Thursday, December 2, 2010

Anticipating 2011

I've never been a goal-setter. To be candid, I've never seen the point and never done a good job at actually keeping the goals that I say I'm going to do.

That's why I'm, honestly, a bit surprised that I succeeded with NaNo. Say what you will about it being too short a time to write so many words, but what NaNo really gave me was a goal and a group of like-minded people with that same goal. Their was a sense of accountability - if I did my normal routine of getting bored and stopping, people were going to know.

With the success of NaNo in mind, I've decided that 2011 is going to be a year of goals and I'm immortalizing these goals on my blog so that I can't back out. If I don't accomplish them, I'll have to answer to all of you.

I know it's a little early to post my new year's goals (as in a month early) but I figure with the holidays and all it will be easier to get it out there now. (Also I can't back out and change my mind in the next month if I do it now!)

Goals for 2011 (That I'll start in January)

*Finish the edits on my recently completed MS

*Start sending out queries by November

*Exercise for at least half an hour every day (it's way too easy during the school months and spending a lot of my free time writing not to do anything - and that's no good!)

*Get a regular blogging schedule: Monday, Wednesday and Friday

*Read 110 books in 12 months (Cause if I flip 110 it's 2011 minus the two!). I feel like too often, as writers, we focus too much on our own journey - we say we don't have time to read because we're writing. And that's crap. There isn't an excuse not to read and be a part of this community if I expect to be a part of it and have other people read my books one day. I've let my reading slip and there's no valid excuse for it.

Besides, reading makes you a better writer. Period. (Why wouldn't you want this? See? No excuse cause in the end, it's helping you and your journey too.)

I'll probably mostly read fantasy and paranormal (cause it's my favorite) but I'm branching out to read all genres because, well, why not? I'm even planning to read a few leadership and business books at Mom's insistence (it may help me promote and sell my book one day!).

Do you think I'm insane for wanting to do all of this in 2011 while being a full-time student and getting (hopefully) a job?

Have you made any goals lately? How do you feel about making goals? 


  1. You go. Congrats on finishing!
    Well, my main goal is to finish revising my MS, because I think I may go insane if I don't and hope to query by the fall of 2011. We will see.
    I definitely want to exercise more.
    I have the blog schedule.
    Want to have a regular writing schedule.
    Great goals and good luck!

  2. Awesome goals! And no I don't think you're crazy. If I don't set goals I tend to be aimless, so I set them and do my best to reach them.

  3. I had to cover my eyes so I couldn't see 2011!!!!

    I need to come up for air first!

    Okay, M, inspired by you, maybe I should make some goals. *sigh*

  4. No,no--you're not insane, you are inspiring! Wow. I'd be happy to reach half those goals, especially the number of books read. I'm up to 50 for this year, can I bump it up to 100 in 2011? Congratulations for writing your goals down, and good luck!

  5. You are so brave to post these. I tend to keep mine hidden, that way no one knows when I fail.

  6. Those are some great goals! I have to start making my list too...

  7. I think those are some really great goals. And you're smart to set them now so you have a chance to let them sink in. In fact I should do the same.

    Congrats on finishing NaN0! That word count is amazing.

  8. Way to go on winning NaNo! Good job!

    I don't think you're insane. It's a lot on your plate, but I think you can do anything you set your mind to. (Says me, looking at the gal who hit her NaNo goal in record time because she knew she had to.) =o)

  9. Congrats on finishing NaNo! That's certainly an accomplishment to be proud of. :)

    I'm terrible about keeping my goals, as well. I haven't decided if I'll make goals this new year or not. :/

    Good luck on meeting all of your goals for 2011!

