It’s not New Year’s Eve without a party, so I invited my friends to share their New Year’s Resolutions with us – or, in some cases, the reasons why they don’t make resolutions. I hope 2013 brings lots of exciting things your way!
In my own case, I tend to avoid resolutions, for the simple reason that I rarely keep them. The resolutions tend to stay the same from one year to the next: 1) Write/Revise/Complete the Darn Book(s)! and 2) Get More Exercise/Lose Weight. This year I really should make some resolutions – the same as above, plus 3) Get Organized. (Since I moved to Chicago a few months ago, I’ve become the Queen of Disorganization.)
I did accomplish one task I’d resolved to do in 2012 – I was published in fiction! Three of my short stories were published in an Ohio Valley Romance Writers Christmas anthology.
Enough about me – let’s hear what my friends have to say!
Tracey Devlyn: It’s been many, many years since I made a New Year’s resolution. If I need to make a pact with myself, I don’t wait until January 1st. Why? Because I’ll either forget by the time January rolls around, or it’s something that shouldn’t wait. I’m a Git-R-Done kind of gal. Waiting kills me.
Anna Campbell: I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions – I’ve learned from bitter experience that they’re generally history by, um, about lunchtime New Year’s Day. Happy 2013, everyone!
Virginia Kantra: I’ve given up on New Year’s resolutions. Partly because most of the things I’d change I have absolutely no control over, but mostly because there was a depressing sameness to my annual list: Lose ten pounds. Write faster.
So now instead of making resolutions, I try to give thanks. To my husband, who loves me no matter how distracted I am. To my editor, who lets me write the stories I love. To the writers whose friendship I cherish and whose stories inspire me. For the readers who post on Facebook and buy my books. Maybe that list doesn’t change much year to year. But it makes me feel good!
Monica Burns: I never make resolutions because it’s a setup for failure. Instead of resolutions, I just tell myself to take it one day at a time.
Everything is a lifestyle change, whether it’s eating, being a better parent, writing that next book or just dealing with whatever life throws at you. Resolutions have a way of making us crazy, and as a writer, I’m crazy enough, I don’t need added incentives.
Gabriella Edwards: I usually don’t make resolutions, but I am this year. I’m determined to complete at least two projects, I’ve placed on hold, for publishing. This is a year of milestones for me, so I truly need to be constructive and get this done.
Vicky Dreiling: My New Year’s Resolution is to work smarter, not harder. I know it’s a cliché by now, but it makes sense to me.
Anna Patterson: New Year’s Resolution: To build and strengthen things: friendships, creative gifts, worthwhile projects!
Mary Anne Landers: I’m determined to become courageous in every aspect of my life. Yes, that includes writing. What’s been holding my back is fear that nobody accept my works for publication if I go the traditional route, or read my works if I self-publish.
I make no bones about the fact that I don’t care for the usual romance formulas. Despite the popularity and endurance of writing according to the rules, to me it’s just not romantic. And let’s face it, the last thing romance readers and the industry need is an author who writes about power for the heroine, redemption for the hero, and mind-blowing sex for both—when her heart isn’t in it.
So I must write my own way. I deal with the beauty, power, and wonder of love—real love, not a power fantasy. About love that can overcome tremendous obstacles and daunting odds. And about focal figures who are able to give real love and worthy to receive it. Maybe nobody will read my works. Maybe I’ll start a trend. There’s only one way to find out! Happy New Year to you and yours!
Donna MacMeans: I don’t really focus on new year’s resolutions. Mainly, because I lack the discipline to make those resolutions reality (grin). Yes, I give lip service every year (or I should say – every decade) to losing weight and cleaning out my office, yet I end every year much as it began. So instead, I use the new year to reflect on the accomplishments of the previous year, to remind myself that I’m not standing still – even if it feels sometimes like I am.
One of my 2012 accomplishments was the release of The Casanova Code – a new release is always worthy of celebration – and going to Scotland as part of the research of the next book in the series. Hey – if I stay active enough pursuing my writing passion maybe I’ll end 2013 weighing less than I do at the end of 2012! (Not much hope for a clean office though) One can always dream (grin).
