Setting and meeting a writing goal

checklistI have posted before about setting goals when writing a novel. I typically don’t like them as they never seem to help me. Something always seems to come up, so I don’t reach the number of hours or words that I want to achieve. This leaves me discouraged.

My latest novel has been a slow process. It has been almost two years since Destiny, the conclusion of my trilogy, came out. Some days I feel the need to hurry up and get this one completed. I would like to give my readers something new and of course, a writer’s credibility increases with each published novel.

Lots of things have happened in the past two years that have kept me from working on this latest book. There have been big vacations, lengthy hospital stays for my mom, the death of a friend and of course the normal crazy busy stuff of being a parent and an active community member.

Another reason this book has taken a little longer is that unlike working on Destiny, I had to start over and create a whole new world. There were magic systems to set up, characters to develop and a plot to tweak.

But even as much as I usually resist setting up a writing goal, in July, I decided I need to come up with one. I actually set up two. One was very aggressive with me putting in lots of work in a short time frame. But knowing that I would have other things – such as my bigger role with the PTA – taking up some of my time, I created a second set of goals that was probably a little more realistic.

I accomplished the first step of that second goal on Tuesday. I completed the first draft of Alexandria*. (*This is the working title and probably will change before publication day.)

Now I know there is a lot more work ahead but when I say I have done my first draft it is more than that. You see I have a habit of writing and editing at the same time. While I am writing, my husband is reading completed chapters. As he makes suggestions or corrections, I am continually adjusting and rewriting my novel. So as I began to work on my second draft, I have already basically been through the novel in its current state twice.

My official second run through will involve making sure the story line stays on course and that there are no major discrepancies. Since I have already flushed out many of the sections based on my husband’s comments, I hopefully won’t have tons of rewriting to do. If anything, I hope to trim it down some from its 98,000 words.

So the next goal is to have the second draft completed by the end of October. Well maybe it will be more like the middle of November. Either way, here is sticking to this new goal.

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2 thoughts on “Setting and meeting a writing goal

  1. […] finished the first draft on my current work in progress at the end of September. Now to many a first draft is just getting […]

  2. […] on starting a novel, click here. And for tips on dealing with writer’s block, click here.) Set realistic writing goals and stick with […]

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