Looking ahead to what's next in my writing life.
Last year was a success in the sense that you had a story accepted to the Guelph Write Now anthology which will be due out sometime this year. I also submitted a short story to the CBC Literary Short Story Contest.
On WDC you completed 44 of 52 weeks in the "I Write in 2019" . I was on track until NaNoWriMo and then fell behind. Catching up is hard when you cannot enter back to back entries and waiting for someone else to submit became an issue. This year, I endeavour to try again.
You only completed 16 of my 30 Product Reviews for the Yearly Reading Challenge. You did read 32 books in 2019, but you did not do the Product Reviews... so you cannot say that was a full success. You've decided to only sign on to read 15 books for the Yearly Reading Challenge "Writing.Com Reading Challenge" , but on Goodread.com you still signed up for 30.
Outside of your WDC online home, you have made many new face to face connections with other writers. For the first half of the year I ventured as far as Burlington to write with a group there, but you found the distance was a bit much. You also travel to Guelph for a couple of groups. One is the Guelph Write Now group which you try to go to on Wednesday evenings to write with others. You also meet with them every other Sunday for a Goals and Accountability session which has made a good deal of difference as we can cheer each other on as well as give each other a kick in the pants if things are getting stagnant. It is like doing Weekly Goals here on WDC, but with the face to face component that makes it even more real and doable. If you aren't meeting your goals we talk about why and what you can do to make them happen. We also meet for the occasional Craft session. You will continue to go to the groups in Guelph and Kitchener. It is important to you to keep contact with other writers in the area.
In Guelph you also go to a Monday morning writing room, but that only happens when you can make it. If you are teaching you can't go. It will be March Break before you can go again, but in the summer you go every week.
In Kitchener Waterloo where you actually live, there are several groups you have joined. One meets every Monday evening at Café 1842 to write and chat. From that group, you met another writer who was willing to go with you to the Kingston Writer's Fest. Now that was an adventure worth driving 6 hours west for! I also introduced her to WDC - Caroline .
You also got to go to a Writer's Retreat with the Firefly Creative Writer's Group based out of Toronto. That was a wonderful, uplifting experience. A weekend of good food, writing with others and on your own, sharing your work in progress and swimming in Lake Simcoe. You would love to go again.
You did a writer's retreat with Melinda Burns again. You also took a fiction writing workshop with her and did three writing and soul collage workshops out at the Eramosa Eden Retreat Center. I hope to do more workshops and retreats with Ms. Burns. You love her style and her approach... you have taken workshops with her since 1991.
This year you have signed on to the "Destination: Goal Zone" . You have set these three goals for the year to be to:
#1 Complete a contest a week for the I Write in 2020 Challenge. "I Write in 2020"
#2 Write 750 words a day (for a weekly total of 5250 words a week).
#3 Continue to work on my NaNoWriMo novel - Arlynn's Way.
You want to keep up with doing weekly goals on WDC and participating in various activities and fundraisers.
You signed up for a two year membership with Novlr and you have set a goal of 1000 words added to my novel (Arlynn's Way) for the month of January. You are currently at the 96% mark for attaining that goal and it is January 24th as you edit this. You are thinking about making this a thing - 1000 words a month.
What other plans do you have for 2020?
You want to get your revisions done on your story that was accepted into the GWN Anthology. That will be your first officially published piece. So that will be a priority.
You will be doing Prep for NaNoWriMo in October "October NaNoWriMo Prep Challenge" and NaNoWriMo in November. WDC has a lot of good forums to support Wrimos with the process. I particularly enjoy the word sprints forum. I also have groups in Kitchener and Guelph that meet up regularly for write-ins.
You want to stretch yourself to submit writing to several contests out beyond WDC. You are thinking short stories for the Alice Monroe Short Story Contest and the Eden Mills Short Story contest. You also want to attend each of those festivals as well. (Alice Monroe's Festival is June 5 - 7 this year and the contest is open now until March 15) (Eden Mills is in September).
Important websites for those contests:
I just ordered the Canadian Writers' Contest Calendar 2020 from White Mountain Publications
And for inspiration:
by Sara Bareilles
You can be amazing
You can turn a phrase into a weapon or a drug
You can be the outcast
Or be the backlash of somebody's lack of love
Or you can start speaking up
Nothing's gonna hurt you the way that words do
And they settle 'neath your skin
Kept on the inside and no sunlight
Sometimes a shadow wins
But I wonder what would happen if you
Say what you wanna say
And let the words fall out
Honestly I wanna see you be brave
Word Count = 1004.