The end of 2013 is approaching faster than a freight train. How did you do this year? Did you accomplish everything you wanted to?

Now, before you start pulling the covers over your head or giving me dirty looks, let me just say I’m not here to grill you about it. In fact, to ease your fears, I’m going to share my 2013 goals including those I didn’t accomplish. Yes, you heard me correctly.

GOALS – Planned

Setup group for local writ­ers DONE first meet­ing started in January. This group turned out to be more successful than I imagined and opened the doors to personal and professional opportunities I never imagined. YAY!

Pub­lish two books by sub­mit­ting The Trou­ble with Soul Mates in April and Deadly Blood­lines in August This didn’t work out due to a hiccup with my publisher and the fact I decided to go the self-publishing route. This threw my publication schedule way off.

Sub­mit Deadly Series by August I decided not to submit this series to a publisher and I added another book so it’s currently a four book series.

Attend the 2013 RWA con­fer­ence in July and sit in work­shops focused on brand­ing, mar­ket­ing, writ­ing series, and career, as well as par­tic­i­pate in the ”Read­ers for Life” Lit­er­acy Auto­graph­ing. DONE see details here

Orga­nize paper and elec­tronic writ­ing files by assess­ing cur­rent meth­ods used and updat­ing them to fit new needs by end of March DONE My electronic and my paper files are organized. I’m still working with Ever­note for collecting and storing information from the internet.

Cre­ate and imple­ment a blog­ging sched­ule around my exist­ing writ­ing and pro­mo­tions sched­ule using pre-posting options in Word­Press and Hoot­suite by the end of Feb­ru­ary DONE, although I cer­tainly didn’t fin­ish it in February.

Take one online class every quar­ter that’s craft or pro­mo­tion related DONE I went a lit­tle over­board in the first and second quarter, so held off in the last quarter to catch up with writing.

Improve my techie skills in the areas of: web­site options, book cov­ers, using videos, and other pro­mo­tional options by Octo­ber There was more information out there than I thought, so this is ongoing. Some information gained will be used in my marketing plan for my Deadly Series.

Sched­ule book sign­ings with Books and Books and Book Nook before July DONE See details here.

Enter pub­lished works for RWA’s Rita Awards in Octo­ber Cancelled due to issues with my publisher.

Work­shop sub­mis­sion for RWA 2014 in Octo­ber I decided to self-publish in July, and doors opened for me to do more book signings than just RWA, which means only one trip to the US in 2014, so I decided to cancel this goal.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at

GOALS – Unplanned  

Self-publish all future publications This was SO not planned, but I’m feeling optimistic about the decision. See the start of my journey here.

Participate in 2013 NaNoWriMo I had no intension of participating this year, but chose to write book 2, Deadly Race, to keep up with my revised publication schedule.

Organize a book fair to promote Cayman authors It was a great opportunity to support local authors and opened so many doors not only for me but other authors that participated. See details here.

As you can see I didn’t accomplish all of my own goals. Don’t you feel better now? The important thing to remember about goals is:

  • They remind you of what you decided at the beginning of the year
  • They deep you on track throughout the year
  • They help you stay focused on a primary goal(s)

What they’re not for:

  • Make you feel guilty or worthless because you didn’t accomplish them
  • Make you eat tons of chocolate to feel better about yourself when you fall behind (although it does help)
  • Avoid people like the plague because you didn’t finish what you said (or maybe even bragged) you would

I know it’s hard to believe, but goals are not the enemy. One of the main reasons I mentioned my unplanned goals is that people tend to focus on what they didn’t do and forget what they did instead. Sometimes opportunities come our way that take us off track, but in a good way, and they should be remembered. These opportunities may change our goals or make it impossible to finish others, but they are just as important as the goals we set.