsome says to date the list too.

Yesterday, I revisited my goals and I'm very happy with what I'd written all those years ago. I've seen some changes and some attained.

Elizabeth Essex said...

This is just what I needed this morning - a bit of a roadmap to get myself through a rough patch in my current manuscript. I'm going to try and use your suggestion of breaking the problem down into smaller, more manageable steps and try again.
And loved the exerpt!

Diana Cosby said...

crys said...
Oh, you inspire me, Diana!

~:) Then we're even, because you are one incredible person whom I'm blessed is in my life! *Hugs*

Aside from your writing and books (wow!), you do so much for others and lead by example.

~*Hug* Thank you for your kind words, but as do you my friend.

I need a Pocket Diana! (iDiana?) That would keep me inspired and balanced! *hugs*

~ROFLOL! Pocket Diana - LOL I'm going to be chuckling about that all day, Crys. Thanks. :)

Love you!

~Love you, too! *Hugs*

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

VB said...
And Diana, you are always welcome. Many good wishes for you and your writing.

~:) Thanks, I always love visiting your blog.

I believe at my first RWA Conference, Debbie Macomber was the speaker. She had us write down our goals on an index card and own them. Handsome says to date the list too.

~Writing them down empowers them, forces your mind to focus on the goal, vs. thinking about it and it's only a thought.

Yesterday, I revisited my goals and I'm very happy with what I'd written all those years ago. I've seen some changes and some attained.

~Each one is a step forward. Excellent! ^5 And yes, as we grow, our goals tend to change. It's always wise to stop and refocus along the path to ensure your energy is truly toward where you want to be. :)

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

Elizabeth Essex said...

~Hey, fabulous to see you! *Hugs*

This is just what I needed this morning - a bit of a roadmap to get myself through a rough patch in my current manuscript. I'm going to try and use your suggestion of breaking the problem down into smaller, more manageable steps and try again.

~If it makes you feel better, I'm doing the same thing with my mss right now. Big fun! I will win, I refuse to let my characters get the better of me. LOL

And loved the excerpt!

~:) Thank you so much, I enjoyed writing Seathan and Linet's story. And hint, some big plot twist occurs in this story! Have a fabulous Halloween weekend, and I wish you continued success!

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Abigail-Madison Chase said...

wow,

Caroline Clemmons said...

Diana, as usual a wonderful post. I find setting goals definitely helps me manage my time. Otherwise, I shilly shally around and the day disappears.

Vicki, I see your promo for the Jefferson Christmas tour. Don't you love that town? Love the history, too.

Liz Lipperman said...

Ooh, what a great excerpt. It reminds me of the great Catherine Woodiwiss, and on that alone, I will run out and buy it.

Wonderful post on goals, Diana. I love that you give so much back with your writing.

VB said...

Hi, all. Thank you for posting. Goals are not something about think about every day.

Caroline, I go to Jefferson every year for the Candlelight tour with girlfriends. The coordinator is a good friend from Library Board. It is a very nice place to relax.

Diana Cosby said...

Abigail-Madison Chase said...
wow,

~:) Hi Abigail, my sincere thanks for stopping by. If anything helps, that's what it's all about. My sincere best to you and I wish you continued success!

Have a wonderful Halloween weekend! ^5

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

Caroline Clemmons said...
Diana, as usual a wonderful post.

~*Hugs* Hi Caroline, my sincere thanks for stopping by as your kind words. Always fabulous to see you.

I find setting goals definitely helps me manage my time. Otherwise, I shilly shally around and the day disappears.

~:) Exactly, clarity as focus are the keys. Take care and I wish you continued success! *Hugs*

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

Liz Lipperman said...
Ooh, what a great excerpt. It reminds me of the great Catherine Woodiwiss, and on that alone, I will run out and buy it.

~Holy cow, I'm flat out humbled to be compared to Catherine Woodiwiss. -blush- Wow, I don't even know how to respond but to say my humble thanks! *Hugs*

Wonderful post on goals, Diana. I love that you give so much back with your writing.

~Thank you very much for taking the time to stop by, I sincerely appreciate it. If anything helps, that's what it's all about. Take care and I wish you every success! Have a fabulous Halloween weekend!


Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Mary Forbes said...

"when those doubt-filled times come, I stop, review my goals as what I've so far achieved, then regroup and push forward."

Diana, thank you for reminding me! Today, I've done just that: regrouped with smaller goals, which are making me breathe easier.

Love ya!

Diana Cosby said...

Mary Forbes said...
"when those doubt-filled times come, I stop, review my goals as what I've so far achieved, then regroup and push forward."

Diana, thank you for reminding me! Today, I've done just that: regrouped with smaller goals, which are making me breathe easier.

