We are about to witness the passing of another year. I suspect there will be many changes in 2012. You can feel it in the air. It starts with the economy, the political unrest on the national level and eventually trickles down into our homes and our daily lives. Some people hate change.
Change is not a bad thing. I mentioned to my husband the other day that when life or the course we have been on accumulates too many projects, collects too many peopleand things, the best action plan is to go back to basics. Start from the beginning and incorporate into your life the essential behaviors and things that you would need to function. (Most people do not make a distinction between need and want. This distinction between your needs and wants list is the key to defining who you are.) Then add layers to it. You will find that you will do things differently, cutting out unnecessary or outmoded steps in your life…allowing more new things to come into your life. It is much like giving your bedroom a fresh coat of paint. You first must clean out the entire room, pick out a paint color (goal) and then reintroduce only things that you need.
For me, change is been in the works throughout 2011. I have learned much about myself, my motivation to write, and to maintain this website. If you have noticed, I only post when I feel I have something to share.
So, I leave you on Christmas Eve with a great blog by Larry Brooks. Here Larry shows us the long view of our writing journey. It is something to think about as you reflect on your writing goals for 2012. http://storyfix.com/
May your new year be filled with conflict, mayhem and drama — of course, on paper, not in real life. Are you ready?
Figuring out the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) posed may position you to achieve your goal sooner, better or easier. This is because now you are able to clearly assess where you are and take a more clear cut action plan to get you your results.
Okay, I know what you are thinking. Why don’t you just write and see what comes of it? You can do it that way, but I want to make this a career change. In order to do that, it is best to have a plan. If you plan to earn a living as a writer, you need to treat this as a business. Some people are lucky. They have contacts. They are at the right place at the right time. But if you are like me, I don’t have those contacts. I live in an area that takes pride in the fact that it is a bio sciences community…(yeah, great backdrop to a novel, but I am not really part of the bio community).
Above all, more than creating strategy, what will propel you forward is excellent writing with a unique viewpoint/plot. If it is good, it will eventually find its way to the marketplace. Good planning strategies can sell average quality novels. Good planning may catapult excellent writing. And if you are planning to make this your bread and butter, I’m sure you would much rather get paid now as opposed to having your estate receive your royalties.
As I mentioned in my last blog, I know what I should do, but have not taken the time to implement it in my own life. So, as I discover who I am, so will you. Before I create my SWOT for transitioning into a fiction writer, let’s be very clear about my goal.
Goal: To become a fiction writer by end of the year 2009.
Is this specific? Yes
Is this measurable? Yes. Measurable in the sense that the number of written pages will indicate progress.
Is this attainable? Yes. It requires discipline and focus.
Is this realistic: Yes, because I have the education and have been writing for many years…just not fiction
Is there a time frame: Yes. (I need a deadline otherwise I get derailed too easily. If you are working a full time job, this time frame becomes even more imperative, because your time is limited.)
Good foundation in research
Small business management knowledge
Need more fiction writing time
Easily distracted by family and responsibilities
Too eager to help others
To-Do List is overwhelming
Opportunity to meet many people where I work
Member of a Writing Group
Contacts at colleges where I attended
Understanding how to use the Internet and viral marketing as a tool
Lack of focus.
Energies too dispersed.
In the next post I will create an action plan to make the most of my strengths and opportunities and strategies to turn my weaknesses and threats into an advantage.