Sunday, December 27, 2009

Goals for 2010?


Some of you e-mailed and asked me how I was able to get so much done in 2009 and what my goals are for 2010. This blog's for you! Goal setting with the help of a calendar is the master tool in my took kit. Goal setting comes naturally for me because I'm a planner. I start each novel by plotting. I'll choose one of the stories that's been rolling around in my head and pull out a stack of index cards. Each main character has a card on which I list their GMC (Goal, Motivation, Conflict...I bought a great book on this at http://www.debradixon.com/gmc.html or you can search the internet for more information.) Also, I'll have a card labeled "scenes" where I'll make notes about the main scenes in the book. I carry these cards everywhere because they're small and handy.

Once I have an idea of where my plot is headed, I begin to visualize the completed project. I always shoot for 60,000words when I begin a new book. I pull out a calendar and choose a start date and an end date. I'll then calculate how many words I need to write each day and I'll note on the calendar what my total word count should be at the end of each day. It's a great motivational tool because it encourages me to stay on track or to catch up if I fall behind. If you write 2,000 words per day, at the end of the month, you'll have a complete first draft. Once I've finished this draft, I'll shelve it and take some time off, maybe do a little plotting on the next one. I like to wait at least a month before editing because that allows me to distance myself from the story and makes it easier to catch errors or plot weaknesses.

Also, I write something every day. At one time, I wouldn't even start to write unless I knew I had at least an hour of free time. I've changed my attack plan and now write even if I have only a few minutes. You won't believe how much you can get done in just fifteen minutes. Take those fifteen minute blocks and spread them across the day and you'll write more than you could ever imagine.

Now you have all my secrets. On to my goals. In 2010, I will have two books released from Desert Breeze Publishing in ebook format. My goals are to finish final the edits on these when they come back from my editor. Also, I'd like nab an agent, and hopefully sign a contract for a print book. And of course, write something every day with a goal to finish three novels this year. Good luck with your writing goals!

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