RoW80 Check-In: December 7th!

“Looking at Estialog and his tired eyes, his hunching shoulders, the intricate lines across his sallow, grey skin, Gilferen realized that Knolan was not nearly as old as he and Locke made him out to seem. It was merely that they were so young.

Fellow readers, RoWers, and enthusiasts, brace yourself. I’m about to deliver news that may not necessarily be shocking, but it will definitely confirm that suspicion you’ve had growing in your minds that I’m a little bit crazy. I think I might just be addicted to goals. Every time I add a new project or start on a new approach, it’s like a rush of adrenaline, probably not too dissimilar to what addicts feel when they get that first hit of whatever they crave. I have added….even more goals. It’s almost a little ridiculous, but bear with me! I’m completely restructuring my approach, as well, so the word count goals are light enough that I can easy add a little bit here and there to a variety of different projects, and then, if I have time, I will choose one (only one!) to brush up and tighten for that day.

There will be days, like yesterday, where I don’t get to every project, and that’s okay. The project are going to be listed in my little memo notepad in order of importance, and that’s what I get to first. If I don’t get to the others, ah well, tomorrow is another day, but something was still done. If I manage to hit all the notes, even better! It’s the kind of structuring I need to be productive, I think, even if some people might think so many projects is counterproductive. I just don’t have the focus to stick to one project, and I feel if I’m exploring many different ideas, my work improves, eagerly feeding off of so many exciting things happening. My brain is a multitasker, a micro-manager, and it loves breaking things down into little pieces based on arbitrary rules like “Revise a line for every chapter you read” and “At least 100 words each time at the keyboard, then do something else.” It’s scattered and probably a little OCD, but it’s just what my creative process demands.

A good deal of these extra additional goals came from the mere fact that I’ve started recording my word counts in a checklist on a small memo pad. The previous lists ended with my current goals, but there was a great deal of lines left on the memo pad. So I decided I needed to just fill it up with a list; it seemed too incomplete and scant otherwise! How’s that for OCD? And they’re not all writing goals, either. There’s a handful of goals about making sure to post my blog and comment on at least one other person’s blog. There’s a goal for doing a little bit of sketching, now that the library is organized and I have piles of drawings going untouched. There’s a section on character and plot developing, with outlining and character interviews. And, of course, there’s reading goals, too! Each of the writing goals is a minimum of 500 words, which at list point is pretty swift for me.

As you can see, the list on the left seems a little short and incomplete. Meanwhile, on the right, we have today’s list, which looks more full. Much better! And potentially crazy….

Needless to say, breaking down each and every one of my goals would get a little tedious and boring for my readers, so I think in the future I’m just going to break down the highlight. Like the fact that I’ve rewritten five pages of serpent in a Cage since Sunday’s check-in! Whoooo! And I’ve been having some fantastic ideas for the Novel in 6 Months Horror story, too; some really great snippets are forming and hopefully I’ll be able to meld them all together into a cohesive piece. I’m excited that this new approach is going to give me a chance to work on some short story collections, because I want to get some of those up a ebooks, especially since I think there just may be a Kindle in my future as a Christmas/very belated birthday present. It’s perfect for days like this when I have the time to sit and work on several projects, and on the days when I do work the regular job, it gives me a way to focus on what needs to be done first (top ‘o the list), while forgiving myself for not getting to the less important things (the bottom). I’m excited to get to some world-building stuff like character interviews and outlines, the former of which I’ll probably be posting, too, if anyone’s interested! I also can’t wait to get my desktop back in line after the holidays so I can share some of the artwork I’ve been picking at, too.

How’s everyone else doing? I always say I’m going to swing by a lot, but I rarely manage to pull it off (gee, I wonder why…) And, since today’s post was a little less of a check-in and more of a rambling discourse on my new goals, how do you organize yourself for you goals? Do you tend to have just one main goal to focus on and get it done, or do you like a scattering of things to work on? Or, like me, a big old long wishlist?

Anyway, I’m off to start getting some checks on that list! Don’t forget to encourage my fellow RoWers here! Happy writing!

Oh, and I can’t believe I almost forgot for a second day in a row to welcome my new subscribers! Photographer Rob Slaven and fellow Sencha Connoisseur Fiona have joined on up, so welcome guys, and thank you so much! I’m looking forward to following you guys, too!


  1. Are you my twin? lol I’m just as OCD and addicted to goals, always looking for the next challenge and something new to try! I have a spreadsheet with my goals and I mark off each batch of words written, each article/book etc read, each picture drawn and on and on. The list never looks long enough and the moment I think I have a break I become obsessed with needing something else to fill my time as I feel I must always be doing something interesting! lol
    Anyway – great work on everything, keep it up ‘sis’ 😉 hehe

    • Ahahaha, yeah, we’ve got to have some sort of shared genetics somewhere, Sharon, because….yeah. It’s good to know that I’m not the only goal addict around here. I’d feel a little better about it if I knew I was better at actually getting those goals met, but I still think I make a pretty good showing.

  2. At least you prioritized! That is one of the big keys to running a compliment of goals like that. Just be sure you know your “happy completion” level, meaning, how many checks do you need to get to feel it was a good day?

    Wishing you the best of luck with this. Tried it myself once but I use a more fluid system now. Have a great week 🙂

    • Thanks, Gene! I think the real trick is just figuring out what’s going to work best for you and sticking with it. Right now, this is what works, but next week, I might be making yet another post about some other new system I’ve devised….

      Part of me just wants to say I’d be happy with even just one check. Because that means I’ve done something, and if I do more than that, that’s even better. But I know there will be some days where, if I don’t get more than half, I’ll feel like I’ve just wasted the day. So it’s hard to tell on a consistent “happy completion” level with me.

  3. Oh gosh, I am totally in love with lists, so seeing all of yours makes me feel a lot better. I have an overall ‘master list’ of goals, but the way that I fulfill them changes depending on the day of the week (that’s the good and bad thing about being a student with an odd sort of ever-shifting schedule). During November, there was just a single goal: all NaNo, all the time. Now that it’s over, my muse wants to wander about and play with different ideas, so I’m easing up on specific goals and instead aiming for a general ‘do something writerly most days of the week.’ 😉

    Good luck with the new system. Can’t wait to hear how it goes!

    • Oh, I know! That’s the one thing I really grew to dislike about NaNoWriMo, and that’s that there was absolutely no room for anything but the main goal and it drove me crazy! Maybe that’s why I’m so eager to have a variety now that it’s over…I’m terrible at tasking on one thing; I need variety and excitement!

      And thanks for the luck, Lena!

  4. That little guy above is getting around. He got sent to my spam folder though. 🙂

    Great job on the goals. I–have issues with organization and setting things aside to work on that. I’m usually a pantser when it comes to my writing.

  5. I’ve been right all along. You ARE crazy! LOL Seriously, as I’ve said before, I do admire your drive. I have a feeling you’ll be having a lot of success in the next few years. How can you not?

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