You Can Get There from Here

It is possible to get the house painted, get the promotion, get the Hawaiian vacation.

It is possible to get the first draft done (or the second, the third…even the eighteenth). It’s possible to get an agent, a book contract.

All of these, and many others, are possible to achieve. But they are not easy. They take work.

And we’ve all heard that before.

But something has to happen before the work, before we put the thought, labor and effort into getting what we want.

For me, achieving anything I want requires setting a goal. The goal provides the focus for my efforts. The goal gives me the target to refocus on when I drift off course or stop completely.

Goals have to be measureable. We have to be able to know when we’ve achieved it.

At an ACFW conference a few years ago, Debbie Macomber challenged us to set five goals for our writing careers. Here are mine:

  1. Write full time
  2. Have my first novel, Journey to Riverbend, published
  3. Sign a multibook contract
  4. Publish contemporary as well as historical fiction
  5. Teach at workshops and conferences

These goals all have one thing in common. They are specific. I know when I’ve accomplished them.

I’m either writing full time or I’m not.

My novel is published or it’s not.

When we’re setting goals whether for our writing or our non-writing careers, we need to be as concrete as possible. “I’m going to write a book someday” is not a goal. It’s a wish.

Next week, we’ll look at identifying the steps to achieve our goals.

How about you? What goals have you set for your writing? Your non-writing career? Your life?

3 Responses to You Can Get There from Here

  1. DiAne Gates May 2, 2012 at 8:29 pm #

    Henry, thank you for rescuing me from drifting on the ocean of I’ll-get-to-it- tomorrow.

    Going to copy your post and hang it above my computer to remind me. Better yet, I’ll set five goals of my own and hang them there. Thanks.


  2. Henry May 2, 2012 at 9:57 pm #

    Thank you, DiAne.
    I’m interested to see what your goals are.

  3. Lori Freeland May 4, 2012 at 3:13 am #

    I love goals! Great idea.

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