Every year, I set goals for myself, and every quarter, I review my progress. So, here’s my (lack of) progress so far in 2015.
1. Write and submit at least one new short story every month, with the goal being at least 10 publications this year.
I have several half-written stories, and a lot more one-page-written stories. In fact, I have about ten of them, each on a separate pad of paper. I carry at least three-four with me all the time in the hopes that I’ll have time to finish one. Not happening.
2. Write the rough drafts for a seven-part novella series, and maybe even publish one or two of them.
The first one is about half written, with the rest outlined.
3. Have at least one novel published, with another one polished enough to publish in 2016.
4. Publish at least two long short stories (10k+) or short story collections.
I have about six stories in various stages of completion that I want to group into a collection, and a couple long stories half written. It’s just a matter of finishing them all.
5. Improve my marketing strategy in order to increase my fanbase (as measured by newsletter subscription, Facebook page likes, and social media interactions like comments, likes, and favorites), sales, and reviews.
I haven’t had time to focus on this; it’s top of my list for this summer.
6. Read 100 books.
I’m at 13, which is impressive considering how much free time I don’t have.
7. Get healthier: cut out my daily breakfast Pepsi (not sure how the lack of caffeine will work when I generally only get 4-5 hours of sleep) and eventually almost all soda; go out to eat once a week or less; eat more fruits and veggies and less processed, sodium-drenched foods; use the gym membership I’m paying for; ride my bike to work when it warms up; etc.
I’ve actually done this! Since the beginning of the year, I’ve been tracking what I eat with the MyFitnessPal app, and not only am I eating a lot healthier (and a lot less), but I’ve lost about 5 lbs. And it’s warm enough now that next week I’ll start riding my bike to work on the days I don’t have class or meetings after work that I have to drive to.
So far this year, I’ve learned that working 45 hours/week while taking 15 hours of graduate-level classes is pushing the limit of my abilities and leaves little time for anything besides homework (including sleeping). But it’s paid off, because I was accepted into a PhD program starting this fall! I’ll actually have more free time then, because I’m quitting my job when classes start in the fall and only taking 13 hours of classes (six of which are a three day/week internship). I’m also only taking one class this summer (compared to 3 classes and a 20 hour/week internship while working fulltime last summer). So while I haven’t made much progress yet this year, I anticipate having a lot more time to accomplish everything in just another month. If I can make it until then without my statistics class killing me.
If you’ve set goals for yourself, how’re they going so far this year?