It's the last Friday of the year and time to assess my success at meeting my writing goals for the year and set new goals for 2022!
I posted my original goals at the end of 2020, and two updates-one in April and the other in August.
Short Stories Written and Polished in 2021:
My goal for 2021 was to write and polish thirteen (13) short stories. At the time, I had written and polished four (4) short stories in two months at the end of 2020 and had written more than one novel in 3-6 months in 2019-2020. A little more than one short story written and polished each month seemed feasible. I already had a dozen or more started.
In 2021, I wrote and polished a total of seven (7) stories, falling short of my goal of a baker's dozen. The vast majority of these were written in the first quarter of 2021. Unfortunately, once I started querying my novel, it really stymied my creative flow and I was unable to write much. With everything I had available to edit, one would think I could work on those. But those stories needed many more words written and I was unable to complete them. I did not polish anything once I was back at work in-person full-time. My laptop was broken for most of the second half of the year.
2021 wore on me in ways that 2020 did not.
This goal receives an incomplete ❌
Story Submissions in 2021:
I submitted forty (40) stories this year, exceeding my goal of 39 submissions.
This goal recieves a success! ✔️
Rejections in 2021: My goal was for a 100% rejection rate on my submissions. I like this goal because it keeps me submitting. Plus, I win if I meet it and I win if I don't because it means I had some acceptances.
I received thirty-seven (37) rejections and two (2) acceptances this year.
This goal receives a success! ✔️
Acceptances in 2021:
I do not make acceptance goals because I have no control over those. However, it's the end of the year, and I will report my final numbers. I had two (2) acceptances in 2021.
Published Stories in 2021:
I published four (4) stories in 2021. Two were published by publications, one was published for a short time on my website for the Writer in Motion program, and one was published exclusively in my newsletter.
Stories under consideration at this moment: Seven.
Goal: Short Story Submissions in 2022
I'm pulling this number using some logic, math, and the fact that I managed 40 submissions this year and want to always increase my goals when possible. This is a little less than one submission per week.
Goal: Short Story Rejections in 2022
My goals for 2021 quickly went awry and have changed and morphed throughout the year. I learned how some techiques for querying worked for me and others did not. I also believe now that querying advice from before the pandemic is useful to a certain extent but can set expectations much too high for the landscape now. I'll let you peruse all the Twitter threads about publishing today to draw your own conclusions.
My goals for 2022 are vague to the point of not really being goals at all. Keep querying. Keep editing. Go with the flow.
I like the trimester approach to updating goals. I'll keep you posted and, of course, I'll shout from the rooftops should I become agented or have more stories published.
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Writer of spec fic.