Friday, July 14, 2017

Writing Goals for the Second Half of 2017!

So, I know I don't talk about my writing very often on here but . . . it's a thing!  I'm a writer.  And while I haven't been the most consistent with my personal writing the past few years due to college, I'm still studying creative writing in college and have worked on short stories, nonfiction creative essays, and have recently started writing a new novel!

I'm really passionate about this project and am having a blast working on it.  It's still in the very early stages of writing it but I have a solid ending I'm working toward and have done some extensive world building.  However, I have a pattern of starting writing projects, getting pretty far in, and then getting distracted by a shiny new idea and leaving the other idea behind.  

I DO NOT want to do this with this project.  I'm determined this will be the writing project I stick with, no matter how many beautiful new ideas pop up.  So, I've been setting some goals for myself to hold myself accountable and finish this one!

Here are some of those goals: 

1. Finish the first draft by the end of the year!
Okay, so yes, that might seem like a long time for a first draft.  But I want to give myself plenty of time without making myself feel rushed.  I've never finished a first draft before (because of the problem listed above) so I'm a little nervous for it. 

2. Draw a rough draft map of the world!
This will probably be happening sooner rather than later.  The novel I'm working on is a fantasy novel so I want to have an idea of the shape and geography of the world before getting too deep.  While I know that can all be fixed during edits, I'd rather start with as solid a foundation as possible.

3.  Find a critique partner!  
While I don't plan on finishing the first draft before the end of the year, I'd really love to meet a critique partner soon and begin establishing a friendship so sharing our work together will be more comfortable.  This goal, while really exciting, also fills me with nerves because meeting new people, sharing my work, and just like . . . being vulnerable in general. 

4. Start compiling a list of agents that I may be interested in querying!
While a long way off, I feel like it will be good to start this step as soon as possible -- at least research and find agents that would be interested in the genre of my novel and who have worked on projects that I've liked in the past!

Those are the biggest goals I've set for the second half of the year.  Yeah, I'm totally intimidated looking at them right now but I'm determined to complete them and really excited for it!  I want to do this so badly and I need to keep at it.  

Now that the goals are out of the way, I figured I could share a little bit about my project! 

So, it's a fantasy novel and young adult (though more mature YA)!  It deals with magic and gods and worlds ending and life-and-death competitions and I love it.  It's (tentatively) called Love & War right now but I know that title just won't stick but I needed something to name the word document.  The main character is nineteen years old and super badass and I love her.  


Here's a short excerpt for the first draft (this is unedited so please be gentle with it):

Calla could feel his eyes on her, like a heavy quilt laid over her at night.  Her back to him, she felt the weight of his gaze between her shoulder blades, on her wide stance, on the dagger that hung loose but firm in her hand.  She didn’t allow her body to tense, ignored the instincts that whispered at her to turn around, to fling her shining blade at his heart rather than the heart of the dummy in front of her. 
Faster than human eyes could track, Calla flung the dagger from her grip and watched it fly end over end before striking its mark with a resounding thud.  The dummy fell backwards from the impact.  
With all of her daggers stuck in the dummies and nothing else to distract herself with, Calla sighed.  “Is there something I can help you with, Lennan?” she said, voice dry.  She walked toward the dummies and looked over her shoulder at the man standing in the doorway. 

AHH okay so there it is!  I really hope you guys like it.  I'm super excited about this project (like I've said 5,023,018,244 times in the post already) and I'm looking forward to working on it more.  I'd love to hear your thought or about any writing project you're working on! Leave me some tips in the comments about this if you feel so inclined!  


  1. Ooooooooo! YAY for writing! Best of luck with everything, Ashtyn! I know you can do it - you've got the drive and willpower tucked away and you can meet all of these goals and more. Your excerpt has me intrigued and if it were a book on shelves or available for review, I'd definitely pick it up/request it. Happy writing, lady!

    Have a fantastic week. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    1. Thanks so much, Alyssa! That really means a lot to hear! I'm so excited about this WIP and have been making some head way so yay!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Sounds like a fun read! I love that you have set goals for the rest of the year. I've finished drafts in the past, but it's been years now. I need to make time for my personal writing and stick with one story (I have a few). I think my big goal is to have at least the first draft of one of these ideas finished by the end of the year.

    You can do it! WE can do it. :)


    1. Thank you, Lauren! We definitely can do it! I'd love to hear more about your personal writing! I'll totally be here to cheer you on while you work toward completing your goals!

      Thanks for stopping by!


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