Posted on Tue 01 November 2016

Monthly Review: October 2016

sunny walk

Last month's review. All monthly reviews.

What did I complete that I am proud of this month?

✔️ My fifth magazine/feature article pitch (5 was my goal for the year)

✔️ Huge progress on Exist for iOS, both fixing stuff in the location branch and building/improving the food branch

✔️ Restarted a proper workout plan

This month's goals

✔️ Launch first month of The Monthly Review

✖️ Publish 4 posts for my blog (Sketchnotes: Eisenhower matrix)

✖️ Publish 3 posts for Hello Code/Larder/Exist

✔️ Get started on tax returns

✔️ Launch Exist for iOS update with location tracking

✔️ Send new version of Exist for iOS to beta testers with HealthKit improvements

✔️ Draft one personal essay/feature article (actually pitched two magazines with 2-3 ideas each, so I'm counting that as covering this goal)

✖️ Launch a new small new project I've started working on

✖️ Draft another new project I've been planning (1/2 done)

I had a hard time blogging this month, because until late in the month I just didn't feel like writing much. I do have a few drafts in the pipeline now, so hopefully that brief period of writer's block is over.

I'm feeling good about my efforts to pitch personal essays and magazine-style feature articles, though I haven't heard back from anyone I've pitched as yet. I've made notes to follow up on my current pitches, but it would be nice to have some feedback on how good/bad my pitches are before I continue.

I have a bunch of small personal projects I want to work on, but the ones that are manageable aren't too exciting, and the ones that are exciting will take a lot longer to get anywhere, so I'm not making a lot of progress there. I've at least made a start on a small project, and I'm hoping to be able to get it launched in November if I really buckle down.

This month's habit


A little up and down, but doing better at keeping up regular workouts at the end of the month. I've found that I feel better about my day if I start it with a workout, so I've started a plan that includes 5-6 workouts per week of around 15 minutes each. I don't think this will be too much for my body, and hopefully it'll be enough to keep me feeling good every day.

Time spent coding

22h 29m, 25 commits

Almost doubled my time spent coding this month! That was thanks to a couple of weekends where I spent many hours at the computer. I'm feeling more confident about my abilities to make things work and to figure things out when they don't work, which is helping me get more done.

Most played music

Books read

Theatre & events

Wheeler Centre panel on interviewing. It was okay for a short, free event. Learned to always record interviews and try doing pre-interviews, where I just chat with someone to build some rapport and get them to relax and trust me first.

Goals for November

  • Write 4 posts for my blog
  • Finish drafting and edit ongoing personal project
  • Write 2 guest posts
  • Finish and submit major uni assignment
  • Finish and launch Exist for iOS version that's in testing now
  • Get my side project iOS app ready for beta testing
  • Pitch 2 more magazines on personal essays/feature articles

November habit focus


This is the only habit from my list for 2016 that I haven't yet focused on. I've really abandoned piano because I've been busy and it's hard work. I'm hoping with a little bit of practice every day it'll get a bit easier and more enjoyable.

My plan is to do this every morning after working out and showering. I'll either practice a song I have music for, or use an app on my iPad to practice reading music and playing.

The absolute minimum fallback practice will be practising reading notes using an app on my phone/iPad.

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