Friday, December 6, 2013

Setting Goals

Can you believe that we're now in December?  I can't believe by how much has happened this year.  But as I look back, I realize that it's because I'm finally setting clear goals, especially when it comes to writing.  This year, I decided to make writing a priority, and I'm amazed by how much I've been able to accomplish.
This year, I've revised my Red WIP twice, written two new novels, joined writing groups, both online and in person.  I started this blog and joined social networking sites, met other writers and made some great friendships.  I think that's more than I've been able to do in the past decade.  It's pretty amazing, and I hope to continue to increase my productivity next year as well.

So now, I'm working on setting goals for next year, using December to look at what I've been able to do this year and what I want to do next year.  It's an opportunity to focus on what I want to accomplish, and I'm still working on the list.

When setting goals, it's important to try new things, to expand our abilities in what we do, but it's also important to remember not to set unrealistic goals that make us feel like failures if we don't accomplish them.  There's always a balance.  And if there is a goal that seems achievable, then it might be a good idea to break it up into bite sized goals that can be built one on another.

For example, I would like to work towards publishing now.  I have a MS that I feel is ready to be sent out.  This year, I've edited it quite ruthlessly, and had numerous betas tear it apart as well.  It's been torn apart and put back together and I'm really happy with the way that it's turned out so far.

But just making a goal of getting published isn't going to set me in the right direction.  It would probably help me to use the month of January to research literary agents, write (and revise!) a killer query and synopsis.  I have to know the steps to accomplishing my goal if I even want to start out.  Otherwise, I'm setting myself up for failure.

It's still early in December, but I think it's important to think about those goals and resolutions for 2014.  What do you plan on accomplishing?  How do you make sure that you accomplish your goals?