New Year's Resolutions - Why Words Work - Writing Confessions

Writing Confessions: New Year’s Resolutions

I went to a New Year’s party last night.

As I sit up in bed writing in my half-lit bedroom, I can still feel the scent of beer and pretzel salt lingering in my nose. While many chose to dive into the oncoming year with a helpful shove from booze, I decided to dance and sing my way into 2019 surrounded by those I love.

The sun is a thin orange strip above the frosty rooftops. Down in my back garden I can hear the twittering of the blackbirds on the grass. The house is quiet. Peaceful. And I really don’t want to get up.

So instead, I’ve been thinking about New Year’s Resolutions.

Why Words Work - Blog Plan 2019

Usually when I think about new year’s resolutions, I go overboard. I tell myself that this will be my year. That this time, I will move mountains. I say that I will achieve everything I want to achieve – novel, short stories, the whole shebang – and then some.

And most of the time, I fall flat on my face.

I’ve always had a problem with setting the bar too high for myself. At school, nothing less than the top score would be good enough for me. At university, the first draft of every essay needed to be perfect. In the first few months as a post-graduate, I set myself ambitions that my personal circumstances couldn’t allow.

As I tuck my bare feet under the bed covers and stare at the slowly rising sun, the weight of a new year wraps around my shoulders. 2019. What will I do this year? Who will I meet? What will I write? Where will my ambitions take me?

There is only one answer to all these questions: I don’t know.

Emma Rose Hollands - Why Words Work - Daydreaming

As such, I am going to approach this goal-setting business from a new angle.

The following is a list of things I want in 2019. They are not goals. They are not set in stone. Nor are they grand, sweeping statements that will alter my life forever.

They are just things that I want; things that I can achieve, but only if I choose to pursue them.

2019 will be my year – but only if I put in the work to make it that way.

WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO ACHIEVE IN 2019

  • REACH 500 FOLLOWERS ON MY BLOG
  • INTERVIEW MORE DEBUT / FLEDGLING AUTHORS
  • READ FOR AN HOUR A DAY, EVERYDAY
  • ENTER SHORT STORY COMPETITIONS EVERY MONTH
  • FINISH A NOVEL
  • ACT LIKE THE WRITER I HAVE ALWAYS DREAMED I COULD BE…


Do you have any New Year’s Resolutions? What are your reading/writing goals for 2019? Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @ERHollands. Whatever they are, I hope this new year brings you happiness.

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4 thoughts on “Writing Confessions: New Year’s Resolutions

  1. I want to enter short story contests, too this year. For the past two years, I said I want to enter a contest, but never did. I think I let fear of failing paralyze me. But I want to change that this year. I want to find a good contest and put myself out there. Also, I want to publish more stories on my blog and my Wattpad account. My blog has been lacking in flash fiction content and I only have three stories on my Wattpad. I want to add more and continue to build my audience.

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  2. Happy New year! I like these goals. Goals should be achievable and these absolutely are.
    Smaller goals are goals we are more likely to complete! E.g. go for a 20 minute walk every day. Once that’s easily achieved you can up your goal to 30 minutes etc! It definitely doesn’t set ourselves up to fail and has a positive outcome.
    I enjoy your goals and i definitely think they’re doable. Good luck!

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  3. One of the most important things I’ve retained from my years working in the corporate world is the difference between “lead” goals and “lag” goals.

    “Lead” goals are things within your direct control (so, for you, reading for an hour every day and entering a short story competition every month would be some of your “lead” goals).

    “Lag” goals are those that are outside of your direct control, that rely on some external action or input (so, reaching 500 followers, for instance, because it relies on other people finding and following you).

    This year, I’m doing my best to focus on my lead goals, and forcing myself to trust that the lag achievements will follow – “If you build it, they will come”, I guess. It gives me a much better feeling of control, and reins me in when I start shooting for the moon (because I definitely fall victim to that over-the-top-goal-setting trap too). Hope that helps, and cheering you on for 2019! 😍

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