The New Year has come and gone, and we’re officially a month into 2020. A new year and a new decade promises new resolutions and new goals, especially if you’re a writer. Setting goals for yourself as a writer allows you to stay focused and motivate yourself. Your goals give you a benchmark to strive toward or surpass. Your goals for 2020 should be achievable. There’s nothing worse than setting a goal that’s too difficult or impossible to achieve, only to feel bad about yourself when you don’t achieve it. In 2020, you want to challenge yourself, but you don’t want to self-sabotage by setting unachievable goals. In this blog, we’ll discuss achievable goals for 2020, such as how to write more, writing in a new genre, and self-publishing your work.
We recently wrote about the reasons why you might not have achieved your 2019 writing goals. We postulated that there are three common reasons why your writing goals weren’t met: the goals set were too difficult to achieve, the goals set didn’t fit in your schedule, and (most common) life got busy.
At the end of the day, these goals are personal writing goals. What you accomplish depends on you.
Reasonable Writing Goals for 2020
As we said, writing goals are personal, therefore the goals you set should be specific to your schedule, your interests, and your ability. For example, if you’re figuring out how to write more in 2020, don’t get ahead of yourself and set an outrageous daily word count. If you normally write poetry, don’t skip several steps and aim to write and publish a mystery novel if you’ve never tried writing mysteries before.
Start by focusing on what you’re interested in, what you can do, and what your schedule allows.
How to Write More: Write About What You’re Interested In
If you’re trying to figure out how to write more in 2020, start by writing what you’re interested in! Nothing will end a writing session early quite like boredom.
It happens all the time: writers begin a new story, a new memoir, or a new poem, and quickly find themselves zoning out or getting distracted by their phones or what’s happening outside the window. If a project isn’t keeping your attention, it’s time to go back to the drawing board and ramp up the idea. Or, if you’re writing a portion of a chapter that is less than thrilling, skip forward, and write the exciting part! You can always backtrack.
If you find yourself losing momentum, try one of these tactics:
- Respond to a writing prompt! Find something fun or silly online and let your imagination run wild.
- Stand up, go for a walk, and come back refreshed. Or, stand up and stretch at your desk. Get your blood flowing, and so will the good ideas.
- Cut out the boring parts of a story. If you’re bored, chances are the readers will be, too!
Write What You Can
Is one of your New Year’s goals for 2020 to write in a new genre? This is a great idea for how to write more. We’re all about it! However, don’t sabotage yourself by aiming to write and self-publish a book in a genre you’ve never written in or read before. Writers always need to do their research. If you’ve never read historical fiction, don’t sit down to write without exploring the genre!
Here are some tips when setting new genre writing goals for 2020:
- Read, read, read. The best way to get acquainted with a new genre? Read it! Read the bestsellers. Check out the indie press releases. Read the self-published authors. Basically, read everything.
- Brush up on the history of the genre. What are popular themes and tropes? What are cliches you should avoid?
- Blend genres. What happens when you take two good things and combine them? If you normally write science fiction, but want to explore writing romance, play up romantic relationships in a Sci-Fi novel. If you’re used to writing poetry but want to branch out and write a novel this year, write a novel in verse!
How to Write More: Set Goals Based on Schedule
Writing can be cathartic, it can be therapy. Setting aside time in your busy schedule to write a hundred or a thousand words can greatly improve your quality of life, therefore we recommend setting a daily or weekly writing goal that will fit within your work, school, or general life schedule. This is one of the best tips if your goal is to figure out how to write more.
Here are some ways to write more in your day to day life:
- Set aside ten to thirty minutes in the evening to write.
- Set a weekly word goal. If you aim to write 5,000 words a week, but Monday was a busy day, you can write for longer on Tuesday. Give yourself more time to meet your goals.
- Prioritize your writing. Don’t write while watching TV or listening to an audiobook. When you write, be present.
- Break your writing time up. Don’t aim to write for three hours straight. Breaking it up into smaller, manageable chunks is less daunting.
- Download an app that limits your screen time. This boosts your focus so that you aren’t stopping every five minutes to check Facebook.
- Ask your family or friends or roommates for support. Make sure they know your writing schedule and will leave you unbothered during this time.
Are you trying to write more in 2020? What other writing goals do you have? Let us know in the comments!