Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What's on Your 2010 List?

Hope everyone had a great holiday season, and that you're all ready to enter 2010 :)

For the writers out there, this might mean stepping up the word count, finishing that manuscript, joining an organization or critique group, or perhaps attending a conference. For those who don't hear character voices in their heads (oh, how quiet that must be!) the resolutions could be anything...but this seems to be the time of year where we all look back, then we look forward.

I once heard someone talk about this topic, and her approach stuck in my mind. She said our lives are like driving a car. We need to use our rearview mirror; we need to keep tabs of what's behind us so we know how to navigate forward. BUT our rear view mirror (aka our past experiences) can't become our primary view source. We need to keep our eyes ahead, looking at the new, making sure we navigate to where we're going.

It's good to remember some pieces of the past (particularly for a writer as it is great fodder for fiction). But if you constantly watch that rearview mirror, what happens? You crash into a tree. It's all a balancing act, so as we approach the end of 2009, look back. What went well? What didn't? What would you change if you could do it over? What would you like to add into the mix?

These are things we should put in our recipe for 2010. (Yes, I'm using food analogies. I'm hungry and have yet to eat lunch...)

So, I ask yet again...What's on your 2010 list?

My primary 2 resolutions are:

* Do a set word count every day. I don't have a problem in making time to write each day, but the word count tends to vary depending on mood. I want to put a word count on each day. If I miss a day (as life will sometimes cause us to do) then I'll make up that wordcount by the end of the week.

* Remember that negativity always blocks out the voice of the muse. It's like a kid covering his ears and singing a song to himself. You can't hear that inner voice, that inspiration, if your mind is cluttered with negativity.

Hope everyone has an incredible new year, and here's to a great 2010 :)



Mark David Gerson said...

Great resolutions, Elaine.

I agree 100% on the word-count goal. I tend to set a time goal for myself instead, while keeping an overarching word-count goal that I don't feel attached to.

As for the voice of the muse, I'm very aware of all that could both block and amplify it...not least because I've written a book with that very title (The Voice of the Muse: Answering the Call to Write)!

Happy New Year!

The Writers Canvas said...

Thanks Mark :)

Another writer mentioned the timeframe (as opposed to word count) might be a more plausible goal. My issue is that even when I set aside "time" - - other things can creep up and get in the way. I figure with a word count, I've got to finish.

But, we'll see what works. Resolutions are not all-or-nothing beings; they're intentions in progress.

Thanks again for commenting! I need to get your book one day!


Anonymous said...

Hi Elaine. I resolve to treat myself better this year. I have my space to write and this year I will write everyday, complete two projects, focus, dedicate time, make fewer excuses and apologies for needing to write and pay more attention to the writers I follow who can be a great help by teaching me. We're never too old to learn and grow.

I give a great deal to others and this year I need to include myself on that list. At least the part that says, I am a writer, so today I write."

Happy New Year and much success to you, dear lady.

The Writers Canvas said...

Thanks for the comment, Sherry :)

I hear ya on keeping ourselves on that list of things we do. Being Southern gals, that is sometimes hard to do at times :-)

Someone once said to always put writing in the top 3 items on your to-do-list. Why? Because nobody ever reaches the bottom of their to-do-list. So always put it first and make time :)

I'm wanting to finish one project and complete another one, so we can keep each other's goals in check :)

Thanks again for commenting -


Willena said...

Now that my temporary roommate situation turned out to be even more temporary than I counted on, I have an office space back. One of my resolutions is to set it up so that it inviting to write there every day. I spent some $$ on picture rails so I can have a rotating gallery of inspiration up at all times. I like both the word count and time frame ideas...I have always tried the time frame idea...but like you, I let other things creep into the time I supposedly set aside to write.

I guess my most important resolution is to get up early so that I can really keep writing at the top of the to-do list.