GOALS


Photo via Fastsigns blog - Click for website
I'm trying to get back into the blogging groove, and the last post was a big help.  A big thanks to all of you who've wished my dad a speedy recovery, and supported him/me with the blog-love.  I believe in positive vibes, and dad should be River Dancing by Christmas with all of the well-wishes you folks have been sending.

While I was away from the blog, with sketchy internet and very little time to do much else, I was able to step back and consider just exactly what this blog is about, and where it is headed.  In short, it has always been about sharing the passion I have for writing and reading with others who enjoy the same things.  It's also about building a network of peers.  Almost all of my followers are writers at various stages in their careers.  Some are agented, some published, some toiling away in the dark, like me, and some who are hobbyist who simply enjoy reading and/or writing.

Writing is a typically solitary activity, and unlike other jobs where you show up and mingle at the office, the only way you're going to meet people in this business (pre-publication) is to go to a conference or get active in the vast (and growing) online community.  That's why I started this, and that's why I'll continue to do it.

So, as much as I do love seeing a new follower (yes, I dance, sing, and then follow/read your blogs while singing and dancing!), when it's all stripped down I recognize this isn't about self-promotion.  This isn't even about building some kind of pre-fanbase to jumpstart my writing career.  If it were, at the rate I'm going my internet presence would merit publication interest in 2089, and by then I'm certain the machines will have won.

All of that being said, I also believe in goal setting. I've already stated a my motivation: fun and networking.  How about a specific tangible goal?  When I started back in February/March of this year, I thought, Man, I'd love to get to 20 followers!  Now I'm up to 37, and I'm starting to think, Wouldn't it be cool to be to 50 by the holidays?  Again, this isn't about the number.  I "know" almost every single person who follows this blog, and by know I mean I read their blogs, interact with them on various writing sites, and/or comment regularly on their blogs.  These aren't nameless internet folks, nor are they my real family members.  The way I see it, these are friends and co-workers.  

How do I reach those goals?

First, I need to provide information or content that is worthy of your time.  I really try to pay attention to the posts that draw the most interest and feedback, but I'm not certain I've done a good enough job of building on those types of things.  So I'll do more of that.  Second, I have to continue to find new people with similar interests online, comment on their blogs, and get involved with what they're trying to do.  It sounds counterintuitive, but spending time getting to know other people via their content, etc. is the fastest way to build your own network.  So many of you who follow this blog have done so because I've stumbled across your blogs and commented, or because I've got to know you via a message board.  Pay it forward, and your network will grow.

What are your goals and ambitions?

Despite appearances, the reason of this post is not to reveal some new blog direction or come clean about my abilities (or lack there of).  I wrote this to challenge all of you to think about your blogs, dreams, goals, and ambitions.   Furthermore, I'd like to draw some inspiration.  I'd love to know (in the comments, etc.) where you started, how far you've come, and where you hope to go.

Hope you all have a tremendous weekend!

-EJW-  

P.S. - There is an awesome contest going on at the Bookshelf Muse blog.  There are query and page critiques, PLUS a chance to be mentored by an up-and-coming author!  It's one of the cooler, more unique opportunities I've seen.  Plus the blog is great, so go check it out.

P.S.S. - New look.  Like it?  Hate it?  Meh?

10 comments:

  1. EJ:

    I started my blog a year ago to keep family and friends updated on what we were doing as a family and to comment on whatever I wanted to.

    I was good at posting everyday until the holidays.

    Recently I've changed my blog look and content. I found I was really motivated by the blog of Lisa Shearin (awesome author with a great blog) and wanted to share with others some of the things I've been learning as I write (as well as keep family and friends updated on my writing-- as well as some of our family things!) I've found the comments from my fellow writers have benn very helpful to me and encourage me to keep at it!

    Love the new look here- very classy!

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  2. I surprised myself when I was still keeping my blog schedule a year after I started it. [I started it as a test to see if I could maintain a schedule since I'm rather disorganized, except for when I'm not.]

    Then, I surprised myself again when the practice helped me organized my thoughts more succinctly.

    I'm probably in the minority ... but I think I blog for myself ... and anyone else that wants to read me as I mouth off.

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  3. I started my blog in March but didn't realy start blogging til May. Now, having just switched to Blogger, I feel like I'm starting all over again... but that's ok. It's good to know who your faithful followers are. It's THEIR blogs that I go out of my way to read and comment on.

    Anyway, I had an idea yesterday. Perhaps you'd like to take part? I thought I'd call it "Bloggers Unite" and have a weekly or biweekly spotlight on each of my followers. Nothing long, just a brief spotlight to introduce the blogger and give others a chance to get to know him/her and follow their blogs. It really helps to share the blog love, and what goes around comes around.

    If you want to join the movement, just let your peeps know and see who may be interested in participating. If lots of us do it, we'll be meeting new bloggers every week and gaining new followers.

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  4. nice post. i always need to remind myself of my goals (usually in the middle of the night in a panicky mid-life crisis kinda moment)

    i'm toiling away in the dark like you - but also in between learning about writing and enjoying it as a hobby with the idea of wanting to be published one day.

    i started my blog after reading all other mates from AW blog and was going to make it about writing - but then realised it was too personal for me to share, haha. so i now rave on about reading and authors and such.

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  5. I just try to write for my main blog 2 times a week and my book promo blog 1 time a week. As for my novel writing, I'm trying to keep up with my goals currently, since life happens and it cost me almost 3 weeks loss in my writing goal. I always coach myself into getting back on a schedule and thankfully it works. I also have writing buddies that check on my here and there.

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  6. I started blogging 2 years ago before moving to Japan. That blog was completely about living in Japan. The next blog I started was about weightloss. Then there was a reviewing blog.

    And then I realised that, with an attention span like mine, there's no way I could maintain blogs on individual strands of my life. So I started PoC. My goal was to just write. Funnily enough, the blog I started to focus on everything has kinda ended up focused on one thing: writing. lol.

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  7. I like the new look. Very clean and easy to read. And goals are always good. Once you know what you want, you can move into the action phase. Good luck!

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  8. I'm glad to hear that everything is going well with the family. Sometimes the family consumes us and we lose our selves for a time.

    I enjoy the diversity of your blog and the many things that you cover and discuss. I find myself enlightened, educated and coming back for more.

    I think we all revamp ourselves from time to time to keep things fresh. I have redone my blog to make it easier to read for my followers. It used to be dark and that was comforting to me but then realized that something brighter might be easier on someone else's eyes.

    I am not structured. I am a little more random due to family and time restrictions but am glad that some people choose to stick it out with me.

    I started in March and am still working it all out. My friends also have introduced me to tweeting so I am learning all the ropes there as well. I am always welcoming a challenge and finding inspiration. Thank you.

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  9. Goals are so important. I find it easier if I have a goal in mind when I set out with different tasks. And I love the new layout.

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  10. Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

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“Much unhappiness has come into the world because of bewilderment and things left unsaid.” ― Fyodor Dostoyevsky

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