Goal Setting for Writers, Part 4: Action Plan

Do you have a hard time achieving your writing goals?

Are you tired of spending more time dreaming about achieving your writing dreams? Of dreaming about your writing career? Or are you tired of spending more time setting goals but not achieving them? It doesn’t have to be this hard.

Ready to set goals and create a detailed action plan so you know exactly what to work on to achieve your writing dreams?

In this blog post series on goal setting for writers, I’ll go through a 4-step goal setting formula that will help writers achieve their writing dreams.

In part 4, I’ll continue with the fourth and final step of goal setting: your action plan.

Before we dive into the goodies, let’s check out the overview of the 4-step goal setting formula.

 

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    An Overview of the 4-Step Goal Setting Formula

    This 4-step goal setting formula is really simple and easy to remember. It contains:

    1. Vision (a 3- and a 1-year vision)

    2. Mission (your why)

    3. A clearly formulated goal (a SMART goal)

    4. A plan of action

    Now, let’s dive right into this week’s topic, your action plan.

    An Action Plan

    Making an action plan is quite simple but oh so important. If you don’t schedule the time to work on your writing, it will most likely never happen. An action plan is, therefore, invaluable.

    If your 1-year vision (which I’ve gone through in part 1 of this series) ends with you having finished the first draft of a 60.000 word manuscript, you have 365 days (or 52 weeks or 12 months) to spread that number out across.

    The easiest way to make an action plan (and a way to track your progress) is to split your overarching goal into smaller ones. For example:

    • Your overarching goal is to write a first draft of 60.000 words in a year.

    • Split the goal of 60.000 words into monthly goals: 5.000 words a month.

    • Split the goal of 5.000 words a month into weekly goals: 1.250 words a week.

    • You can also plan daily goals if you want to get into the nitty-gritty.

    Simple, right? However, not every goal is this basic.

    If your goal is, for example, to publish a novel before the end of the year, the planning will look a little different.

    There are many smaller steps you need to take to reach this kind of goal—like getting your novel professionally edited, getting it formatted, working on a book cover with a designer, fixing the product pages on the different retailer’s platforms, etc. 

    With a goal like this, you need to plan backward, from deadline to start.

    To make it as easy as possible, write a list of the things you need to get done, and then make a note on how long (realistically speaking) it will take for you to finish those tasks. For example:

    • Developmental edit – one month

    • Line edit – three weeks

    • Proofread – one week

    • Book cover design – two weeks

    • Etc.

    Then it’s time to put all your action steps in a planner of choice. Write down when you need to start and finish these smaller goals so that you know what tasks to work on.

    This is also where the ongoing tracking of your goals will come in handy.

    There you have it. Now, create your own goals and action plan and make sure you track your progress consistently to know that you’re on the right track to achieving your writing dreams.

    There you have the fourth and final step in the 4-step goal setting formula. I hope you found this useful.

     

    Download the FREE 4-Step Goal Setting Formula for Writers Workbook (thewritingkylie.com)

    Do you want a workbook to write down your goals?

    Download the FREE 4-Step Goal Setting Formula for Writers Workbook by signing up below.

      Powered By ConvertKit

      (When you sign up here, you will also receive monthly educational emails right into your inbox.)

       

      In this blog post series on goal setting for writers, I’ll go through a 4-step goal setting formula that will help writers achieve their writing dreams.  In part 4, I’ll continue with the fourth and final step of goal setting: your action plan.

      In this blog post series on goal setting for writers, I’ll go through a 4-step goal setting formula that will help writers achieve their writing dreams.  In part 4, I’ll continue with the fourth and final step of goal setting: your action plan.


      Do you want to learn more about, and dig deeper into, goal setting?

      Check out the Goal Setting Workshop for Writers and learn how to set intentional, effective, and exciting goals to achieve your writing dreams.

      Learn more

       

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      Sep 13, Grand Remembrances

      Today is Grandparents Day in the United States. Being a Grand is a special honor. I feel very blessed that my wife and I have two grandchildren. We were able to visit them today. Yes, we are still being cautious with the coronavirus, but we also find it very difficult to not see them when they live so close. So today we did drop by to visit Jacob (age 10) and Sophia (age 7) along with their parents. We brought donuts and caught up with them. Our grandchildren are still pretty young and this is a precious time in their lives – and ours!

      I wish I had known my grandparents better. We never lived in the same place. Dad was a career Air Force pilot, so we moved around a lot. But we did get to see them once in a while when they would visit us, or we them.

      A Plague of Giants

      There are five known magical ‘kennings’ or types: air, water, fire, earth, and plants. Each nation specializes in of these kennings, and the magic influences the society. There’s a big pitfall with this diversity of ability and locale–not everyone gets along.

