Let’s Plan for Success in 2019!
By: Loni Cameron
2019 is upon us! The New Year gives us an opportunity for new goals. I’m not always one for resolutions – it’s hard to keep those. I prefer goals: reasonable, achievable, and specific goals. In 2018, I completed my first NaNoWriMo, with an almost finished novel I’m proud of! This was a huge achievement for me. Did I plan to do it? Not really consciously ahead of time. But did it feel good! So, for 2019, I think it is time for me to make some writing goals – or promises to myself (if you will). With concrete goals (promises) in mind, 2019 can be a year where I can feel accomplished by having some concrete purpose which I can achieve by the end of the year. I hope you can make these promises to yourself, too.
- Meet other authors/Join a group – This is one of the best things I’ve done for myself. I am part of the WCYR, but I also attend other writing groups. I surround myself with like-minded individuals, who share my ups and downs. I support other writers and they support me, including through purchasing their latest release, or bouncing ideas off each other, to working out the flaws in our projects.
- Set a Reading Goal – You can’t write if you don’t read. It’s that simple.
- Try Something New – Whether it is writing in a new genre, or having a new experience to write about, trying something new is important. I think we can all manage one new thing per year.
- Get Words on the Page – You can’t call yourself a writer if you’re not writing. Get that idea down, even just the bare bones. Don’t let it get lost in the ether. Which leads us to my next resolution…
- Be Okay with Bad Writing – That NaNo novel I’m so happy to have worked on, it’s not good. At least not yet. It was difficult, but I had to be okay with writing badly. I put words on the page, which can be then moulded into something better. Turn off your self-editor while working on your first draft. You can fix it later.
- Don’t Compare Yourself to Others – This one is so difficult for most of us. In those writing groups I love so much, I do it. I compare myself and my writing to those around me. I need to stop and so should you. Let’s celebrate ourselves.
- Get up! Exercise! – Writers sit. A lot. We write, we read, we research. These are sitting activities. If we’re feeling particularly languid, they can be lying down activities. Stay healthy, rev up your energy. Go for a walk, go to a yoga class, do Just be sure to have a notebook standing by for when inspiration strikes!
- Enter a Contest/Submit Something – I haven’t done this one in a long time. We can’t move forward in our writing careers if we don’t submit out stories. It’s scary: you might get rejected. but it’s important. Do it! You might actually win! You might get an honourable mention! And your name is out there!
- Have Fun with Your Writing – Write about that practical school joker. Write a Harry Potter fan fiction. Write some bad poetry. As long as you enjoy it, it was worth your time. And you’re writing.
- You are a Writer, So Own It – This is another one I have a hard time with. But I shouldn’t. I’m proud of writing and my wild imagination. You should be, too! Let’s own our voices and get our messages heard!
I hope some of these resolutions/goals/promises speak to you. I hope you can promise yourself a more writerly 2019. Happy New Year!