If January was any hint, 2017 is going to be a hectic year. My February calendar is already starting to look uncomfortably packed and March is looking worse. As things ramp up at work and my fiancé and I get closer to our wedding in September I want to make sure that I don’t lose sight of my writing goals for this year.
In order to do this, I’ve made it a point to do two things every month: reflect on the past month and set goals for the next one. I journal my reflections. Those reflections are meant to be private so that I can be honest. The goals however are meant to be shared so I can be held accountable to some extent.
God forbid I let down the internet.
The one thing I will share from my reflections this month is the manifesto of sorts I’ve created for myself as a writer. I’ve written “manifesto” on the inside cover of all of my notebooks so I’m always reminded of why and how I should be writing. It’s simple; which is best I think.
My Writing Manifesto
Write only for myself.
Write honestly and without fear.
Write with persistence and devotion to the words.
“Manifesto” might be a bit of a strong word and what it contains might be over simplified but I think in many ways that’s the point. I intended for it to be applicable to the different types of writing I do. What you see above are words that I think any writer tries to live by and at the end of the day they’re all I should hold myself accountable to. If my writing has held to those four things, then I can say I’ve done a good job.
I’ve also spent some time trying to prioritize what I want to accomplish in February. Again, I tried to keep it simple. I know this next month is going to be crazy so being conservative and realistic was key.
February Writing Goals:
Write 1 Connor Griffin Writes post per week
I’m going to shoot posts going live on Sundays. This gives me all week plus half of the weekend to think of, draft, write, and edit a post. Seems simple enough.
Post to my Connor Griffin Writes Instagram account at least once a day
My writing Instagram account is quickly becoming my favorite writing outlet. Not only am I exposed to awesome writing from literally thousands of fellow writers, it forces me to write for a different medium than I’m used to. I’ve always considered myself a novelist at heart. Being forced to condense my writing to have maximum effect with a minimal word count has really improved the way I approach all of my writing.
Start my New Project’s manuscript
Earlier I posted on how I had a new project for the new year. I also posted about how I’m trying to change up the way I approach my big projects. (You can read that post here.) So I spent all of January outlining that project. I built out character profiles, set up research meetings, and covered my cubicle at work with sticky notes referencing story ideas. Then, with five days left in January, I read an article from The Economist (I think) that gave me an idea for a story I instantly became obsessed with. I got nothing done at work for the rest of the day and did a bare bones outline of the entire novel in 30 minutes at home that night. I’ve spent every moment since thinking about how to fill that outline out. Regardless of whether that outline is ready to go or not, I’m breaking ground on the manuscript come February 1st. Be sure to check back soon for my details on that project!
Write an average of 500 words per day
It doesn’t matter what it is. If the writing is not work-related or an email to my mom it counts. Poetry, prose, journal, manuscript, crayon on the walls. It all counts. The idea behind this is setting aside a specific time each day to write. Turn off the tv, pour a cup of coffee, and just write. Ideally these words would be a part of my manuscript but if I have to write my name 500 times, I’ll do that too.
I’d like to think I’ll post here more than once a week and that one of those might be an update on how I’m doing on these goals. Just to be sure I’d head over to my Connor Griffin Writes Facebook Page or follow me on Instagram for more frequent updates.
Until next time,