Monday, June 04, 2007

Goals

A couple of writing friends and I have an informal group called "The Chocolate Cake Club." We are mostly a goal setting group with critiques upon request, discussion at random meetings, and cheerleaders at all times.

My goal last month was three hand written pages per day, or a total of 93 pages. As you can see by the progress bar below, I didn't meet that goal.

But those 93 pages weren't just to fill pages with words that would need to be edited out. No, those 93 pages were meant develop enough scenes that I would have a basic outline and direction of my book.

Typically, I write in a linear fashion; start at the beginning and continue to the end. But this time, the story was coming to me in scenes. I knew the chunks would work, and I could fill-in the missing bits after the scenes I knew about were complete.

It was a refreshing change. I enjoyed it. But I didn't accomplish my quantitative goal, but the story goal. Depending on how you count it, I either failed miserably or passed with flying colors.

Setting goals is good. I probably could have pounded out the other pages, and (most likely) tossed them out later. I achieved my goal, I believe, by using the three pages a day to motivate me to get my butt in the chair.

The good news is, The Chocolate Cake club agrees with me. Adjusting goals as you go is fine. The story goal should always take precedence over the quantitative goal. It's that quantitative goal that keeps your butt in the chair.

And when your butt is in the chair, your writing gets done.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

A goal is just that. If what you produced is good stuff, then you achieved the ultimate goal which is to write well and often. Edix

Word Nerd said...

So did the lunch today count for the goals or are we still going to lunch Saturday for the CCC celebration.

slpenney said...

Ummm...Lunch didn't exactly involve chocolate. I don't think fortune cookies count.