Writing goals are different for each and every writer, but the one common thread among them all is that they will undoubtedly keep on you on track with your writing.
Setting out to write a book or even a blog post requires you to have a vision in mind, and a discipline in order to reach that vision. Writing goals are what keep us in alignment with that vision and help it materialize into reality faster.
With that in mind, let’s look at a common question from our authors:
“Should I be writing every day?”
Our answer is, a resolute yes. Now, if you felt an overwhelming sense of pressure when you just read that, then I think it’s fair to say that we need to help you choose a writing goal that’s best fit for YOU.
Here are our best tips for cultivating writing goals that will keep you on track and set you up for success.
1. Know that every writer is different
While Stephen King might be able to draft a story on a flight from San Diego to Boston, you needn’t compare yourself to anybody other than yourself.
Each writer has a unique style of writing, and that includes HOW they write. You only need to know yourself, and not compare yourself to what another author is able to output.
2. Keep your goals visible
Having your goals well-defined is the first step, but having them visible is the next. Write your goal down on a whiteboard or a sticky note, and keep it near your workspace.
Your measure of success (the goal) should always be clearly visible so you know to keep yourself on track with it.
Remember, we don’t set goals to tyrannize ourselves, we set them because we love our future selves and want them to succeed!
3. Trust your instincts and intuition
The writing goal that you’ve set may be the destination, but how you get there is up to you. So long as you’re making progress toward your goal, feel licensed to trust your intuition as to how and when you write.
4. Keep it real
A lofty writing goal might sound impressive to you, your friends, and your family, but it will ultimately result in disappointment if it’s not realistic.
All too often, authors will set writing goals that they acutely know they won’t be able to adhere to. And when they inevitably fail to live up to their own unrealistic expectations, they get disappointed and disengage from their writing.
Don’t let this be you! Keep your goals real, and just a hair challenging, so that it feels authentic and celebratory when you (inevitably) succeed.
5. Have a contingency plan
Per that note above in number four about disengaging with your writing, you should have a contingency plan for if you are unable to reach your writing goal.
That contingency plan should be more of a recovery plan, to get you back on the horse! Make sure you’ve got a game plan for how to get your writing back in motion in the event that you stall out.
6. Review your goals and pivot as needed
Just because you set your writing goal one way doesn’t mean that you’re fated to keep it that way forever.
If you’ve noticed that you’re failing to live up to your goals, or even that they’re too EASY, then it might be time to review and recalibrate.
Understand that writing goals are fluid, and they can change based on the need and the season. Just be careful not to turn the burner down right before the pot is finally getting to a boil!
7. Celebrate along the way
Writing goals are like any type of goal; they should have a reward in place for when they’re met! Don’t be a tyrant unto yourself. To get the maximal cooperation between the author side of your brain and the rest of your mind, you should always have a reward baked into your goal.
After all, nobody wants to do a thankless job, right? Make sure that when you reach your writing goals, you have a way to show gratitude to yourself, so that your unconscious perceives it as a worthwhile effort that should be repeated.
Writing the Right Goals
No matter how you want to come at writing your book, you’ll always benefit from having some goals in place to get you there.
We hope that this list helps you on your way to being a successful writer! If you need more advice on how to write, edit, design, and publish your book, we’re here to help. Click to get in touch with our team of publishing experts.