New Year’s is often a time for reflection, so I’m going to take this post to look back at my writing goals from the last year and set some new ones for 2014. 2013 has been a great year for me in both my professions, but my writing has really taken off.
Around this time last year, I hadn’t committed to a serious writing project that wasn’t a class assignment in about three years. Aside from the occasional journal entry or reflective piece, I virtually stopped writing creatively in late 2009. A lot of things in my personal life contributed to this, but even after I’d worked through those I felt like my writing was going nowhere. I still called myself a writer — I wrote plenty of publicity blurbs for the library that counted as creative writing, and since I was about twelve I’ve never not thought of myself as a writer — but I was a writer without a story.
I’d heard or read from hundreds of writers who stressed the importance of writing every day, and I knew I’d done my best writing during a stretch of a few months when I’d committed to writing two hours a day, so I resolved to write something every day in 2013. I set the bar pretty low. I didn’t give myself any word count or time requirements. Since I come across a lot of unique people working as a public librarian, I resolved to come up with 365 characters in 2013. They could be real, based on real people, or entirely fictional. They didn’t even have to be human. But I wanted to end the year with 365 somethings, even if they were terrible.
By March, 365 characters had turned into finish the book I started writing by the end of the year. I’d bumped into another writer, who encouraged me to attend the Midwest Writers’ Workshop in July. There, I met even more writers in the area and found some great critique partners (who also happen to be awesome friends!).
Now, I’m at different stages of editing the two novels I wrote this year, and I have a wonderful network of YA writers to tap into when I’m looking for inspiration or just commiseration. So for 2014 I’m setting the bar a little higher with two writing goals.
1. I want to finish editing both of the novels that I’m working on right now.
2. I want to have an agent offer to represent me. Ideally I’d like to sign with an agent, but I know better than to sign just because of the excitement of having an agent.
I’ll keep you posted on my progress throughout the year. What about you? Do you have any writing goals for 2014?