Every morning a bit of inspiration called “Bright Moment” (www.brightmoment.com) pops into my email — and no matter what I’m doing, I take a moment to read it. These pithy 1-paragraph insights from a great motivational coach named Ed Smith are always so helpful and inspiring! Do yourself a favor and sign up — it’s fun and free.
A few days ago, Ed came up with an intriguing idea that I thought we might all benefit from. In a nutshell, he suggested that we write a letter to ourselves outlining our goals for the next three months in key areas like professional growth, health, and finances.
Next, put the letter in an envelope and note on the front the date three months from the day you identified your goals for the quarter. Then tuck the letter away. When the date on the front arrives, pull your letter to yourself out and see how far you’ve progressed in meeting your goals.
How about adopting this idea and tailoring it to our writing targets? Here’s how I envision this working: Come September 1, we’ll sit down on our little buttskis and map out some definite, doable “stretch” goals for whatever project we’re working on in a letter, stick it in an envelope, and date the outside December 1. Take my YA novel: By December 1, I could plan to:
• Complete my revisions, read my draft aloud, revise, and proofread.
• Deliver a polished manuscript to three trusted readers for their review.
• Draft a dynamite query letter for submission to agents.
• Assemble a first-round list of agents based on recommendations.
• Consider giving an exclusive to one agent I’d really like to work with.
Wow! Just writing all this down makes me feel more focused. I’m definitely going to pen myself a letter. Are you in? Think of it as a letter ladder carrying you closer to your goals. Write on!