At the start of each year people often set up New Year’s Resolutions/goals for themselves. Perhaps it is time to tackle that manuscript you have been wanting to work on. Maybe you want to continue a novel that you haven’t been able to set time to work on. Reasons aside, let the New Year be an opportunity to finally tackle your writing passion!
How Do You Start?
Well that is easy, pick up the pencil or open your word processor app and get writing!
Seriously though, the five points listed below will help you avoid falling through the cracks and forgetting your goal of writing . It is easy to set an objective for the New Year after the Holidays when there is some downtime. The challenge is keeping up with it as the year picks up momentum.
1. Write down your goal for the year.
Yes, write your goal down on a piece of paper. This may sound pointless as you aren’t making any direct progress in your writing however this does give you a 5,000 foot view of what you are wanting to achieve this year. Be realistic with the goal and do not be afraid to push yourself. Perhaps the goal is “I want to finish the first draft of my manuscript”. Or “I want to finalize the editing portion of my manuscript”.
2. Dedicate a minimum of half an hour a day to work on your writing
Do this religiously. This is the most crucial point when it comes to setting a goal. Setting aside a minimum of half an hour a day to work on your writing guarantees some progress in it. Aim for higher, around an hour or two to make some real progress. If that is not possible, set aside some time each day to write whether that is a part of your morning routine, lunch break or in the evening. Pick a time that will work best for you when you won’t have many interruptions.
3. Take your writing seriously
To remain motivated with working on your book you need to treat it as a critical task. If it is something that you like to do only when you’re in the mood to write or have nothing else going on, chances are you won’t power through the challenging parts of writing. If you want your writing to be taken seriously it starts with your perspective towards it.
4. Make Adjustments to your routine
The previous points mention consistency and treating your writing as a high priority. This means you might have to make some adjustments to your current lifestyle. Perhaps you have to be more selective on your outings or cannot watch as much Netflix as you did last year. Self-reflect on where your time is going and see what you can cut back on to invest in your writing. The truth is you do have to make some sacrifice.
An important point a lot of people need to remember is to reward yourself. It is very easy to keep on working and forgetting to celebrate when reaching milestones. When you finish a chapter treat yourself to a good coffee or maybe beer. Leaped over that writer’s block? Awesome, take some time to do something else, like do a dance or something.
Coffee is a fantastic reward.
These are some tactics that you can use to pursue your writing. Habits are built from repetition, so keep writing every day. You’ll be surprised how much ground you can cover in the span of one year as long as your remain consistent with your routine.
Conscioused.org has additional insight into the theory of creating habits. Check out their article for more information.