  10. I think these are all fantastic goals... wow. 110 books! geaux, girl~

  11. Making, dating and writing down goals is one of THE most important things to do. There have been enough studies done to prove that. Just remember if it is not reached to reset it.
    I set a goal over 18 years ago. It was reset many times and there were many times when felt I did not have the strength to reach it- it was too big. It WAS big enough that every time i fell and with every obstacle put in my path, I could always see it. I am happy to say that goal has been reached.
    The most important thing to recognize with goals is you need to continually make them. If you don't have a goal that fills you with purpose and passion, you will drift.

  12. CONGRATS AT NANO!!!!!!!!!!!
    you have some excellent goals here...
    maybe you should add sleep sometime in there... :)
    i loved what you had to say about reading! (though i do NOT read fast enough to read 110 books in a year!)

  13. Congrats on finishing NaNo! And good goals. I'm not sure I could do the 110 books in a year. I read a lot and I read quickly, but that's still roughly two books a week every week. I mean, sometimes I go through periods when I just don't read. They don't last long, but it'd be enough to screw up that number. Good luck!

  14. Those are all great goals. I think I will be setting some goals as well. I lost NaNo, but it did help me realize some things about myself. Reading more definitely helps you become a better writer.

    As for the exercise, the fiancé and I have been using EA Active on the Wii. They did really good focusing on form and a nonstop 25-45 minute workout based on how intense you set it.

  15. Those are great goals! I think they are very attainable too. It is so good to have accountability for them. Good luck.

  16. These look like pretty do-able goals, though reading a new book every 3 days...that's really ambitious! Good luck!

  17. Even though, I do think you are nuts for doing this, I think its great! Also you can recommend any of the good books you read to me haha. No its good though, and getting all that book stuff done! I sing your praises.

  18. Those are great goals. Go for it.

  19. No, go for it! What's the saying? Better to set a goal and miss it than set no goal and hit it. If you fall short, you will still have stretched further than you thought possible.

  20. I don't think you're crazy--I think these are great goals!

  21. What great goals! This was a good idea! *steal* ;) A regular schedule for blogging really helps the frazzley-ness it can create if you don't have one.

    Good luck on all your goals!!

  22. Congrats on your NaNo finish - that's awesome! And good luck with your goals. The best way to achieve them is to know what they are ahead of time! :-)

  23. You did an amazing job with NaNoWriMo! Congrats!

    I love your goals - I think they're great!

    I really wanted to read 100 books this year, but I'm only around 50 so far (sigh). I did *write* a book though, so that took up a lot of time :) I agree about reading though. There are so many amazing books I haven't read yet - I need to get on the ball!

  24. I am NOT a goal setter. I'm generally pretty motivated on my own when I decide to do something. When I do set goals, I keep them vague, just the stress of having something I should be doing out there, makes me do it right away. Goals that last all year would force me onto some sort of anxiety medicine and sleeping pills. I did nano out of peer pressure and I'd decided I wanted to write something anyway. I knew I'd be able to do it. does that make it cheating? Maybe :)
    Best of luck with your goals. SOunds ambitious but totally doable.

  25. Congrats, Melissa! I laughed that you specified you'll be starting in January with your 2011 goals. I think it's so great to set them, and check them off as you get to them. It builds confidence. My goals are: rewriting both novels and querying the first one by April, the second by December of 2011!

  26. yay for finishing nano!

    I love all your goals too. I am such a procrastinator i am not going to think of my goals until the new year, haha.

    i failed nano - but wrote about 20k. just didnt happen for me. sigh.


  27. Well done on your NaNo win!

    Fantastic goals!

    (remember to break down the big goals into smaller bite size goals which are more manageable)

    I can't believe that I have set myself the Write1Sub1 goal for 2011. We will see how far I get!!

  28. I think your goals sound challenging yet doable. And get it done in 2011 because isn't the world going to end in 2012?

  29. Congratulations on finishing Nano! WTG!!!!!

    You have some great goals for 2011. I need to set some myself. I need to do a reflection of what I've accomplished in 2010 too.

    A great easy read business book is called THE TIPPING POINT. It's really interesting.

