The fourth check-in is today, and I’m actually feeling pretty good about where I am.  There is only one area where I’ve fallen behind, and I know I can catch up there as I go along, so I’m not overly concerned.  I think the thing that I notice most is that I’m not all consumed by ROW80 like I was the first time I tried it.  That time it became a drag, so I ended up not being able to do well and just stopped part of the way through.  That, and that darn character building I was having issues with. 😉 The other thing I’ve noticed is that there seems to be a lot more participation from people going to blogs and commenting on them this time.  Maybe there are more people doing it than last time, or maybe it is the fact that I know more participants, but it just seems like I’m getting more comments.  Conversely, I’m going to more blogs and commenting too.  It makes it more enjoyable.  One final thing that really helps is having someone to bounce ideas off of when you get stuck or start falling behind.  Gene Lempp is my ROWbro, and I think we’ve helped each other stay focused for the first couple of weeks.  If I can recommend one thing to anyone participating, it is to be responsible to someone for getting things done.  It has helped quite a bit.  So, where do I stand with my goals?  See below.

1 – My first goal is to have assignments turned in to WWBC on time each week.  So far so good.  I’ve been on time each Wednesday, and I should have this coming week’s assignment finished today.

2 – Goal number two is to do my Write It Forward exercises, and I’m 100% on having these done.  By the way, I highly recommend this class by Kristen Lamb.  Lots of good stuff, and it is highly interactive with participants.  If you want to see how things go back and forth, go to #wana711 on Twitter and see the strings.

3 – Number three is to score a minimum of 114 on during each month of ROW80.  The numbering system is a little crazy, but basically this means I need to do this six days per week.  I’m right on target there, missing one day each of the last two weeks.  Frankly, it has become a part of my writing habit, which is what I was hoping would happen.  If you are familiar with writing pages from “The Artist’s Way” book, think of 750words as morning pages on steroids.  You type instead of writing it out, which is much better for me, and then it gives you stats on what you typed about, like typing speed, how many times you stopped, words you used the most, and then it shows things like if you were writing about others or yourself, what kind of mood you were in while writing, what the weather was in your area when you were writing, etc.  I’m actually using my 750words time today to write this.  I just write in 750words, copy what I’ve written, and then paste it in WordPress.  I use the time on other days to do assignments in WWBC and WIF.  It takes me 15-20 minutes to type 750words, so that’s a great time early in the morning or at lunch to get some good assignment time in.  If you haven’t tried it, I would highly recommend it.

4 – Item number four is to read three books and comment on them.  This is where I’m getting into trouble.  It’s like the other areas are in good shape, but mainly because they each have a set time on an assignment or a daily thing.  Since this is just due at the end, it keeps getting kicked down the road.  I’m going to need to do some catching up today as a matter of fact, or I’m going to be way behind.  Once I post this, I’m going to shut off my computer and “get ‘er done.”

5 – The final one is commenting and linking to 15 blogs or more each week to promote other people and their work.  This week I did about 25, and it was pretty easy.  Even though I didn’t think I had done so, when I checked Trunkly, I had 20 early yesterday.  I was pleasantly surprised, and then did a few more anyway.  I recommend Trunkly, as it keeps up with where you’ve been on the Internet.  By the way, if you do get Trunkly, please feel free to follow me, and I’ll follow back.

So there you have it sports fans.  I used about 800 words, ticked off an assignment for today, and have my check-in post for today.  Have a great week.