Sunday, December 27, 2009

It's Time to Think About Goals...

photo courtesy of Tim Zim

Goal is a dirty word, I know. When I worked, my stomach would tighten, my eyes narrow and my heart palpitate when my boss said that four-letter word. Goal. Hrrrmmmp. Goal. Then he/or she would proceed to give me a laundry list of items I was to accomplish in the coming year. AND almost all the items I had absolutely no control over. NONE.

So you can see why goals make me cringe. I'm the kind of person who takes full responsibility for things over which I have control. Not a problem. If it's in my sphere of influence, I'll take charge and do it to the best of my ability. But don't expect me to solve the national debt, end the war in Afghanistan or balance my checkbook. Okay, the checkbook I do have control over, but I'm lousy at math.

But my dear writer friends, we do have control over our writing. I'm much better at achieving my personal goals if I write them down and keep them close. So here's the list I have taped next to my computer. I encourage you to do the same (make your own list, that is.)

1. Finish the damn synopsis (Yes, I have started referring to it as The Damn Synopsis)
2. Final edit the book
3. Attend 1 workshop to work on skills
4. Attend 2 conferences when I can pitch the novel
5. Begin second draft of second novel
6. Participate in NaNoWriMo for 4th year
7. Assemble the list of potential agents and begin the query process
8. Submit one - two essays per month.
9. Organize my office
10. Remain positive even in the face of rejection.

Okay, so there you have my goals.

What are your writing goals for 2010?


BECKY said...

Hi Tricia! I always love your posts and eagerly look forward to new ones. This one did not disappoint me, either. I recently wrote about my "plans" for 2010. I explained how I don't do "New Year's Resolutions", and I don't particularly like the "goal" word, either! Good Luck in your goals! Maybe we can check with each other from time to time and see how we're doing!

Ashley said...

Aw, now I have the whole establishing goals thing heading my list of goals. So at least I have a start for my list. 1) Get up before noon tomorrow; 2) Start a list of goals. Small steps.
YOUR list is excellent!

K9friend said...

My goal is to park my posterior in the chair and WRITE! I seem to find too many excuses for other things, despite the lessons NaNo taught me about getting things done.

Writer Chick said...


Thanks. I've learned not to mind goals if I have control over them. It's the ones that are handed off to us as being attainable, but in actuality they are nothing more than some executive's goal who is passing it down the line.

My goals are up to me to complete. If I don't obtain them, it's my fault alone. AND in the middle of the year, if I find that my target has changed, I can change my goal or leave it alone. It's all about me :)

Writer Chick said...

Ashley, yep, get busy making those goals. I want to see your re-write and hear how many agents you have queried. No rest for the wicked, lady. Oh and pass the wine.

Writer Chick said...


Yep, if the butt isn't on the chair it's a little hard to write. NaNo taught me so many things about myself and goals and perseverance.

Good luck.

Margo Dill said...

Oh, now you are forcing me to make some goals!!!!!!!!!!! Yours are great. My first goal is to submit my blasted YA novel to agents that is FINALLY DONE.

My second goal is to work on my picture books and see if I can get anywhere with any of those.

My third goal is to start a new novel.

Between all those goals, I want to keep writing for THE NEWS-GAZETTE, WOW!, and Bright Hub, and maybe find a higher paying blog job? Oh, and keep my blog up and increase my views.

WOW! Maybe I need two years for all that.


irishoma said...

Hi Tricia,
Your goals are great and show how organized you are.
I am so impressed that you are going for your fourth year with NaNoWriMo.
Rather than a goal, I have a motto for 2010. It's "stop *itching and start pitching." I'm going to stop complaining about what needs to be changed and change it.
Happy New Year.

Writer Chick said...


Great goals. I find I work better when I have goals. Kind of like going on vacation with a road map. If I don't know how to get there, who knows if I'll make it or not. Sometimes it's fun to veer off the beaten track, but you have to know how to get back to the main road.

Good luck in 2010.

Writer Chick said...

Donna, I love your motto. I need to live by that.

David Lee Kirkland said...

Goals for 2010? Mostly two. Continue my 'poem per day'until I get to 365. (In the form of tanka, on Twitter, where my handle is Davidleek. Presently over 300. Maybe do a chapbook later.) And, continue brainstorming and networking and marketing to try to get my fantasy novel out to folks connected to the t.v. and/or movie worlds. Fantasy is hot, and while the odds are slim they are better than with the Powerball lottery!