Tuesday, February 07, 2023

Time Management Tuesday: Gail Needs Goals And Objectives For 2023

Though I have been getting back into work since mid-January and have had in mind the "going forth" I mentioned last week, I have definitely felt the lack of firm goals and objectives for the coming year. The big value of goals (what is to be done) and objectives (how what is to be done will actually be done) is that you can keep going back to them to make sure you are spending your time on the things you want to spend it on.

My goals and objectives this year have been shaped by a decision I made during last month's retreat. Retreats, the kind where you're really retreating and not somewhere taking workshops, are great for creative thinking, in my experience.

This year, I decided, I will commit to my adult writing, particularly short form. While I published eight children's books with a good traditional publisher, it's been fifteen years since I've seen any movement in my writing for middle grade and YA. During that time I've had short stories and essays published for adults and have moved into humor writing, publishing on Medium. That seems a more productive use of time. 

Why Choose One Age Group?

Writing requires much more than just writing. Writers should be reading what is being written for the age groups they write for to help them understand what others are doing and where they are doing it. They should be doing market research for their age groups, meaning, for short-form writers, what publications are publishing what they write and, for long-form writers, what agents and publishers would be interested in considering what they're doing. There are different types of workshops and other types of studying to do for each age group. There are different social media groups to network with for each age group.

I am also interested in a variety of short-form writing--humor, essays, short stories. Writing about eating, versus food writing. I've completed and submitted a humor piece already this year, I'm working on an eating essay, and I'm thinking about another essay about time management for writers. Needless to say, all three of these pieces need to be submitted to different places, meaning I have to stay up on what the three different publications I'm interested in require for submissions.

Trying to work for two different age groups has been spreading me too thin. I hope that concentrating on adult work will give me opportunities to write more, submit more, study more, and build more of a reputation as an adult writer.

How Will This Impact Original Content?

Original Content will continue but with more focus on my adult work. I will continue to support children's books, particularly if they somehow address one of my interests. But you're going to see more adult books and adult writing concerns here in 2023.

If you look to the menu on the left, you'll see that I've added links to sites that collect my work on Medium and at Literary Mama, so that visitors can easily access my work at those sites. I've eliminated the Children's Literature Links, which mainly went to blogs. 

I'm also going to add a new feature, Getting Serious About Humor, in which I will be writing about and analyzing humor books I've read. I've got one post ready to go for that and two I need to write. Those posts will all be easily available by way of a link to the left. There's another new link there called Reader Response that will lead readers to all my blog posts on books tagged Reader Response.

Now For Specific Goals And Objectives For 2023

Goal 1. Finish 143 Canterbury Road As An Adult Book. This book was always straddling the border between YA and adult. I was thinking of it as YA so I could bring it to my NESCBWI writers' group. But I'm stepping back from that group for this year, freeing me to focus on adult themes, such as the impact of chance on our lives, rather than traditional YA themes such as place in and transitioning from family.

  • I've been rereading the manuscript and creating a blueprint of changes to be made by chapter and determining what chapters I need to finish the book and developing those.
  • I need to write an essay one of the characters writes.
  • Use the blueprint to finish a draft.
  • Send the draft to a reader I've lined up to check out technical information.

Goal 2. Work On Adult Essays, Short Stories, And Humor.

  • Complete and submit something every month to a Medium publication.
  • Revise some short stories and essays, preparing them for publication.
  • Increase my reading of both traditional and on-line journals--market research.
  • Spend more time with flash and essay Facebook groups, places to find both material to read and publications for submitting to.

Goal 3. Revise An Adult Manuscript Called Good Women


  • This will require some research regarding changes I am interested in making.
  • Blueprint where those changes will go.
  • Make the changes!

Goal 4. Submit Adult Books To Agents

  • Research agents for adult books
  • Submit Good Women first, since it's closer to being done and may have some current events interest

Goal 5. Community Building/General Marketing/Branding

  • Provide social media support for adult writers and continue supporting children's writers when appropriate, which means when the spirit moves me.
  • Attend virtual events for adult writers, fewer for children's writers.
  • Attend workshops for adult writing.
  • Use NetGalley to support authors with new books publishing this year.
  • Continue promoting Original Content at Facebook communities, Goodreads' blog, and Twitter.

No comments: