I meant to post this back in March on my old IHeartAllStories Weebly blog. But March was Women’s History Month. And the blog content then focused towards women. Women writers, past and present, celebrating amazing women and female characters. So I had to push it back.
Then April was a no go because it was National Poetry Month. And to celebrate I hosted a special month long poetry project. Featuring 30 days of poet interviews. I also participated in the poem-a-day challenge in the Scribophile poetry group forums. So it was pushed back again.
I didn’t know how I’d survive April but before I knew it, it was already May. My poetry project and challenge were completed. I passed my online class, Warfare and Weapons of Ancient Egypt, with 85%. Although I’m 3 classes behind the How Writers Write Poetry class. But navigating the system to post your assignments is too much of a hassle. So I planned to catch up by watching the past beginner and master video sessions. Then apply what I’ve learned to sketch new poems for my poetry manuscripts.
Three stones. One bird.
Now it’s June. And if you’re like me, with the constant push back, a little re-evaluation is in order. To get things back on track and stay on plan for the rest of the year, here’s what you can do:
- Review your submission tracker. You’re on the right track if you’re using Duotrope, Submittable or another submission platform. But it’s not enough. I don’t use Duotrope. But Submittable shows me a list of my saved drafts, my rejections and acceptances. But what I’m really looking for are presses/journals I want to submit to again. That’s why I’ve created an Excel spreadsheet and highlighted those I want to resubmit to. I did the same for new awards and contests I want to enter for the next six months. Of course life happens. And you need to give yourself enough time to write, have it critiqued and polish your submission. Also, take note of deadlines that are too soon for comfort. If there’s not enough time to give your best work, then don’t. Cut them out. And rework it into your plan for next year. Most awards and contests are annually anyways. PS If you’re writing, but not submitting…time to eat that bullet.
- Reevaluate your current accomplishments and make them work for you. Don’t waste time crying and moaning of what you haven’t accomplished. But first acknowledge what you have completed. Even if it had nothing to do with your original plans. There’s a value in it that can be applied to help you reach your writing goals. For example, I’m behind with my poetry manuscripts. They’re only ⅔ complete but I have 2-3 poetry competitions I want to submit them to. Lucky for me the submission deadlines are between July and September. Also lucky for me, is that I participated in the Poem-A-Day challenge again for 2015 National Poetry Month. Out of those 30 poems are poems that I can edit and use as is. Or rewrite to fit the manuscripts themes.
- Redo your writing plan. No one ever said that a writing plan is set in stone. So there’s nothing wrong with changing things around in the middle. There are a lot of time detractors that’ll eat up your time to work on your project(s). Work, family, illness, yourself because you’re drained and need a little break to replenish your creative wells. For example, I didn’t take into account that National Poetry Month would leave me so spent that I lost my creative mood. Then add to that two online classes I registered for (and was not a part of my 2015 writing plan). We’re almost six months into the year now. And if I want to stay on schedule I’ll have to shift my focus to finishing and polishing my poetry manuscripts I Spy With My Little Eyes (chapbook) and Triplicity (book). And my young adult-supernatural work in progress novel, Nadia, the Hidden Fire Witch. Which means my other writing projects will enter hiatus: Harbingers of El Tinor, a fantasy-sword and sorcery work in progress novel. And How to Write a Novel When You’re a Night Shift Mommy: A Beginner’s Quick Guide, a nonfiction book from the 2014 WNFIN (Write Nonfiction in November) challenge. But if I can complete two out of the three ahead of time, I’ll resume working on one of the two or both.
So there you have it. Your three R’s in getting your writing goals back on track. Would you like to add anything else?