2015 Round Of Words part 1 ~ Goals

IMG_0183.JPGPart of me thinks that I don’t have enough time for the Round of Words right now. I’m headed into the start of rehearsals for a big musical, and won’t have as much time to write as I’d like. Plus I have some knitting projects I’m excited about doing for myself, and work is getting crazy, and…

And, and, and. But you know what? That’s exactly why I need ROW. You guys are my accountability club. In the past, you have been the reason why I got any writing done at all some months. Because I knew that someone was cheering me on, and that somebody would notice (even just form my silence) if I didn’t get any writing accomplished at all.

So. Keeping in mind the various other things I want to get done this quarter (and even including some of them in my goals), here are my goals for the 2015 Q1 ROW:

1. Some kind of writing task at least two times a week. This can be editing, writing, plotting, research… anything. And it can last as long – or as short – as it lasts, so long as I feel comfortable considering it as my “best shot” for the time I had available in which to do it.

2. Exercise at least three times a week. Probably this will usually be on the stationary bike. Sometimes it will be walking, or weights, or crunches. And I’m not setting a time goal for this one, either. As with goal #1, it just needs to be what I have time for at the time.

3. Knit 2 squares for the 2015 Geek-A-Long blanket. This looks like a fun project, and the 2014 GAL Blanket was really cute and I wished I had done it. (I know, I didn’t have time for it. Still.) In fact, I still want to knit the 2014 one, so I may sometimes backtrack and knit squares from the 2014 blanket instead.

4. Finish a crocheted scarf I’m working on for a friend. Ideally, it will be done in time for his birthday in a month. But if not, as long as I can get it done this quarter, I’ll be happy.

5. Post ROW blogs at least once a week, and visit (& comment on!) the blogs on my blog roll plus at least 5 random ROW-er blogs. This one will be harder to judge than some, since I won’t always comment on every blog I read. But I want to catch up to my feed reader, and STAY caught up. That’s the thing I fell behind on at the end of last year that I feel the most guilty about.

There it is. My list of goals for Round 1 of 2015. Yes, I know, it’s not nearly as detailed and organized and planned out as some of my ROW Goals have been in the past. It’s just a list of things I want to accomplish. No categories, no priorities, no order. Just a list of things. Right now, that it my focus. The small things that will, given time, add up to the bigger things.

Enter 2014

So, it’s time to start off a new year. Welcome to 2014, and may it be happy for everyone!

In keeping with tradition here at the Lair of the Bookwyrm, I am not going to list resolutions per se. Instead, I am going to list up some things that I intend to do this year, and that will include my goals for the first Round of Words in 2014. (Writing is a big part of things that I intend to do in 2014.)

Also in keeping with my personal tradition, I am not going to rehash what I did or didn’t do over the course of the year. Plans change, and goals should too. Instead, I will revisit these plans and intents over the course of the year in my ROW80 blog posts. Which will hopefully be weekly, but you know how these things go.

Therefore, here are my intents for 2014:

Year-long Goals

  • Knitting-wise, this will be the Year of the WIP. I intend to finish up a lot of my works in progress, to the point that I only intend to start one new project per quarter, and each of those projects will be gifts. I retain the right to revise this if I come across MUST KNIT gifts or finish a ton on WIPs.
  • I am going to do another 52 books in 52 weeks blog post series. Not because I want to make sure I read 52 books over the year, but to make sure that I review 52 books this year. My reviews have been slacking lately.

Round (aka quarter)-long Goals

  • Work on my new collaborative web-based writing project. It’s not my project to disclose – I’m just assisting on it – so I can’t even go into what it’s about. For now, I’ll just call it my Co-op project, and it has a pretty high priority without completely bumping my own work to the sidelines. Part of the Round goals will be brainstorming a plot, and part will be working out a schedule of deadlines. This may move to a weekly or monthly goal as my partners and I iron out the schedule.
  • Get my 2 main characters firmed up for SCVH. I stalled out on the character building for them during the rehearsals for my caroling group, and it’s time to get them figured out so I can firm up the plot for that book.
  • Read a craft book. I have two in mind, just need to pick which one. Do any applicable exercises that go with the book.

Monthly Goals

  • (At least) 1 good visit with family per month.
  • (At least) 1 paper book read, and 1 audio book listened to. Yes, I have a goal of a weekly book review and I would prefer to finish a book a week minimum, but I also want to make sure I keep the variety – hence the paper book versus the audio book.
  • Update my book library in LibraryThing. Audio books and e-books too.

