This is me getting serious

A post in which WHM gets serious about this whole writing thing. Maybe.

I produced about 12,000 words of creative writing this year. That’s actually a pretty good year for me. And, of course, if you add in all the blogging, posting to Twitter, Facebook, G+ and forums as well as all the writing I do for work, the word count would be impressive. It takes a lot of effort to keep you all entertained. But as important (and fun) as all that other writing is, it doesn’t matter if I’m not also producing fiction. It just doesn’t.

So I suppose the time has come for me to get serious. And that means the setting of a goal and the public stating of that goal. It’s a modest goal, but if I reach it, I’ll have increased my fiction output considerably.

Here it is:

4,000 words of fiction

8 story ideas (no matter how silly or half-baked)

per month

I’m making it retroactive to the start of December. My current total is: 1,125  1,034* words of fiction and 7 story ideas. I have some ground to make up and I may weasel out of it because the zeal didn’t really start until half-way through, but I also have time off next week so, we’ll see (to be fair, I’ve also been doing a lot of revising this month, but I’m not going to count that. It has to be new words set down on the page).

In order to reach this goal, I’m going to need to write for at least 2 hours a week. Probably more like 3. Again, small potatoes compared to most writers, but it’ll be a stretch for me. And I went ahead and set a story ideas goal because I keep finding myself not writing down story ideas because I always think: I already have so many projects I’m not working on, why bother? That’s stupid, of course. That’s a surefire way to get stuck in “not working on the same two or three stories forever” mode.

So that’s the plan. As of now, the focus will be on short fiction (some speculative; some literary fiction; some Mormon-related; some not; plus some humor), but there may also be a novella happening. Wish me luck!**

* I counted wrong. It was actually 1,034.

** of course, it’s not about luck. It’s about discipline. But it’s kind of weird to wish people discipline. Unless, well, you know… but let’s not go there.

5 thoughts on “This is me getting serious”

  1. Break a leg! (How’s that?)

    You might want to consider adding a third goal, of sitting down to write at least once every two days. The reason I suggest this is all your goals are per month, and if it were me I could see myself letting things slide at the beginning of the month with the thought that I could make it up later . . . a recipe for failure and self-loathing. On the other hand I suggested only once eery other day (at minimum) because that was you can miss a day without beating yourself up–as long as you don’t miss two days in a row.

    (I also find Write Or Die insanely helpful for keeping my attention focused when I actually do get to the BIC HOK moment.)

  2. Thanks!

    And: excellent point. I’m going to definitely need to do some testing to see what kind of schedule works for me.

  3. 980 words this morning. Which means 3,080 for the month. The trick is going to be doing the full 4,000 next month.

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