Who else is as excited as me to start this new year? I cannot wait to see what is in store for me in the year to come. I loved everything that happened for me personally during 2016 and I can’t wait to continue to grow and see what opportunities present themselves in 2017. Here’s my goals for 2017.
At the end of each year I write a list of 20 things I would like to accomplish in the coming year. I started doing this only at the end of 2014, but I’ve found it really handy for keeping my goals focused in my mind.
2016 was not very writing-oriented so I want to change that in 2017. So, with that in mind, here are my writing specific goals for the coming year:
- Complete Within These Walls Series
I started this series in 2015 for NaNoWriMo and wrote two and a half of the five planned books for the series. Unfortunately, they’re currently too short and I need to beef them up and edit and revise and such, but the main goal is to just get a first draft of all five books written down this year.
- Continue A Little Touch of Magic Series
I recently completed the first draft of the first book in a series I am calling The Callers series. I published it on WattPad as I was writing it, but still need to upload the last couple of chapters. Once complete, I plan to revise and edit until I feel comfortable self-publishing it. For 2017, that’s the first part of this goal and the second part is to complete the first draft of the next two books. The basic idea is to have a book for each letter of the alphabet so there’s a lot of scope with the series and I’m hoping that people continue to love it as much as they seem to be enjoying the first book.
- Complete The Moon Child
I started this novel last year – the only new novel that I started, if memory serves.It’s the novel that I submitted for critique at the SCBWI conference and it was well received. I’ve actually already started on this one as I plan to finish a complete first draft by the end of January. In 2017, I’d really like to have this fully revised and perhaps ready for submission.
- Win a Camp NaNoWriMo and/or NaNoWriMo
I didn’t do so great with the NaNoWriMo challenges in 2016, but I had a lot of things going on during the NaNo months that were awesome things, so I’m not overly sad about it. I have participated in every NaNoWriMo event since 2007 so I doubt I’ll ever stop. Even if I only make it a couple hundred words in, I will always try.
- Attend the SCBWI conference 2017
This one is not so much a writing goal as it is writing related. I loved my time at the conference this year and if I only go on one trip in 2017, I would love it to be for the conference again. I learned so much and met so many wonderful new people that I’d be a fool NOT to go again.
- Get a literary agent
This one is probably an obvious one, but I would really like to find some representation this year for one of my novels. I haven’t queried anything in a while, so I’ll need to make sure my novels are as perfect as they can be before sending them out.
Reading and Social Media Goals
Last year, I didn’t read nearly as many books as I did the previous year. I think that’s due to the fact that I went to a lot of events and fell seriously behind in all things reading and reviewing. For 2017, I have a very simple couple of goals in my list:
- Read 50 books
- Read 100 books
These should be easily achievable, but I will be setting my Goodreads Reading Challenge at 150, just to try and push myself a little more.
In regards to social media, I’m basically just going to try and interact with people more. I have a terrible habit of lurking around and not really contributing unless it’s to promote something I’m doing and I do feel bad about that.
With that in mind, I want to comment on things like the SCBWI Facebook groups more as well as interacting with others more on Twitter.
I’d also like to build my followers a little too.
- 400 followers on Heather Reviews Blog
I’ve been building a fairly good following with my review blog over the two years that I’ve been blogging there. It’s currently sitting on 281 people and I would like to try and up that to 400. I haven’t really looked into my analytics much since I started blogging but I’m going to start taking things a little more seriously this year and I want to make sure that I can change and adapt things so that I reach more people at all times.
- 100 followers on Heather Lawson Writes Blog
Here on this blog, I’m actually rather pleased that I still had 50 followers after two years of complete inactivity. I’d like to round the number up from 66 to 100 in 2017, which I don’t think should be too difficult if I stick to my ‘interacting with other people’ plan.
- 1500 followers on Twitter
I’ve been building a steady following on Twitter for the last couple years and I’m really happy with how it’s going. I’m currently on 1,121 followers and I’d like to reach my next milestone during 2017.
As well as the obvious blogging and writing goals, I do like to try and put down some other goals to work towards that don’t fall under any of the other categories. So here’s my miscellaneous goals for the coming year:
- Save £500/£1000
I have a very sorry looking savings account after the last minute trips I took last year. While I don’t regret spending the money and taking the trips, I do miss having a bit of a buffer of money in my accounts. I did owe my mum a fair chunk of money but was able to give her a Christmas gift of her money back last year so I start 2017 with very little money in my actual accounts but I am debt free! Luckily, I have a steady job that will allow me to put a little aside each month to hopefully reach these goals no problem.
- Lose 1st/2st/3st
According to my doctor, I am actually obese – not that I look it. It’s to do with my BMI and I do see his point when I think about how my plantar fasciitus gets worse when I gain a couple lbs. For me to be a ‘healthy’ weight/BMI, I need to lose roughly 3-4st. I have a goal in mind that I’m going to try and reach and then see how I feel if/when I reach it before deciding if I need to lose or gain to be healthy for myself.
- Enroll in final Open University module
I technically should be graduating with my Open University degree in June of this year, but I took a year out to get my head in order and sort out some of the other pressing things I had going on in my life. Now that I have a good plan in place, I’m confident that I’ll achieve the best grade possible for my final module, which I’ll start in October. When I complete it, I’ll be graduating with either a 2:1 or a 2:2 for my BA in English Literature. I started this journey in 2012, so it’ll be nice to finally have that degree in my possession.
So that’s all my goals for the year to come. Do you make goals like this rather than resolutions?
Happy New Year everyone! x