Happy New Year!! I like to think this is the start of 365 days of magic. Good and bad days are sure to come, but how I choose to see the bigger picture is what matters most.

This year, it’s all about keeping things simple while also attempting to accomplish my dream of publication. Things got a little too complicated in 2013 and I almost gave myself a stroke trying to keep up with the nitpicky goals I set. For my own sanity, I’ve decided to  set five goals with wider parameters. However, these simple goals are also geared towards keeping me accountable and on track.

1. Pitch The Muse.

Once known as Novel #2, The Muse is the novel I’ve poured everything into for the last two years, (yes, I’ve finally chosen a title!). It’s been pitched to five agents and received one official rejection. The other four answered with silence, so that means it’s time for another round of pitching. I’m not setting a specific number of pitches, but I am holding myself accountable to the following:

  • Consistently send out query packages over the course of 2014
  • Research agents and add to the list of prospects
  • Do not give up!

2. Outline and start writing The Muse: Lineage.

The Muse is not a stand-alone novel, rather it is the first book in a planned trilogy.  The big-picture story is mapped out in my head,  (I know how it ends!), but the small details are still a work in progress.

During the summer of 2013, I began brainstorming the story layout for Lineage and piecing together a playlist. However, there is a lot more research and work to do. I’m hoping to have the outline complete by June 2014. By the end of the year, my goal is to get the first draft rolling.

3. Submit writing.

Last year, I made the mistake of trying to tell my muse exactly what we’re going to write. She retaliated by giving me tunnel vision for The Muse. This time around, I’m just going to make the broad goal of promising myself to submit any kind of work whether it be short stories, poetry, or articles.

4. Continue to build author platform.

To keep my pen name afloat, I’m setting my usual goals of maintaining an author platform via my blog and social networking. I’m also looking to expand my presence by joining at least one more network or challenge before the end of 2014. As I work on Lineage my Facebook and Twitter feeds will certainly be jumping with updates. Be sure to join me on both networks to follow my journey.

5. Inspire others.

As always, a huge goal of mine is to inspire others to write or explore their creativity. This blog is a major vehicle for that goal and I intend to offer content that both inspires and motivates your muse!

While I’ve set these five goals, I’m also adding a sixth “invisible” goal:

6. Be Flexible.

In three months I may decide to blow the dust off Novel #1 or read one or more books on writing/publishing. Maybe I’ll find a writing challenge that sparks my imagination in an unexpected way . . . the point is I’m going to keep my options open. And I will take opportunities as they come.

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Every month, I’ll be self-assessing where I stand on each goal. In the past, these posts have really helped motivate others to not only make goals, but also to stick to them. We all know how easy it is to wander off when the words just won’t come. Writing is something that takes commitment and consistency. Otherwise, the stories stay inside of us or get lost along the way. Let’s pick up that pen and write in 2014!

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c.b.w. 2014

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