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Do You Set Goals/Resolutons? [Discussion]

Photo: SeanToyer | Flickr

The new year brings renewed commitment to goals for many, and writers are no exception. The flipping of the calendar from December to January just feels like a natural place to stop and reevaluate progress toward our goals and make adjustments.

Throughout January, we’re talking about the process of goal-setting, and how writers specifically can get the most out of the process. Now, howevver, we want to hear from you! Tell us:

  • How do you feel about goal-setting/resolutions in general? Do they help keep you on track or do they fall by the wayside after a few weeks?
  • Have you made any writing, publishing or marketing-related goals/resolutions for the new year? Please share them, if you feel comfortable.
  • How will you track your progress toward your goal? Do you have a plan laid out with steps to take to get there?
  • If you have a plan to achieve to your goal, how is it broken down? Daily? Weekly? Monthly? Do you have specific word count/sales numbers/milestones to achieve?
  • If you haven’t set any goals, why not? Do they feel too constricting? Do you work better without them?

Again, Happy New Year to all, and we can’t wait to see where you guys weigh in on this important topic. We’ll use your responses to craft our post topics for the next two weeks, so don’t hesitate to ask questions or make additional comments about the goal-setting process!

  • It is my goal to have a fantasy novel e-published by the end of August. It’s an ambitious goal. I will revise the date if my time estimates are way off, or if my beta readers are slow responding, but not just for laziness. I really want to do this. I will track progress over on my blog. I have the plan mapped out in general terms: finish plotting / planning this month, write the first draft by May 1, etc.

  • I think real, concrete goals are crucial. It’s not enough to say “I’d really like to do XYZ” without adding how you plan to do it. That’s why I hate the concept of bucket lists! If you want to do something, make a plan. That said, as Dale Robert pointed out, you can only control so much, so your goals should only be about your actions: word counts, submissions, attending conferences. If you have a goal, you need a plan. When you have a plan, obstacles become items on your to-do list, not show stoppers.

  • My 2011 writing goal is a page a day science fiction novel. I hope to have an e-book for it by Thanksgiving.

    I’m posting in on the web because I’ve been searching for a literary agent, and it seems one needs an agent to get an agents. The interesting news is the publishing industry seems to be following closely behind the music industry, so 2011 seems like a good year to figure out what that means.

  • Wow! Goals! Those would be nice, if only had time between writing, blogging, working, fathering, husbanding to set some, I’m certain I could achieve more.
    I do have one goal, to forgive myself for not reaching any.

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  • Goals are great motivators, if you haven’t set too lofty a one to meet. I prefer setting goals I can realistically reach. I guess mine are to get the word out about my first published ebook and get some good sales, and to finish up book two and get it into submission shape.

  • I used to begin my sentences regarding goals with “I am going to try…”, until I heard a speaker advise that “Trying is lying. You either will or you won’t.”

    My goals for 2011 are to finish my first novel (now sitting at 200 pages) and to complete book two in The Stibil Forest Adventures.

  • My [writing]goals for 2011 are to edit. edit edit and edit. To feel confident not just in the beginning of my novel (which has already been edited a ton of times courtesy of rereads when writing) but the end as well. So that when opportunities come up, liek the contest late last year with the Knight Agency’s contest, I can join in.

    I am also planning on starting a paranormal romance moving away from vamps and werewolves thats overrunning the market right now.