Recently writer Hope Clark tweeted, “Summarize your 2010 writing year in one word. Then select the word that will define your writing year in 2011. Then set your goals.” That set me to thinking; I would summarize my 2010 writing year as “hopeful.” The word that will define my 2011 writing year is “determined.”
I did make some writing progress this past year; I started two novels which had been progressing well, giving me a bit more confidence in writing fiction. However, personal circumstances have delayed my continued work on them, so I’m not yet where I’d like to be. I also made a few attempts to publish articles, but did not pursue that fully. So I actually was more hopeful this past year than action-oriented.
This past November 1st I made a promise to myself that on November 1, 2011, I would reduce my work hours at my regular job and spend more of my day writing. At the time I made that promise I started writing 2 hours a day, until homelessness threatened in early December. That scare is over now and I’m writing again.
This year I will finish the two novels I’m currently writing , plus a third. Getting them published is another matter, and I’m not basing reducing my work hours on them. My plan is to string together enough writing assignments of different types that will make up the balance of the pay lost from my regular job. I’ve already begun some assignments that will help me toward that goal.
Today I am 57 years old; I seem to be in reasonable health and I don’t expect to depart this world anytime soon, barring unforeseen circumstance, but I have to take up my life now. At age 55 I was faced with the question of where I wanted to live the rest of my days, and after careful and thorough consideration I chose to move to Portland. I made a one-year plan at that point and followed through, and here I am. Now I am faced with what I want to do the rest of my life. I want to write for as long as I have the strength, mind, heart and soul to do so. I’m going to follow through on my new one-year plan. At the end of that year, I’m going to make a new one-year plan, to write full time by November 1, 2012.
I believe that when one sets a goal and moves toward it with great determination, come what may, the Universe, after a throwing a few curve balls, gets behind such a one and helps bring about the appropriate circumstances so the goal can be achieved. So that’s my one-word description for my 2011 writing year — “determined.” I’ll report back on that as the year progresses.
It’s going to be an interesting 2011!