5 Goals Every Writer Should Set + How to Stay Accountable

It is essential to have goals if you are a writer, especially if you plan on going somewhere with your writing. Most important though, it is essential to actually stick to those goals because otherwise you won’t find yourself where you want to be by the time the next year comes rolling around, and trust me, it will come a lot faster than anticipated. A lot of people make the mistake of setting these massive goals and then giving up two weeks into the new year, so today I will be sharing some of my personal ideas, goals and tips centered around creating and sticking to writing related goals!

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  1. Write Everyday – If you are a writer, you probably already write everyday. I know I do, even if it is not related to my fiction writing. Writing everyday includes writing a story, essay, blog post, or even a journal entry, really anything that relates to using your writing muscle. This is a really easy goal to make, and honestly it may be the easiest one to keep up with. Just set aside anywhere between ten minutes to even an hour in the morning, afternoon or evening and write in your journal or even a quick blog post. The point is, to be a writer, you have to actually write.
  2. Submit to At Least One Literary Magazine or Writing Contest – It amazes me how many people don’t take the opportunity to submit their work to literary magazines or writing contests, especially if it is completely free for you to do! Submitting your work to magazines is a great way to get your name and work out there and the writing world, and even possibly make some money off of the thing you love to do. If you need some recommendations for literary magazines to submit to, definitely check out my blog post where I share 10 literary magazines that are completely free to submit to!
  3. Read, Read, Read – This is an obvious one, but it is one that needs to be  enforced because sometimes we get so caught up with our writing that we forget to read. Reading helps motivate and inspire us to write, and is an essential ingredient to creating a story. Even if you are caught up in writing your own story, don’t forget to crack open a book even if it is just for 15 minutes a day.
  4. Participate in Camp NaNoWriMo/NaNoWriMo – Camp NaNoWriMo and NaNoWriMo give you the motivation (and excuse) to write during the month of July and November, and give you a reason to connect with other writers from around the world. Even if you do not reach the goal of 50k words in a month, as long as NaNoWriMo gets you to write something I see that as a huge success! So definitely add participating in Camp NaNoWriMo or NaNoWriMo to your goals for 2018 because it is such a fun and beneficial experience. it will amaze you how much of a manuscript you can get done in a short period of time.
  5. Connect With Other Writers – This had never been a goal of mine until this year, when I realized how important it is to connect with other writers. Writing is a lonely task, and if you have someone else to discuss writing with, it will make it less lonely. Also, by connecting with other writers you can share your work with each other, get feedback and learn how to give feedback too; all things that benefit and create a well-rounded writer!

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When it comes to staying accountable to your goals, it is important to one, create goals that are not too far out of reach, but just far enough to get you out of your comfort zone and two, create goals that you control the outcome of. By this I mean not writing down I resolve to win one writing contest this year…because while that would be amazing, you are not in control of who the judges choose. Instead, choose a broader goal like I resolve to enter one writing contest this year. Now that is something you can control. And finally third, create goals but also create a plan to achieve those goals. It is easy to write down I resolve to enter one writing contest this year, but how are you going to actually do this? Are you going to write everyday for two weeks before the contest? Are you going to start editing three days before? These are important things to think of when writing down your goals, and it will make them so much easier to achieve when you know exactly how you are going to do it.

Ways I stay accountable to my goals are by treating myself to a reward if I write everyday for a week, or accomplish a goal by submitting different pieces of work to a few literary magazines or writing contests. If you reward yourself, you will find yourself feeling more motivated to accomplishing the goals on your list. Another way I make sure I accomplish my goals, is by setting reminders on my phone because sometimes I honestly just forget. Sometimes I need that reminder to sit down and write for thirty minutes, or sometimes I forget that a writing contest deadline is coming up. Writing it down isn’t always enough.

 

Those are some goals every writer should set and also how to stay accountable. Hopefully this was somewhat helpful to you, and gave you some ideas of what goals you should set of yourself as a writer, but if you have some more goal ideas definitely leave them in the comments! If you liked this blog post please like it so I know to make more, and also don’t forget to check out my last blog post: 10 Literary Magazines To Submit To (NO FEES) 🙂

Camp NaNoWriMo Writing Tips #4

Ahh Camp NaNoWriMo is almost over and I am starting to loose motivation so I decided to make another one of these writing tip posts in case any of you are doubting your work!

Writing Tip #1 – Running out of ideas for a story? Look at a picture and write about it. A picture tells a thousand words so you should easily be able to get your ideas flowing by doing this.

Writing Tip #2 – To improve your vocabulary which is very important for a writer, subscribe to online vocab building websites because you will be able to do activities that teach you knew words that you may be able to use in your story!

Writing Tip #3 – Doubting yourself? Give yourself a writing goal to achieve every week and if you complete it reward yourself. Example: Say your goal by the end of the week is 10,000 words and if you complete it then treat yourself to a chocolate bar, or an 10 minute longer break during writing. Whatever you want.

