Monday, May 21, 2012

MONDAY'S MUSINGS: TAKE THE NEXT SMALL STEP

When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer, just take the next small step. 





This begs the question, what's the next small step? And really, only you can decide what that step should or will be. 

This is where determination comes into play. Of course, life has no guarantees, does it?

With our writing, if it’s something we enjoy, if it gives us a sense of accomplishment or makes us feel good to create, why stop? If our goal is to be published then we can’t let rejections or fear slow us down or stop us.

I think setting goals are important, but it only works if we have realistic (do-able) goals. You have to think smart and have the skills, resources, and support needed to accomplish the goal. For me, setting a series of goals helps.  Yes, I want to be published. That is my big goal. Realistically, what I write today probably won’t get published tomorrow. To get there I have to break that large goal into small steps. I need to know the craft of writing (skills), have the resources (the time), and I need support (knowledgeable people) willing to cheer me on. Or give me a swift kick when I need it. 

Set a goal and a time frame to achieve it. Setting a time frame 
helps keep you focused on your target goal .
  

Personally, I need to accomplish something so I feel I’m making steps towards the main goal I've set. Isn’t that true with any set of goals we set? When we achieve a step towards that goal, doesn’t it make you feel good? Encourages you to go on?  Gives you the needed excitement to reach for the next step on your goals plan?

One thing I’ve noticed from those who have been successful. They have set personal writing goals.  Possibly setting word count. Maybe we need research to make the next step successful. Or having someone read what we’ve written and give us some constructive critiques. When I give something I’ve written to someone, I read it with fresh eyes because I start to see it as another would. That helps too.

The point is there has to be a next step to fulfill our goals.

When in doubt, just take the next small step…


If you're a writer what sort of goals have you set for yourself?

  • If you're not published: what goals are you setting to become published?
  • If you are published, what are some successful goals you've set for yourself? 

21 comments:

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Well I am back....just.
I will certainly take the small steps to achieve my goals.
Most enjoyable read.

Yvonne.

Jo said...

Actually getting published is an achievement, hope you make it. Then I hope you can stay there.

Clarissa Draper said...

I always set small goals for myself. Something I know I can meet. If not, I get so discouraged. Awesome post.

Julie said...

Love the quotes and I think small steps are so important in order to meet our goals. Something I'm finally learning! I'm not published and that is definitely my goal, I'm working on taking steps to get there. Great post, Sia!

Chelle Sandell said...

I've recently set a few goals in regards to my writing and personal struggles. Hopefully I can stick to them. I've decided to self-pub the manuscript I'm working on and trying to push myself to finish it before I get stuck in edit mode.

Johanna Garth said...

I'm a total goal setter. When writing it's 2000 words a day and when editing first edit it's 2 chapters. Second edit it's 5 chapters.

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Yvonne--glad you're back and I hope you had a good time away. :-) Small steps are good.

@JO, That's my plan.

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Clarissa--That's thinking smart. It doesn't do a blasted bit of good to set a goal, that might sound good, but you can't meet. Your little step is something do-able and leads to the final step. Each step you successfully meet encourages you for the next step.

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Julie, thank you. The green text is mine (from seminars I've given) but it's something that helps me be encouraged and focuses on what and why. :-)

It's little steps for me, too, Julie. Yay on meeting your small goals!

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Chelle. When you throw health issues in the mix it makes setting reasonable goals harder, doesn't it? I know this from personal experience. It's a learning process for me, right now, because I have to dovetail my goals to my resources-energy levels and time. A learning curve for the NOW and it Sucks.

Isn't it great there are choices in so far as publishing goes? Let me know how it goes Chelle!

James Rafferty said...

Writing novels can take a long time, especially if you're doing it while working full-time. I agree that getting published won't happen unless you have goals and continue making progress toward them. This way, small steps can produce big results.

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Johanna--I knew that, lol! But you still set reasonable goals based on time available and juggling life and family.

Good goals, especially like your editing goals!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I learned I do well will writing goals, especially word count - found that out during NaNo 2010. Working on chapter goals now as I work on my third and final book.

~Sia McKye~ said...

Alex, I couldn't have gotten as far as I did with NaNo without goals.

NaNo was an excellent proving ground for writing techniques and accomplishing goals. I've done goals and set up the steps all my working life, but not necessarily with writing.

I've asked before and will again: Final as in Cassa?

~Sia McKye~ said...

@James
I think setting small goals, toward the end result of being published, is especially important when a writer also works full time.

~Sia McKye~ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chelle Sandell said...

@Sia...I know, right?! I hate that you know and understand what I deal with...but it's almost a relief when someone does. The hard part is when we do feel up to it, we have so many things that need to get done that it's hard to throw writing into the mix. I've found that it's best to write in the mornings after a couple of cups of coffee. Haha. Just about when the caffeine kicks in. ;) My heroine probably sounds like she's hyper.

~Sia McKye~ said...

@Chelle And your aren't alone with health issues and writing, believe me. There are several out here in the same boat.

Seriously, the hardest part is not to OVERDO when we feel good and have the energy. Pacing myself has been the hardest lesson. One I haven't conquered completely, although it is getting easier. :-)

Hang in there Chelle!

Stephen Tremp said...

I set big goals, then start put on my journey one step at a time. I don;t mind taking small steps because at the end of the week, I've covered some serious ground. Nothing wrong with small steps at all.

A Daft Scots Lass said...

I got sooooo distracted by the naked torso, designer stubble, awesome 6 pack, tattoo-clad rough 'n ready man on your right side bar. Oohhh Happy Day!

Carol Kilgore said...

Great motivational post, Sia. I'm a goal setter. I set small goals and larger ones, daily ones I'm pretty sure I can meet and others that challenge me.