Saturday, January 8, 2011



I have goals. Goals I set when I start a project. As I go I check to see how I'm doing, adjust my course and keep going. I have goals for everything. Work, physical health, my art...writing.
Since this is a writing blog, I'll talk about that.

My writing goals look something like this.
Get published--check.
Get a novel published--check.
Get a novel published in print--check.
Get an agent--working on that one.
Get into a large publishing house like St. Martins or Penguin Press.
The ultimate goal--get on a bestseller's list.

Though lofty, they give me focus, help me to keep my eyes on the ultimate prize. I recently realized I've passed my halfway mark and I'm still in shock. Four years ago I wouldn't have believed I could get a novel published, much less the three novels and five short stories I have published today. I plan to continue with two of my series. Slipping the Past and Blown Away. For these two series, I have three novels going at the moment that are 3/4 way finished.

I believe in babysteps. Four years ago I started from the other end of my list, sending out query letters to agents with a story that wasn't ready, bombing time after time. Discouraged, I almost gave up. But a chat with a friend convinced me to change tactics and start small. I wasn't ready and I'd tried to bypass some of the important stuff in my impatience. I've learned to slow down and take baby steps. Thank God for friends who aren't afraid to give you a kick in the ass when you need it. I'll aways be thankful for mine.

2011 brings challenges, the biggest for me will be the next step. The story I plan to send out is almost done. I've been writing it for four years, coddling it, tweaking and playing with it. Though not the same story I tried to sell before (I've hidden that one under the bed), it's one I started the day I changed my tactics. So as I get ready to take my next step, I smile. Maybe this year will be my year, maybe not, but at least I'm moving forward and that alone gives me reason to celebrate.

Here's wishing everyone the best for the new year. May we all achieve our goals and heart's desires.

D L Jackson


Kristabel Reed said...

Small goals, I like it. My 2010 goal was to finish a story and get published. Check! My 2011 goal is to do more than one story. :) Baby steps indeed!

Excellent reasonings, and good luck in 2011!

Joann said...

Wow! I like your goals, DL. And you can achieve them...I know you can.

D L Jackson said...

Thanks, Kristabel and congrats on your 2010 publication! That's a huge accomplishment and well-earned check mark on your list. Make sure you write those goals down and give yourself a deadline. Writing your goals down and looking at them every day is a proven way to suceed.
Did you know there was a study where students in a graduating class from Harvard were asked if they had goals? Almost everyone said they did, but then they were asked, "Did you write them down?" Only five percent of that class admitted they had. Ten years later, that 5% was worth more financally than the 95% combined.
Write them down, people. It makes a big difference.

D L Jackson said...

Thanks, Joann. If you're going to reach for something, make it worth grabbing. That's my motto.

Annie Nicholas said...

I think many of us at PR are at the point in our career that we want aim higher, which is very exciting to me. Nothing like having friends to hold your hand who understand what your going through.

Here's to your queries.

Sandra Sookoo said...

Awesome goals, Dawn. you're a great writer and you have the right attitude to succeed in reaching those goals. I know you'll get there.