Maya Rodale: My resolution: to write MORE! Having mastered writing diligently every day (except weekends) my challenge for 2013 is to see if I can perhaps double my daily word count leaving me more time to focus on revisions and to create more stories for my readers.
Michele Stegman: I heard this idea from friends and thought it was a good one.
I have a jar and every time something fun, good, interesting happens we’ll write it on a slip of paper and put it in the jar. At the end of the year, we’ll empty the jar and read all the notes!
Macy Beckett (also w/a Melissa Landers) – I typically don’t make New Year’s resolutions because I set small goals throughout the year. But this time I’m making an exception. With three manuscripts due in the next eleven months, I need to find a better work-life balance. (I’m starting to forget what my family looks like!)
This year, I resolve to set “business hours” for myself and stop writing when my day is done. It sounds easy, doesn’t it? Let’s see if I can turn off my inner taskmaster. She’s relentless.
Carrie Spencer: I’m generally not a big resolution-er. Last year however, I resolved to brush my teeth every day, and that turned out pretty well, so this year I’ll bump it up a step. This year, I’ll learn how to finish the story. No more plot holes or alien armies appearing in the middle of my romance, 2013 is the year I’ll plot and finish writing a book(s) through to the end. Kind of a big step up from brushing my teeth eh? =)
Keri Stevens: My resolution: to Get Things Done.
I’ve become a convert to David Allen’s GTD productivity principles so I’m trying to apply them both personally and professionally.
Diane J. Reed: Sometimes we’re inspired by how our own characters bravely face challenges in life. Since my YA heroine Robin used to live at a boarding school before her family hit the skids and she started robbing banks, I’d like to be similarly innovative!
I want to commit all kinds of CRIMES in the name of fiction—go left when everyone else goes right, dream up unique heroes & heroines that don’t fit the usual mold—just to see how far I can push the envelope. Original, fresh, and crazy-as-hell fun are going to be my mantras.
Oh yeah, and I’d like to lose weight, too ; )
Nancy Northcott: My New Year’s Resolution is twofold–first, to make a series bible for the Protectors and second, to keep it current as the series grows. I’m realizing I need one to keep up with all the characters and with small but matters like their like eye and hair colors. And who knows what about the mages–a “what do they know and when did they know it” thing. *g* Happy New Year!
Tawny Weber: I’m not a resolution kind of gal, but I am a hardcore goal setter. I always work better with a target in sight, whether it’s writing with the dark moment in mind or exercising while visualizing a cute outfit that I can only fit into if I’m in shape.
So I sit down the last week of each year and look back over my years goals to see how I did, ask myself why some didn’t work out and rethink them. Then I get to work on the next years goals, setting them for all of the areas of my life, from my physical goals to my career goals to my spiritual goals. This year, I’ve added a new twist by asking myself what I want to feel, too. What’s my primary emotional motivation for the goal? That’s really forcing me to take it deeper, to evaluate why I want the goal, and is empowering me with a lot more energy to make it happen
I hope everyone had a fabulous 2012, and that 2013 is blessed with WONDERFUL joy and success!
Robin Covington: My resolution is to fill a jar with a note everyday of something positive that happened each day. Then at the end of 2013, I can read them and see what great things happened to me.
1. Don’t sweat the small stuff. I’ve gotten a little better with that every year, and there’s always a corresponding uptick in my peace of mind.
2. Kiss my husband at least three times a day. Life can get very busy sometimes and it’s all too easy to let the romance in our own lives slide by the wayside.
3. Get off the darn internet. A hugely valuable tool, and a huge time suck.
4. Read more novels. See resolution three.
Amy Atwell: I just released Ambersley in paperback about a week ago. My resolution this year is to complete the sequel–titled Portman Square, recently added as an excerpt in the digital book.
Kelsey Browning: Happy New Year!
