Writing Goals for 2012

All right, it’s January 1st! Time to set some overly ambitious goals for the new year 🙂

Goal 1: 1hr creative writing 5x/week.

I’ve been successful at incorporating running/yoga into my everyday life, so I’m modeling this goal after my running/yoga practice. I started thinking about why I’m successful at that, but writing always gets pushed to the bottom of the list. The thing with running & yoga is that I don’t really think about product on a daily basis. I know I’m never going to be the best runner or yogi and that isn’t really the point anyway. The point is the practice. If I go for a run or spend an hour doing yoga, afterward I’m satisfied—even if was a crappy day and there will be crappy days—because the satisfaction comes from just doing it. In the long term, daily practice does lead to rewards (like personal bests & the ability to do poses that used to be difficult) but the nice thing is these are a bonus. (Whereas if product goals are your primary focus, you’ll feel like a failure until you achieve them, and if you never do, you’ll probably quit.)

Lately so much of my writing time has been product-focused. When you need to produce a completed piece of writing, you can’t just say “I’ll spend x hours on this” because at the end of x hours, you’ll probably not be done (everything takes longer than you think it will) and you have to keep going until you are done (which is frustrating), but you probably also have a deadline (which is stressful). All of which adds up to a generally unpleasant writing experience. With this goal, I want to focus on writing as a practice, and on shifting my mindset from viewing creative writing as a reward (which is why I always leave it till last—it’s the  “I don’t deserve to take time to do this because I haven’t finished x, y, and z” mindset) to viewing it as a necessity, something that will only benefit my other writing. Speaking of other writing…

Goal 2: draft of dissertation by end of year.

Goal 3: blog 3x/week.

Goal 4: 366 project.

…discussion of goals 2, 3 & 4 reserved for future posts (see Goal 3 ;)). Goals 2, 3 & 4 are definitely overly ambitious, but I did warn you.