Thursday, September 30, 2010

Mary's Rants - Goals and/or Communities

Before I get going, let me say one thing--I can't wait until Bob Mayer tomorrow! Woohoo. I traveled to Boise, Idaho to see him in 2009 and this year our chapter brought him in for a day workshop in June. You will learn from him.

Okay now on to my rants for the week. I honestly didn't know what I was going to post, then I reviewed this weeks topics. Kari's interview was great but didn't have an actual topic. But Liz's topic and Cassy's topic are both great, and even though at first glance they do not sound related they are.

Goals as in writing goals. Liz spoke of what their chapter does every year at the Christmas lunch (I think I'm going to suggest that to our chapter).

Community as in writing community. This can be many things, a on-line group, your local RWA chapter, a critique group, and the list goes on and on. And how many of those 'communities' set goals? Or help each of us reach goals?

I belong to the online AITC group (Ass in the chair) community and we meet every year at someone's house and we write our goals down. Then each month we have one week for AITC where we plant our bottoms in the chair and write and/or edit. The next year, the person who wins is in charge of a beautiful tapestry (This of course reminds me of Carole King--those who have no idea, ask your mother) for the next year. They can hang it in their office for inspiration, or in their living room. They are the keeper of the prize until they hand it over the next year to the new winner or keeper of the prize.

I had this beautiful tapestry the first year and since then haven't even come close to my goals. Maybe in 2011 I'll meet them again!

Every writing community I know have some form of system to set goals for their fellow writers. How many of us take this for granted? I know I do. I read Liz and Cassy's posts this week and realized how far I've come because of my communities who have encouraged me to set goals that challenge myself to a new level of writing.

If any of you new writers or even seasoned writers do not belong to a writing community of some kind who support and encourage goal setting, I highly recommend it. And remember not every group will work for you.

As with anything, your writing process, your writing communities or even the way you set your goals, it's all personal. I have critique partners, but I found a critique group did not work for me. But I still reap the same reward. I do not necessarily do NANO each year, but my AITC group does their own version. I actually do better with them. I don't do well if I have to fiddle with a web site to log my goals, etc.

So find what works for you, join, and set your goals. Or do you have one already? What do you do?

Most important--GOOD LUCK!

5 comments:

Liz Lipperman said...

Great post, Mary, tying in this week's topics. I agree 100% that joining a group of writers who "get" you is major in your advance to publication. I also agree a critique group isn't the answer for everyone. You have to find someone who can show you what you're doing wrong and how to correct it without making you doubt yourself. We get enough of that from the professionals.

I,too, can't wait until tomorrow to hear Bob Mayer. He's talking about not being so hard on yourself. That ties in to all the posts this week.

Marilyn said...

I'm envious. I've been trying to find a local writer's group but haven't been successful. I'm not giving up, though. I think it would help tremendously to keep me on target toward some specific goals.

Kari Lee Townsend said...

Great post Mary. I love my chapter CNYRW. The meetings are always so fabulous. Great workshops and awsome writers who really do help motivate and keep you on track.

Mary Martinez said...

Good Luck Marilyn! I hope you can find a local writing group. It is what really helped me the most.

Liz the problem with the critique group for me, I'm too social and nothing got done. LOL. Online is better for me, no wine.

Oh that is great that Bob will be tied into the rest of the week, now I really can't wait!

Kari, our local chapter conference is next weekend on the 8th and the 9th. I'm very excited. And I get to drive Christine Feehan and her assistant from the hotel to the airport on Sunday. It's an hour's drive from Park City. FUN.

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