Ah, I just swore I think. There was definitely a disturbance in the force…

Today I’m going to talk about my goals, and goalsetting. Which goes completely against the grain.
You see, I’m a pantser. I do things at the closest to a deadline I can (which is a terrible habit, I know), or I just go with the flow for most things. I mean I do have an overall plan. Kinda. Sorta.

But today, I’m going to talk about goals. My goals specifically, including my million words in 2019, my 40 for my 40th year, two Camp Nanowrimos and my 17th Nanowrimo (of which I’ve won 16), and some other stuff. Mostly writing related – business goals need a bit more planning.

It’s complicated…

One of the major reasons it’s complicated, for me at least is I’m not…actually writing much at the moment. The #atozchallenge finally brought me out of hiding for my blogging, after a tonne of false starts. So, though I’ve got lofty goals, Camp Nanowrimo is also this month, and so far I’ve managed maybe 1000 words. Not good when you consider that’s just over 100 words a day. On the other hand, I’ve been told to stop being so hard on myself, so I could look at it as *any words are good words*.
I’m working on it, ok?

The goals themselves

So, when I look at my goals, there are three main ones:

Nanowrimo of all kinds – including Camp Nanowrimo (April and July) and the ‘main event’ in November. I’ve never missed one since I started with them as an ML, and it’s an important part of my writing life, though, if I’m also being honest, it’s been harder and harder in the last few years. I keep saying ‘last time’, then always come back once more. No plans to quit this year, and to be honest, November tends to be when I get my biggest count. For year ten of Nanowrimo, I ended up with something like 300k words all told, because my official count didn’t include one book which was ‘lost’ in a USB stick that I found from the beginning of the month. For my Novembers alone, I’m apparently at just over 2.5 million since 2003.

Camp Nanowrimo has always been at least 30k, and I’ve completed all of them, and I’m on my 17th run through. As a goal, it’s much easier to commit to because odd as it sounds, it’s a habit of sorts. November without Nanowrimo, for me, is alien. April and July might be a harder slog, but still enjoyable. (fun fact, this year is my 17th Nanowrimo, and this month is my 17th Camp). I also took part in ScriptFrenzy, and I pay a portion of my royalties to Nanowrimo as an anon donation yearly.

A million words in 2019 – I’m waaaay off track for this, but we’re only in April, so things could change. I committed to this in November of last year, coming off Nanowrimo, thinking I’d continue writing (I didn’t). I’ve tried to pick stuff up, but it’s not been easy. What I do know is that if I’ve had to do a tonne of other things on my mind, it’s at least understandable, and I have. It’s not been the easiest of things to deal with, if I’m honest, but when your mental health suffers, along with your physical health, then the reality is, you might not write, and that’s where I am right now. But, given the #atozchallenge has me blogging again, I’m hopeful, at least, that things will get better.

At the point of writing this, on the 9th of April I am currently at 19k for the whole year (but I don’t record blog posts, and I think I should). Blog posts would bring that up to closer to 45k. I’m going to start recording more writing projects, which I think is important. If all writing is important, then I think blogging should be in my million words. Many blog posts end up inspiring chapters in my self-help books, or are refining blurbs or more, so I think this is fair, though not my plan at the beginning. Which is still way behind it should be, but I’ve spent a lot of time in the last few months reprioritizing and planning (gasp).

And finally, I’ve promised to try and get 40 books up in 2019, to celebrate my 40th birthday. Including the books that came down since The Alexandria Publishing Group closed, so that gives me 12 books to build from. That still leaves 28 to write, edit and more. And I’m doing stuff under a couple of secret pen names, which may count to me, but might not count towards the 40. So far, I’m on two, and plan up to six in the next two months. Again, I’m behind, but I’m hoping that once I find my stride, that it’ll be easier. And to be honest, while I want to finish my million words, any published book is further towards my goal, so if I don’t make it, it’ll be fine. Tracking this one on Pacemaker meant assigning 50 pages per book, and then posting each book as 1 ‘page’ per book, which I’m counting as my Amazon page for the book 😉

All of my goals are in my sidebar 🙂

Why setting goals is important

I thought I’d touch on why goal-setting is important right at the end, because my goals tend to terrify people. I think that if you commit to a goal, that it gives you motivation. Which is really important. I do also use Pacemaker (which I’ve got tracking my main goals) for each book. It’s a bit wierd recording everything twice, but it lets me make sure I’ve counted everything. I also thinks setting goals lets other see where you are and allow THEM to encourage you. Goal setting can be really scary, but I think it’s also important because it teaches you to think about what you’re doing with intention (which I’m going to do for I, so if you’re stuck on that, keep visiting!), and lets you think about what you’re doing in other areas. Planning and goal setting, especially for ROI purposes, really are important for marketing, for example.

What are your goals? Big ones, small ones, I’d love to hear!

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