J.A. Konrath has been posting New Year’s resolutions for writers since 2006. Rather than changing the list each year, he just adds to it. There are now seven sets of resolutions, and they’re a great read. A sampling of my favorites:
== I will start/finish the damn book
== I will refuse to get discouraged, because I know JA Konrath wrote 9 novels, received almost 500 rejections, and penned over 1 million words before he sold a thing–and I’m a lot more talented than that guy
== Find Your Own Way. Advice is cheap, and the Internet abounds with people telling you how to do things. Question everything. The only advice you should take is the advice that makes sense to you. And if it doesn’t work, don’t be afraid to ditch it.
== Set Attainable Goals. Saying you’ll find an agent, or sell 30,000 books, isn’t attainable, because it involves things out of your control. Saying you’ll query 50 agents next month, or do signings at 20 bookstores, is within your power and fully attainable.
== The only difference between routine and rut is spelling.
== No one is going to hand you anything in this business. You have to be smart, be good, work hard, and get lucky.
== I’ve tried to be forward-thinking in my career, rather than being content with my role as a cog in a broken machine. Your best chance for longevity is to question everything, test boundaries, experiment with new ideas, and be willing to change your mind and learn from your mistakes.
== You are the hero in the story of your life. Act like it.
== Self-pubbing is not the kiddie pool, where you learn how to swim. You need to be an excellent swimmer before you jump in.
== Self-publishing is a wonderful opportunity to learn and to grow. This means you MUST try new things.
== If you learn something, share it. If you have some success, show others how to follow your lead. If you fail miserably, warn your peers.
== This is a marathon, not a sprint. You’re a writer. You’re in this until the day you die. As long as you continue to write good books, you’ll find readers.
There’s more, and it’s all worth reading. Definitely click through and check out the rest.