Writer Life & Lessons

Goal-Setting for 2014

yule13 018Since 2009, I’ve picked a word for my year instead of resolutions. Then I began adding goals, and one year, that worked amazingly well for me.

For 2014, I’ve picked a few goals around de-cluttering ready to move house, balance my work with some relaxation time, and building a sleep-wake routine that works for me. The fourth and final goal is “meet any writing goals.”

Which brings me to this post, where I’m suddenly looking at the scribbled-over-calendar I had planned. When Ellie wrote about her goals, I loved the idea of a timeline throughout the year, and began to make my own. But somehow, I ended up with three finished, polished novels at the end of December; and considering I leave for my day-job at 8am, get home after 6pm and am planning to move house and need to actually plan for my wedding; I don’t think that’s very… realistic.

So here I am, sat in front of an empty blog page, wondering what kind of goals I can realistically set.

And I think back to this year’s aims.

Firstly, I’ve completed the mini-goal I made to get a copy of the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook 2014. So that’s a tick. I’ve bookmarked a couple of key pages, including advice by Terry Pratchett, who owns who in publishing as of 2013, and the agents details pages.

I’ve also completed my Planes Shifter novel to the point where I’ve actually printed it out. 91,000 words sat on 206 pages at size 10 font two pages to a sheet; but compromised with double-space and wide-margins. That was a goal for August, then October, and then January. Well, I made the last one.

I also attended a writing workshop and a fantasy convention. I think the latter taught me more than I could have learned on my own in the next three years. To some extent, the best way to learn is to write/read/edit. But actually meeting people who have already done it – that’s priceless. And I’m going to do it all again in 2014.

At the end of the year, I signed up to the Write Chain Challenge, because I wanted to get into the habit of writing 6 days a week. However, I don’t think it’s going to be for me. So I’ll keep the widget up, and if I do get a nice chain, that’ll be good – but I’ve decided not to make this a major goal of 2014.


Writing Goals for 2014:


– I want to track how many words I write. The spreadsheet I found has a “goal” box, so I’ve added 250k, because I’m interesting like that. But my main goal is to just track how much I write. This will also help me track my “productive” times of the year/how events impact my writing.

– Write at least once a week, even during “editing” phases. That means during those sections, I need to write something else.

Plot/Outline Resilience in full. This is a light goal; because Planes Shifter is still my main focus. But I need something different to give myself a break; and it’s the oldest story I have that still excites me.

– Begin submitting to agents by July 1st.

What are your goals for 2014?

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