I sit here, 15 days until Christmas, wondering where the year went?
I had some quiet time recently to think about what I accomplished this year--which is a fair amount, though I wish more of it was writing related--and what I hope to accomplish in the year to come. It's something I do every year and, I will admit, my hopes and plans for a new year tend to be quite lofty. I have grand plans each time with every intention of following through. Then reality rears its ugly head. Whether it by the day job, family obligations, family illness, my own health, etc, things happen and my writing is the first thing that suffers.
I know I'm not alone in this. I've talked to enough authors who deal with the same setbacks I do. We just have to trek forward, barrel though all the other stuff, and...you got it, WRITE. :)
I'm lucky enough to have a great support system. I'm not talking about the husband or other family members, because as much as I love them and they love me, they don't get being a writer. Some of them don't even view it as a career. To them, writing is my hobby. (insert eyeroll here) No, I'm talking about the group of writers I'm blessed to call my friends. And boy, do they know when to call me on my b.s. LOL Oh, they are supportive when one of the kids is sick or something happens, but they are ruthless when they see I'm making excuses for not getting things done and will call me out without hesitation. Sometimes their words aren't what I want to hear, but dang it all, they're what I need to hear, each and every time.
It was a conversation with one of these lovely ladies that made me realize I was setting myself up for failure with my overzealous writing plan for the coming year. We were talking about what we wanted to accomplish and when I laid out my intentions, she immediately said, that sounds great but what happens when your son gets sick or when you're overwhelmed when your husband has to go out of town for 2 weeks for work or a project at work needs your undivided attention?
She made me see that my plan was great if I could focus 100% on writing and nothing else, but that certainly isn't going to be the case. So I had to pare back my plans to something more manageable--even with distractions that are bound to come up. And if a miracle happens and I end up accomplishing more than I set out to do, then woohoo for me. :) But what I have done now, I know is very doable.
Do you do an inventory of what you've accomplished at the end of each year? (And I don't just mean this question for other writers. I certainly do this in every aspect of my life, whether it be things I wanted to do as a family or accomplish at home, etc.) Do you make a list of things you want to accomplish in the year to come? What is your process for making your plans? Do you go big, like I did, or do you plan conservatively?
I hope everyone is enjoying, and continues to enjoy, the holiday season. Here's to finishing 2009 with a bang and starting 2010 on the right foot. :)
Real Woman, Irresistible Men, Endless Possiblities