Screw Resolutions. Here are My Goals for 2019

I’m changing things up for 2019: I’m not making resolutions; I’m making goals. This is part of my plan to get my shit together, writing and having-a-life-wise.

So what are my goals for the coming year? And why did I decide on them? I know you didn’t ask, but I’m going to tell you anyway.

Sew My First a Quilt
I inherited a sewing machine when my parents moved from Massachusetts to South Carolina. And up until about a couple weeks ago, it had sat in a box and on the shelf in my closet since August. The instructions make almost no sense and if not for YouTube, I would’ve never figured out how to thread the bobbin (or what the bobbin is even for). Searching for sewing projects on Pinterest led me to the magical world of quilting, and I decided that I had to make one. Even if it was just to say that I’d done it.

Write & Post Serial Fiction
The idea of posting a piece of serial fiction has been on my mind for years, but I’ve always talked myself out it for one reason or another. That’s going to change, though. I want to post more regularly on here, and this is a way to do that. At least for the duration of the serial. Plus I’m working on a short story that’ll lend itself to the format. Who knows? Maybe I’ll get into a groove and make serials a regular thing.

Make Salsa with Veggies from the Garden
Last year, I took a risk and planted vegetables on my patio. Certain ones–like tomatoes and carrots–did surprisingly well. That’s encouraged me to refine my container garden, improving on the plant spacing and growing more root vegetables. Plus I want to make a recipe using veggies that I’ve grown myself. I mean, there’re few things tastier than eating ripe tomatoes right off the vine. But there’s a level of self-sufficiency in cooking with vegetables that I’ve grown myself.

Finish the Voss 1st Draft
I didn’t write much during 2018: a couple short stories but no novels or novellas. That’s something I want to change. I want to get myself into a writing routine and to complete the first draft of a full-length novel. An idea–that I’ve dubbed Voss–has been floating around my head since I watched the first few seasons of The Curse of Oak Island over last summer. It’s basically a treasure-hunting story with a bit of Haunting of Hill House thrown in to amp up the creepiness.

Tackle an Ambitious Knitting Project
I got back into knitting last year, and the projects I’ve tackled have been confidence-boosters. My garter-stitch hats and the garter-stitch baby blanket for my SO’s new nephew have kept me busy. I want to step up my game, though, and knit a pattern that’s more difficult. Like something with purl stitches (I haven’t figured those out yet) or where I have to count rows.

Visit Somewhere New
This one is more of a tradition than a new goal. Every year since 2013, I’ve made it my mission to visit somewhere that I’d never been. It can be somewhere a plane ride away or as simple as checking out a new town. I already have a couple places in mind: Asheville, Carrowinds Amusement Park, and the beach at Myrtle Beach. It’ll ultimately come down to logistics. And to be honest, I might even go after this goal more than once.

Accountability is a big part of meeting goals, so I’ll be posting regularly about my progress on each of these. Do you have any goals for 2019? What are they?

Goodbye 2016, and Hello 2017

Fun Fact: My parents used to tell my brother and I that the New Year started at 8PM on December 31st. It wasn’t until one of my friends pointed out that midnight was the magic hour when one year turned into the next that we convinced Mom and Dad to let us stay up.

I still stay awake until midnight, though the adult in me is often tempted to crawl under the covers before then. It was the same this time around: I fought keep my eyes open while watching the ball drop in Times Square.

There was ample time–of course–to reflect on 2016 and to look forward to 2017.

It wasn’t a bad year on a personal level (which I feel a bit guilty about since it turned out to be a dumpster fire as a whole). I accomplished my biggest goal of the year: moving to Charlotte, North Carolina. I’ve wanted to move south ever since graduating college, so this was a major deal.

Then there was the Collaborative Writing Challenge. I wrote five chapters in total for The Map and Eslyd’s Awakening, and four of those chapters were chosen to go in the books. Plus I wrote a starter chapter for a CWC project that I decided I liked too much to submit and will be writing the novel this coming year.

And I downsized my Goodreads Reading Challenge from previous years (30 as opposed to 52), which turned out to be a good thing because I finished it with a couple days to spare.

Instead of doing resolutions for 2017, I’m setting goals.They are primarily writing-related. I’ve already outlined what I want to get done this year, and it includes two novels, three short stories, finishing a novella, and revising said novella. It’s a lot. But I’m up for the challenge. I’d also like to get back to a regular schedule for blog posts.

I plan on tackling another Goodreads challenge, keeping up my tradition of visiting somewhere new, and putting myself in a position where I can buy a house in 2018.

What’re your plans for 2017?  I hope you had a Happy (and safe) New Year’s Celebration!

Image result for new years

Update on My Goals for June & July

Wait, it’s not June anymore? Or July? Crap.

I created a list of things to accomplish by the end of July way back at the beginning of June. Since the calendar now reads August, it’s probably time to take a look back at those goals. See what I accomplished. And what I didn’t.

Goal 1: Finish Bay View Outbreak, Part 2
Despite making a bit of progress on the second part of Bay View Outbreak, I didn’t finish it. I battled with the plot for the most part of June and moving to North Carolina took over July. The file has sat unopened on my hard drive for a few weeks. It’s on my list to finish this fall; just not quite yet.

Goal 2: Finish & Edit Chapter 1 of WolfsBane Moon for the Collaborative Writing Challenge
I finished, editted, and submit WolfsBane Moon to Project 6 of CWC. Though I hit a bit of a hiccup when it came to it becoming a potential Chapter 1 for CWC. The person who runs the program asked to make a small change to the chapter that would completely alter the story’s universe. It was then I realized that I liked this story too much to let it go into the wild, wild west of CWC. So I withdrew it and will be writing it this fall. Oh, and I changed the title: A Court of Wolves.

Goal 3: Write Chapter 16 of The Map for the Collaborative Writing Challenge
Chapter 16 of The Map required me to get 2,000 words in a Word Document before a set deadline, and deadlines do wonders for my productivity. I wasn’t entirely happy with it when I finished. But I submitted it anyway. The story coordinator decided to put it into the book, so I guess that it all worked out.

Goal 4: Write, Edit & Post 4 Blog Posts
Technically, I got this done. My original plan wasn’t to count book reviews and to post on my Boston to Charlotte blog as well. But still, I’m glad that I’ve been able to continue this blog with only minimal interruptions.

Goal 5: Finish Edits on The Shed
The edits–including the brand new ending–are done. I’m pretty happy with how the majority of the edits turned out and with how the story now ends. Now my challenge will be to stop picking at it and tweaking things here and there. It’s going up on a critique website so other writers can provide a bit of feedback. Then after ONE more round of edits based on the feedback, I’ll start shopping it around.

Taking into account how busy my life became with the whole “moving to a different state”, I’m satisfied with the results of this personal challenge.

Have you set any goals this summer? How’s your progress going?