I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions. I’m starting to sound like a broken record. Truth be told, I find the whole “new year, new me” or “I have to wait until January 1st to start making changes in my life” uninspiring and cheesy. However, I do like to plan for the future and it’s easy to frame your goals as to where you’d like to be in the next 12 months. I have plenty of reading and writing goals I hope to achieve.
If you’ve read some of my previous posts, you’d know that I love writing and reading. I’ve down several reading wrap-ups as well as writing updates. This time I’m listing out the areas in my writing and reading I want to improve or change. So, if you’re interesting in knowing about my 2020 writing and reading goals, keep reading.
While both are important, my writing goals are more important to me than my reading goals. Why? Because I eventually want to share my work with others. So, I’ll start with my writing goals for the upcoming year.
Write More Consistently
A sentiment you frequently here is that if you want to make a side hustle or hobby a job, you have to start treating it like a job. It makes sense, doesn’t it? You have to put in the time if you want to see results. Thus far I let my mood, stress and being busy take hold of my life way too much where I’d neglect my writing for weeks or months at a time. So, in 20202 a writing goal I have is to be more consistent. This can be in the form of novel writing or blogging, but I shouldn’t be going more than 2 or 3 days without writing.
Finish editing Project Sunflower
Project What? This is a working title I gave my Camp Nanowrimo project. So far I’ve done Nano twice, once in November 2018 and then July 2019. I ended up scrapping my Nanowrimo 2018 project but my Camp Nanowrimo project still has some life to it. I am currently doing a read-through and light edits. However, I would like my story to be ready for readers by the end of the year. Not saying readers will actually have it by then, but I want it to be ready.
Recruit beta readers for Project Sunflower
This writing goal ties in with the previous point. Part of getting my manuscript finished and ready for readers is to allow people to read it and give me feedback on it during the editing process. It’s a weird feeling I need to get out of, but although I dream of sharing my work with the world, the thought of having people read and judge also simultaneously terrifies me? Huh? I know, it makes no sense. Growing up I never let anyone read my writing and if a sibling or my mom ever did, I was mortified. However, it’s time for me to let go, be more confident in my writing and learn to take more constructive criticism if I want to improve my craft.
Become more involved in the writing community
Another 2020 writing goal I have is to really become part of the writing community. Sure, networking is a great benefit, but I’d love to make friends who have the same interests as me. It’s cool talking to my sister about writing, but she doesn’t share it as an interest as me. I want to connect with more writers, both published and unpublished, to gain more insight, be able to share experiences and just geek out over character and plot ideas. While the online community is a great focus, I’d also like to connect with writers in my area (wherever that may be).
Finish another story… or two?
This in theory shouldn’t be too hard…. in theory. Granted, I don’t mean finishing a manuscript to the point where it no longer needs editing. I just mean finishing draft one. Why I say it’s easy in theory is because I’ve had the worst writer’s block/slump the past several months where I can’t seem to put anything together that forms a semi-decent, complete plot. I’ve had seeds for plots but nothing full-fledged. In fact, I’ve started two stories only to can them when I realized there wasn’t actually any story there. I really want to create and so a writing goal I have is to create more.
Improve my blog quality.
The other writing goals listed primarily focus on my novel writing, however my blog writing is also important to me. When I look at my first few posts I’m pleased to see how much it has improved. Continuing to improve the quality is a priority to me.
Now I’m going to switch gears to my reading goals for 2020.
Read at least three books per month.
If you follow a lot of Booktubers, Bookstagrammers, etc. this number may seem quite low. However, for me I just don’t have the time or desire to make time to read 8/10 books a month. I’m not a super quick reader and getting through a lot of books just to see a high number on Goodreads isn’t a goal. That being said, I do want to read more. During the craziness of November/December I didn’t read at all and I wish I had because it’s still something I enjoy doing and what to do more consistently.
Discover more authors.
One thing I’ve always disliked was if someone asked me who my favorite author was I couldn’t tell them. I have books I love but I’m not a diehard fan of one particular author’s work. The closest I’ve had was growing up, I was a massive fan of Sarah Dessen books. However, YA isn’t a genre I gravitate towards and I’m looking for something different. One reason is because I’ve only read one book from many authors. However, not only do I want to read more authors, I want to get familiar with authors’ many works. So, I plan to go through my Goodreads account and see which books I rated highly and read more books from that author.
Here are some authors I’d like to read more from:
- Taylor Jenkins Reid (author of Daisy Jones & the Six)
- Erin Morgenstern (author of The Night Circus)
- Stephanie Garber (author of Caraval)
- Victoria Schwab (author of A Darker Shade of Magic)
Read more adult books.
As mentioned, YA isn’t a genre I gravitate towards anymore. That being said, I still read many books that could be classified as YA (perhaps “New Adult” which I’m still unclear if it’s a thing) or with 18 or so year old characters. Perhaps it’s because I’m older, but I just don’t connect with YA anymore and would like to find more books about 20-somethings like myself.
Read more fantasy.
Growing up, I didn’t read much fantasy. Despite really loving anything to do with magic when it comes to TV shows and movies, my reading was typically contemporary YA or dystopian. However, one of my reading goals for 2020 is to delve into this genre more, as I began dipping my toes into it a bit in 2019.
Delve into more classic books.
I’m not in the camp of readers that think the “classic” older books are necessarily the best books. For some reason people think the best books are only the ones written a long time ago. Besides, who decides whether something is a classic? That being said, there are some works from famed writers I’d like to tackle because I feel like it may challenge me as a reader and just make me a more well-rounded reader. This can range from modern classics, like George Orwell or Stephen King books, to Charlotte Bronte or Charles Dickens.
Read more non-fiction books.
Non-fiction books are my jam. I love being able to escape into a new world. However, within the last year or so I read many non-fiction self-help books that really opened me up to reading more non-fiction. Of course there are other genres, like biographies, but self-help is my main focus with this reading goal. One of my favorite self-help books that started my journey to reframing my mindset was You Are a Bad*ss by Jen Sincero.