So I got this idea from writer/vlogger Kim Chance (hope you don't mind, Kim!), and I think it's an awesome way to stay on track with writing and anything else in life. Several people in my writing group have been considering ways to be accountable in our writing, and I think this is a great start! Having goals and tracking your progress always helps, and it makes you really feel accomplished when you can cross something off your list as "done"! Every little victory is still a victory, and it takes you closer and closer to your ultimate goal. I'll be establishing goals at the beginning of each quarter (every 3 months). Then at the end, I'll not only make new ones, but I'll recap and see which goals I checked off and which goals will be pushed till next time. I'd love for lots of other writers to do this, and then we can all share with each other our goals/congratulate each other on completing them. The writing world is competitive, but writers aren't cut-throat. We stick together and learn from others - both their successes and mistakes. Alright, so let's begin with my 2017 Winter Quarterly Goals:
GOAL #1: FINISH FIRST DRAFT OF FANTASY WIP
This one is a VERY large and possibly unrealistic goal. I am only a few chapters in, although I have roughly outlined the book and written a number of later scenes already. I have been working on the first draft for about three months, but not very seriously. I wanted to be done in six months with the first draft, and I'm still hoping I'll make it, but we'll see!
GOAL #2: FINISH ALL MY TBRs FROM B-DAY/CHRISTMAS
Most of these were end-of-the-year goals from 2016, but I only finished one. ONE! Out of like ten. My current to-be-reads are: Crown of Embers by Rae Carson, Code Name Verity, Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (which I'm reading now), and Entwined by Heather Dixon. Four in three months? I can do it! (*she chants to herself*)
GOAL #3: TIE UP LOOSE ENDS WITH WHAT LIES ABOVE / SEND NEW QUERIES
As some of you know, I am currently querying my novel WHAT LIES ABOVE, and as of right now, the only loose end is an R&R I have out with one agent. The future is yet to tell what will happen there, but if it doesn't work out, then my goal is to start sending out new queries to other agents, as I have only sent out about 25 so far.
GOAL #4: ENTER A WRITING CONTEST
Any ideas, ya'll? Preferably ones without a huge entry fee, and from relatively reputable magazines/websites.
GOAL #5: KEEP CONNECTING WITH WRITERS & BUILDING NETWORK
So far, this is going great. I joined a writing group and am meeting other awesome writers & starting conversations with them. I also have connected with other authors through blogs and Facebook. I want to work to continue this and make lots more solid connections!
GOAL #6: FINISH MY PUZZLE
This is a personal one, and kind of a funny one too. Back in October, I fractured my foot and was off it for weeks. In order to pass the time, I thought I'd start this beautiful Thomas Kinkade puzzle, which I'd probably never do otherwise. Now that I'm back on my feet, I still haven't finished it! It's been on my to-do list, but I haven't disciplined myself to finish. So this quarter, I shall do it! Haha, we'll see ;)
Alright, there we go! Of course, I have other goals (personal ones), but these are my main ones. I can't accomplish everything at once. Every little victory is still a victory! Everything I cross off my list helps me move one step closer to the end result. And I think that's a great thing to remember, especially for newer writers... Finishing a book or getting published -- those things don't happen overnight. There are a thousand steps involved, but every one taken brings you closer. Just keep persevering!
So what are your writer/reader goals? They can be New Year resolutions, or quarterly goals, or just things you hope to accomplish... Comment below. I'd loved to hear!