Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Road Trip Wednesday #171: Quarterly Check-In


Road Trip Wednesday is a "Blog Carnival," where YA Highway's contributors post a weekly writing- or reading-related question that begs to be answered. In the comments, you can hop from destination to destination and get everybody's unique take on the topic.
  
This week's topic:
Quarterly check-ins! We're already 1/4 of the way through the year--where are you on your reading and writing goals?



I was shocked, SHOCKED when I looked at the calendar and saw MARCH. My knee-jerk reaction was to think, "Oh no, it's already spring and I've accomplished nothing!"

But when I stopped to think about it and look over my notes, I see this isn't true. Still behind, natch, but not as hopelessly as I thought. (I think we all accomplish more than we know. Don't forget to give yourself some credit for all your accomplishments, big and small.)


Reading & Writing 
Goals & Progress

Reading

* Goal: Read 100 books (not counting rereads in 2013)
* Progress: Behind schedule
* Notes: Likely won't make this goal on the nose, but I feel comfortable with that. I've got a lot of epic fantasy on my TBR list for the year, and it takes awhile to work through those massive tomes. More importantly, I've thoroughly enjoyed all the books I've picked up so far. Still, I know part of it is that I've been neglecting my workouts, during which I always listen to an audiobook. Getting back into my running shoes will not only benefit my health but also my book count!

Writing

* Goal: Complete WiP 'Jack'
* Progress: ~Halfway through
* Notes: It's been a struggle to get into a steady writing routine. I've discovered a few key things about myself that should help. (Seems like the writing habit is mostly a struggle with our natural tendencies and bad habits!) Things I've learned so far: 1) Music is good, but a single pre-chosen song without lyrics is best. 2) Have notes ready and on hand to prevent straying. 3) My biggest distraction is the internet. Making writing time internet-free works in my favor.

* Goal: Outline & Brainstorm next WiP
* Progress: Iffy
* Notes: I've got a general sense and some ideas floating around in my head, but I need to get them all down in their own dedicated file.

* Goal: Connect with other writers
* Progress: Taking the plunge
* Notes: I'm especially proud of the strides I've made here. Moving twice in the last 3 years has left me somewhat bereft in the offline friends department. I told myself that when I moved to Hawaii I would push myself to connect with other writers. I signed up for SCBWI and attended the one-day regional conference. It was beyond worth it! I made some great writerly friends, learned a lot from the guest speakers, and have an upcoming meeting with some of the other members to discuss our current goals and projects. I'm hoping we can have this meeting on a monthly basis. It'll be a good motivation to keep working.

This quarterly check-in was a great exercise for me. Laying out my goals and progress helped me see what I've accomplished, what weak points need working on, and what I still need to do. I think I'll be working in a similar check-in every quarter. It's a good way to stay on target.

9 comments:

  1. I like the idea of listening to audiobooks while working out--I had been going out for walks and listening to all the old episodes of a podcast I like, but I just caught up with them! An audiobook might just fill that void. Nice!

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    1. I've enjoyed it so much that I signed up for Audible's monthly membership of 1 book a month. The great thing about Audible is that if you don't like the book, you can "exchange" it for another one!

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  2. This --> Don't forget to give yourself some credit for all your accomplishments, big and small.
    ...is so true! Thanks for the reminder :D

    And it seems you´re doing quite well on your goals :D

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    1. I think we tend to look at how far we have yet to go instead of looking back to admire how far we've already come.

      Best of luck with your goals, too!

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  3. Very cool that you were able to go to a SCBWI regional conference. I joined that group but haven't made as many connections with it as I've had with Romance Writers of America. Still, anytime you get to spend time with other writers who are taking their writing seriously, or who are farther along and working in publication, is such an encouragement. Good luck! (I also have World War Z on my to read list--which I see you're reading now.)

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    1. It was such a relief to finally realize, "Hey, I'm not the only one struggling!" Writing can feel so solitary. It's nice to know there are people we can turn to for support.

      Definitely recommend World War Z, it's a must for any zombie/post-apocalypse fan!

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  4. I have the same problems with writing, I get distracted too easily, and if the song I have been listening to for ages stops helping with my writing, I can't get into it again without finding another useful song. I like to have songs with words though. I find they help me more.

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    1. I noticed I was spending way too much time creating "playlists." All well and good, but I'd spend hours working on finding and organizing the perfect songs instead of writing! I think, for me, it was more of an excuse to fool around instead of getting to work.

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  5. Awesome goals you set for yourself there!!! Keep it up!

    http://wordsareinnermusic.blogspot.com/2013/03/road-trip-wednesday-check-in.html

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