Plans for the New Year

This time last year, I posted a list of goals for 2015 instead of a list of resolutions.

I’m still not a fan of resolutions, so I’m doing the same thing this year. I’ll share them in just a moment, but first I wanted to talk about the goals I set for 2015. While there’s more information on the post linked above, I’ll just tackle the bullet points here. So how did last year’s plans turn out?

Finish writing my current work-in-progress.
At the time, this was Serpent’s Wake. Not only did I complete it, but I also completed the first edit. Then I went on to write and edit both Gale’s Gift and Born of the Moon, even seeing Born of the Moon published before the end of the year. So this goal was a definite success!

Send out queries for my last completed project.
The “last completed project” mentioned here was Serpent’s Tears. I did query through 2015, but it didn’t yield any results.

Make progress with organizing the house.
While nothing is ever perfect, the house has come a long way in the past year. There’s plenty of room for improvement, but it feels great to have pared down our belongings and organized things well enough that we still fit in the house. This was also a success, but one I intend to make a perpetual work in progress.

Finish the big to-do list.
There’s always that one thing on the list you don’t accomplish, right? That’s this one. And part of it is that I always, always underestimate how long a project will take. I did make substantial headway, since there are only 10 things left on the list, and two of them weren’t on the list at the beginning of the year. I’ll continue to work on this through 2016, and maybe I’ll see the end of it by this time next year.

So now that we’ve looked at what I did with 2015, what are my plans for next year?

Well… the list is a lot longer, for one.

Goals for 2016

Goal #1: Try to exercise at least 2-3 times a week.

I started doing yoga in the middle of the year and it helped my back and shoulder pain substantially, as well as offering relief to a pinched ulnar nerve that made using my right arm perpetually uncomfortable. I no longer have nerve pain in my arm at all, which seems miraculous after how miserable it left me. Unfortunately, through the busy holiday months, it became harder and harder to find time for a workout, and the pain in my shoulders, neck and upper back has been slowly returning. I don’t have to do it every day, but if I make myself fit it in a few times a week, it should offer pain relief again pretty quick.

Goal #2: Sew 1 piece of doll clothing every 2 weeks.

In 2015, I presented some of the doll clothing I made to the owner of a specialty store and she purchased it from me on the spot to offer through her shop. I sell doll clothing on Etsy as well, so while I prepare more things to take to her to have sold in a brick-and-mortar location, I also need to keep my Etsy shop stocked up. Since my Etsy shop is just a small shop with low sales volume, one piece every two weeks should keep it nice and full.

Goal #3: Post a video every other week.

While I’ll be speaking more about this on blog day next week, the gist is that I’m using YouTube for some projects now, and I’m really excited to share them! As I said, I’ll say more next week, so be sure to come back and read about that next Tuesday.

Goal #4: Complete one drawing each month

It doesn’t have to be big or fancy, but skills are like muscles. If you don’t use them, they atrophy. So even if it’s just a small doodle, making a little more time to draw in 2016 is important to me.

Goal #5: Try to write, but don’t stress.

In 2015, I made a point of trying to write every day, and sometimes I thought it would kill me. It was exhausting, but if I didn’t do it, I felt like I was losing momentum. Writing shouldn’t be like that. It should be enjoyable; it’s a passion, after all. So while I hope to write things–and finish things–in the new year, I’m going to cut myself some slack. I’ll set time aside for writing, but if I don’t get it or I’m not feeling it, it won’t be the end of the world. Sometimes breaks are necessary.

Goal #6: Dye my hair again.

I really loved the pink ombré I had in October. It might seem like a silly thing to put on a goal list, but finding the time to do it is tough, and since the bright colors don’t last long, they can be difficult to maintain. In some ways, this goal can be interpreted as me just making time for something silly and fun, just because it’s fun.

Goal #7: Write first draft of Serpent’s Blood.

This is the end of my trilogy, and I feel like finishing it will be a big landmark. It’s also necessary for me to finish the third book in the series before I move on to the next goal, which is…

Goal #8: Revise Serpent’s Tears.

After querying in 2015 without any results, I decided to put the project away for a little while. When I completed the second book, I discovered some things I could go back and add to the first to make it stronger and–hopefully–more appealing. But instead of adding them right away, I think it’s better to wait until I’m done with the third book as well. That way I’ll know all the little threads that need to be tied up, things that need tightening up earlier in the series, and things I can sprinkle back through the previous two books to make the trilogy stronger as a whole. And if I can get #7 and #8 done, I can shoot for…

Potential Goal #9: Query through the end of the year

Once the books are all wrapped up in a neat little well-edited package, I hope round 2 of querying will go better. But for reasons listed above, I’m not going to push for it until everything else is done. If I get this far, then that’s great. If not, then oh well. At least I’d already know what a goal for 2017 would be.

What are your goals for this year?

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