Writing Prompt of the Day – It was like nothing happened. He didn’t remember a thing and I was off the hook, or so I thought…(From WritingPrompt.com)

Writing Quote of the Day – “Be courageous and try to write in a way that scares you a little.” – Holly Gerth

Hope you guys liked this post and I hoped it help! If you have any writing questions don’t hesitate to ask!

Camp NaNoWriMo Writing Tips #2

Wow, Camp NaNoWriMo is almost halfway over! Whether or not you are halfway done, or barley have any words down this post is made to help you! Here are some tips, prompts, and inspiration writing quotes to get you away from writers block, or wanting to procrastinate.

Tip#1 – If you don’t want to write, or have writers block than just free write. Get out a notebook or open up whatever document you use and just write. Write about why you don’t want to write or what better things you could be doing. If you free write like this for around ten minutes then it will help you push yourself to actually write your story.

Tip#2 – Another way to get over procrastination or writers block is too give yourself a One-Day-Writing-Workshop. Basically all you need to do is set a start time in the morning, so like ten, and a finish time, maybe around four or five, and then you just write. It doesn’t have to be involved with your story, although it would be better if it was, but just write what you feel like. It will open up your brain to writing.

Prompt of the Day – You wake up one day and discover that you are your four year old self. What do you do?

Writing Quote of the Day – You might not write well everyday, but you can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page. -Jodi Picoult

Hope this helped in some ways! If you need some more inspiration then check out the Writer’s Digest or Market!

Harsh but Helpful Writing Tips

Writing is not a walk through the park, neither is trying to get your book published so hopefully these few harsh, but helpful writing tips will assist you in this long journey.

The first draft always sucks – Your first draft will never be amazing let alone good but that’s what editing is for. The whole idea of a first draft is too get all your thoughts down quickly so it seems fitting that it would be terrible by the end. That’s fixable at least.

Develop a thick shell – If you want to be a writer you have to develop a thick shell because there will be people who turn you down multiple times and give harsh advice but you have to learn to accept that and take their words into consideration.

Hunt for inspiration – Inspiration isn’t going to come to you! You have to go and hunt it down because that is the only way your going to find it. Inspiration is what drives you to write the book so this is very important.

Writing is hard – This is a solid fact. Writing is not easy! If it was everybody would be doing it and be good at it but it doesn’t work like that. Make sure you know what your signing up for when you decide to write a novel because it takes a lot of commitment and hard work but if you succeed its always worth it in the end.

Tell your story – There is always going to be writers who are better then you, it’s inevitable but you are there to tell your story and nobody can tell it better than you. Don’t write to try and be the “best” writer, write because you are just there to share your story with the world.

Those are few harsh but all around helpful tips that I found and I really hope the help you get an idea of what being a writer is like! 🙂

 

 

 

Camp NaNoWriMo: Writing Websites

Camp NaNoWriMo begins in only 15 days so I decided to post another “helpful” post on some websites that will help you with your writing journey! These are websites that have writing prompts, tips, videos, and other things that I think will help you during July. I hope this helps all of you!
Writer’s Digest – This is a great website for readers because it offers webinars, tutorials, tips and lots of other writing advice that it is extremely helpful. They even have information about agents which you will need sooner or later!

Gotham Writers – This is a website where there are different writing courses for you too take and yes, they do cost some money but they are definitely worth it because you will learn a lot! If you cannot afford the prices there are also small contests that they offer where you can win a free class of your choice which is better than nothing!

Bloomsburry Newsletter – If you go on the Bloomsburry publishing website and sign up for their newsletter they will frequently send you newsletters that have lots of interesting tips and advice for writers from other writers. I really enjoy reading them and find them very helpful!

Those are a few great websites that will help you during NaNoWriMo so I hope you check them out!

(P.S. this was not sponsored these are just websites that I personally love and think you guys will too!)

Camp NaNoWriMo: Writing Tips

Camp NaNoWriMo is near and here are some writing tips that I have discovered. I hope they help you and make sure you comment any writing tips you have for other writers 🙂

Dialogue – Don’t make your dialogue too fancy. What I mean by this is, “……” I pondered or “……” She exclaimed. Readers aren’t exactly interested in that so it is always safe to go with the regular, said or asked. Of course you can throw in a few exclaims and other “fancy” dialogue here and there but just make sure you are not over using it. A time when you should use fancier dialogue is when you are showing volume of your characters words like whispered, shouted or screamed. Those are exceptions because the volume is important for dialogue.

Characters – Characters are a very, very important asset to your story because in a way, they are running the show. You want to make sure your characters are different and easy to tell apart. They need to have their own unique voice when they speak. You don’t want to read about characters that are bland and similar, you want to have a variety in race, appearance, personality, etc, etc.

Background – After writing for a while now, I have gathered the importance of having all your background information together. By this I just mean the history of your world, characters, and anything else that has background info. This helps explain this in more detail and makes your story more put together and interesting. J.K Rowling is a great example of background info because her wizarding world has such a complex history that adds more to the story. Also adding background information to your characters is important because then we can learn about their past and any challenges they faced.

Those are some writing tips that I hope help you and make writing your story easier and more enjoyable!