New Year, new blog, new CMS! I've moved from Wordpress to Squarespace and I'm loving it so far. However, this blog is not just getting a new look - it's getting a new direction.
From now on, I will be writing about Social Media (as it pertains to writers) or the Writer's Life (craft and lifestyle issues) on Wednesdays. I will also be blogging about Faith and Wellness on some Tuesdays. (I've not decided on the frequency yet. Perhaps every fortnight to begin with.) For now, just look out for new posts on Wednesdays and Tuesdays. You can also subscribe to the blog and have posts delivered to your e-mail inbox so that you won't miss a post.
But enough about me. It's the new year, and I'm sure you're planning to bust some goals this year.
When it comes to making New year resolutions I'd like to focus on actions rather than results. Meaning, instead of setting a goal that says, "I want to be a New York Times bestselling author this year", which is beyond my control, I'd focus on goals where I have total control over such as "I will write 1,000 words a day, five times a week".
I think it's far more fruitful to focus on how you get to your dream than the dream itself.
Stumped? Here are some New year resolutions you can make:
Finish your writing projects
Do you know what you can do with an unfinished story? Nothing. But a completed story opens many doors. When you have a habit of finishing every tale you start, not only will you feel more accomplished, each story is an opportunity waiting to be tapped. Book deal? Money? Readers? All this only happens if you finish that story.
Send your stories out
You can e-mail your works to agents and editors, put it up as a serialised novel on Wattpad or Jukepop, or self-publish on Amazon or Kobo. The idea is to drag your story out of your hard drive and put it out there in readers' hands.
Build your author's website
It still surprises me how many writers neglect to do this. A website is like a shopfront on the Internet where people can peruse your work, get to know you, and perhaps contact you for future work. So, create an author's site this year. You will really appreciate it! A website is more than a brag page. For one, my website has gotten me jobs and have helped me meet so many interesting people. Heck, I've even gotten interviewed on ABC radio because of it! It's really not that hard to get your own site. You can even create a blog free at Blogspot, Weebly or Wordpress.com. (Never fear, I shall be blogging more about this in the future.)
Make health a priority: Exercise and eat well
One of my goals for 2016 is to get my butt off the chair and make health a priority. I'll be eating the Paleo way (because it keeps my blood sugars balanced) and exercising five times a week. When my diet and exercise are in order, I am far more creative and motivated to pursue my goals.
Read for fun
What a strange resolution, you might think. Isn't this what writers naturally do? You'd be surprised! Between 2012 and 2014, I was so obsessed with learning the craft of writing a novel that all I did was read books about writing and productivity. And if I did read fiction, I'd be analysing what the author was doing instead. In 2015 I regained a little bit of the fun by reading books just for the hell of it. Reading fiction feeds your muse, and as Ray Bradbury famously said: "You must read dreadful dumb books and glorious books, and let them wrestle in beautiful fights inside your head, vulgar one moment, brilliant the next."
May you have a wonderful 2016! What's your New Year's resolution?