Sunday, August 17, 2014

Begin With The Goal In Mind

Our big local festival Homecoming, ends today. The centerpiece of the event (as far as I'm concerned, at least) is the Half Marathon, which was won by the same man, Kenyan Julius Kogo for the fifth consecutive time. I hurt myself training for it this year and didn't get to run in it, but I WILL run next year and I WILL set a PR.

The reason I am talking about this is not that I'm a frustrated runner (though I am). It's that Homecoming is our annual signal that summer is fast coming to an end. School starts tomorrow for students, having already started for teachers on Wednesday. My classroom is ready and I'm looking forward to meeting my new kids. Especially for the next four months, life will be quite hectic. That may seem like it will make it harder for me to write, but the opposite is actually true.

I need routine to get work done. When I have time on my hands, I waste it. On the other hand, when my time is limited, I seem to feel the need to take advantage of what I do have. I don't imagine I'm at all unique in that. Probably a lot of folks feel the same way. I like to say that I could use some time off to write, and who knows, maybe if I had enough time that I could get bored with it, I would start writing again just to have a new routine. But with less than a three week summer this year, all I could think about was how little I wanted to do anything constructive with my days off.

I'm almost 18,000 words into the initial draft of my third Shalan adventure and I have two more final drafts waiting for publication. So for this school year, my writing goals are two: finish this manuscript--all the way up to publication ready--and get my first manuscript published, be that through an agent or on my own. I am stating here that this time next year, I will be a published author who is actually making meaningful money.

Assuming that is true, I'll remind you of my prediction in twelve months. If it's not, don't remind me unless you want a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

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