It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.
– Walt Disney
For years, I avoided making resolutions. Then last year, when my soda intake was up to five cans a day, I made a deal with myself: I could get a new Xbox 360 console if I went 100 days without soda. Despite my best excuses, I did it.
I broke through that “I can’t do it” barrier with which we are all familiar.
More than just feeling healthier, I felt empowered. Pulling-Excalibur-from-the-stone empowered. Riding that momentum (and coming off of milestone birthday), I’m ready to take on more.
Starting with my writing.
Resolution #1: Less input, more application.
Doing too much research consumes valuable brain capacity that could otherwise be used to figure out how to put that research to work. We feel smart when we read it but stupid when we try to apply it.
I’m going to limit my input in 2013 and spend more time thoughtfully applying what I learn.
Resolution #2: Respect my copywriting.
When I compare myself to the gurus, I come up short. (C’mon, they’re gurus. And we are our own worst critics.) But my bills are paid and my clients are happy.
I am an experienced copywriter. I need to remember that. 2013 will see me focus on learning more, comparing less and appreciating my progress.
Resolution #3: Respect my creative writing.
I get so deep in my copywriting that I apply the same principals to my creative writing. In case you’re wondering, it doesn’t work. Creative writing comes from the heart, not the desire to boost conversion.
In 2013, I will pick up my creative writing pen again. And instead of trying to make it something it doesn’t want to be, I will just let it “be.”
Resolution #4: Read my professional development books.
They are a professional’s equivalent to home exercise videos. We buy them with the best intentions but somehow never crack them open. I have over a dozen, in pristine condition.
It’s time I read them. And when I’m done, their margins will be full of notes, their pages highlighted to high water and their spines cracked like pepper.
(This also applies to my Yoga for Beginners and Pilates Basics DVDs.)
Resolution #5: Enter three writing contests.
In 2013, I’m going to put myself out there more. Three may not seem like many, but I’ll be writing my entries from scratch. If I enter more, I’ll have more reason to celebrate, but I’m starting with three.
Resolution #6: Fill four journals.
In 2012, I filled two journals with ideas, notes, quotes, mind maps, blog posts, doodles, reminders, lists, stickers, random thoughts and everything else that sprang to mind. Completely unorganized, these journals are messy, colorful and odd to read.
When I look through them, I feel a fearless creativity that I haven’t felt in years. I want more in 2013.
Resolution #7: Get a life outside of writing.
The most creative people I know lead full lives away from their desk. Their outside passions fuel their work, and it shows. On the flip side, I’m a Fine Arts major who stopped creating art a few years ago. Lame.
So in 2013, I’m going to fill a standard sketchbook.
2013 is gonna be a challenge.
As I earn more freelancing stripes, I’ll also be planning my wedding. My list of writer’s resolutions may be a bit ambitious, but that’s okay.
It’s not about being perfect; it’s about doing better. Which leads me to…
Resolution #8: Go 180 days without soda. For this, I will earn a new smartphone. One that can support a Twitter app.
In addition to publishing these resolutions in a post, I’m going to post them on a separate page. If popular resolution-keeping advice is right, it will keep me accountable.
How about you? What writers resolutions are you making to yourself for 2013?
4 thoughts on “My 7 Writer’s Resolutions for 2013”
[…] Last month, I submitted an entry to a minor writing contest in a major publication. It was an exercise in stepping outside my comfort zone and part of my writer’s resolutions for 2013. […]
That’s quite the list! I hope you find the time to explore your creative writing, it’s so easy to get lost in the “serious” stuff. I only have two: boost my freelancing gig and finish my manuscript.
Yeah, I’ve gotten in deep with the serious stuff. The one piece of creative writing I did last year was still marketing-focused. Must fix that.
I’m also working to boost my freelance gigs but really consider that ongoing. Good luck on your manuscript. What are you writing about? How are you balancing it with your freelance?
Right now I’m devoting one hour to fiction per day and it’s working even on days when I can push out more. Balancing is tough but without slotting in that time, I don’t know how I’d do it.
I’m writing a novella which I think may turn into a 3-part series of short stories. It’s set in Cuba, about a young photographer who loses almost everything when she’s sent there on assignment. She fights different obstacles, personal demons and deals with some cultural issues along the way. It’s a combination of drama and comedy.