• Dan

Writing Goals


Poppies by Dan 2020

Howdy,

I've encountered on the Internet and heard on the news scads of comments that boil down to this: I never guessed I'd be here five years ago. Every time I read this or hear a news commentator or a politician say it, I always think about the Spanish flu or bubonic plague. I mean, hello? An epidemic isn't unprecedented. Humanity has suffered pestilence throughout history. The haunting reframe from Battlestar Galactica comes to mind: all this has happened before; all this will happen again. Again and again and again, and apparently, we'll act surprised when it does.

Anyway, I've been thinking... am I where I expected to be? My conclusion…I am. I didn't expect to be cooped up due to a stay at home order, but I did have the goal to have Solarflame published. Well, that's becoming a reality. The book isn't published yet, but it is coming in 2021. In that sense, I'm exactly where I expected (and want!) to be.

Now, maybe I'm lucky this regard, but I don't find this epidemic negatively impacting my creativity. If your creativity feels constrained, remember the words of Richard Lovelace, "Stone walls do not a prison make, Nor iron bars a cage."

Setting writing goals helps me achieve what I want. It's something I can hold myself accountable to. Personally, I don't beat myself up if I don't meet a particular goal. I tend to be satisfied as long as I'm moving toward it, even if I miss achieving it by a specific calendar date. Writing takes time. Just look at George RR Martin, he works on books for years.

Here are the goals I came up with for 2020.

  1. Finish editing my YA WIP–a small checkmark on this one. Is editing ever done? At this point, I think it's safe to say I'm proofreading.

  2. Send out more queries–a big checkmark on this one, Solarflame is being published!

  3. Attend Willamette Writers' Conference & begin hawking my YA manuscript–I won't be attending the conference unless I do virtually. I am, however, already sending out queries, fingers and toes crossed.

  4. Start a new novel-length project –I'm amazed that I'm already meeting this goal. I'm in the very early planning stages of a new project.

Writing, I am learning, is only part of the journey. Now, on the verge of publication, I have discovered I need a new set of goals. These revolve around building up "my platform." My goals in this area are still too mushy to share. Once the concrete is better mixed, I'll bang out a post on the topic.

As always, good luck in all your writing endeavors, and during plague times, remain six feet apart in public.

© 2018 by Dan