It’s that time! Time wear sparkly shirts and drink sparkly drinks and hope that 2013 is going to be a sparkly year (but not in a Twilight way.)
Last year’s decision to make goals rather than resolutions (and blogging about them monthly) worked so well for me that I’m planning to do it all over again and bore you all to tears with my goals for 2013. It was actually the accountability of putting the goals online that was so helpful to me. I said I was going to do these things and I had to deliver, whether anyone was actually reading the blog posts or not.
Here are my goals for 2013:
I really need to finish this draft.
My novel: It was supposed to be out to agents by this time, according to my 2012 resolutions. Well, that didn’t happen. This year I’m resolving to spend the first hour of every weekday working on it until it’s done, no matter what other projects come along.
Marketing: I’m terrible at marketing. I should not admit it, but it’s true. I hate putting myself forward; it goes against everything that was drummed into me as a little girl in Catholic school. So this year, I am also spending an hour of each weekday working on marketing projects, including the upkeep of this blog, my social networks, reading up on marketing and emails to bookstores and libraries and reviewers. This doesn’t mean I’m going to become an unbearable spammer. It just means I need to put myself out there more and to new audiences.
Making a marketing plan for my new book: If I have a written plan, it will be harder to go wrong.
Publishing: My goal last year was to send out three pieces. I did, and I got rejected. My goal this year will be to publish three things that are not my upcoming book.
Reading: Last year, I planned to read 12 novels in a year. This goal sparked a reading binge the likes of which I haven’t experienced since high school. I met my goal in May and kept on reading. As of yesterday, I read 33 books – novels, collections and nonfiction – in 2012. For 2013, I would like to read that number of books again, and not limit the goal to novels. I also want to include at least one Jane Austen novel and at least one Charles Dickens book.
Conferences: I already attend a retreat and a conference on the semi-regular. This year, I want to find one new writing conference to go to. I need to up my networking.
UPDATE FROM NEW YEARS DAY – I thought of this one in the middle of the festivities last night:
Grants: I’d also like to apply for at least three fellowships or grants this year.
This year I’m planning to incorporate a few personal goals in with the writing goals, including the classic New Years rez…
Weight: I feel most comfortable when I weigh within a certain five-pound range, and I am always two pounds away from that five pound range, because when I’m that close to my goal weight, I feel like I can eat whatever and not work out and generally slack off. For 2012, I would like to get within that range and stay there. Right now I’m two pounds outside the upper end of it.
While I’m among the living, I don’t get to be a Late Great O’Connell.
Punctuality: I’ve never been an incredibly punctual person. In fact, I’ve built my lateness into my personality. I was born late, my family has refered to itself as the Late Great O’Connells, therefore, I’ve let myself accept that I will always be late to everything. In fact, if I didn’t have a driver, I probably would have been late to my own wedding. Well that’s got to end. Recently, two incidents made me think that it’s time to change my lateness issues: 1) We were horrifyingly late to Christmas dinner and 2) I was late for a writing event and missed an important marketing opportunity. This lateness has got to stop. I’ve done all sorts of things to keep myself from being late, including setting the clock in my car forward five minutes, which does nothing except make me panic and drive like a maniac, then do the mental math and subtract five minutes. So I’m going to make it a point to be on time, starting today. I’m setting the car clock back to the regular time. Every time I’m late, a dollar is going into a mason jar, and at the end of the year, some worthy charity is getting a donation.
My big-picture goal
Last year I also picked two big-picture issues that had been bothering me to mull over and research, and I was supposed to write about them in essay form. I mulled them over but didn’t write about them; I found that I wasn’t ready to share my findings about my own anxiety or my feelings about religion. But thinking about these issues did help me, and so I’m planning to examine an issue this year as well. I think it’s time I started solidifying my political positions. I mean, I know what I believe, but I’m not always well-informed and there are certain issues I avoid altogether. But this year, I think it’s important for me to look at all the political issues I can, and make up my mind. Part of this is so that I can argue with ease at parties, but I don’t like feeling fuzzy about certain issues, so part of this is to help me understand my own feelings.
Well, that’s it. Now I’m off to put on something with sequins. Happy New Year, readers! Good luck with your own resolutions!