Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Have you set your Writing Goals for 2018, yet? Guest post by @KWilkinsauthor #AmWriting


Set New Writing Goals for the New Year
By Author Kelli A. Wilkins www.KelliWilkins.com



Hi everyone!


It’s January, and everyone is talking about making changes and setting goals for themselves. And why not? We have brand-new calendars hanging on our walls that are filled with unexplored days yet to come. Every day brings hope, possibilities, and opportunities to make this year really great.


But do you find yourself gazing at your new calendar and wondering, “How is it 2018? Where did last year go? I had all those plans…”


If so, don’t stress out. Not everyone accomplishes every goal they set for themselves. Take some time to look back at what you achieved last year and start thinking about this year. Evaluating your writing goals and setting reasonable action steps now will help you get on target for 2018.


Perhaps you took time off from writing and want to get back in the swing of things. Maybe your writing muse went on vacation to Hawaii and hasn’t come back yet. That’s okay. It’s fine to take a break from writing for a while—but not too long. (If you rest too long, you’ll rust!) Writing exercises, journaling, and freewriting story ideas are great ways to revive your motivation.


As we head into the new year, it seems that everyone’s talking about changes and goals. What are your writing goals for 2018? Do you want to finish the novel you started last year (or haven’t started yet)? Send out a dozen short stories? Enter a contest? Now is the perfect time to sit down and make a list of all you want to accomplish. Having a list of projects and priorities will help keep your writing objectives on track.


For example, if you’re determined to start a new book, make a timeline for research, character development, plotting, etc. Give yourself a deadline for when you want to start writing and stick to it. Decide how many pages or chapters you want to finish each day/week/month. Little by little, your book will take shape, and you’ll be amazed at your progress. (Need help getting started? Check out my non-fiction writing guide, You Can Write - Really!)


No matter what your writing goals are, a little pre-planning will help you focus and allow you to flow from one writing project to another. Preparation also keeps you motivated and fends off writer’s block, because you always have “the next thing” to work on.


If you write magazine articles, are there any major publications you’re targeting? Start brainstorming ideas now, make a list of places to send queries, and check out potential markets for their latest submission guidelines. (It’s also time to be thinking 3 to 6 months ahead and plan those spring and summer articles.)


Write fiction? Have you found any new markets? Signed up for online market newsletters? If you’re published in one genre (say, romance or horror), are you going to expand your horizons and write a different type of story this year?


Is the writing part going fine, but you need to develop (or enhance) your online profile and/or marketing? Explore writing-related websites and blogs, Yahoo Groups, social media groups, and advertising opportunities for your work. Are your blog, website, and author page(s) up-to-date? Should they get a refresh (or a major overhaul) for the new year?


Take ten or fifteen minutes to evaluate your writing career. What did you accomplish last year that you’re most proud of? What would you like to achieve this year? What markets did you crack that you’d like to write for again? Which publications do you really want your work to appear in?


When you write down your goals, start off your sentences with a positive statement, such as: “I will finish my novel by June 1” or “I will submit six articles to magazines.” After you’ve made the list, note what you need to do to get started. This could include setting aside specific times to write each day, getting writer’s guidelines, or sending out query letters. Then, pick one project (the most time-sensitive one, or your personal favorite), and get to work. Before you know it, you’ll be on your way to publication!


One of my 2018 goals was to get my latest historical romance novel finished by my birthday. It’s “done” in the sense that the latest draft is finished. I need to give it another proofread before I send it out, but that’s one goal down so far.


This is also the perfect time of year to let go of things that no longer serve you. Simplify as much as you can, and you’ll make room for new opportunities and events in your life. (This applies to everything – not just writing.)


For example, if certain social media sites or groups aren’t working for you, or are taking away from your writing time, scale back on the time you spend there. Everyone gets 24 hours each day, so choose how you use your time wisely.


Cheers to 2018! Let’s make the most of it.

Kelli A. Wilkins




ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, 19 romance novels, and 5 non-fiction books.

Her romances span many genres and heat levels, and she’s also been known to scare readers with her horror stories.


Kelli’s writing book, "You Can Write—Really! A Beginner’s Guide to Writing Fiction" is a fun and informative guide filled with writing exercises and helpful tips all authors can use.

Visit her website www.KelliWilkins.com and blog http://kelliwilkinsauthor.blogspot.com/ to learn about all of her writings.


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