Welcome to Writing Prompt Pit Stop! Here we are in June, 2014 – 6 months in, or halfway through the year. If you remember, at the first of the year I put out a challenge for you to not make a New Year’s Resolution for 2014, as we all know how well those work, rather to take me up on my “mapping out a plan” challenge. This is where I asked you to:
“…sit down and map out a plan for your writing, or other project, that you really want to do this year. Instead of saying “I’m going to write every day in 2014,” and then when you miss a day and beat yourself up and give up…why not say, “I’m going to plan on writing as much as I can each month, and by March I’ll have X amount of that novel written, or X amount of poems for a manuscript, or have X amount of that full-length play written….” Then if you make that happen, pat yourself on the back and say “Now by June I’ll have X amount more of that novel written, or X amount more poems for a manuscript, or have several 10 minute plays written.” If you don’t make it to your goal for March, simply map out something that you know you are likely to attain!
If you make June’s deadline, then shoot for X more amount of writing in September in whatever genre that you’re working in.”
Well, it’s June! How are you doing? Have you made any of your goals? Have you tried something new? Do you already have X more as a goal set for September? Have you surprised yourself by completing something that ordinarily would have fallen victim to procrastination? Or have you fallen victim to procrastination?
Here’s what I said I’d do back in that first post of 2014: “I plan to take my own advice and map out some projects, and maybe take a workshop or class doing something that I’ve never tried before.”
I’m pleased to say that I kept my word! I have got a new chapbook ready to send out. I’ve been in contact with a publisher about a full-length manuscript that I’ve been working on the past few years; I took part in Oulipost 2014 which was a challenge (that was outside of my comfort zone – but I completed it [30 poems in 30 days] and gained so much from doing so!) put out by The Found Poetry Review for National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo). I have taken on a new writing gig as the arts blogger for Wheresthecat.com. I’ve exhibited art in the first art walk in Toledo this year, and I have an art exhibit lined up for my art in September. So, yes, I’ve had a good six months so far in 2014, but I want more!
So, here’s my challenge for you (and myself) for the last half of 2014:
1) Let’s keep mapping out those challenges for ourselves. Get something written on paper – it makes it much more real than just thinking about it. If you have not followed along in early 2014 – what are you waiting on? Don’t feel like a failure or like it’s too late now. It’s never too late. Set a small goal first, and then go for it.
2) Do something that you haven’t done before. Get out of your comfort zone. In my case, it was doing Oulipost 2014. But now that I’ve done that, I’d like to try something else that I haven’t done. Some of you may not have taken the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) challenge in November – that’s a great challenge. Maybe there’s a local writing group that you can join in on or, if not, start your own! I’ve started many over the years and it’s a great way to meet like-minded people. At this time I participate in three writing groups – two that I’m in charge of, and one that I just go to participate and enjoy. If you’ve not tried submitting your writing somewhere…take a chance (after revising, of course) – look up publishers on New Pages (free), or Duotrope (small fee) that accepts work similar to yours. The main thing is just to stretch your wings and take a chance.
3) If you write poems, make a goal to get 16-24 of them together for a chapbook by the end of the year. If you write plays, make a goal to write a 10 minute play and submit it somewhere by the end of the year (There’s also National Playwriting Month (NaPlWriMo) in November too!). If you write fiction, make a goal to either write a flash fiction piece and send it out, or get that novel started (or finished) that you’ve been toying with forever. If you write essays, or memoir – do the same…as you can see, the main thing is just to sit down and write. I write everyday. Even if it’s just 10 minutes. It works…it keeps you going! For my visual artist friends – get to drawing or painting…at least something everyday. It works. Baby steps….
I hope all of you have been having a good, creative 2014 so far, and let’s make the last half of 2014 even better…let’s make all of our creative goals come to fruition…or at least get closer.
Don’t hesitate to share, in the comments section, what creative things you’ve been doing so far in 2014 or what goals that you’ve met already…or write at least one goal so you that you can check back in December and see if you met or surpassed it.
See you here next Wednesday with another writing prompt!