So we’re talking about goals this week. I hate goals, ‘cuz I rarely keep them if they’re just for me. If I muck it up, I’m the only one who cares.
But I think it’s safe to assume that all of us as writers will have some of the same goals:
*To land a high-powered agent who gets us a 6-figure deal on our next book.
*To have that book go to auction and come back with a 5 book contract because the editor loves your writing so much, they don’t want you to ever leave them.
*To have that book hit the New York Times and USA Today best seller lists the first week it’s released.
*To win the RITA.
*To have the book optioned for a blockbuster movie starting Hugh Jackman and Sandra Bullock. (I like older heroines and since I write humorous paranormals, she has to be beautiful and quirky too.)
OK, time to wake up now, Lori. Let’s focus on something that is actually within your power (and within the realm of reality).
My goal for 2009 is to be a faster writer. To be successful in this biz, you need to be. No editor or agent wants an author who takes 2 years or more to write each book -- which seems to be my track record judging by how long it took me to write my last 2 books. Did you just see that snail whiz by me? Yep, the sad truth is I’m the slowest writer alive. My very first book, which I wrote before I knew ANYTHING, took me 9 months to write, so I know I CAN write faster if I try (of course, that was pre-kids). So my goal for 2009 is to be faster without sacrificing quality. To sit my but in my chair and get the words on the page. Consider it my own personal NaNoWriMo.
And like NaNo, I’ve decided to do it by word count and not by page count. I know me. If I get only one word on page 3, I’ll count it as a page for the day. Nope, computer word count is going to keep me accountable (and honest). And I’m going to be realistic about it, too. 1700 words a day, 7 days a week like it would require to do 50K for NaNo is not realistic for me. Weekends bring family demands and I rarely get much writing done then. Starting today, I’m going to go for 1000 words a day (3 pages in TNR for me), 5 days a week. At that rate, I can have the first draft of a 100K novel done in 20 weeks. Much better than 2 years, don’t you think?
So with a goal like this, do I want to end up being as prolific as Nora? To be honest, no. I think my head would explode if I even tried. No, if you factor in revisions and polishing, I'd be happy with one book a year. If I can do one every 9 months like my first book, I -- and hopefully my future editor and agent -- will be ecstatic.
I’ll post again next week and let you know how I did.