Monday, January 2, 2017

Planning My AuthorLife for 2017

Happy New Year to all! I started off the new year right by getting organized and on track. I usually am more direction-focused, but 2016 proved to be a bit of a challenge as far as staying on track with my writing. But it's done and over with and in the past - can't go back, can only go forward. So my determined-self had a talk with my laggy-self and said 'It's time to take charge - take action!' So I have.

As a writer I'm big on notebooks, of course. I always have one with me, jotting personal to-do notes (family etc) along with writing ideas and to-do's, and as of the last two years, archery notes as well (I took up archery two years ago). But I knew I needed something more - not just a notebook to help me keep on track, and not just an agenda. They both are useless if I don't refer to them or update them regularly. But given how I let things compromise my direction in my writing career over the past year (notice how I said 'I LET' - I'm taking responsibility for my lagging-self, not blaming everything else), I knew I needed something MORE to help me along.

In comes a discovery - 'AuthorLife Planner - 2017' by Bria Quinlan. As the subtitle suggests - 'Prep. Plan. Produce' - it's just what I needed. Goal-setting, time-management, personal dreams/wants/desires, accountability - the list goes on of what this planner intends for the author trying to create a productive writing career. I worked through the first pages which invite the author to realize dreams, goals and areas-of-improvement both personally and writerly. Quinlan suggests the breaking down of the year into quarters, and planning week by week, month by month and then quarter by quarter. I had never thought of viewing my writing goals in quarters - seems so obvious, but sometimes the obvious isn't so obvious - and the concept rang true for me. It's not as overwhelming as planning for year, and planning for the month ahead, although good to do, sometimes leads to disappointment for me. A month goes by, my busy work-life and home-life makes the month a blur, and then I look back and realize I got nothing done over that month, and then beat myself up over it.

But who's to say I won't achieve what I want in the first quarter of the year - January 1st to March 31st? Well, I'll be taking responsibility for that. Determination is my weapon against disappointment, along with a sprinkle of allowances for hiccups or setbacks along the way. I have resolved to not be so hard on myself when things don't go as planned - when I don't accomplish what I want. That's life. I have even scheduled/planned time in the week to ONLY work on the AuthorLife Planning book - to sit, plan, think, review, revise and re-direct my AuthorLife (if and when needed).

Added to that, I received a new notebook for Christmas from my mom, the cover bearing an appropriate inspirational message of 'This Moment Is Yours.' And it's right - this moment IS mine. With the two books freshly cracked open and ready to help me along my year of writing (and whatever comes my way), I'm happy and confident I'm on the 'write' track.

It takes three weeks to make or break a habit, a routine. I'm determined to see through to the end of January with my new goals and plans. I'm determined to not be so hard on myself, and know I will make-up setbacks in other ways, yet to not look at those 'setbacks' in a negative way, but as something to learn from and move forward with. I'm a busy office-worker/momma/wife/writer/archer. Among all those roles I lead, I look forward to planning my AuthorLife for 2017, and know that keeping track in one area of my life will only spill-over and result in positive and productive other areas of my life.

Love this book - I highly recommend it! Write on!

Find Bria Quinlan at

Want to know more about the book? Click here.

Find AuthorLife Planner 2017 on Amazon - click here.

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