We’re in the Same Boat
As the years come to a close, we often take time to reflect on the year we just had, what were the highs, the lows, where are we sitting right now, and where would we have liked to be. For some people, they look back at the year and realize they accomplished so much more than they had thought possible. Far more common, we look back at the year and see failure, missed opportunities, or landing just shy of where we’d hoped to be. That about sums up my 2022. I rolled into the year excited for what was to come. I spent some time thinking about a few things I wanted to accomplish this year. I made sure the list wasn’t too long, because then it would feel daunting and impossible. I made 4 resolutions in various aspects of my life and they were; write a book, hike the Uinta Highline trail, have a successful side hustle, and be able to hold a handstand (without moving) for one minute.
I didn’t stop there, I found some graphics online and put together a simple vision board and set it as my background on my work laptop. This way I could look at it every time I logged onto the computer. I found resources and guides to help with my goals, I invited others to join me on my journey, and I worked at them. Partway through the year I had some life changes happen that threw me off my rhythm.
I stopped writing in my blog, I wasn’t working on my handstand (I broke a finger which made that hard), and I didn’t make much progress on writing my book. So I get it, I understand what it feels like to not get where you want to be. However, while this year will end with 2.5 of my goals not being achieved (I did hike the Uinta Highline Trail), I am back at it and working towards the upcoming year thanks to these few ideas.
“If the plan doesn’t work, change the plan but never change the goal.”-Millionaire Quotes –
Create a writing group
Having a writing group is one of the best things you can do as a writer. They can give you the motivation you need to keep going, or restart the writing fire, they provide a safe place to share your work and receive helpful feedback, writing groups can keep you writing consistently, give you the inspiration you need for that next part, and they can build you up when you’re struggling.
This summer I hardly wrote at all. But writing was on my mind a lot because a member of my writing group, Garrett Goodrich, was absolutely slaying it. He had the summer off as a teacher and wrote almost 80,000 words. Every day he would give me updates on his progress and share the awesome moments from his writing. It kept my own writing forefront in my mind even though I wasn’t writing a whole lot.
If you’re nervous and don’t know where to start, reach out to me, I’d be happy to work with you on your story.
“Surround yourself with people who illuminate your path. Who push you to dig deeper. Who make you happy. Who make you laugh. Who pray for you and support you, even in the hard times. Those are your people.”-Kristen Butler-
Break it down
A year is a lot of time to accomplish something and we often set large lofty goals. My goal is to write a book for example. (Sound familiar?) If your new year’s writing resolution is the same as mine, here is a simple infographic breaking down the timeline for writing a book in a year. The key is to break down your writing goal into smaller, manageable chunks. Then make a plan on when you hope to accomplish those.
Reading is a great way to stay motivated with your writing. It can give the change of pace you need to stick with your writing. Goodreads has a fun widget where you can set a number of books you plan on reading throughout the year and then shows your progress. Pick 6 books that you want to read this year. Make sure they are in the genre you write in, by strong authors that you would love to emulate. Put them on your calendar to read one every other month. If you find yourself coming up to June and your writing has been struggling, picking up that book can relight your writing resolution.
The more reading you can do throughout the year, the better your writing will be.
“Sometimes we need fantasy to survive the reality.”– The Minds Journal –
Participate in Writing Events
My big motivator to get back into my writing was NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) that took place just last month. I didn’t even work on my novel during the event, but that wasn’t why I participated this year. I knew if I jumped right back into my novel I would feel overwhelmed and stop. So I wrote anything and everything to get back in the habit. I’m about ready to get back working on my novel, I feel the fire and the excitement of writing again.
NaNoWriMo also hosts events in April and July known as Camp NaNo. They are mini versions of what happens in November. These are just a few events throughout the year that will help you keep your new year’s resolution to finish your writing goals.
Share your writing goals for 2023 in the comments below, I’d love to see what you are hoping to accomplish. If you need a little more motivation throughout the year, subscribe to my weekly newsletter where you’ll get writing motivation, reminders on upcoming events, writing prompts, and other informational resources. 2023 doesn’t have to work out the same way as 2022. These are just a few easy things you can implement to stick with your new year’s resolution and accomplish your writing goals.
When we have writing in front of us, we’ll think about it more, when we think about it more, our desire builds until it needs an escape, and that’s where your keyboard comes in.