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Monday, January 18, 2010

Setting Goals

There is something very intimidating about the word “resolution.” Maybe it’s the legal sound of it or simply the power of the consonants that give the word such and intimidating air. To me, a resolution is something that must be done which means there is absolutely no wiggle room whatsoever. Either you have met your resolution or you haven’t. There’s no grey area.

I like grey area. So, I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions, besides January is the only time I ever think to make a resolution anyway. No, I set goals. I like the word “goal.” It has an optimistic ring to it, a belief that it can be achieved if serious effort is put into it, and inherent in the word is the notion that if it is not met, the world will not come to an end. Yes, I like goals.

In my last blog post I agreed to share some of my goals if others shared theirs. Well they did, so here I am with a few of my goals for the year. First off, one of my goals is to read at least one romance novel a month. It is said that the more you write the harder it is to read and yet the prevailing wisdom is that if you don’t read, you won’t keep up with the industry. So, one of my goals is to read a book a month and of course that means I’ll have to tell everyone what I thought about it right here on Happily Ever After Thoughts. I hope some of you will share your thoughts on books you read this year as well. You can either talk about them in a comment or email me at and I will put your thoughts up as a post.

Another goal I have this year is to finish my current work in progress by April 1. I think I can do this. It means writing approximately 72 pages a month plus revising. I have my schedule laid out with days off when I know I’ll need them, so I should be able to reach that goal.
As you can see from these two (of my 14) goals for the year, they come in all shapes and sizes and deadlines. I think it’s important to have little goals as well as big ones. That way when I achieve my little ones, I’m so energized by having accomplished them, that I’m ready to tackle the bigger ones. I call this self positive reinforcement.

Do you have any goals for this year, next month, tomorrow? Have you found a strategy to help you meet your goals? Do you tell your friends, write them down, promise yourself chocolate if you make them? If you have ideas on how to meet goals, please share. We could all use a little help.


  1. Alexis, great post! Resolutions and goals do seem to have different scopes. One way I keep my goals in mind is by reviewing them in bed at night, after I've turned out the lights. I close my eyes and visualize, renew, and affirm my ability to meet my goals. It's amazing how effective a little positive thinking can be.

    Can't wait to see your 'reviews' of new romances!

  2. Hi Laura,

    Wow, what a great idea! I never thought about doing that. I've heard you should read the scene you just wrote as the last thing to do before you go to sleep and hit the keyboard before you're fully awake in the morning. I do that a lot, but never thought about thinking about my goals at night. I may just have to try that because I know you reach a lot of yours!