Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Take Writing Goals A Little At A Time

Wouldn't we all love to be consoled with chocolate and a lot of money? Even the hug might be of big help when our writing life doesn't go according to plan. 

We talk a lot about setting goals and achieving them. It's good to have goals, something to reach out and hold onto. The hard work comes when attempting to achieve our goals. Making the list is easy. We know what we want and where we would like to go on this journey. Next comes working at each goal a little at a time.

That's what it takes--a little at a time. To quote an old cliche Rome wasn' t built in a day. Anything worth having is worth working for. But when we take those small steps, one at a time, we can get tired of waiting for results. Discouragement becomes a close companion.

As an example, if you set a goal of being published in a high paying magazine even though you've yet to be published anywhere, back up and start small. Try a website or a small local magazine when you submit your first stories. When you've found some success with those, move on to the next level and keep moving until you reach your goal level of publication. It may not happen in a year or even five, but if you keep working toward that goal, you might very well achieve it. 

When we don't reach our goals in a short time, we feel bad, as if we've failed. Then we need that hug and the chocolate. And, oh yes, that 6  million dollars. You haven't failed; you're taking it a little at a time to eventually reach your goal. Make a chart with your goal at the top and your status now at the bottom. Draw a line toward the top every time you get published. You want that line to move steadily. Sometimes it will and others it may stay at the same point for an achingly long time. Keep that end goal in mind--it's the gold ring on the carousel; it's the piece of birthday cake with the flower on it; it's the handsomest guy in school asking you to the prom. 

When your get bogged down with the way your writing journey moves, commiserate with another writer. They can relate better than anyone. Then, get back to work on your current writing project or start a new one. Keep your goals in mind but don't let achieving them be the most important part of your writing journey. The thing that is of prime importance is to write and keep writing. Edit and keep editing. Submit and keep submitting. Do that, and the goals will happen. A little at a time!

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