I’ve often said I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions because I figure if there’s anything I should stop or start doing, I should start doing it/not doing it when I think of it instead of waiting until January 1st. Something’s either virtuous and a good idea or it’s not, right?
That said, goals are not the same as resolutions. Goals are the targets you set for yourself and you don’t expect to wake up on January 1 and have them all accomplished. And I do think goals are useful, as long as they fall within the Erica Ridley guidelines for goal-setting, which are as follows:
* Goals should be specific
* Goals should be quantifiable
* Goals should be realistic
* Goals should be attainable
* You should be accountable
Erica gave a great explanation of all five guidelines on the Manuscript Mavens back in January of 2007, which you can still read here. (By the way, have I mentioned recently that Erica’s awesome paranormal gothic Regency, Too Wicked to Kiss, will be released by Kensington Books in their Zebra line in just two months’ time? If you haven’t already, hop over to her website for the book. It’s chock full of fun stuff and extras.)
So, now that we are a full week into the new year, here are Jackie’s specific, quantifiable, realistic, and achievable (cough) goals for 2010:
1. Write or revise every workday, even if I don’t feel like it and even if only dreck comes out.
2. FINISH at least two projects with word counts over 40,000 and two under 40,000. (In 2009, I was real good at starting, but very bad at finishing. Aside from one novella and two very short stories, I didn’t actually write THE END on anything.)
3. Submit at least three proposals/completed manuscripts to major publishing houses.
4. Submit at least two short stories/novellas to major epublishers.
5. Read a minimum of one book per week (I have really been falling down on this one and I know it’s not helping my writing).
That’s it. Pretty simple, really. I could have been a lot more specific about the individual projects I’m planning to work on, but decided that probably wasn’t a good idea since a sale of any one project could derail my plans to work on others (especially since they’re mostly unrelated to each other and/or targeted to completely different genres/publishers).
Check in with me again in about 358 days to find out how I did ;)!