Okay so the end of 2006 fell in a hole. It’s done, over, finito. Now for the NEW YEAR and a FRESH START.
1. Write. I am a writer. My goal is to write every day, long and hard, and in a professional manner, so that I will actually finish my book and also develop and complete other writing projects.
I will think in terms of DAILY hours at the computer, not minutes, in order to complete my book as well as work on the thousand other writing projects I have.
2. Be accountable. I will report here every day even if my message is brief, even if all I write is “I didn’t write.” The reason? If I force myself to post about writing, then I will force myself to notice of the amount of time and effort I put into writing. If I don’t write, then perhaps I will get tired of typing “I didn’t write” and TAKE action.
3. Commit. Whether I write for five minutes or five hours,I will write EVERY SINGLE DAY. No missing. If I am pressed for time, then I will write with the egg timer set so that I know once I fulfill my commitment to write–even for 5 minutes–I can guiltlessly attend to “real life” business. No wasting time, feeling sorry for myself, wandering to the refrigerator to get a snack, doing a quick sudoku, taking the Spider Solitaire detour. I will get what I have to do in “real life” done, and get back to the writing.
4. Have fun. One of the reasons I write is because it’s fun. It is PLAY despite the fact that I am serious about it. But I often forget to allow the “fun” to happen because I am either worried about who will tell me it sucks–voices in my head as I type–or I go straight to the point, how useless this all is because I’ll never finish. I’m giving that up. Right now.
Actually. I think I have already given it up.
I have a right to write and to have fun. Give up the worry. Just do it. I often forget that nothing can be perfect the first time around, so I must insist when I get stuck to move on, change scenes, be creative about my approach.
5. Market. Continue on my quest to send out work. Use revising shorter stuff as a break from the novel but allow myself to use my hours to write and market rather than waste time with tv or computer games or visiting that big white appliance that lies in wait for me in the kitchen.
I did not achieve my goal of 100 rejections this past year. I will start fresh and send out again and again. I still have several prospects out in the market ether and perhaps one or two might yield something, but I will not focus on the result once the decision is out of my hands. What I will focus on is getting good stuff into into its best shape and continuing to put it out there. As I do this, hopefully I will learn what works and doesn’t work, not just through the rejections, but through the experience of shaping and reworking my stuff.
6. Read. Read long hard and well. Think about what I’m reading, why it works or doesn’t work for me. Read fiction and non-fiction. Explore areas of interest and non-interest because ya never know.
7. Explore. Explore long hard and well. Every experience will enrich my real life and my writing life. But don’t let the exploring take over the writing. Writing first. Writing first.