Once again, I’m going to start writing my list of goals for 2016 by thinking about how I want to feel about my writing this year. Once I decide how I want to feel, I’ll try to identify the thoughts I need to think in order to feel that way.
Last year, I wanted to feel enthusiastic, motivated, and confident about my writing. I decided I needed to think thoughts like: Slow and steady wins the race, and little and often in order to feel these feelings.
When I look back at the past year, I can see how that thinking helped move me forward. I didn’t accomplish some of my goals for last year (some of them really were Wildly Improbable!) but I did develop a habit of writing more, and more often. I didn’t realize it until I looked back at the entire year and re-read my post from this time last year.
This year, I am determined to move forward in my writing. Determined seems like a good feeling for 2016. Also: joyful and easy. Joyful, as I really do find joy in writing, but I can sometimes berate myself into feeling like sitting at my desk to write is a prison sentence. It’s not; it’s a privilege. Add the joy back and I can remember that fact more easily. Easy, because I have created habits that make writing every day easier and I want to continue that trend.
So what do I need to think in order to feel determined, joyful, and easy about my writing life and my writing goals?
I need to think: I got this, and, Just write for a few minutes, see what happens. I also plan to ask myself this question every morning: What would make it easy for me to get some writing done today?
Here are my writing WIGs for 2016:
- Blog regularly for my blogs and for NHWN.
- Write a short story and submit to Level Best Books.
- Submit an entry to the 24-hour short story contest as least once this year.
- Contribute to my critique group (with my writing and my critiques) thoughtfully and consistently.
- Complete a draft of my nonfiction book.
- Host 2 writing retreats in 2016.
- Go on a writing retreat in 2016 (other than those I host.)
- Write 250 words 5 days a week.
- Write a love letter once a month.
- Create a cartoon for fun.
I’ve left out a few concrete goals, such as “Win NaNo,” to focus on developing a daily writing habit, which will serve me better in the long run. While these goals are not easy, I’m hopeful I can achieve most of them this year. I’m determined!
What are your writing goals for 2016?
Diane MacKinnon is a writer, blogger, master life coach, and family physician. I love New Years and new goals! You?