I don’t really make resolutions, just goals for the new year. Another thing I’ve been doing lately is posting a short list of priorities (usually by quarter) close to my desk. That way I know each day if I’m spending my time on my biggest priorities. The answer isn’t always yes, but it helps me refocus (usually :-)). Personal Assets, coming August 2013
Leigh Duncan: I’m a firm believer in goal setting and I take a couple of days at the beginning of each new year to put mine in writing. Usually, my contracts determine how many books I need to write and how long they need to be (for instance, a good year’s work might be one single title and a category romance…or three category romances). But as we ring in 2013, I’m waiting to hear back on several proposals. Some are category romances; some are longer. And until I know for sure what my editors will want, I’ve had to adjust my goals somewhat. Instead of books, I’m focusing on word count. And my goal for 2013 is…
Write 1500 good words a day, at least five days a week for 24 weeks. For me, that means sketching the scene (or a part of a scene) in the morning and spending the afternoon layering and polishing. Achieving that goal will result in 180,000 words for either three new books for Harlequin American or a single title and one category romance. Since that only accounts for half the year, I’ll devote the rest of the time to creating detailed outlines for the stories I intend to write and, of course, editing.
Tonya Kappes: New Year’s Resolution – Connect with readers on a more personal level than I already do!
Lori Foster: Resolution: I plan to tame my insane schedule and somehow find more time to just relax. I want to keep my writing deadlines, I just don’t want them to be so crushing and all-consuming.
Roxanne St. Claire: My resolution this year is to Love More. Really, I just want my immediate reaction to every situation to be driven by love — to my family, for my job, even to strangers. I want 2013 to be the year I stop wanting everything to be better and LOVE what I already have!
Adrienne Giordano: My resolution is to take better care of myself by giving my brain a rest once in a while. (And I’m not kidding!)
Brenda Novak: My first New Year’s resolution is to get out of debt. It’s what I wish for our country, but since I have no control over that (and the government doesn’t seem to be cooperating), I’m taking better control of my personal finances. LOL
Beth Kery: I resolve not to make rigid New Year’s resolutions for the simple reason that it might actually restrict me in my writing career versus motivate me. So I always resolve to do a daily word count and to try and cultivate my writing skills through conferences, reading, etc.
But if I were to say to myself that in 2013, I will have XYZ books published, it might prohibit me from taking advantage of certain opportunities that can pop up in this industry. If opportunity knocks in this field, you have to be ready to reply…and it may not be the opportunity for which you’d planned or sought.
For instance, in April of 2012, I’d never thought of a serial novel, let alone considered writing one. I’d certainly never had an inkling about the novel that became Because You Are Mine. I had to be willing to listen when my agent and editor proposed the idea to me and spring on it when it occurred.
As a result, a project that I’d never considered in the spring of 2012 had become a New York Time’s bestseller by August of 2012. If I’d stuck to a rigid plan, I’d never have had that unique, rewarding experience.
Patricia McLinn, writing as P.A. McLinn: My 2013 resolution: Beside my “To Be Done” list, I’m going to keep a “Got It Done” list and celebrate it!
Jennette Marie Powell:I don’t make resolutions, because they always fall by the wayside by February! Resolutions are an all-or-nothing mode of thinking, and that never works for me. I do make goals, though, and this year, I want to release two new novels. Last year, I had three – a novel, a short story, and a boxed set ebook.
Darynda Jones: My New Year’s “Promise” to myself is to get on a frickin’ schedule. One of the tips from some of the biggest authors out there is to write at the same time everyday, so I am going to try to do that very thing. I am so random in every way. LOL.
What about YOU? Tell us your New Year’s Resolutions in the comment field below.
Join us on Wednesday, when Luke Young gives us a A Man’s Eye View of Self Publishing in RU’s first post of the new year!
- C.J. Redwine: New Year’s Resolutions for Writers
- Keri Stevens: Inheriting King Kong
- The 7 Components of Book Marketing Strategy by Jennifer Fusco
- Setting Goals For Your Writing by Andrew Grey
- Pinch Points and Turning Points, Oh My!