Monday, January 2, 2012

Monday Meeting Accountability

Grab a cup of coffee, pull up a chair. Let's weigh in on what goals we have this week for writing! It's the first Monday Meeting of the New Year! A new year, a new start, for me, an exciting (if not new) project.

This is not a Resolution 2012 post, although I have to say, I loved my Resolution 2011. Last year, I decided that every day that I didn't write, I would donate to the charity, Room to Read. I think I'm going to continue that this year--because even when life got too challenging to write, I knew that my charity benefitted. Last year, I gave over $100 to the charity. :)

Instead of looking at year long goals (although I just made one, didn't I?), right now I am looking at goals for the next 80 days. I am being held accountable to these goals by all the lovely people participating in ROW 80. I'm very excited.


1. To track my writing progress. In order to fulfill this goal, I set up a OneNote calendar, where I write down what I do with my writing time. I also started a notebook for each project, so I could have my notes and ideas at my fingertips. I love handwritten calendars and notebooks, but I can never put my hands on them when I need them. So, this way, I keep myself accountable. For instance, right now, I'm logging this time in as blogging time. :)

2. To write each day, either 2 hours, or to a 1K wordcount. I am revising and drafting as I go, so it's not as speedy as fast drafting can be for me. I think this goal will be challenging, but doable. If I don't write each day, my charity will gain a dollar.

3. To host a Practice Room session once a week. I got out of the habit of doing my part in TPR last year, and I feel the loss. I love the Practice Room, and miss it when I write in the library, or places where I can't open the chat room. I invite you all to come and write there as well!

4. To be honest and realistic (with others) about how I want to spend my time. I am dedicating this next 80 days to try to complete my current WIP. I am not including this as a goal--to finish it--because my novels take as long as they take. However, I want my writing time to be used for that purpose. I always have a lot of projects in the wings, some involving other people. I want to make sure that I am dedicated to my focus.

5. To exercise five days a week. I write better when I get moving, and the winter is a time when I sometimes slack off. So, I am pledging not to slack off during this time!

6. To post at least one Friday Feature interview a month. If I had my druthers, I would set the goal to do one per week, but since this involves others, I never know what is going to happen.

Welcome, and let me know some of your goals--for the week, for the next 80 days, for the year. Do you have a fabulous way of keeping accountability? Are you super organized? What methods do you use to track your success? What writing project is keeping you up at nights? Will you meet me in the Practice Room to write?


  1. sounds like terrific and very doable goals! I've seen that ROW all over the place! :)

  2. Heather, those are very well stated and measurable goals. Good luck to you on everything you're going for, and remember the rest of us are always here if you need us. :)

    I keep my writing goal to 500 words per day, although I usually end up with more. My full time job keeps me pretty busy.

    I've never heard of the Practice Room. I'll check that out.

  3. Laura--I'm excited to try the ROWing community! I'll let you know how it goes!

    laura lynn--Thanks for the words of support. I think 500 words could be the gateway to more. It sounds like a smart goal!

    Normally there are morning practice room sessions each morning. Tina, our fearless Practice Room leader, may be taking some time off to start the new year slow. I know my kids are still off of school today. :)

  4. Great goals--I really like how clear and solid they are, yet even when you don't make it one day you'll still be achieving another goal--giving to charity. I think I might do that too!

  5. I agree with everyone, great doable goals!

    I love especially the TPR goals. But it is great that you have the library and it is keeping you writing. It was awesome to go to post the schedule at TPR and see your name up there. Such a lovely surprise. See you tomorrow. :)

  6. Excellent goals for Row80, Heather! It will be great to watch your progress this round. A diverse set, with excellent either/or choice on your wordcount/hours writing. I know you're going to do extremely well.

    Evernote is a great choice for keeping track of time/progress. Last round, I used my patented "tiny drawn boxes that are checked off in my journal" method. It was, as you say, not always near-to-hand. For this round, Excel selected itself for tracking because I already spend a lot of time creating spreadsheets...might as well put those columns to good use!

    I may borrow goal number 4 from you. My tendency is to say "yes" to a large number of projects which I later have to back out of. That's a habit worth breaking.

    Good luck in the coming week!

  7. Good luck with your goals! PS-I LOVE the blurb under "what I'm writing." Definitely a good pitch.

  8. Colleen--I love the charity thing. My friend Marisa calls that a win-win!

    Tina--I know, the library is great. But it's all about balance. I need to fit in everything which feeds my writing soul! I'm so happy to be back in TPR!

    Tracy--LOL about your box-checking method. I have to say, that's so satisfactory to me!! Number four is a tough one for me--I feel such guilt. But I owe myself and this manuscript. :)

    Melanie--Welcome! I'm glad you like that pitch. I have to revisit the rewrite of that novel at some point!!

  9. Wooo! Go you, Heather!! I think I'll make it a plan to host a TPR once a week, too. Sometimes, I'm good, and host a bunch, but sometimes I'm lazy, and instead of hosting on days when there isn't, I just get lazy and don't write at all!!

    Good luck with your 80 days challenge!! Such a fun challenge! Mine will be more like 90 days - I suspect I'll need those extra 10 days :D

  10. M--I'm glad you're on the hosting at TPR once a week bandwagon. I think I'll enlist J as well. And maybe some of the West Coast TPRers! I'm excited to see how your 3 month novel writing experiment goes--I think it will be great!

  11. I have a hard time exercising in the winter, too. It's just so damn cold outside, ya know?

    I am also committed to my current wip and toward that end I want to be more consistent about attending The Practice Room on Monday nights. Because it's good for me to practice with others :)

  12. Great goals! I love the idea of donating to a charity on the days you don't write. I need to implement something like that into my life. Best of luck to you!

  13. Nice goals. I haven't figured out mine yet.

  14. To keep my writing organized and on track, I keep a journal specifically to write weekly to-do writing lists in. It helps to have that visual that I can check off as I move through it. Happy writing to you :)

  15. Marcy--TOO COLD! I would love to try to fit in a night TPR session. But normally I'm still putting kiddos to bed during Dianne's time. It's so great, though!

    Jess--Hi! Thanks. Good luck to you in your goals as well!!

    Alicia--You'll figure them out. And, if you're like me, you'll then change 'em. Hope your holidays were great!

    Joanne--That's great. I love crossing things off. Makes me stay on target! Good luck with your goals!

  16. TPR sounds interesting. I'm still to devise a way to track my writing progress and to organize my research materials which are in a state of "controlled" chaos.

  17. Wow, love your list. Wishing you a wonderful new year full of accomplished goals!

  18. I'll see you in the Practice Room! I love your charity resolution, absolutely brilliant...may have to steal it for myself:-)

  19. svetlanakarlin--controlled chaos can be a beautiful thing!

    Ruth--thanks so much for the supportive comment! I wish the same for you! What a beautiful blog you have. :)

    Amy--Yay! I saw your blog's link at TPR, and chased you over to your blog. Love the advice you had over there! I really enjoy the charity resolution. I hope everyone steals it!! :) See you in TPR!

  20. Good luck with your writing this round!

  21. J.R.--Thanks! Good luck with your goals, as well!

  22. Awesome goals. And I can see from your next post that you're making them. I'm trying to exercise more too. And balance the whole blogging and writing. Happy New Year!