Share this article on Facebook
Why New Year's Resolutions Make Dollars and Sense
by Susan Denney
Even as Iâm recommending that you make New Yearâs
resolutions, I can hear your objections loud and clear. I can hear you
saying to me, âYou want me to make New Yearâs resolutions?
Give me a break. I just finished the holiday season and Iâm exhausted.
Iâd be a lot more interested in advice on how to pay off my Christmas
Visa bill or how to get the red and green M&Mâs out of the living
room carpet. Iâve never made a list of resolutions that Iâve
kept for more than two weeks. A new set of broken resolutions will only
make me feel more guilty than the last set I didnât keep.â
Objections taken. Making a list of idealistic and unattainable promises
never did anyone any good. And they never made a dent in anyoneâs
MasterCard bill. Resolving to be a better person, to make more money or
to achieve world peace just isnât going to make things happen. But
writing down specific goals is the key to more peopleâs success
than you would believe possible. If youâre interested in making
more money and finding more writing success in 2007, read on.
As writers, we are all aware of the power of putting an idea on paper.
Financial planners, educators and even the Mayo Clinic agree that writing
down goals is an important step in achieving what we want. The results
of writing goals down can seem like magic. For reasons not completely
understood, the act of writing down a goal makes it a part of us. Our
mind will work on achieving it whether we think about it actively or not.
I was hopeful but skeptical when I was first challenged to write down
five financial goals for my writing. It seemed too easy. All I was supposed
to do was give them careful thought, write them down on a piece of paper
and put them in a prominent place in my home. I chose my bathroom mirror.
Some of them seemed impossibly far off at the beginning of the year, but
by the end of the year, I found that I had reached three of those five
goals. It was my most financially successful year of writing to date.
In order for goals to work, they must have four characteristics. First,
they must be attainable. It wouldnât be right for me to set a goal
of selling twelve romance novels in a year. I still have a day job, after
all. I just donât have enough hours in the day to write them. But
I could attain a goal of selling one romance novel. Secondly, goals must
be realistic. My goal to earn as much money as J. K. Rowling wouldnât
be as realistic as the goal of making $650.00 a month on magazine articles.
That wouldnât be bad pay for a part-time job. Thirdly, goals must
be specific enough to measure success. If I set a goal of doing more writing
in 2007, it would be hard to judge whether I had done so or not. But if
I set a goal of writing at least ten hours a week, I would have a benchmark
for success. Lastly, a goal should be positive. A negative goal will not
inspire or change behavior. âI wonât get so many rejection
letters,â is a negative goal. A positive goal would be, âI
will receive three acceptance letters a month.â
Here are some examples of specific writing goals that a writer might
make for 2007.
- âI will write for at least ten hours a week.â
- âI will write at least five days a week.â
- âI will send off at least seven query letters a month.â
- âI will attend two writersâ conferences this year.â
- âI will earn at least $350.00 dollars each month selling magazine
- âI will publish twenty-five articles this year.â
- âI will sell eight confession stories this year.â
- âI will set up three book-signings for the novel that I published
- âI will publish a new novel this year.â
- âI will earn at least $12,000.00 dollars this year by writing.â
- âI will break into eight higher paying markets this year.â
- âI will exercise at least three times a week so that I will
have more energy and stamina for writing.â
- âI will save every writing receipt that might be tax-deductible
and put it in a special folder beginning today.â
- âI will read two books in my chosen genre each month.â
- âI will keep a writing notebook with me at all times so that
I can write down ideas as they come to me.â
If you really want to guarantee success, divide the big goals into steps.
For example, if I set a goal to publish an unfinished novel this year,
I might subdivide that goal into the following:
- âI will finish the manuscript by March 15th, 2007.â
- âI will finish editing the manuscript by April 25th, 2007.â
- âI will send the manuscript off to a publisher or agent by May
Only you can set dates, amounts and numbers that will work for you. But
donât be afraid to think big. As long as your goals are attainable
and realistic, the skyâs the limit. Also, limit your goals to five.
Any more than that and your brain will probably opt out. Prepare to be
amazed when you meet at least three of your goals this year.
Iâd love to stay and chat, but I have some goal-setting of my own
to do today. Happy New Year!
© Copyright 2007, Susan Denney
Susan Denney is a freelance writer living in Pennsylvania. She has published childrens fiction and nonfiction as well as adult articles
on a variety of topics. Check out her website at www.susandenney.com.
Other articles by Susan Denney :
Check out the latest articles in
How to Promote Your Book BLOG
Find out what works.
Join the Writing for DOLLARS! group on Facebook.
Writing for DOLLARS!
is a publication of