Natasha McNeely's Author Blog

Never stop dreaming, 'cause the day you stop dreaming, is the day you stop living.

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21st Birthday + Writing!

Yep. That’s right. Yesterday, January 7th, I turned twenty-one. I know that’s supposed to be a huge deal here in the United States and whatnot, but really, it’s just another year.

I was ready for the day!

I was ready for the day!

My cousin’s wife took me to see 47 Ronin in the morning, which was a lot better than I expected it to be! The final battle in the movie was a bit short for my liking, but other than that, I really liked it. It made me cry three separate times.

After that, I went and watched my cousin’s high school basketball game. Unfortunately they lost, but he did really well! After that I went out to dinner with my family. We had Mexican food and they forced me to wear a sombrero while they sang the happy birthday song. Never again!

My parents surprised me by having my cousin’s wife Jessica (who manages the floral department at a store) make a bouquet of flowers for me since they’re in Germany and couldn’t be here. I also got some lovely Japanese Cherry Blossom scented candles and body lotion from her and my cousin.

The gorgeous bouquet Jessica made for me!

The gorgeous bouquet Jessica made for me!

All in all, it was a great day, but I was exhausted by the end of it. All I wanted to do after I got home was relax and play some video games, but I couldn’t even focus on that. I ended up in bed by 9:45 last night.

And before anyone asks: No, I did not touch a drop of alcohol.

That aside, my writing is going really well so far in 2014! Just take a look in the sidebar. That progress bar is starting to get pretty full…

I can really feel the end getting closer and closer… I might be able to finish the first draft of Silent Spirit by the end of January! We’ll see.

How was your first week of 2014? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

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The New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone!

I’m going to keep this one simple. No long-winded explanations of my goals for 2014, no lamenting the goals I failed to reach in 2013. None of that!

Instead, there will just be a very short summary.

My goals include, but are not limited to:

  • Writing 1,000 words per day.
  • Losing weight.
  • Learning to drive.
  • Traveling more.
  • Doing things I like.

Sounds simple enough. I started off my writing goal well enough, with 1,252 words written in the past hour! That’s it for tonight though; I need to do some things.

Like I said, I’m keeping this one short.

I hope 2013 was a great year for you and that 2014 will be even better!

How did you celebrate the new year, and what are some of your goals for 2014? Let me know in the comments! 🙂


Holidays approaching… Also, my birthday?!

I can’t believe Christmas is only one week away. In fact, it’s less than that since I’m writing this on Wednesday night.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m one of those people who’s already done with all my shopping and wrapping, so I don’t have anything major left to do before Christmas. Besides work. Because of the busy holiday season, I’ll be working some extra hours and I definitely can’t complain about that!

This means I’ll have a busy two weeks, though, but I’ll get through it!

On Monday I’m going to see The Hobbit with some family, which will be fun.Rosetta Stone

That aside, Christmas being so close means my 21st birthday is fast approaching. It’s only a few weeks away – January 7th! Admittedly, I cheated and got myself an early birthday present.

What, you might ask? The Rosetta Stone language program, specifically for Japanese! I have all kinds of books for learning the language, but this will help me with learning to truly speak the language. It got here today and I immediately spent two hours using it.

This will keep me busy, that’s for sure.

So, what are your holiday plans? Hanging out with family? A big get-together? Let me know in the comments!

Happy holidays, everyone! 🙂


Return To Blogging!

My plan of blogging three times a week failed, hard, this first month of 2013. I’m sorry about that. It’s been kind of an odd month, with all kinds of stuff going on, so my head has been everywhere but on the things I wanted to focus on.

The plan is to force myself to focus again as of this week. That means regular blog posts and writing. I apologize for my absence here, lately. Let’s get things back on track!

How has the first month of 2013 treated you? Let me know in the comments!

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New Experiences: What are things you’d like to do?

We all know how it is. You go to school or work, you come home, have dinner, do homework, etc, etc. It’s a cycle that repeats itself. It gets boring unless you do something to spruce it up a bit. Something unique, to break up the monotony.

There are so many things you can do!

So, what are things you’d like to do in 2013 to add some spice to your life? Go skydiving? Go on a tropical holiday? Go to the movies? Go see your favorite band or singer in concert?

Image of a unified SmackDown / ECW Wrestling R...

Photo credit: Wikipedia

For me, my new experience this year will be going to see the WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) live when they come to Germany in April! That’ll be a fun Saturday night, and as an added bonus, it will help me write Survival, my side-project. There are fights in wrestling rings in that book… although the fights are a tad different. You know, until one fighter is completely unable to fight just a bit more physical. These fighters are a bit rougher and cause much bloodshed and possible death.

So, I’m definitely looking forward to going to see that and to experience the vibe in the arena. That’ll help me portray it better in my writing. Plus, I’ll get to see my favorite wrestlers in action. And then, another goal of mine is to go to gamescom in August. My first ever trip to a gaming convention. I’m excited for that!

So, what are things you’d like to do in 2013? Let me know in the comments!

I hope you all get to do the things you want to!


2012 in review – Thank you, everyone!

Happy New Year, everyone! 2012 passed by so quickly and we’re only hours away from entering a new year now. Do you have special plans for 2013? If so, I’d love to hear about them!

Thank you to everyone who has visited my blog, commented, and just participated in general; it means a lot to me. I know I’ve been absent during the holidays, but all that is going to change. I will be blogging daily for the first week of January.

This week starts tomorrow, January 1st, and will end next Monday, on January 7th – my 20th birthday. It’s hard to believe I’ll be starting a new decade just a week from now! After that, my schedule will revert back to Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays. Look forward to all kinds of stuff: Story snippets, general posts, and some reviews.

We’ll start off my week of blogging with my 2013 resolutions, so look forward to that.

Let’s make 2013 an amazing year! Be safe, everyone!

Interested in my 2012 blog report? Just keep reading!

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,200 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 9 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Change Of Pace: Writing + Holidays!

This weekend, I took what was a very welcome weekend off. Why did I take time off, you might ask? Because on Thursday, the 6th of December, I finished the first draft of my Dark Fantasy Novella. It feels great to have finished the first stage of a project! I decided to spend this weekend away from it and tomorrow, Monday, I’m going to start editing.

A mock-cover created by Nakaya de Jong.

A mock-cover created by Nakaya de Jong.

The goal I have in mind is to finish editing in December/early January, and send the manuscript to beta readers by mid-January.

I spent the weekend mostly just relaxing. I went shopping with my parents and aside from that, spent some time relaxing by playing video games and other such things. There’s nothing like playing an RPG to help inspire you! As of tomorrow, editing of the novella will start and rewriting Tales of The Forbidden will resume.

That’s the current state of affairs in regards to my writing, for anyone who was interested.

Packages from amazon have started arriving. Two this week and another two are scheduled to arrive around Wednesday. After that, it’s just packages from family we’re waiting on. I still need to send my Christmas cards, which I intend to do this week at some point.

How are your holiday preparations going? Let me know in the comments!