Yesterday I reviewed the goals I set for myself in 2011 and how I did with them. Today I want to set some goals for 2012.
This is tough for me this year, because a lot of the things I really want are things that are out of my control. (Like SELL A BOOK...yeah, that one is out of my hands.) But there are plenty of things that are well within my control, so I want to focus on those.
1. Finish my new project
I need to work on being a more efficient writer. I just don't have the time to trash two drafts to come up with one that works. I need to figure out the problems I'm having as I go along and fix them then, rather than at the end. I think this will help me be more efficient and productive when it comes to actually putting a book together. This will be fiddling with my process a bit, but I'm willing to try out new things to find something that works well for me. So I'm aiming to have something shiny and new complete and polished by the end of the year, hopefully sooner.
1.5 Finish 1st Draft by March 31st
Going along with my goal to be more efficient, I am setting a goal to have my 1st draft done by the end of the 1st quarter. But this is going to be a usable first draft that makes sense, not just a collection of terrible scenes and mumbo jumbo that I still need to take months to piece together. I wasn't going to set a date for myself, because I always underestimate and take twice as long as I think I need, but my former writing instructor was challenging us to pledge a goal with a solid date that he is going to hold us to, so I decided to give it a go. I built in more time than I think I actually need, so hopefully this is do-able.
2. FOCUS during writing time
I need to work on focusing during my writing time and not getting distracted. This goes along with being more efficient, too...I need to make sure my writing time is for writing. I need to schedule my time effectively and use my Freedom or whatever it takes to keep me on task. I get so distracted by blogging and email and Twitter that I only write for half of my allotted writing time...sometimes less than that. No wonder I always need twice as long as I think I do to finish anything, huh?! So I need to work on my focus. I need to be serious and get things done. There is a time for dicking around on the internet, and that time is when the writing goals have been met for the day.
3. Read 52 books
The more I focus on writing, the less I focus on reading. But staying up on my reading is important, and it helps me be a better writer. It's easy to put reading on the back burner, and you can tell I did that in 2011 when you compare my reading with past years. I finished 2011 with 52 books read, which is an average of one book per week. I ended up pretty happy with that, and I think it's totally do-able for this year. And if I do more, great.
So, there are my goals for 2012, down in writing to help me stay accountable. I think the main challenge for me will be streamlining my writing process and finding balance between writing, reading, blogging, working, grading, and having a life. (That's a constant challenge for everyone, isn't it?) I will be setting small goals along the way, and hopefully I can be as successful with getting everything checked off at the end of the year as I was in 2011. I have some pretty lofty personal goals this year, too...like I said, I am expecting some awesome things to happen in 2012. I can't wait to see how it all shakes out.
What goals do you have for 2012?