Reviewing Your 2013 Writing Life

Infodesign-calendars-design-52489-hSo, we've got two days until the new year, and I don't know about you, but I've been busy thinking about 2014.  I have so many writing goals I want to accomplish–novels and stories to get out in the world, and classes and products to offer here on the blog.  So this year I'm trying to approach it logically (not my strong suit, as I'm about as right-brained as they come), and write out my goals now.  (I'm using this workbook that my daughter got me for Christmas.)

The difference for me this time around is that I'm actually taking the time to review 2013.   Yeah, I know, brilliant idea, right?  Anyway, as I was working on this project earlier this morning, the thought occurred that maybe you would like some guidance on looking over 2013 as well.  So herewith, I offer questions to ponder and answer in three areas: writing, motivation and putting it into the world (also known as marketing).

(And by the way, I'll be back on Thursday, newsletter day, with guidance for planning your 2014 writing life.)

1.  Writing.  

We start with this because it is the basis of everything.  Duh.

–What was the best thing about your writing in 2013?

–What was the worst thing?

–What are you most proud of?

–What is your biggest writing accomplishment?

–What felt good around your writing?

–What felt off?

–What lessons did you learn around your writing?

–What do you want more of?

–What do you want less of?

–What was your biggest writing problem?

2.  Motivation

Yes, one could argue that this could come first, but I maintain, as mentioned above, that when you're a writer, writing is the starting point of everything.  

–What inspired you?

–What motivated you to plant your butt in the chair and write?

–What de-motivated you?

–What got in the way of your writing?

–What is your biggest issue in finding time to write?

–What time of day were you most inspired?

–What books inspired you?

–What blogs inspired you?

–What magazines inspired you?

–What other creative pursuits inspired you?

3.  Marketing

I know, ick, but if you want your work to go out in the world, you've got to consider it.

–How did you market your work in 2013?

–What were your most successful channels?

–How many times did you submit your work in 2013? Or, how many pieces did you publish yourself?

–Which social media outlet did you rock?

–Did you blog or maintain your website consistently?

–What did you learn about yourself and your writing through marketing?

–Do you have a mailing list?  Did you grow it this year?

–How did your off-line marketing efforts go?

–Did you get media publicity this year? In what venues?

–What areas of marketing did you most enjoy?

Okay, there you have it–30 questions to answer about 2013.  I'll be back on Thursday with thoughts to ponder for 2014.  In the meantime, would you care to comment?  What was your biggest writing accomplishment in 2013? 

Image by eliazar.

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6 Responses to Reviewing Your 2013 Writing Life

  1. Amanda Martin 12/31/2013 at 00:49 #

    I set myself a writing challenge of epic proportions this year – to write a novel in daily installments on my blog as well as writing a daily blog post. I posted my last installment this morning – the novel came in at 285,500 words – together with my last blog post of 2013. I never expected to finish and I’ve learned so much about writing, editing and publishing as a result (I published each month’s installments as a free ebook on Smashwords). It also gave me the confidence to self-publish two of my other novels this year. 2013 was definitely the year of words. Not sure what 2014 will bring (apart from some much-needed housework and sleep) but I’m excited already.

  2. Charlotte Dixon 12/31/2013 at 06:54 #

    Oh my goodness, Amanda, congratulations!  What a huge accomplishment.  I've been to your blog and read a couple excerpts, but I didn't realize you were posting them every day.  That's amazing.  I have a strong feeling 2014 will bring way more writing into your life.  Once you've started a daily practice like that, its hard to stop.  Happy new year!

  3. Robyn LaRue 01/01/2014 at 07:33 #

    Wow, Amanda, congratulations!

    I struggle with the marketing part, and that is what I’m reviewing today. Thanks for the list of questions. They are printed while the coffee brews. Review commencing shortly. :)

  4. Charlotte Dixon 01/01/2014 at 10:25 #

    Robyn, I hope you find them helpful. And tomorrow comes a whole new list of questions for 2014! Happy new year!

  5. Mary Rives 01/03/2014 at 15:57 #

    My biggest writing accomplishment of 2013 was becoming a published author at long last — and also writing an then performing a deeply personal monologue. My stories were published in two anthologies. This was a great start because now I am writing my memoir in earnest. I am a slow writer, but it is slow and steady progress as many of the stories I am writing and telling are emotionally charged and intense! What I am not doing is blogging about this so I reckon this is going to be a goal for 2014!

  6. Charlotte Dixon 01/04/2014 at 07:50 #

    Wow, Mary, I'd say 2013 was quite the year for you!  Here's to making 2014 even more successful–and making good progress on that memoir.  

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