      Enter the Hathrim giants, or ‘lavaborn’ whose kenning is fire. Where they live the trees that fuel their fire are long gone, but the giants are definitely not welcome anywhere else. They’re big, they’re violent, and they’re ruthless. When a volcano erupts and they are forced to evacuate, they take the opportunity to relocate. They don’t care that it’s in a place where they aren’t wanted.

      I first read Kevin Hearne’s Iron Druid books and loved them (also the quirky The Tales of Pell), so was curious about this new venture, starting with A PLAGUE OF GIANTS. Think Avatar: The Last Airbender meets Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera series. Elemental magic, a variety of races, different lands. And it’s all thrown at you from page one.

      But this story is told a little differently. It starts at the end of the war, after a difficult victory, and a bard with earth kenning uses his magic to re-tell the story of the war to a city of refugees. And it’s this movement back and forth in time and between key players in this war that we get a singularly grand view of the war as a whole. Hearne uses this method to great effect.

      There are so many interesting characters in this book that I can’t cover them all here. Often in books like this such a large cast of ‘main’ character can make the storytelling suffer, especially since they don’t have a lot of interaction with each other for the first 3/4 of the book–but it doesn’t suffer, thankfully. And the characterization is good enough, despite these short bursts, that by the end we understand these people and care about what happens to them.

      If there were a main character it would be Dervan, a historian who is assigned to record (also spy on?) the bard’s stories. He finds himself caught up in machinations he feels unfit to survive. Fintan is the bard from another country, who at first is rather mysterious and his true personality is hidden by the stories he tells; it takes a while to understand him. Gorin Mogen is the leader of the Hathrim giants who decide to find a new land to settle. He’s hard to like, but as far as villains go, you understand his motivations and he can be even a little convincing. There’s Abhi, the son of hunters, who decides hunting isn’t the life for him–and unexpectedly finds himself on a quest for the sixth kenning. And Gondel Vedd, a scholar of linguistics who finds himself tasked with finding a way to communicate with a race of giants never seen before (definitely not Hathrim) and stumbles onto a mystery no one could have guessed: there may be a seventh kenning.

      There are other characters, but what makes them all interesting is that they’re regular people (well, maybe not Gorin Mogen or the viceroy–he’s a piece of work) who become heroes in their own little ways, whether it’s the teenage girl who isn’t afraid to share vital information, to the scholars who suddenly find how crucial their minds are to the survival of a nation, to the humble public servants who find bravery when they need it most. This is a story of loss, love, redemption, courage, unity, and overcoming despair to not give up. All very human experiences by simple people who do extraordinary things.

      Hearne’s worldbuilding is engaging. He doesn’t bottle feed you, at first it feels like drinking from a hydrant, but then you settle in and pick up things along the way. Then he shows you stuff with a punch to the gut. This is no fluffy world with simple magic without price. All the magic has a price, and more often than not it leads you straight to death’s door. For most people just the seeking of the magic will kill you. I particularly enjoyed the scenes with Ahbi and his discovery of the sixth kenning and everything associated with it. But giants? I mean, really? It isn’t bad enough fighting people who can control fire that you have to add that they’re twice the size of normal people? For Hearne if it’s war, the stakes are pretty high, and it gets ugly.

      The benefit of the storytelling style is that the book, despite its length, moves along steadily (Hearne is no novice, here). The bits of story lead you along without annoying cliffhangers (mostly), and I never got bored with the switch between characters. It was easy to move between them, and they were recognizable enough that I got lost or confused. The end of the novel felt a little abrupt, but I guess that has more to do with I was ready for the story to continue, despite the exiting climax.

      If you’re looking for epic fantasy with fun storytelling and clever worldbuilding, check out A PLAGUE OF GIANTS.

      The post A Plague of Giants appeared first on Elitist Book Reviews.

      The Artwork Of Gary Choo

      Gary Choo is a concept artist/illustrator based in Singapore. I’ve know Gary for a good many years ( 17, actually ), working together in animation studios in Singapore like Silicon Illusions and Lucasfilm. Gary currently runs an art team at Mighty Bear Games, but when time allows he also draws covers for Marvel comics, and they’re amazing –

      The Art Of Gary Choo
      The Art Of Gary Choo
      The Art Of Gary Choo
      The Art Of Gary Choo
      The Art Of Gary Choo

      To see more of Gary’s work or to engage him for freelance work, head down to his ArtStation.

      The post The Art Of Gary Choo appeared first on Halcyon Realms – Art Book Reviews – Anime, Manga, Film, Photography.

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