  30. These are great goals, Melissa! I think you can do it- I wish I could read more but it's so hard! I'm finally getting into Graceling, which I've wanted to read for SO LONG. I think you can totally be ready to query by November and snag an agent. Especially with your awesome idea ;p

  31. I love goals that are all about being healthy and happy, and it sounds like you'll be both in 2011! Good luck!

  32. Insane? Maybe. Awesome? ABSOLUTELY!!!

    I love your goals and mine will probably be exactly the same! You can do it Melissa!

  33. Okay, you're definitely kind of crazy, but GO YOU! :D

    I'm not really a goal person either, but I made some and posted them on the blog at the beginning of this year. Surprisingly, this helped a lot in keeping me on point, and I'm pretty surprised how many goals/resolutions I was able to keep.

    So, awesome goals! I look forward to seeing you achieve them. :)

  34. congrats for finishing NaNo. I think your goals for next year are brilliant. It's good you are focussed and determined :)

  35. I take 50 euros per month as a pocket money. No more. Also, this my to be read shelf:
    And it's GROWING. Before I know it it will be as large as Hungrid's brother (only he won't shout "Hermi". More like "Read me me!").
    Well, I have my resolutions, doesn't mean I'll stick to them though. :) But I'll try...

  36. I am a goal-setter. I don't set HUGE goals, though.

    I set big goals, sure, but I line up micro-goals along the way to reach the big goal.

    For instance, I didn't make it a goal to write 50kw in November. (Congratulations, btw, on NaNo!)

    I make it a goal to write often, and when I write, pound out at least 1,000 words, preferably 1,250w (I like that number), and better yet, the stretch-goal of 1,500w+.

    I don't make it a goal to work out every day for a year. I make it a goal to work out 3 times a week, at least, with a stretch goal of 5 times.

    One of the things with goal-setting is the sense of failure if you set the goal too high and miss.

    Allow for misses.

    Consider the ATTEMPT a success. You're only measuring against yourself, so you cannot fail.

    And don't wait until January. Goals start today. No sense waiting, Ms. Procrastinator!

    - Eric

  37. Go for it! I'm like you, I set my goals high and do my best to reach them all but if I fall short, I'll still have accomplished a lot. Good luck meeting all your goals!

  38. WOW! Those are some goals.

    Congrats on NaNo, fellow winner.

    110 books in a year seems like a huge number. I am looking at Grad programs for creative writing and they require like 60 to 70, so 110 is way out of there reach.

    You are querying? Well, I am hosting a query letter blogfest From Dec 12to18. There's a prize. Stop by and check it out:


  39. Excellent goals! I love your explanation for reading 110 books. Goals, I usually think about on New Years eve, reading and writing more will definitely be on my list. Have a lovely weekend! ;)

  40. I think you should go for it. I'm a little high from my nano success, but I'm making some goals in my head and when I figure out which ones to go with, I'm gonna post them.

    And, like with nano, if I don't follow through, PEOPLE WILL KNOW!

    Good luck!

  41. I'm so proud of you for finishing! Congratulations!

    And it's NEVer too early to set goals... you have some great ones listed here!

    And I think you can definitely accomplish them all :)

    I have many of the same ones you listed, but add FINISH my WiP to that (which I hope to do this weekend!)

    Good luck with everything!

  42. These are fantastic goals, I'm so impressed! I think the key is to schedule your goals--work out when you're going to fit in the exercise, the reading, the editing. 2011 sounds like it's going to be a great year!

  43. Yes, You Can!!!
    These are wonderful goals, and I think you can achieve them.
    I happen to love to read, and I've lost track of how many books I read a year, but between homeschool books (my daughters), my fun books, my serious books, and books that are handed to me by friends or family, I read over a hundred each year. Some of them are very short, and a number of them are kids and YA books. I just love to read, and I hope it makes me a better writer.

  44. Better to have too many, than none at all!


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