I don’t believe in resolutions.  Wait – let me rephrase that.  Of course I believe in them, I’d be stupid not to, as people make them all the time.  Heck, I’ve made plenty of resolutions over the years.  What I really mean to say is that I don’t believe they are effective.  In fact, I think they tend to be dangerous:  engines of guilt that drive avoidance and procrastination and other unhealthy behaviors when we slip and slide and don’t quite measure up.  As in, “I didn’t do what I said I would, so I’m obviously inept and I should just give up and eat several pounds of chocolate…”

What seems like a far better idea, to me anyway, is to sit down and plan where you want to be at the end of 2009.  And while you’re at it, use the power of intention.  Wishful thinking never got anybody anywhere.  Just to be sure we are clear, wishful thinking sounds like this:  “I wish I could have a different job.  I wish I could finish my novel.  I wish I had more time to write.  I wish an agent would realize what a truly magical writer I really am…”

Sound familiar?  The wishful thought is connected to powerlessness and “poor me” thinking, and leads more towards a good stiff drink than positive actions toward the goal.

I’m a fan of the affirmation that states your goals like they’re already a done deal.  That sounds something like this:

  • During 2009 I signed a contract with an excellent agent.
  • My novel, Remember, was accepted by a major publishing house, and the advance was sufficient to pay off my credit card and student loan debt.
  • I have completed Swimming North, and both my agent and I are very excited about the finished product.

I have more, but I think I’ll keep them between myself and my journal.  What about the rest of you?  Writing goals for 2009?  Share them here, if you will – I challenge you to state them boldly as a done deal.