Whoa, where did this year go? It seems like only yesterday you were popping a champagne cork and making a lot of crazy promises. But you’re a writer, that’s pretty much a normal Friday, amirite? Unfortunately, about this time last year, you read a bunch of articles on New Year’s resolutions for writers, and you thought it’d be a good idea to set yourself up for failure with unrealistic expectations about what you could accomplish. Just in the nick of time, I’ve made a list of popular writerly resolutions and how you can check them off your list before the ball drops on your year’s worth of dropped balls.
- Back up your computer. Oh, you actually kept this one? I’d assumed the reason you haven’t gotten anything done this year was because your computer crashed. Well. Nice job, I guess. That’s one resolution down.
- Finish your novel. Oh dear God…okay, we’ll come back to this one.
- Consistently make time to write. Did you forget to do this? Well, it’s time to make up for lost time. You want consistency? I got your consistency right here, pal. Try writing from sunrise to two hours before sunrise for the rest of the year. Hey, I never promised this would be easy. Or fun. Or realistic–but if you cared about what was realistic, you wouldn’t have made all those resolutions in the first place.
- Stop taking criticism personally. Lucky you, you’ll be in such a haze of caffeine and sleep deprivation, you wouldn’t notice if a tiger took a bite out of your rump. If you aren’t yet sufficiently dead inside to do this, you can ease the pain of criticism by ignoring all advice.
- Stop doubting yourself. If you’ve let things slide enough that you need this article, this one’s pretty much out the window. Just kidding! The good news is you have every reason to believe in yourself. The bad news is that the thing you should believe is that you’ll consistently disappoint yourself and your loved ones. See? Your self-doubt is gone.
- Submit to 100 magazines. Two words: email blast. Done and done.
- Get at least one story accepted. This may be mutually exclusive with the previous resolution on this list. If you REALLY want to cross this off, though, I’ll publish your story on my blog for you. In return for you generously donating content to my website, you’ll receive the satisfaction of helping me add content to my website.
- Read 100 books. Audiobooks are a great way to power through books during your commute to work, or when you’re sleeping. That still won’t give you enough time to read everything, so you may need to read 100 Cliff’s Notes.
- Keep a journal. Hey, Twitter is like a journal, kinda. It’s a way to record your thoughts and feelings. It seems this year you spent a lot of time thinking about what you had for breakfast and how many five-star reviews your book got on Amazon. Whatever, it counts.
- Join a writers group. A good writers group consists of kindred creative spirits with whom you can share your ideas and push each other to heights you couldn’t have imagined. Since you’ve only got a few days left to make that happen, though, joining that Facebook group where people write angry screeds at each other about gun control will have to do.
- Exercise. Last-minute panic can elevate your heart rate almost as much as a fifteen-minute run. You’re covered.
- Finish your novel. Oh God, oh God, how did I get so far behind? Okay, we can fix this. Well, you’ve heard of National Novel Writing Month? Then prepare yourself for Personal Novel Writing Week. It’s pretty much the same, except without the clever name, camaraderie with other writers, three weeks’ worth of writing time, and any fun whatsoever.
And if for some reason you’re still not able to keep all your resolutions:
- Make brand-new resolutions for next year. Just remember that, even though you’ve never kept a single New Year’s Resolution in your life, next year will be different for some reason.
Did you accomplish your New Year’s writing resolutions? Well, aren’t you fancy?! Please share your genius with the rest of us in the comments section.
Now, thanks to tinyCoffee and PayPal, you can!