January 2nd, 2011

Goals and Focus in the New Year


I don't believe in New Year's resolutions, as such. People rarely seem to stick to them, and then they feel bad. Phooey.

Goals, on the other hand, I can get behind.

I like lists, for one thing, and you can write down goals in lists. But I also find that if I start the year with a concrete set of goals, it helps to keep me focused as I forge ahead. And let's face it, with everything we have on our plates, it is nice to have a reminder of what the heck it was we'd set out to do in the first place.

I sat down this week and reviewed my goals for last year to see how well I'd done. Not terrible, actually...about 7.5 out of 10, I'd say. (Yes, the list could have been written better, hence the .5)

I tend to divide my goals into two categories: personal, and writing. On the personal side I did much better with rediscovering how to relax and have fun (thanks, Blue Moon Circle!)and pushing outside my comfort zone. Didn't find the man of my dreams, but I'm not sure that belonged on the list anyway. Oh well. Let him find me.

On the writing side, I actually accomplished 4.5 out of 5--finished Pentacles and Pentimentos,the novel I was working on (and another after it), finished the edits for P&P and sent it out to agents, spent more time and energy promoting the nonfiction books (since I had two coming out in one year), and managed my online time better with more blogging and less "social" time. Oh, and I got an agent. WOOT.

Yep, that was the big one.

The only thing I didn't accomplish was to get a book contract for the fiction. So that goes on the top of this year's list. And I have every expectation that I'll be able to put a check-mark beside that goal before too long.

I'm coming up with a new list of goals for this year, both personal and writing. But the biggest goal remains the same: to be my best self, both as a human being and as a writer. Working on that one...check.

What are your goals for the year, and what are you doing to achieve them?