Like any other goal in life, if you want to be a successful writer, you have to define where you are now and where you want to go.
If you define your writing goals, you can achieve them. They must be realistically carried out over a period of time, going step-by-step. It’s the building block approach.
You need to be realistic about your schedule and try to estimate what you can reasonably accomplish daily, weekly, or monthly. You should be mindful that you may fall behind, despite your best efforts. If so, you should modify your schedule without beating yourself up.
Ask yourself these questions:
1) Broadly, if someone gave you the gift of time and you could live until the age of 105 with all your mental faculties, what are all the writing projects you’d want to accomplish?
2) If you could spend seven days a week writing, how would you spend your time? On one writing project? Several? What would this (these) be?
3) If you didn’t have the gift of time, what are half of those projects you’d like to fulfill?
4) If you have limited writing time, what one genre would you choose to be successfully published in?
5) What are your strengths as a writer, and how would you plan to build upon them? (This is important. If you are discouraged, you must always start with a positive approach.)
6) If you could improve your writing skills, (i.e. being more descriptive), what skills would you cultivate?
7) If you could pick one successful author in the world to instruct you, who would he/she be? (Hint: If you can’t be personally trained by the author, you should read all of his/her works.)
If you’ve been writing for a while, you might also ask yourself if you could start all over again, what you would do differently. Then, you can focus on starting fresh from this point forward.
Personally, I love to write detailed lists of what I plan to accomplish. Next, I fill in spaces of my calendar with deadlines for their accomplishment.
For the nuts and bolts about setting deadlines for yourself, read one of my previous posts, “Goal Setting for Writers, ” dated Nov. 17, 2010.
Copyright 2012 by Charlotte Digregorio.