I have a love/hate relationship with new beginnings. Having a clean slate, in a sense, is freeing, but having an era of life end–especially a whole year–leads to self-evaluation. This year, I’d set low goals for myself: I wanted to get back into writing. I’d spend almost a year away from it, and after much thinking, I decided that writing is my passion and that I needed to find a way back to it.
The last half of the year was a rousing success, at least compared to my previous non-writing months. I finished a short novel (and had it accepted by my editor at Samhain), wrote a Christmas novelette (published in December by Ellora’s Cave) and hit the 50k mark for my National Novel Writing Month manuscript. AND I’m almost done with another novella, targeted at Ellora’s Cave.
On the short story front, I submitted three erotic short stories to Cleis press anthologies, and I’m waiting to hear back. The one litfic story I have sitting in my notebook will probably never see the light of day, but I wrote something outside my genre, which was one of my secondary goals.
As for the DIY-MFA…I’m still learning something new every day. I’m still reading classics (mostly short stories and poems) and contemporary novels, though not as much as I’d like. That’ll be part of my 2011 goal.
My health has taken a turn for the better, and I’ve gotten my writing room organized, which, I’ve seen, has a direct correlation on my productivity and focus.
2011 is going to be the year of the novel for me. The novel, and self-improvement. So far, the longest MS I’ve completed is the NaNo 50k, but as I’d like to target New York (and agents), I’ll need to work my way up to longer 80k+ works. Daunting, yes, but I’ve spent a good amount of time this fall honing my writing skills and working to understand the mechanics of longer plots, so I am cautiously optimistic about this goal.
However, as I am notoriously bad about keeping goals, I’m not setting any. These are more…guidelines. (Yes, that is an allusion to Pirates of the Caribbean).
I’ll also be updating my blog more often, so check back for more on SMUG Mondays, DIY-MFA, my goals, what I’m reading, and guest blogs.
Do you set New Year’s goals for yourself? What are they? If not, do you do something to celebrate the new beginning of a new year?