Weekly Goals

  • Spend a minimum of 3 hours per week on writing projects. Any writing projects.
  • Go to the gym 3 times per week minimum. I’m not setting a specific goal of what to do each time I go, but I hope to have weekly focus on weights, cardio, and the yoga class I want to start.
  • Post a minimum of 3 blog posts per week. One should be a ROW update, one should be a book review, and the other will often be a Ten on Tuesday. However, this is not a firm schedule, and can be modified as I choose. Except…
  • Review one book per week on the blog.
  • Maintain my books read for the week in Goodreads.

So that’s my plan for 2014. It will be altered as needed throughout the year, of course, but I think it’s good to take stock every so often and set plans. Goals are a good thing. Without something to shoot for, we often don’t bother to aim for anything at all.

Ten on Tuesday ~ Goals

Today’s Ten on Tuesday prompt, unsurprisingly, is “10 goals you have to 2013.” Given that it’s the first 10 on Tues after the new year, a resolutions post is what we should have all been anticipating. This is actually something that is a good thing for me to do, as I haven’t yet posted anything about 2013 goals (I don’t really count my ROW80 goals in this, as those are designed to be a list of goals for an 80-day period, and are smaller in scope than yearly goals).

To start with, let’s review what I said last year at this time:

I am not making resolutions this year.

I am also not looking at my resolutions from last year to see how I did. My goals for the year changed throughout the year… heck, I’d even changed my mind by March 2011.

What I am going to do this year is track the projects I finish. I’d like to have 12 or more by the end of the year…

In addition, I would like one of those finished items to be the Star Trek socks, as they are now meant to be a Christmas gift. I would like another of the FOs to be one of the big ticket WIPs currently in progress. The stole or sweater would be ideal, but there are others I’d be happy to finish, too.

And that’s my plan for the year.

So: how did I do? Well, I did create a sticky post with my FOs for 2012. (It’s not sticky any longer, as it’s no longer 2012.) And if you look at that tracker, you will see that I completed 13 knitted items, so that was a success! Also, one of the items was the pair of Star Trek socks, so that was a success also! I did not finish either the stole (which I think I will end up frogging) or the sweater (which I think needs to become a vest due to lack of enough yarn for the sleeves) but that’s okay with me. Maybe I will finish (or frog) them in 2013.

And now, speaking of 2013:

Ten Goals for 2013

  1. Finish the Babette blanket.
  2. Back-post all of my book reviews to my book review blog, Book-Wyrm-Reads. I have already done many of them (they were on the blog as pages instead of posts, and that was cumbersome. I spent a large chunk of time this weekend switching that around, but I think it was worth it) but I want to get them all there so I have them all in one place. A side part of this goal is to cross-post all of my review that I post here on my review blog so I don’t have to ever go back and combine the two again.
  3. Have a giveaway to celebrate the blogiversary that I missed last month.
  4. Get married!
  5. There’s a commitment I made regarding one of the theatre shows I was in a couple of years ago, and I never quite finished what I intended to do. Without going into any more detail than that, I want to make sure to finish up that thing this year.
  6. Get all of the stuff I pulled out of my storage locker at the end of last year taken care of. Some of it needs to get put away (which means I need to find a home for it in the craft room) and some of it needs to leave my house for a new home.
  7. Speaking of the craft room… I’d like to get all of the craft supplies tidy. This means that I need to go through the supplies and figure out what I will use and what I will not be using, and get rid of the latter.
  8. Send a minimum of one fun piece of mail a month. If you would like to be the recipient of a random letter or card, let me know in the comments and I’ll ask you (via email) for a mailing address. And then, at some point in 2013, I’ll surprise you with a note in the mail.  🙂  (And yes, I will send mail anywhere on the planet that a postal service can reach. It doesn’t have to be in the US.)
  9. Drink more water.
  10. Make writing (nearly) daily a habit again. ROW80 is going to be my big push for this, as that’s the main focus of that challenge, but it is a goal for me that spans the whole year. As to the “nearly” part, I know there will be days when I am too busy with other things to write, and I don’t want to beat myself up with guilt for those days. But I want it to be a regular part of my life again.

