arts & music

The Pressurized Goal (or: Baby Steps = Progress)

by Myranda — February 28, 2020
Woman with umbrella walking up many steps toward her goal

Taking baby steps toward her creative goal, Myranda is putting herself out there! Open mic night on stage, sharing her words in a crowded room.

When I set my creative goal this year, I set it deliberately, carefully. It needed to be the kind of goal that would keep a steady bit of pressure on. However, it also needed to be a goal I could break down into smaller chunks, as it were. Pressure wouldn’t be enough to sustain me. I knew, I also needed to have little victories.

My main goal is to have a fairly polished manuscript by the end of 2020. What does this mean? It means I want to have a finished romance novel manuscript, one I’ve edited to the best of my abilities on my own, so I can then decide next steps. This might mean submitting for professional publishing, or it could mean looking for grants and such so I can have it edited and publish on my own.

Before I get to this stage, of course, there are smaller goals I need to manage. First, I need to finish my rough draft. My goal is to have that done by April. I’ve moved it from March, adjusting for some unexpected busyness at my day job. It’s hard to be creative when your brain is drained from the day! Still, I’m feeling like this goal is manageable. After that, there will be a rewrite, then I’ll look for beta readers. Once their feedback in is, another rewrite in full. All this, hopefully, by the end of December.

While I work on these little creative stages for my goal, I’ve also set a goal to put my writer hat on a bit more; that is, to participate in more public writer activities. On Valentine’s Day, I got to celebrate a little victory by attending a writers Open Mic. Not only attending: I read in front of an audience. It’s something I haven’t done with my own writing in over a decade.

Woman reading on stage at a podium
Photo of me reading kindly provided (with permission for use) by Belongdawe

It didn’t go perfectly. I speak fairly quickly in general, and my nerves didn’t help my pace. I didn’t think to adjust the light angle so I could be a little closer to the mic and be heard a little better. However, I did it. I committed to read from my work-in-progress. I didn’t chicken out at the last minute! It was hard and scary but I did it anyway. And I’ll do it again, and get better, step by baby step, each time I do. So here’s to more little victories to come.

Main photo: AHMED MOUSTAFA from Pexels

You Might Also Like