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The Writer's Life

December 28th, 2006


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05:17 pm - 8007 Writing Goals
I've been thinking about this quite a bit lately. 'Tis the season and all that.

I just read an article by C. Hope Clark at the beginning of the FundsforWriters newsletter that made me rethink how I was wording my goals, though.

She says:
At this point of the holidays, the presents are wrapped, the dinner is planned and travel is done. Chances are you'll have
some moments to contemplate your life whether seated in front of the fireplace with eggnog or strolling through the snow that has blanketed so much of the United States lately. You know that notebook that sticks with you? The one that contains your story outlines, character thoughts and plotting changes? The one that contains your to-do lists and deadlines? That's the one...the notebook where you now need to record what you intend to do with your writing in 2007.

None of these phrases are allowed...

"Write more"
"Write everyday"
"Study writing"
"Sign up for a class"
"Read more writing books"

How many articles will you keep in play? When will you
finish the novel? How many new magazines will you break into? How much money will you make? How many articles will you sell? What hours of the day will you write and how many words will you write during that time?

Goals are only as good as the measurements. Theories are for dreams, not for accomplishments. While you start with a dream, the work comes when you mold them into reality. Most writer
wannabes love the dreams, but stop there. You know them...the
ones who talk about being famous, making money, speaking on Oprah.

You think about recording thoughts and stories that do more for the reader than they do for you. That's the sign of a good writer. He thinks more about how the writer will enjoy the words even if the writer doesn't remember where the words came from.

Failing to communicate lets others down. It's when you crave doing for others that you perform your best work.

Now...what are your writing goals for 2007?
Clue: It ain't about the byline.

(Funds for Writers, December 24, 2006, Volume 7, Issue 52)

Things to make you go "Hmmmm...."

For me, I've already made one change. In Microsoft Outlook, I have set up some daily, weekly, and monthly tasks that I need to do to accomplish my writing goals. One of them was "Write at least one hour!" It now reads, "Write 1000 words!"

I still need to work on goals for queries and the like. I'll get to that. Soon.

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