Words that Begin with F for 2013 and #ROW80

I teach children’s Bible classes. One year I drafted a curriculum for 9-11 year olds with principles for dealing with the bombardment of inappropriate messages to kids: Foundation, Fortress, Filter, Focus, Friends. While explaining the course to a fellow teacher, I said that I was using F-words for each lesson.

She flinched, and I immediately caught my error. Thenceforth, I made certain at all times to refer to the list as “words that begin with F.”

I had a similar realization when I was thinking about resolutions for the New Year. Several other writers (Kait Nolan and Raelyn Barclay among them) have mentioned adopting a single word as an inspiration for what they hope to achieve in 2013.

The word that appealed to me was FORWARD. I want to keep moving forward with my goals in 2013 and not stagnate (like I did somewhat in 2012).

But other words began to crop up in my head too. Words like FOCUS–keeping my mind, time, and resources on what is most important–and FAMILY–recognizing how few years I really have left with my children at home.

I kept going with the letter F theme, and here is my list of “Words that Begin with F” for 2013.

FORWARD. No looking back. No standing still. Keep moving forward.

FOCUS. No caving to distractions. No time-suck on details. Stay focused on what matters.

FAMILY. Spend more time with my fabulous family.

FAITH. Invest more time in Bible study and prayer. God has done so much for me. I want to know Him better.

FICTION. Write, write, write. Edit, edit, edit. Publish, publish,… You get the point.

FIT. Get healthy. Eat better. Exercise regularly. Drink more water. Sure I’m not 20 anymore, but I want to be healthy in my 40+ years.

FORTY. Check off “bucket list” activities. A few years back, I made a 40 After 40 List with forty items to accomplish in my life after I hit that big 4-0. I have let that list languish. It’s time to go back to my 40 items and start living out what I want to do.

And finally, here’s a phrase beginning with F: Fess Up. Yes, it’s time to fess up on how I did with A Round of Words in 80 Days this past week.

ROW Update


  • Complete full rewrite of SHARING HUNTER. In the hands of a Beta reader.
  • Work with editors on short story for Orange Karen Anthology. Waiting for the call.
  • Revisit GRACE & FIRE (1st novel) and run through one more round of edits. Made it through 10 chapters, so I’m up to chapter 14 of 29.


  • Write one full short story.
  • Write blog posts for Sundays (including ROW80 updates) and Wednesdays. Done. Posted on Christmas Gifts and #ROW80 on Sunday, If Da Vinci Tweeted on Wednesday, and Bond-ing with the Family on Friday.
  • Start plotting sequel to GRACE & FIRE (working title: HOPE & ASHES). Researching fire, arson, and–saddens my heart–burned bodies.


Non-writing goals

  • Exercise twice a week. Zumba on Monday and Thursday.
  • Take a true Sabbath–no working and time with God and family one day a week. You won’t see me today online. I’ll be back in full swing on Monday.

What would be your word for 2013? Do you have any other great words that begin with F to add to my list?

Make sure you cheer on my fellow ROWers! You can find them HERE.

26 thoughts on “Words that Begin with F for 2013 and #ROW80

  1. LOVE your F theme for the year! A lot of great words in that list and awesome motivation. Thanks for the shout out, too.

    You had a fabulous 🙂 week Julie! I can’t believe you got through that entire packet in one week. The EDITS one is almost overwhelming in the amount of work needed per lesson. On the other hand, you inspire me to take that bull by the horns.

    Wishing you another fabulous week.

    1. Thanks, Raelyn! I did not get through the ECE packet in one week. I had already started during the holidays, so I was halfway through when I began on Monday. But I did knock out a chapter each day to finish it up! Have a marvelous week.

  2. LOL @ F-words! (First thing I thought of, too – hmmm.) I saw those one-word posts, and the one I thought of was also FOCUS. With you on FAMILY too – my daughter has been accepted at the three universities she applied to, and made her choice yesterday. Ow, it’s getting more real…I can’t believe it!

    Add FANTASTIC to your list – ’cause that’s how you’re doing on ROW80! Keep up the good work!

    1. Oh, I tried not to make everyone’s mind go THERE, while still admitting to my need to rephrase the theme. LOL.

      I can’t imagine how you feel with your daughter so close to college. My heart lurches at the thought of my babies–I mean, boys–being adults and leaving home. I’m sure you’re proud, though!

  3. Love the “F” words. You’re choices were great, and it’s completely hilarious how everyone’s mind (mine included) slipped right into the gutter!

    I like your Faith addition, and the taking of one entire day for Faith and Family. I, too, need to take a day once a week and reflect on what’s most important.

    Thanks for putting that reminder out there.

    1. I have those word art things on my bookshelves with the “FAITH” and “FAMILY.” Surely, that will remind me, right?

      Best wishes with your emphasis on what’s most important, Lara!

  4. Well, your title certainly is an attention-getter…I had to click just to see if the F-words included the one that immediately popped up in my brain. What can I say? I had to know. Your F-words certainly have a great deal more class…I really liked your list of goals, both in relation to writing an otherwise. Good luck to you! 🙂

  5. Forward<–that has got to be one of my favorite words. I like all your Fs, since they will give you a well rounded week and keep you moving forward at a steady pace. I hope you're enjoying your Sunday. See you tomorrow, friend (hey, there's a good F-word 😉

  6. My word of the year is Fearless, which I guess works well with your F list. For me, this year is all about trying new things, daring to leave behind my doubts, and moving forward with my goals. You can borrow it if you choose to. 🙂

  7. This was an awesome check-in, Julie! I think taking a word and making it a focus for your entire year is a wonderful idea. The fact that you’ve got so many great ones is even better! I wish you the best of luck with them all. I think you’re going to do a great job. 🙂

    Grace & Fire and Hope & Ashes are GREAT titles for books. Super intriguing!! Also, don’t you love it when you can follow up a goal with a resounding, Bam! Makes everything better. 🙂

  8. Oh I’m inspired. I love your F-words so much I may have to take them with me 😀 You’re charging through the round already and I’m envious of your organisation. Actually, that should be my word every year. X

  9. It’s funny how using “f words” in such an innocent sentence can sound so wrong. LOL. I love the list. Fabulous! “Forward” is a great word for making progress. Good luck on your goals!

  10. I’ll add another F-word to your fine list, FORTITUDE. Like you, I stagnated a bit in 2012. Perhaps my craft and emotional strength needed to catch up to the incredible strides I’d made in my first year.

    We move orward with fortitude and fearlessness. 🙂

  11. I’m going to snag another word – Fearless.

    I remembered today that Eleanor Roosevelt was rather fearful as a child and to get over it, she decided to face a fear every day. I took the challenge today, and took my very out-of-shape body to a yoga class.

    Thanks for the F-words!

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