~Mary, my sincere thanks for stopping by. You're an amazing writer who continually inspires me. And, your brainstorming helps me get out of many a 'stuck' story moment. *Hugs*

Love ya!

~Love you, too! My sincere thanks for everything over the years, your friendship is the greatest gift!
Love you!


Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

vb said...

High praise for you, Diana, from Liz.

Thank you, Mary, for commenting. Have a wonderful weekend.

Diana Cosby said...

vb said...
High praise for you, Diana, from Liz.

~Very much so, deeply humbling.

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Maggie Toussaint said...

I love it when you talk about goals. You are one of the most focused writers I know, and I admire your pluck.

Enjoyed the excerpt, too.

Hugs! Maggie

Chris K said...

I love how you combine your goals - and I love how some are more easily attained than others so you can always feel you've accomplished something on your journey to reach the other goals.

what an inspiring post!

And from such a great author too!!!

Author said...

Hi, Maggie, how nice you could post on my little ol' blog. Thank you.

And yes, Chris, I agree, this is a fantastic and inspiring topic. Diana and I thought long and hard about it and I'm glad we did.

Diana Cosby said...

Maggie Toussaint said...
I love it when you talk about goals. You are one of the most focused writers I know, and I admire your pluck.

~Maggie, my sincere thanks for taking time out of your busy life with your new release as your new grandchild and stopping by. *Hugs* You're such an inspiration to me over the years, and your tenacity continually inspires me! ^5

Enjoyed the excerpt, too.

~:) *Hugs* Thank you so much, I had a blast writing Seathan and Linet's story! Take care and wishing you continued success!
Love you!

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

Maggie Toussaint said...
I love it when you talk about goals. You are one of the most focused writers I know, and I admire your pluck.

~Maggie, my sincere thanks for taking time out of your busy life with your new release as your new grandchild and stopping by. *Hugs* You're such an inspiration to me over the years, and your tenacity continually inspires me! ^5

Enjoyed the excerpt, too.

~:) *Hugs* Thank you so much, I had a blast writing Seathan and Linet's story! Take care and wishing you continued success!
Love you!

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

Chris K said...
I love how you combine your goals -

~Hi Chris, my sincere thanks for taking time to stop by. I firmly believe when we combine our goals, it has an immediate as powerful impact. How can it not when you combine the things you love to do?

and I love how some are more easily attained than others so you can always feel you've accomplished something on your journey to reach the other goals.

~Clarity of goals is the key as is breaking them down into doable steps. No step is too small. Each one is forward motion.

what an inspiring post!

~If anything helps, that's what it's all about.

And from such a great author too!!!

~-blush- I'm sincerely humbled by your kind words. Take care, enjoy your Halloween weekend, and I wish you every success!

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

Diana Cosby said...

Vicki,
My sincere thanks for having me on Handbags, Books . . . Whatever! Also, another huge thanks to everyone who took time out of their busy lives to stop by and say hi. Y'all are amazing! Take care, I wish you the very best, and please let me know as you achieve your goals. I'll be rooting for you! ^5
*Hugs*

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com
His Captive/Alexander MacGruder
His Woman/Duncan MacGruder - 4 star Romantic Times review - 2009 Booksellers Best Finalist
His Conquest / His Destiny - Nov 2011

vb said...

And thank you, Diana, for yet again, a fantastic blog. Can't wait to see His Conquest on bookshelves.

Happy writing (and Halloween) to all!!!

StephB said...

Diana,
Awesome post about goals. Very inspirational. One goal I'm working on now is Weight Watchers - I have to think small, but as time goes by I find the goals are being accomplished.

Congrats on your release. It looks really interesting. I haven't read many Scottish historicals but your excerpt really piqued my interest!

Smiles
Steph

Diana Cosby said...

StephB said...
Diana,
Awesome post about goals. Very inspirational.

~If anything helps, that's what it's all about. ^5

One goal I'm working on now is Weight Watchers - I have to think small, but as time goes by I find the goals are being accomplished.

~Which is exactly what it takes, a clear goal as perseverance. Way to go! ^5

Congrats on your release. It looks really interesting. I haven't read many Scottish historicals but your excerpt really piqued my interest!

~Thank you so much, I love the MacGruder brothers series, and am thrilled to share that each story is a book of my heart. I was thrilled to learn over the weekend that His Woman, the second book in the MacGruder brothers series, made it on Buzzle.com's, "Best Romance Novel List of 2010!"
http://www.buzzle.com/articles/best-romance-novels.html
*It's all truly humbling.

Take care, you're doing great, and I wish you every success! ^5

Diana Cosby, AGC(AW), USN Ret.
www.dianacosby.com

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