Jumping Into A Round of Words

My blog readers may or may not remember that once upon a time I joined A Round of Words in 80 Days. (For those who don’t know or need a refreshers, ROW80 is “the writing challenge that knows you have a life,” or something that lets you pick your own goals yet still provides an accountability group. It’s like a sustainable NaNoWriMo.)

ROW80Anyway, I joined ROW80 when it first started. It was a great idea, and I had fun with it, but the life thing became something I didn’t want to share with writing. It happens sometimes, and I didn’t have enough energy to go around so I had to pick what was most important to me. At the time, it wasn’t writing.

However, getting back to writing has always been a goal for the future, and something that was in the back of my head. I just wasn’t ready for it… until November 2012. After a hiatus of 2 years, I got back to NaNo in 2012. And I won, getting my 50K with plenty of time to spare.

And now, having reached that goal of getting back to writing, I want to find a way to work it back into my regular routine.

Now. Many people doing ROW80 have made writing a daily goal. I am not yet going to do that. Other aspects of my life are still taking up a lot of time and energy. My commute is longer than I’d like. I have a wedding to plan. And I need to get my crafting supplies down to a manageable amount so they fit in the space allotted for them. (Speaking of which, if you, dear blog reader, are someone who wants to take some Creative Memories scrapbook supplies off my hands at a cheaper-than-retail-rate, let me know. Most of the things are older items, but I’ve gone to digital scrapbooking so don’t need any of my traditional supplies any more.)

Right. I may as well just get straight to my goals for ROW 80 Round 1 2013 now. The starting date is officially tomorrow, but Sunday is going to be one of my regular blog days (see goals below) and Monday is not, so I’ll post this a day early. No harm in that.

I’m going to include more than just writing in my goals this time around. And if these goals end up being too easy, I can revise them as needed. Hopefully they won’t be too hard to meet, but if so I’ll deal with that when the time comes.

Round Of Words 2013R1 goals:

WRITING GOALS:

  1. Write (or edit, or worldbuild, or etc.) for 45 minutes on 3 weekdays per week. This will mostly be on C&F.
  2. Write (etc) for 1 hour on 1 weekend day per week. (Again, focused on C&F.)
  3. Have a submission package for T (my 2009 NaNo project) ready by the end of Round 1.

BLOGGING GOALS:

  1. Write a minimum of three posts per week. (These can be scheduled in advance if needed.)
  2. Catch up with my feed reader by the end of every Sunday.

LIFE GOALS:

  1. Post a minimum of 2 auctions to eBay per week.
  2. Hydrate better. I’m going to try starting and ending each day by drinking a large glass of water, and we’ll see how that works.

And that’s that. It’s been a while since I’ve done this kind of goal tracking, so we’ll see how it goes.

How about you? Even if you’re not in ROW80, do you have any plans or goals for the new year?

And Two Bits!

Wow, time flies! We’ve now finished the first quarter of 2011. Amazing, huh? I can’t believe that the year’s a fourth over already.

So, I was planning on doing not weekly goals, not monthly goals, and not merely yearly goals; but quarterly goals. However, I looked back, and saw that I posted yearly goals (or “Intentions”) but didn’t actually list my quarterly ones. (At least, not that I saw through a migraine haze last night.)

So, we’ll leave it as “Q1 2011 was good. Not measurably so, because I didn’t set quarterly specific goals, but good nonetheless.”

And so that Q2 2011 is more measurable, here’s what I want to have accomplished three months from now…

1. Finish the short story that I’m currently working on. (We’ll call it “Foretold” for lack of a better name.)

2. Maintain the S/M – W – F blog posting schedule.

3. Start cutting back on caffeine (again). This is always easier in the spring and summer. Hopefully this year I can maintain it better. (Oh… and this is not for any dietary reasons, or addiction reasons, and certainly not religious reasons. This is because I like having the ability to use tea to combat a headache, and I can’t do that if I’m acclimated to the caffeine levels. Also because I like vacationing without needing to take tea with me in order to not get a headache.) (Side note: this will start later. Not today. I still have the remnants of yesterday’s headache today.)

4. FINALLY finish the submissions package for T. I’m not even going to plan to send it anywhere yet. I just want to get it READY to send.

5. A couple of projects I have for the theatre company that (while I’m not detailing them on here) I’d like to have done by the end of May (aka the end of Q2). Or at least have one done and the second started.

6. Finish one of the three SiPs (aka Socks in Progress) I have OTN (On The Needles) at the moment. This will probably be the MTT socks, because I have gotten the foot of sock #2 started for that one.

