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Wednesday, January 6, 2016

#IWSG: Resolutions





It's the first Wednesday of a new year.  It's time for the Insecure Writers Support Group, whose mission is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. And thanks to this month's awesome hosts: L.G. Keltner, Denise Covey, Sheri Larsen, J.Q. Rose, Chemist Ken, and Michelle Wallace!

Prior to Lent, many people choose to give up things. A sacrifice, so to speak. At the beginning of the new year, we make plans to do things and/or do them more. Like . . .

Read more. Since I started writing, reading has taken a back seat. Last year’s Goodreads Challenge was an eye-opener. I thought I’d read more books than that. Maybe I didn’t list all that I’d read. Anyway, I need to read more outside the genres I write. My book club should ensure that.

Walk more. With a bad back, walking is difficult. You know that commercial about being more active helps arthritis but arthritis makes it hard to be active. I agree with that! Still, I have to walk more than just through stores.

Write more. Or faster. I have so many ideas running around in my mind that I’ll need another lifetime to write them all. Buckling down each morning and getting those words on the screen will definitely aid the progress of the next book.

Promote better. Hubs (who was in business) asked how I could tell if my efforts at promotion were successful. Good question. I need to figure out if I’m spending my time efficiently and my money wisely.

Enjoy time with my family more. I’m not saying I don’t already enjoy them. I have to not think about what needs to be done while I’m enjoying the grandkids, our kids, and Hubs. Maybe I need to “stop and smell the roses” or “live in the moment.” Whatever cliché works.

I know all about making SMART goals, and mine aren’t SMART. I’ll save them for my 2016 Business Plan.

Do you make resolutions each January? Or do you just go with the flow? What works best for you?

 Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.

53 comments:

  1. Hi Diane! It's nice being one of the first commenters as I go on my early rounds. Except for Alex who comes by and pips me at the post! Good resolutions! I hope you manage to stick to them. I never do. I'm more an 'aim at nothing and you're sure to hit it' kind of girl...sorta. Living in the moment is just SO important! No good having our head moving onto the next thing while we're doing something else.

    Have a great 2016!

    Denise :-)

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    1. Thanks, Denise. You made me laugh at your aim at nothing. Thanks for co-hosting this month. Best wishes for a great new year.

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  2. Happy New Year, Diane! I have taken up walking with my husband and it's great. We have talked and laughed more on those walks than we do when we go about our daily lives at home. I would highly recommend it. The fitness part is an added bonus.

    Thank you for reminding be of being SMART. It is one way of staying on track and keeping focused, as well as ensuring we achieve our goals.

    Wishing you every success throughout the year.

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    1. What a great benefit to walking, Nicola. Hubs is willing to walk with me and even coerces me. I'm sure that will help. Best wishes for a great new year!

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  3. I hear you on reading. That's the single most helpful thing I've done to improve my writing. You see the things that don't work and why. You see the things you'd aspire to accomplish. It really takes us to a new level.

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    1. Aren't we perverse, Crystal? We see others' faults but can't see our own. I also see fine examples of what I should do. Best wishes!

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  4. Your resolutions sound like the ones I used to make. I've given up and now take the "What will be, will be" approach. Much less stressful. For tips on how to track promo benefits vs money spent, you should read a post on Steve Tremp's blog for how he did it.
    http://authorstephentremp.blogspot.com.eg/2015/12/my-paid-online-promo-results-and.html

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    1. Thanks for the link to Steve's post. Best wishes for a great 2016.

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  5. I also read far less last year. I want to read more this year. I miss it! I'm also going to work on promoting better. I tried two cheap paid ($5) promos at the end of 2015 that ended up doing nothing for me. Well, now I know. But trying to figure out what will work is the trick. If you figure it out, share it with us. :)

    Happy 2016!!!!

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    1. Share secrets, Chrys??? You know I will. :) It's frustrating to spend a lot of time promoting with little sales to show for it. Hope you have a great 2016.

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  6. Hi, Diane,

    Happy New Year! I think it's great that people make goals for the new year. But, as for me, I never did. I keep things in my head of things I'd like to accomplish and if I do, great... if not, I don't dwell on it and just move on. Life always gets in my way and I need to ride the waves wherever they take me...

    Wishing you all the best for this year!

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    1. Thanks, Michael, and best wishes for the new year to you, too. Life sure can get in our way--sending all our best intentions down the toilet. We do what we can.

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  7. I did the GR reading challenge for the first time last year after being disappointed with how little I read in 2014. It really helped motivate me to read more.
    Good luck with your goals!

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    1. Thanks, Patricia. Good luck to you, too. Being a better reader makes for a better writer.

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  8. Hi Diane - I, too, couldn't believe how few books I read last year when I looked on my Goodreads year in review. And I love to read! But I just go in fits and spurts sometimes and cannot buckle down and read a book straight through. It's usually because I don't like the story or I'm bored, and I figure, why force myself to read a book if I don't want to? :) I'm hoping to do better on finishing books this year, too.

    Resolutions are hard for me. I try to just make small changes, and it doesn't have to be at the beginning of the year. The way I see it, any time is a good time to make a change!

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    1. Melissa, I'm with you about not finishing some books. I have too many on my TBR list and Kindle to read boring books. Good idea about making small changes throughout the year.

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  9. I love setting goals, or resolutions as they're called at the beginning of the New Year. I usually always achieve them, maybe not in the time I've set, but time is a fleeting thing, flexible, and necessary for accomplishing any task. Sometimes it's with you and sometimes it isn't.
    Wishing you well with all your New Year's Goals!
    Oh and the title of my post for IWSG is also Resolutions. :)

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    1. Brilliant minds, Yolanda. :) Most of the IWSG blogs I've read have been about goal setting or resolutions. It's that time of year, I guess.

