Meandering / writing

Meandering Monday about Goal-Setting and Motivation

I started my writing ‘career’ in 2004. Actually, there should be air-quotes around the ‘started’, too. Although I made the determination to start writing in 2004, I didn’t finish my first story until 2008, and my second in 2010. My third came in 2011. If you’re following, that’s 4 years, then 2 years, then 1; if I were to continue that progression, cutting the time to write each next story in half, I would have produced an infinite number of stories before the next year passed. over ten years later I only have one hundred and four stories finished, so that obviously didn’t happen. (The infinity thing is really impossible, in case you didn’t realize it.)

What did happen was that I got myself on a schedule. Starting in 2011, I set goals for what I intended to achieve each year, and then slavishly stuck to it. I will credit my productivity to that goal-setting and my dogged determination to meet those goals, driven mostly by a fear of failure.

But that fear obviously isn’t WHY I write, just what pushes me along to make sure I keep putting words on the page, and ensures that I AM a writer, instead of someone who wants to be one.

Standard writer advice is to revel in the rejections you receive, because those mean that you are putting yourself out there. Well, I have over 650 of those rejection notices, so I’m definitely out there.

Fear and rejection may not be the best motivators. It would be nice to have some carrots to go along with those sticks.

It’s funny that after years of anti-social Bill doing this writing thing alone, I have discovered that being in a writing group is encouraging (I was in one back when I started, but it just wasn’t right for me. I understand the notion of paying one’s dues, but when I realized that I was giving so much of my time to the group with very little return – well, it just wasn’t for me. That experience kept me from joining another group for over a decade.)

Another thing that helps motivate me is seeing others succeed. I watched the 2022 Writers of the Future awards ceremony this weekend. I doubt I will ever win that contest, but seeing writers who’ve been plugging away like I have reach that level of success is encouraging. It’s fun to struggle with my insecurity, wondering if I REALLY want to win, because then I’d have to make a speech in front of thousands of people (in person and online) (two speeches if I win the big prize.) And I’d have to perform on demand in the workshops – a scary proposition. I don’t know if I REALLY want to win.

Who am I kidding – of course I do. Just saying…

Current Book Promotions

In a Flash Detective Jimmy Delaney eBook CoverPurrMission-MainTall_025For info on how to preorder my latest release (“Two Buttons to Eternity”), or even get it for FREE, as well as  information and links for my other current promotions (including the FREE starter eBooks for my Herc Tom, Champion of the Empire series and my Detective Jimmy Delaney series), look HERE on my CURRENT BOOK PROMOTIONS page.


Reaching Out

William Mangieri’s writing has been published on Daily Science Fiction and The Arcanist. His ninety or so short stories and related collections can be found at several online retailers, including, but not limited to:

Want to help me make a go of this writing gig WITHOUT IT COSTING YOU A PENNY? I’m in the Amazon Affiliates program, so any time you click one of the links I provide here to my books on Amazon, and then make a purchase of something like, say, a TV, I get a small percentage of Amazon’s profit. So PLEASE consider using one of my links to get to Amazon before you make that next purchase. Thanx!


or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri

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