Writing Diary: Goals

Hi, my name is Katherine and I’m having a hard time writing today. It’s not that I don’t want to write or I don’t have any ideas, it’s that none of my ideas are sparking me with vigor. Or my ideas are really large, and require starting again on another project, propelling me on a year-long journey to reach my next goal. 

Not every goal takes a year, but most of them take longer than a week or two. It’s why I need this blog. It’s a chance to complete goals in a day (if I so desire). I need short goals. And I need long goals. 

I just finished a long goal. I finished a draft of the first book in a series. My next goal was to return to book two and re-write the last five chapters.  When I started writing book three, I realized the last part of book two needed to be re-written. That’s another long—potentially three month—goal. 

Short goals. Long goals. And then there is the long, LONG goal of being published. Not just one book, but many. 

They say you are 30% more likely achieve goals written down.

They also say if you make your bed every day, you’re 30% more likely to be successful. I used to hate making my bed. Seriously, I hated it. I can’t really explain why. Then I read this stat in an article somewhere and I haven’t missed a day making my bed. Now, it feels weird to go to the kitchen to make coffee if my bed isn’t made. Increasing my odds of success is more important than doing something I don’t really like. With the right motivation, making my bed isn’t really that difficult. 

I am in need of a similar motivation for putting my laundry away. Someone please write an article about how putting your laundry away on the same day you wash it will increase your odds at achieving your dreams by 50%. I won’t ever leave those clothes unfolded. 

I read in some book written by some author who said showing up every day is important for developing your craft. Even if nothing comes out of you. Even if you have nothing to offer. You can’t wait for inspiration before you sit down at the typewriter (I distinctly remember it was a typewriter this author was using). You need to show up every day. You may not have the words today, but if you show up every day, you’ll be ready to put the words down when they do come. 

So I got up at 6AM today. I made my coffee, read a page on characterization from my current book on the writing craft, declined my brother’s phone call, turned off the internet attached to my computer, and started writing. 

I’m having trouble writing today. But somebody, somewhere said to show up every day, even if you have nothing to say. 

Then you’ll be ready when the words come.