I’ve been a big goal setter for as long as I can remember.  In fact, “To Do Lists” are some of my favorite things. (Though sometimes they only seem like space holders for the ever-increasing number of tasks that seem to go onto those lists faster than they come off.)

I try to keep in mind that my goals are not written in stone – whatever I plan to do has to be tempered by what life throws at me.  One of my mantras from my days of homeschooling is “Plan, but be flexible.” That applies to almost everything I tackle, but in particular to my life as an independently published author.

But if I want to consider myself a full-time author, and I do, then I have to make sure my writing doesn’t get pushed aside by less important things. So, like so many others, I spend much time trying to find the balance. Another one of my mantras!

So, as the first four months of 2018 are coming to an end, I thought I should go back and look at the goals I made earlier this year and see if I am on track, or if I’ve been flexing a bit too much!

In early March, in the blog post, “Dealing with the Winter Blues,” I had given myself a few goals, including

  • Getting back into my swimming class and starting to swim laps again. I am happy to report that I have not only gone back to swimming four days a week, I’ve added Saturdays and Sundays to several weeks. Last Thursday I celebrated my 61st birthday by swimming a half mile again. (First time since last October.)
  • I wanted to get at least 31,000 words written on my Michelangelo novel. I did accomplish that goal – in fact I wrote at least 1,000 words per day for every day in March and the first several days of April.
  • I wanted to start using Scrivener. As I mentioned in the “Writing with Scrivener” post, that actually went better than I had expected. To say that I am now a HUGE fan of Scrivener would be an understatement.

Sadly, April’s goals were not met quite as well.  In my blog post, “My Nine Tips for Novice Novel Writers” I wrote that by the end of April (as in, today!) I hoped to be far enough along on my Michelangelo novel that it was ready to be sent out to Beta Readers for feedback. Alas, I have not quite met that goal. I’m close, but my best guess is that I’m at least two weeks from that spot. (Which shouldn’t sink my desire to get my next three Leonardo da Vinci novels written by this time next year, but I’m quickly using up the margin that I had built into that goal.)

But, that’s where the flexibility comes in. As we move into May, I cannot get angry with myself for missing that goal. I can only revise the goal and move forward. So, new goals: Hopefully, by the end of May, my sixth da Vinci novel will be published. It is so close! And Michelangelo will be in the hands of my initial readers.  If I haven’t started da Vinci #7 by the end of May, I hope to be lined up and ready to begin it no later than the beginning of June.

So that’s how I end this month. Old, unmet goals have been revised, and new ones are being made.

Happy reading and writing!