Monday, January 19, 2009

Goals for 2009

I figure it is still January, so it's still okay to wish you all a happy new year.
As this new year begins, I have asked the members of my local ACFW chapter to write down their writing goals for the year so I can pray for them throughout the year. I did this last year and enjoyed being able to pray for them.
I asked them to write out three or more writing goals. They needed to be realistic for them, measurable, and within their control. Here are some examples:
Don’t say, “I’m going to get an agent this year,” because you have no control over this. Rather say, “I’m going to send out one proposal a month until I get an agent.” You have control over how many proposals you send out but not if an agent accepts you.
Don’t say, “I’m going to write one book a month this year,” when you haven’t been able to finish one in your lifetime.
Rather say, “I’m going to complete one book this year.” If you complete twelve, great! It is fine to exceed your goals.
Don’t say, “I’m going to write more this year,” because how do you define more? More than what? How much did you write last year?
Rather say, “I’m going to write one page a day or a thousand words a week.” You can measure that.
Other goals you might want to think about putting on your goal list would be to read a certain number of books on the craft of writing, or going to a writer’s conference, or getting into a critique group, or starting one, start a Web site or blog. Stretch yourself.
And if you are not a writer, set other goals for yourself like reading books, or gardening, or volunteering, but do set some goals.
One of my goals for this year is to blog two to three times a week. That will be a stretch for me. I’m hoping once I get in the habit of it, it will come easier.
“Reach for the stars. You may not get there but you will soar higher than if you had never reached at all.”
If you have no goals, any road will get you there. (Or rather nowhere.)
So I challenge you, set some long term and shorter-term goals for the year then focus on meeting them. Even if you don’t reach them all, you will get closer than if you never reached at all.

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