2014 Writing Goals

This week, YA Highway’s Road Trip Wednesday asked, “How did you do on your [writing] goals this year?”

I did some good writing work this year. I got beta reader feedback and revised one book, and wrote almost 50,000 words on the next book. A writing friend and I revived our old critique group with new and old members, and I visited an out-of-state writing friend and got absolutely fantastic feedback on the first-half-of-the-year book. I also took a couple of writing classes through StoryStudio, and started writing on the train fairly frequently, to supplement my at-home writing sessions. 

The biggest thing I want to work on for next year is WRITING FASTER. I actually produce words pretty quickly, but I’m not satisfied with how long it takes me to produce a complete “good” draft of a novel. The time-consuming part tends to be, well, figuring out what actually happens!

So, for 2014, my writing goals will be:

1. Keep to my regular writing schedule, and supplement with at least two train/bus writing sessions per week.

2. Finish a “good” draft of Europe book. 

3. Write a complete first draft of Road Trip book (or a different book, if I’m not feeling that one by the time I’m done with Europe).

4. Keep learning as much as I can about plot. Read 5 craft books, including Writing Young Adult Fiction for Dummies, which was highly recommended to me by a writer friend.

5. Read at least 50 YA books published in the last three years to keep on top of the industry. (I set this goal every year and have hit the target the past few years.)

6. In general, read less! I am totally serious about this. I definitely tend to use reading as a crutch–it’s my go-to activity whenever I’m not sure what to do next. I don’t specifically use it to avoid writing, but in 2014 I want to be more creative, take more risks, and branch out more in how I’m spending my time. Time to get out of my all-reading-all-the-time rut!

What are your goals (writing or otherwise) for 2014?