Monday, January 4, 2010

My No-Resolutions Resolution

Happy 2010 to all and I hope your holidays were filled with magic -- and chocolate. Also, I need to give a shout-out to my fellow Sister, Lacey, for the new, cool pic that adorns our blog. I love it!

I've read a lot of blogs lately about resolutions and goals for the new year. I love the start of each year -- for me, it's symbolic of a fresh start and gives me an extra boost of motivation. What I don't love are resolutions. They don't work for me. Never have. One year, I made a resolution that involved exercising 3X per week. I thought I'd start small so I'd succeed. Right. I lasted maybe 3 weeks and it was pure torture for me -- worse than doing dishes -- so I gave up. Later, I discovered yoga which I love and guess how often I do it? Yep, at least 3 times a week but because I want to, not because I should do it. I've learned that I rebel against goals, even self-created ones, if I'm not really invested. No more resolutions for me!

So instead of giving myself resolutions, I give myself suggestions. Yes, I realize it's mainly a matter of semantics but it works for me. The term suggestions gives me more breathing room. Years ago, I decided to get my Ph.D. in Psychology and it was never a struggle -- well, except for the dissertation which reached the doing dishes torture level at times. However, I didn't need to set actual goals along the way because it never crossed my mind that I wouldn't finish. No resolutions were needed.

In terms of writing, mid-way through 2009 I decided to write a novel. I had several picture books and a short middle-grade fantasy finished but I was really drawn to writing YA. I started the novel in Sept. and followed Stephen King's SUGGESTION to write 2,000 words/day. I finished the novel in Oct. I'm still revising it but even that process is rewarding -- most of the time. I haven't reached my doing dishes torture level yet, which is how I know I'm not finished. So for 2010, I've decided on several suggestions for my writing.

Here are my 2010 SUGGESTIONS for myself:
1. Finish revising YA novel #1.
2. Perfect query letter.
3. Send out query letter to agents.
4. Attend major conference. (I'm already attending a small SCBWI event in
Jan. and have my major conference picked out for the Spring. BONUS: I'm
helping to judge the writing contest for the Spring conference and it's been
a wonderful experience.)
5. Finish YA novel #2. (20,000 words so far)
6. Continue expanding this blog w/ my Sisters: Lacey, Valerie, and Lisa. In
December, we decided to get serious with the blog and although it's only a
few weeks later, we've been having a blast with it!

That's it. Those are my suggestions for myself for this year and I'm off to a great start even though it's only 4 days into 2010. What about you? What are your writing suggestions/goals/resolutions/whatever you want to call them for this year?


  1. I have the book "Whatever Happened to Uncle Albert" and our school kids would like to do one of the mystery plays, I would like to know what I can do to get permission to use one ,the author is Sue Alexander. My name is Elaine Friesen and my email address is thank - you.

  2. Thanks for the shout-out, my lovely sister :)

    I like the idea of suggestions. I have never once fulfilled a resolution, but I still go on making them.

    I did managed to get to a few--I quit smokeing--but like you, it was because I wanted to. On my own time.

    My "suggestions" for the new year are very similar to yours, Kristi. I want to expand this blog and better my writing with the help of The Sisters, and I want to finished polishing my MS (one of them at least) and perfect a query and start sending it!

  3. Elaine, have you tried visiting and contacting the author directly?

    Thanks for stopping by our blog!

  4. Great point! I'd never thought of making New Year's Suggestions. My solutions to the same problem of consistently broken New Year's Resolutions are to make new resolutions throughout the year...mine are prioritized, and when I feel I've accomplished one goal, I get to work on the next one. Why have only one day a year when you can resolve to work on something? And while it's important to have a universally agreed-upon New Year for civilization's sake, if I do feel the need to look at the year ahead and the year behind, I do it on my birthday instead. That's MY new year!

  5. Lacey - that would be cool to go through the query process at the same time! Also, thanks for the info for Elaine - I emailed her but you had more detailed info for her which was great.

    Jenny - I agree that it should be an ongoing process. Alas, I stopped having birthdays long ago, so I can't use that as my new year! :)

  6. Great post Kristi! We have a lot of the same goals for 2010! I'm sure together we can all help each other reach them!

  7. Valerie - That would sure make it a great year for all of us :)

  8. im on a NY resolution REVolution. ON my blog yesterday, I listed all the promises I planned to break. ;)

  9. Shelli - yours was hilarious! That's a great way to go about resolutions :)


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