2011 Year of Writing Deliberately - goals and challenges

 2011 Writing Deliberately

Mercy! Where has this year gone.  It just seems like yesterday we were celebrating the beginning of 2010 and my year of Writing Deliberately.   My goals were to write every morning, finish the first draft of Eyes in the Ashes, and edit Floating on the Surface (2007 Nano)   I finished the first draft of Eyes and discovered my main characters had turned into supporting cast and two of my supporting cast had turned into the main characters.  After I read the draft, I realized I had some work cut out for me, plus enough fodder and the characters for a sequel seeing as one of my bad guys got away.   Those ideas are stewing in the back of my brain.  I never did get back to Floating on the Surface.  It's turned into my practice piece.   I did reread Winter Illusion (2009 Nano) and it will need a bit of rewriting along with a new and exciting action packed first chapter. 

I hadn't planned on joining in on National Novel Writing Month this year in an effort to concentrate on Winter Illusion, however....  Yep, a new idea which was actually an old idea that's been floating around in my head off and on for years, took flight.   I started "Red Thief" in November, managed to hit 50k just barely and win Nano.  However, the story wasn't done.  And after the writing frenzy in November, slowed down a bit. I'll be editing out the filler (yep, I slightly did it again) and typing up the pages I've written the past couple weeks to get caught up in order to continue fresh and ready to go in 2011.  

As for my goal to write every single morning, that didn't quite work out.  But I did discover that  if I sat down with paper in hand, the words would flow and it didn't matter what time of the day it was.    Though I do have to admit, it's all about time management and balance.  I happened to come across this tidbit on time-management-guide.com

To achieve success, you need both persistence and flexibility. When you face difficulties and unexpected problems, use all your persistence and determination to stick to your goals. But always stay flexible with your objectives and activities. If the way you do things now does not work, try another way. Keep trying until you find the one that works.
Don't change the ends, change the means. And never forget the difference between ends and means, between goals and objectives.

Which brings me to my goals for 2011 and another year of Writing Deliberately.   To help me with my goals, I am joining two writing challenges.  I've signed up for Kelly Stone's 90 Day Writing Challenge on Facebook.   The goal is to set a writing goal you can meet and write every day from January 1st through April 2nd.   The other challenge is Kait Nolan's A Round of Words in 80 Days.  

The challenge will run in 80 days increments, 4 times a year with a break between.  Round one will run through March 24th. Kait says:

Your goal can be anything you like as long as it is MEASURABLE. If you’re already in the middle of a WIP, that’s fine.  Tailor your goal to suit that.  You may even want to set mini goals (I want to finish the last 40k of this novel.  Then I want to spend the last 20 days revising it at x pages a day.).  There are a lot of elements to writing a book other than the writing itself.  Plotting.  Outlining.  Character Interviews.  Whatever.  Set your goal to match wherever you are right now on your WIP.  If you want to use your Round for editing a novel, that’s fine too.  Just know that this is, at heart, a writing challenge, so all the weekly inspirational posts will be geared in that direction.

There’s no mandatory daily word count. Every writer is different, everyone has different schedules.  You set a goal that works for you.  Find a way to make writing a priority in your life in a way that FITS.  But set SOME kind of schedule and be CONSISTENT.

My goals for the year are to 

1)  Finish the first draft of Red Thief

2)  Complete 2nd Edit of Winter Illusion  and have beta reading.

3)  Outline Red Thief, complete character interviews and research plot points.

4)  Take an online writing course.

5)  Enter at least one Writer's Digest writing contest

6)  Join IRL or online critique group.

7) By the end of the year I would like to have at least one story ready to query.  I love all my stories and will have to decide which one I love the most and do my best to finish it.
Joining me in the Row80 and/or 90 day challenges are J.Kaye from 365 Days of Novel Writing, and Laurel from Creative Moments.

This week I'll be getting all my ducks lined up in a row so I'm ready to start in  2011.  A new new year, a fresh slate, crisp new adventures and a year of writing deliberately. What could be better than that.  

What are your goals for 2011?

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