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  10. Hi Diane! I think your goals speak to yearnings so many people feel: Pursuing our passions and enjoying time with our loved ones. That's what life is really about. Resolutions don't work for me very well. As soon as I set one up, I get knocked off my feet. Sometimes I feel like a phoenix, always rising from the ashes. But I keep getting up. Since I can't be sure of another lifetime, I just have to hope I live long enough to accomplish most of my dreams. LOL I'm grateful for all I have been given, and I'm looking forward to what is still to come. Kudos to you for walking even when it's difficult. Sometimes when I'm suffering with pain and walking, I pretend I'm the little mermaid walking on land for love and even if I end up as foam on the waves, the walk through this life was worth it. I was! Wishing you fulfilling journeys in 2016.

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    1. What a beautiful comment. Good for you to be a phoenix. We do have to rise up after we've been knocked down. It's hard, though. Love your mermaid reference. I'll have to remember that when I'm out walking. Best wishes.

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  11. Hi Diane and Happy New Year!
    First, I wish you success and all the best for 2016. As to New Year's resolutions, I don't make them. What I do is take the first three weeks in the January or the entire month if I need it and look at my plans and goals from the previous year. I look at what I achieved and what is still open and I also add new goals that I would like to see happen.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

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    1. That sounds like a good plan, Patricia. Best wishes to you.

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  12. I don't make resolutions, but I do set daily intentions/goals, which works better for me. This will be the first year that I've joined the Goodreads book challenge. I'm a slow reader, but consistent, as I read every night in bed before I go to sleep.

    May 2016 you much success and joy.

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    1. Daily goals sounds like a way to make big goals easier. I read before bed, too. It's rare when I read during the day--the book has to grab me and not let go. Best wishes for 2016.

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  13. Great things to strive for! I set goals for this year as I did the last few. I still need to work on balancing writing and marketing/blogging. That's a big one for me. Here's to a grand 2016 for all of us. :)

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    1. The balancing is the hard part. Best wishes, Christine.

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  14. I'm not much of a "resolutioner" but instead have plans and things I'd like to accomplish. Not even goals really, but directions I want to head. Several in the works for 2016. Life is certainly a moment-to-moment adventure for me, so a goal or resolution is off-kilter too easily when life changes course.

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    1. Life can really change course fast and unexpectedly. It sounds like you figured out what works for you, Dean. Best wishes.

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  15. I can relate with you on the Goodreads goal. Last year I set it for 100 and read 20! I felt like I read more, and maybe I didn't put them all in, but this year I'm being more reasonable.

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    1. I shot for 75 in 2015 and read 60. I'm trying for 75 again. And remembering to log in all the books. Good luck, Tess.

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  16. Happy 2016! Wishing you and your family lots of love and happiness. Oh, I can sympathize. I have to start working smarter too. All these things to do and so little time. I like that you mentioned that because you write more, that your reading suffers. I have found the same problem. However, writing more and more is always a pleasure. Wishing you the best.

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    1. Thank you so much, Murees. Working smarter has got to be the answer. I love to write and enjoy the process so much other things suffer.

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  17. I know I don't read as much as I used to before writing. Keeping track of what works in marketing is good idea. Why do it again if it didn't work the first time?

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    1. Exactly, Diane. As much as I enjoy blog tours & hops, I'm not sure they are effective. What works for one writer might not work for another. Sheesh. I need a crystal ball.

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  18. I like your goals. It reminds me that I definitely want/need to read more.

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  19. I make goals with a resolution to actually stick to them. I'm not sure that make sense, but it works - somewhat - for me.

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  20. You've got a good set of resolutions there. I tend to set my goals by the schoolyear--occupational hazard: my years run August to June. This year, my goals are all about finishing things. I really want to be able to be "just" a writer in the next couple years, so that means getting more work out there.

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    1. I know what you mean, Samantha. When I was teaching and as long as my kids were in school, my "year" started in late Aug/early Sept. Best wishes on your goal to be a full-time writer only.

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  21. I'm not a resolutions person, Diane, but I have to say yours sound very achievable and well-rounded (and grounded!!)

    Best wishes for a very happy 2016:)

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  22. More is never enough, right? I have some goals I want to get to, but I'm pretty much "go with the flow." There is always room for self improvement :)

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    1. LOL, Dolorah. There's too much OCD in me to completely go with the flow.

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  23. Being present in the moment is so important yet so hard to do sometimes. I'm working on that one myself. :)

    Good luck with all of your goals!

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    1. Thanks, Madeline. I need to work on that, too.

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  24. I'd like to write more as well. I always have trouble getting started. I'd also like to eat less sugar and get rid of clutter about the house.

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    1. De-cluttering is another goal. Best wishes for a great 2016.

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  25. I haven't made any resolutions this year but I am aiming to get my ms submission ready in the next few months.
    I agree that we all need to slow down and enjoy the moment more. I wish you all the best for 2016.

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    1. Thank, Suzanne. Best wishes getting that ms ready!

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  26. Best wishes for the new year, Diane! One of my last year's resolutions was to write faster, as today's market is unforgiving if one doesn't keep pushing out books. I think this year I'm going to reverse it and take it slower instead. It's hard to balance time and quality. If you find the secret formula let me know!! ;-) Hugs!

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    1. I know what you mean about the market. Blink and nobody remembers your name. If I ever find that secret formula, I'll let you know. :)

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  27. Hi Diane!
    I'm not a New Year Resolution kind of person.
    I'm more into small manageable goals, and also tend to go with the flow when I'm in a certain mindset.
    I completed my Goodreads challenge last year.
    "Write more. Or faster." When you find the magic formula for this, please pass it on.
    Happy New Year!

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