7. Ideally, also finish the mitts OTN.

Seven things sounds reasonable. I think we’ll go with that and see how I do.

March? Already?

February is essentially over already. Can you believe it? I sure can’t.

So, in February, I had planned to get chapter one of iAnnie written, to get it posted on my online crit group, and to do at least 2 crits within my group. I haven’t done any of that. If it weren’t for the facts that I have been incredibly busy with other things and that I have still been writing, I would be really concerned.

(Side note: I start a lot of paragraphs on the blog with “so”. If this were a piece of fiction, I would try to change that. Since it isn’t, I’m not going to bother. Or, at least, not now.)

Granted, I haven’t gotten nearly as much writing done as I want. But I have managed to get back some of the discipline I’d been lacking. (Not much. But some.)

This leaves me with the question of whether to continue the last month of the Round Of Words with the same goals I started with, and consider January and February as practice, or to revise my goals for March. I’m leaning towards a revision of the goals to be more realistic. This is very annoying, as under prior circumstances my goals had been quite realistic. It’s frustrating to look at the goals I set for myself, agree that they were realistic, attainable goals, and still acknowledge that it was also understandable that they didn’t happen. If my goals were so attainable, why didn’t I attain them, after all? Or, if I’m not going to bemoan the fact that I didn’t meet them, why can’t I blame unrealistic goal-setting in the first place?

Annoying. I’m *not* beating myself up over it, but there’s a part of me that wants to be able to.

At any rate, I’m going to spend the first week of March playing with ideas on what to do for the rest of the first RoW80 challenge, and I’ll update the blog with my decision next Sunday or Monday. Until then, I hope you have success in your challenges! (And that counts whether you are a fellow RoW-er or not. Everyone has goals and challenges, even if they’re not official and part of a support group. And I wish you luck.)

On Endings and New Beginnings

By the time this blog post goes live, the new year will be a week old. (More or less.) I’ve spent a good deal of time trying to determine whether or not to make resolutions this year, and I’ve decided not to. “Resolution” sounds too final for what I want for 2011.

Instead, I’m going with “Intentions.” (Courtesy of Susan Bischoff.) Things I intend to do this year. This gives me the flexibility to change my mind part-way through the year if I find something isn’t working for me without feeling like I’ve failed. It gives me the option to revist this list and modify any things that need it. In fact, I probably should revisit the list quarterly and see where I stand, what’s working, and what’s not. Changing an intended action is much easier than forcing oneself to stick to a resolution that isn’t working. And really – what’s the goal here? To decide now what I’m going to be like all year? Or to spend the year growing and improving? Yeah, that’s not really a question, is it.

My Intentions for 2011

Writing

  • Finish the RoW Round 1. If it works, keep going.
  • Write a YA for NaNoWriMo. Probably the “sequel” (loosely tied together) to T.
  • Maintain my 2-crits-a-month schedule for my writing group, whether I post in that month or not.
  • Agent hunt with an aim to getting T published.

Blogging

  • Maintain my 3-day-a-week minimum blog posting schedule, including the following features:
    • WiP Wednesdays (usually knitting, though not always)
    • FO Fridays (when I have finished objects to discuss) or Eye Candy Fridays (when I don’t) or Friday Snippets (when I feel like it)
    • Some kind of regular update on my RoW or other challenges. Not necessarily weekly.
    • Book reviews. Maybe weekly, maybe not. But more regular than they have been these past few months.
  • Keep on top of my feed reader. Make sure to keep the feeds I want to keep, and delete the ones I don’t.

Knitting

  • Finish my Serendipity Stole.
  • Knit a pair of socks for myself for every pair I gift.
  • Included in these socks for me: a pair of Star Trek socks and the Kitri socks.

Reading

  • Review (at a minimum) a book a month.
  • One book out of every five should be outside my usual reading habits. (AKA something other than paranormal romance/urban fantasy.)
  • Read at least 5 books I haven’t read before from the banned books list.

Life

This one’s a bit harder, because it requires more people to be involved. But I will do what I can to get these things to happen. (And unlike my RoW80 intro post, I’m not going to publish measurable goals for this one. These are more private goals, and as such how I go about them is my business.)

  • Find an EDJ that I am happy with.
  • Be me in all the relationships in my life (rather than adjusting to be who someone else expects).
  • Get My Stuff in My Room tidy. And keep it that way.