Basics of Author Online Presence Challenge Day 3: Set Your Writing Goals

writing goals

Welcome to day 3 of the Basics of Author Online Presence Challenge – it’s time to set your writing goals. To catch up on the previous tasks, go here.

Set Your Writing Goals

Why? Because you won’t know where you’re going – or how much you’ve achieved – if you don’t have goals.

Let me put it like this: if you want to be a novelist and this great opportunity to be the editor-in-chief of the Daily Planet comes your way, should you take it? Probably not. I can hear you gasping right now. Being editor-in-chief of the Daily Planet is a prestigious job. And will take up all of your time and energy, leaving your novel to gather dust.

Setting your writing goals gives focus to your priorities.

Making lists is always a good way to do this (and you can always make new ones as your goals and priorities shift).

Let’s make four lists of writing goals:

August/September 2017 writing goals.

This list will include reasonable writing goals for you to achieve in the next two months. Like finishing this challenge.

One year from now (which means everything for the next twelve months) writing goals.

This list will include loftier, yet still reasonable, goals for you to achieve in the next year. Like getting published in an ezine.

Five years from now (so everything from now until 2022) writing goals.

Dream big. This list will include the dream written on your mirror that drives you to achieve every day. Like getting your Middle-Grade series published.

Lifetime writing goals.

This is the list where you add everything you hope to achieve with your writing. Like finally giving up the day job because you’re earning a living off your writing.

My writing goals:

Here are some of my goals to get you inspired. Not all, for some are too crazy to share with anyone but my Rottweilers and chickens. (Like taking over the world…Mwha-ha-ha.)

August/September 2017 writing goals.

  • Finish the August Basics of Author Online Presence Challenge.
  • Set up and judge all allocated Cracked Flash Fiction
  • Complete all flash fiction pieces for the August #FlashFicHive challenge.
  • Polish and submit all Brothers Grimm folktale retellings.
  • Write all blog posts for Ronel the Mythmaker for August and September.
  • Write and submit various guest posts.
  • Translate four stories for Wattpad and INK.
  • Write two short stories for Stories on Scrolls.
  • Write two short stories for Tales of the Onyx Labyrinth.
  • Finish second revision pass on YA book 1.
  • Send another batch of short stories to ezines and lit mags.

One year from now (which means everything for the next twelve months) writing goals.

  • Be published in ezines and lit mags.
  • Have YA trilogy at a publishable standard.
  • Have YA trilogy in hands of a capable literary agent.
  • Win another writing award.
  • Be published in more anthologies.

Five years from now (so everything from now until 2022) goals.

  • YA trilogy will be traditionally published.
  • The Adventures of Saphira the Faery Dog will be successfully self-published in various editions and languages.
  • Other projects will be near completion.

Lifetime writing goals.

  • Earn a living from my writing.
  • Be a successful hybrid author: traditionally publish novels and self-pub shorts that fit into my Faerie-world.
  • Have a passionate fan base.
  • Always enjoy my writing and have fun.

I can do this.

I will do this.

Now that I’ve scared you with a peek at what a usual month for me looks like, let’s answer your burning question of what the point of this exercise is.

Yesterday you figured out who you are. Today you figured out where you want to be.

These are basic steps in forming a successful strategy for your author online presence. You can now share your brand (you!) to get to where you want to be (goals give direction and purpose to your author platform).

Oh, and I’m not saying that you cannot say “yes” to opportunities that come your way (saying “yes” usually leads to great things), I’m just saying that if accepting an opportunity will take you further from your goals, then it’s probably not a good idea. But each writer’s journey is different, because our goals are different.

Have you set your goals? Have you shared them on your blog? Great! Now share your goal blog post’s URL in the comments and let’s compare notes.

Author: Ronel Janse van Vuuren

Ronel writes dark fantasy filled with mythology and folklore, some of which can be read on Wattpad and on her blog Ronel the Mythmaker. When not leading her Rottweiler pack or arguing with her characters, she’s writing award-winning fiction.

What are your thoughts on this?