Archive for the ‘Personal challenges’ Category

Times like these I think about my goals for next year. What do I want to achieve? I’m a OCD level planner, so I’ve been thinking about this a lot.

I want to put a new short story on this website every week in 2014, and then soon after indie publish it. I’ve still got some back log to work with, but pretty soon I’m going to have to write more short stories, a lot more.

I want to write a heck of a lot next year. I’ve got a lot of ongoing projects, and I want to get them done so I can finally push them out of the nest.

Challenges: I love writing challenges! I want to join both nanowrimo camps next year, and of course the big event in November. I also want to try ‘story a day May’ (though I think I’m going to fail it spectacularly). And the 3 day novel challenge in September is calling to me. I find them a lot of fun, and it’ll give me more first drafts to edit, edit, edit.

Reading: I managed 61 books this year. I’m setting my 2014 goodreads challenge for 65 books, and I’m hoping to blow past that goal.

Publishing: otherwise known as: come on, finish editing that novel already.

What about you guys? Any big goals for 2014?


I miss it already. I didn’t make my 150k goal, but did reach 72,737 words, the most I’ve ever written in a month. Not bad. I’ll be pushing myself again next year and seeing what I can come up with. I’m determined to get at least 100k next time!

Now, to address a few questions that might come up:

Why would you do that!

To me nano is the ultimate holiday. I clear my decks and try to do nothing but write (and the bill paying job, and everything that pops up saying ‘oh hey you forgot about me.’) It’s my chance to see what I’m capable of, and to just have fun and create. The atmosphere is exhilarating. It’s the only month of the year where I’m surrounded by people who love writing just as much as I do.

50k in a month? Isn’t it a load of crap?

About as much as 50k over five months, or ten months (less for me because I’d forget things if I take too long). It’s a first draft – editing comes later. In fact if you do your research writing slow is a recent fad. A heck of a lot of the classics were written in very short spaces of time.

I still don’t get it.

The best reason for doing nano is to see what you’re capable of. I know now I can write 72,737 words in one month. Actually I know I can write more because I had some 0 word days in there. You don’t know what you’re capable of until you try.

That novel you’ve been dreaming of for ten years – nano is the time to challenge yourself to get all or some of it on paper (or computer screen). Maybe 50k is beyond you, but by trying you might get 10k or 20k.

My first nano I failed with something like 17k. My next I made it to 51k. And this one I made it to 72k. If I didn’t challenge myself I wouldn’t have known what I can do, and I wouldn’t have improved year on year. It’s only by pushing our limits that we find out where they are.