If You Can’t Keep Your Own Goals…

Deconstructing the Artist / Friday, September 4th, 2015

I have a Sunday tradition. Every Sunday, around mid-afternoon or so, I sit down with my paper planner and I sketch out my week. All the appointments I scheduled and forgot, all the shifts from my two jobs, all the extras I took on months ago and also forgot.

This week when I sat down to write it all out, I found my book draft is supposed to be done by this Sunday, the 6th. A few months ago I laid out my goals over the next year, milestones for how I would finish not just this draft but all the editing, more editing, and still more editing. I gave myself 10 weeks to write the rest of the draft. 10 weeks seemed like forever to me. At the rate I’m going, I thought to myself, I’ll be done in 5.

Then work happened and vacations and family events and summer. And then I was down from 10 weeks to 1. There was no way I could have it done in time. Not with my schedule.Absolutely no way!

Then I thought, if I can’t keep my own goals what was the point of making them? What good am I when I can’t keep a promise to myself?

It came out harsh but the idea, the nugget of inspiration if you will, was good. If I am going to have this book done by next spring, it had to start with keeping my first goal to myself. So I re-arranged some stuff and decided the dishes in the sink could wait a bit more. I wrote Tuesday evening when I got out of work and this morning before I left. I have one scene left to write Sunday. One scene. A couple thousand words at most. The goal is so close I can smell the printer ink.

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