Reassessing Goals

Goal setting: creates a future

Goal setting: creates a future (Photo credit: lululemon athletica)

Every now and then it can be a good thing to reassess goals.  See if the original goals you have set are being met, if the goals need changed, or if the goals need totally removed from your list.  I have decided since things have changed in my life it is time for me to reassess the goals I set regarding my writing.

Originally when I first started this blog I was completely unemployed and attempting to begin freelance writing.  Recently I have been able to find a job, which is nice as I feel some of the pressure is removed from writing to make sure it earns money.  This is a two edged sword per se and may also be a bad point.  Either way, I guess the main point is at least I am still motivated to write and still working on freelance writing.  Temporarily I also have another side freelance job I am working on from home.  It is not writing, however, but is internet research.

I love to read, so the goal I set of reading two books a month is one I think I’ll keep.  Though I haven’t kept up with the goal of two blog posts a week, I still think it is a goal that can be met, life has just kind of got in the way.  Another goal I want to add is to start submitting my writing, which I still have yet to do and I have several things ready.  Just need to try to find homes for them.  The article writing goal is one I am deleting from my list as my priorities have changed and two articles per day was too much with the other projects.  I’m still writing articles, but have also expanded to working on other things.  Poetry, personal essays, and a few books are the writing projects topping my list these days.

Any good tips for reassessing your goals or helping to meet the goals you have set?

Searching for Writing Ideas and Motivation

Cover of "How to Get Ideas"

Cover of How to Get Ideas

I am in one of those discouraged moods.  I know I won’t stay there long, but at the moment I am having one of those self pity “woe is me” parties.  I know things take time and I just need to persevere.  Life just doesn’t seem to move as quickly as I want it to at times.  When I am in one of these moods, it zaps my motivation and makes it hard to get things done.

Right now I could either curl up reading a book for hours or watch television without really watching it, but just to distract my mind from thinking about things.  Neither one of those would really be productive choices, when there is so much that needs to be done.  Yes, we all need some down time, but I feel I have had way too much down time this week.

Instead I thought I would write, because usually it seems I feel better when I write.  The only problem is I don’t know what to write about and there is nothing I really have a great desire to write about right now.  I have looked at my list of article ideas, but none of them are interesting to me at the moment.

This blog post may be the only writing I accomplish today, but I am exploring the internet some for article ideas.  I found a website called Quips and Tips for Successful Writers at http://theadventurouswriter.com/blogwriting/how-to-get-ideas-for-magazine-articles-freelance-writing-tips/, which had an article with some useful suggestions on how to get ideas.  If I can get motivated at least maybe I will work on a list of some ideas after answering some of the questions I found there.  Well, away I go to surf the internet some more, but hopefully will not lose myself there too long and will find a spark of motivation.

Inspirational Book for Freelance Writers

English: Amberg - Paperblanks ® books on displ...

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Last week I found a book in a used bookstore I have really been enjoying. The book is Achieving Financial Independence as a Freelance Writer by Ray Dreyfack. The author says he has been a writer for over 30 years so he speaks from the viewpoint of experience. There is good information shared about specializing and using your experience to write. I have found, it is much easier to write about things I am passionate about and have some knowledge or experience regarding the subject matter.

One repeating phrase in the book is “think small grow big”, which simply put means to start small and build from there. This is good advice for beginning freelance writers like me and I think it will become one of my favorite mottos for future reference. This seems to fall in line with a lot of advice I have read for beginners. Advice which recommends beginning freelance writers with limited experience may want to write free for non-profit sources or articles for websites allowing submissions meeting their guidelines.  This provides an opportunity to gain experience and help build your writing portfolio.

The book shares the importance of making contacts, networking, and writing groups. There are numerous groups and associations for writers with membership fees ranging from free to about $100. I have found a local writers’ group through the website www.meetup.com and am looking forward to my first meeting next week.

 This book has been a good source of inspiration and I hope to finish reading it this week. Besides finding a great book, I also had some good news last week. I called to follow-up on an article I wrote for a magazine and later during the day received an email saying the article will be published!

Writing Resources

The World Digital Library.

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It has been a slow writing week for me.  I definitely need to work on my time management skills and atleast write a little everyday.  Some days I spend hours writing and other days I do not seem to find the time.  It is easy to also get lost in time, researching information online, rather than spend time actually writing.  Maybe I need to start setting a time limit for reading blogs and researching information online.

I do find some very helpful information, so at least I am not wasting time.  I have found two books which are on my wish list as writing resources : The Yahoo Style Guide :  The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World by Yahoo and the Associated Press Stylebook.  Another of my favorite freelance writing websites, www.freelancewritinggigs.com , has a link to several free writing resources : www.freelancewritinggigs.com/2009/10/4-free-stuff-for-writers/ .  A dictionary, thesaurus, and encyclopedia are among some of the resources you can find there. 

I have been saving useful links I find as favorites on my computer, so I can find them easily when I need to refer to them again.  Some of the favorite folders I have on my computer are writing jobs, reference resources, nurse freelance writers, and writing contests.  I may have to go through and reorganize them again, but atleast it’s a beginning and you have to start somewhere.  Same thing with writing.

I did finish writing a short article today and submitted it on www.firehow.com .  Here is the link to it : http://firehow.com/2012020530040/how-to-make-the-most-of-your-healthcare-provider-visit.html .  Well, maybe this will be a more productive week and I will get more writing done.