Welcome writers to a very special check-in: the first weekly check in of the 2015 writing year!
You asked for it, you got it. The Weekly Check In is back!
We haven’t had a check in together for a while, and I’ve missed you! So let’s launch the 2015 writing year with a special annual writing check in.
I may phrase the check-in questions in terms of writing but I know we have some multi-talented creative people here so please feel welcome to share about all your creative projects.
Special 2015 New Year Writing Check In
1. How did you fare with your writing and creative goals in 2014?
You know me: I’m just as excited about process as about outcomes. Your internal and intrinsically-motivated writing goals, like taking risks, raising the quality of your writing, or make advances in your writing approach are as valid as external, extrinsic writing accomplishments.
If you are a shy or modest person, this is your official permission to brag about yourself. I really want to know what you’ve been up to!
2. What are your writing and creative goals for 2015?
If you aren’t sure yet what your writing goals for the year are, that’s okay: you’re welcome to come back and add a response in the discussion here anytime you like.
Now that you’ve shared your big goals for the year, let’s move on to our standard weekly check in and talk about the immediate steps you’re taking to achieve those goals.
2015 Week One Weekly Check In
Next week we’ll review our progress on goals for the previous week, but given that we’re coming out of the disruption of the holiday season, let’s leave that for now and move straight on to new goals.
What are your creative goals for the coming week?
Reminder: The most effective goals are process-oriented. (I’ll write more about setting effective goals in the future.) If you’re new to weekly check ins, here are some suggestions for different kinds of weekly goals to help you get started:
You might set a goal to write a certain number of words, pages, or hours per day or per week. You might also set goals around doing research and prep, or rewriting, editing and proofreading. Or, rather than set quantitative goals, you might set qualitative goals, and commit to attempting something more difficult (or something easier!–that can be a valid goal, too) or something new.
What are you doing to grow as a writer this week? Goals around growing might include experimenting with writing games and exercises, writing in new forms, taking a class, reading a writing book, or working with a mentor. Making choices that expand your creative outlook can be great parts of Reading, Watching and Feeding Your Creative Spark, too.
What are you reading this week? Do you set yourself reading goals? I’m sure you’re all reading work in the field that you write for. I hope you’re also reading in other fields. Whether it’s the canonical works of western literature, writing in any form outside the western canon, works by marginalized writers, there is a myriad of options: great writing is inspirational.
If you write work for performance I’m sure you’re watching in your field, but again, there’s so much opportunity to learn from works outside the narrowest definition of what you write. What are you watching, analyzing and learning from this week?
One of the topics I want to explore this year is the idea of “literary citizenship”–which gets more attention in some writing fields than others. For now, the short version is that there’s much to be gained from supporting fellow writers and participating actively in a creative community. Are you exchanging notes with another writer this week? Writing a book review or an interview? What are your goals about connecting with and investing in your fellow writers?
Feeding Your Creative Spark
What are your goals around not just exploiting but also nurturing your creativity this week? Where do you go for inspiration? What fills you up and reinvigorates you?
The suggestions above aren’t the only way to set creative goals and you’re not obligated to answer those questions but I hope they inspire some ideas for how you can set weekly goals of your own.
Reminder for Our First Check In
In the spirit of improv, please cheer for each other when you check in. If you’re new to weekly check ins, the idea of cheering might feel a bit silly at first, especially for people you don’t know. But I promise you that A) you’ll all get to know each other pretty quickly, and B) it feels really great to be cheered for, even by strangers. So please take me on faith and give the cheering a try.
The first weekly check in of the year is here: hurray! I am so excited to hear all about your writing. Fill me in!
And very best wishes to everyone on achieving your writing goals this year.