Here’s a confession: I didn’t meet most of my writing goals this year. But that’s actually OK.
If the same thing happened to you, maybe looking at what went wrong in my writing world can help you take steps to figure out what went wrong in yours — and how to do a little better in 2019.
Finish a draft of a novel
Did I do it? Nope!
Why not? Because I had way too many goals and just didn’t quite get to this one.
How will I do better next year? I’ll have to set fewer goals. Or try to, anyway. I get preoccupied when there are too many things going on at once, and to help myself focus, I need to try giving myself fewer things that could distract from what’s most important.
Focus is vital when trying to meet more than one writing or creative goal at a time. There’s more that can distract you than just YouTube videos or an attention-desperate puppy. Writing things can still distract you from other, possibly more important writing things. Decide what you really want/need to focus on and make that a priority over all the other writing things.
Create more things that scare me
Did I do it? Eh
Why not? My day job took over my life (which wasn’t as terrible as it may seem).
How will I do better next year? Picking one “scary” thing and really focusing in on that. I think getting out of your creative comfort zone is extremely important, but you can’t always dive in and conquer all your creative fears or roadblocks right away.
I’m going to take things one step at a time and get more comfortable doing one thing before I branch out and do more. And I suggest, if you’re in a similar boat, you do the same.
Make more things for Novelty Revisions
Did I do it? Not really …
Why not? I focused primarily on staying consistent with posting and building up a subscriber base, and not enough on creating a diverse stream of content.
How will I do better next year? Setting smaller goals, like making sure I’m sticking to my Patreon and YouTube posting schedule. With goals like this, it’s important to break big things into smaller pieces so that you feel less overwhelmed and don’t fall prey to the “I’ll start tomorrow” mindset.
Honestly, I didn’t make more non-writing things this year because I kept saying “I’ll get to it at some point.” What I really should have done instead was broken these tasks into separate deadlines so that I couldn’t just say “I’ll get to it” because I had to meet a quick deadline.
Before you set any kind of creative goal, make sure your priorities are in order. But also make sure two goals don’t interfere with each other. Start small and work your way slowly up to the end goal you’re trying to achieve.
Did you meet your writing goals this year? If you didn’t, that’s totally OK. Figure out what you need to do differently to get closer to succeeding this year. You got this!
Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a staff writer with The Cheat Sheet, a freelance editor and writer, and a 10-time NaNoWriMo winner. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.