New Year’s Writing Resolutions

In general, I don’t “do” New Year’s resolutions.  I’ve had years where I’ve made lists of grand goals and ways in which I was going to completely change my life, but by the end of February it’s all pretty much fallen by the wayside.

Come to think of it, I’ve only had about three resolutions, ever, that I’ve really stuck to.  Last year, I resolved to get healthy and fit, which involved monitoring what I was eating and trying to stick to a semi-regular workout regimen.  And you know what, I did it.  Did I hit my weight loss goal? No.  But a year later – a year that included two months when I wasn’t even allowed to workout by my doctor’s orders – I’m only 4 pounds short of my goal.  So that’s not bad.

The other two resolutions I’ve managed to keep in my life were writing related, and I think dated back to my 2005 resolutions.  I had started writing the sequel to the “magnum opus” when I was in college, and it was fluttering about in limbo until I sat myself down and said, “Look.  You need to finish the draft of this thing in 2005.”  And I did.

That same year, I said I was going to go back and start the rewrite of the “magnum opus”, and it didn’t look good for a while. Mainly because we weren’t talking about just revising.  We were looking at completely scrapping the original MS and starting over. But literally on New Year’s Eve, I wrote the first sentence of the first draft of the rewrite.

Seven years later, that rewrite is in the revising/editing/submitting stage.  It’s scary. It’s awesome. It’s scarily awesome.

So really, other than my healthy lifestyle changes, the only resolutions I can seem to keep relate to writing.  And I’ve learned that those goals can’t be ridiculously grand and must be revisited periodically.  So here’s the list of writing resolutions for 2013:

  1. Finish revisions to the HFMO (that’s Historical Fiction Magnum Opus, in case you didn’t figure it out already) Part 1, by the end of January
  2. Continue submitting HFMO Part 1 to agents and small pubs (ongoing)
  3. Finish Chick Lit Romance (hereby referred to as CLR) first draft and distribute to critique group(s), by the end of April
  4. Finish Historical Romance (HR) first draft and distribute to critique group(s), by the end of August
  5. Revise/edit/submit at least five short fiction pieces, by the end of August
  6. Begin revisions to HFMO Part 2 and distribute to critique group(s), by end of October
  7. Research self-publishing options, just in case, by the end of December
  8. Look into necessary steps to start up proofreading/editing services, by the end of December

See, giving myself deadlines right there in the resolutions is going to help. If I get to the end of February and it looks like #3 and #4 won’t happen, I can adjust.  Et cetera.  You get the gist.

By the way, in case you were wondering, I’m in Submission Limbo right now.  I blame the holidays – Christmas got the better of my time management.  But my first submission to an agent ended in a form rejection.  Via email, within three days, so it was a little like ripping a  Band Aid off.  I’m okay with it – I was aiming pretty high with that first query.  After all:

“Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star.”  ~ W. Clement Stone

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