happy second-hand day

i’ve dubbed January 2nd as second-hand day, simply because it’s the day after New Year’s. so happy 2014 to you.

i don’t know about you, but i’m pretty disappointed so far. i really expected for at least the rich people to have flying cars by now if not the rest of us. oh well. i guess that’s a disaster waiting to happen.

i’ve never done the whole resolutions thing, but i think everyone should set goals for their year. here are some of mine.

1. finish the novel
i’ve been writing this beast since 2007, not that that’s a bad thing. i’d rather take my time and produce something worthwhile than rush and produce something that reads like an 8th-grader’s fan fiction. finishing involves finishing my self-edit, getting an outside edit done, getting feedback from some trusted advisers, and then submitting query letters or, if i can swing it, self-publish.

2. start on flooring
i hate the flooring in our house. my wife hates it too. we just haven’t had the time or money to deal with it since moving in last year. i would like to change that soon by at least getting some of the flooring done in the house. i don’t expect to do all of it. that would be a miracle.

3. enter a couple of contests
i have a screenplay laying around that i think i’ll enter into a couple of contests. it was in one last year and didn’t really do anything, but contests are very much a luck-of-the-draw with whether the readers like your work or not and it’s easy for a script to fail one year and then do really well the next. so i’ll probably put it back in the running without touching anything up. the worst that happens is i’m out a few bucks, which is usually true of me anyway.

4. read more fiction
2013 for whatever reason was the year of non-fiction for me. i feel smart. which is a problem. i need a good ol’ dose of some masterpiece fiction to remind me how dumb and terrible of an artist i really am.

5. actually earn something from writing
it doesn’t have to be my full income or anything. but i want to make a *little* from my writing this year, even if it’s just doing some commercial stuff on the side. i can live with that. many of the greats did much worse to make end’s meet and get their work out there.

so there you have it. every writer needs goals – if you never set them, you’ll never do anything. this was the trap i was in for many years, and since i’ve started putting writing goals in place over the past few years, i’ve seen a marked improvement in the quality and quantity of my writing, but mostly the quality. you’ve got to make time for it; it must be a priority.

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