Greetings! I’m writing this just a few days before I leave the wintry world of New Hampshire and head for a week in the Caribbean. By the time you read this post, I will just be getting back to the real world.
Anyhow, even though this is a vacation, I have set some goals for myself. I’m going to catch up on my sleep. I’m going to read at least one whole book. I’m going to swim in the ocean. And, I hope to go snorkeling at least once.
Sounds weird, I know, setting goals for a vacation. But the truth is, we all set goals every day. We might call it something else, such as “our plans,” or “our to-do list.” No matter how you label it, most of us live a life of daily goal-setting.
We do the same as writers. When we start out, our goal is probably to make a living as a writer. In order to do that, we must first accomplish smaller and smaller goals:
12. Sell a manuscript.
11. Get published (sometimes #11 and #12 are reversed. Many times, however, we see our names in print without seeing an accompanying paycheck. One of my early by-lines appeared in a church newsletter. I was still thrilled).
10. Submit the finished work to an appropriate editor.
9. Study the current market.
8. Finish the manuscript.
7. Revise the manuscript.
6. Write the story.
5. Commit to writing time.
4. Decide to write the story down.
3. Come up with an idea for a story or a book.
2. Plan to become a writer.
1. Read a lot.
And, like a never-ending grocery list, once you’ve accomplished all 12 goals, get ready to do start over and do it again. I guess that’s number 13.