Goals vs Resolutions

Since I began taking my writing more seriously a few years ago I have made more “resolutions” than ever before. But this year in particular I have seen more comments/posts/blogs/etc about not making resolutions and instead making goals. I have decided to follow suit.

When searching the resolutions in Google one of the definitions given is “a firm decision to do or not to something.” Trying the search again, but this time for goal, one answer is “the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.” A resolution seems pretty cut and dry. If I may borrow from Yoda, “Do or do not. There is no try.” Goals, on the other hand give a little more leeway.

The more I’ve thought about it, when it comes to writing, the term “goals” just seems more appropriate. Partially, for me, because it is little more fluid. I’m setting my sights on a few specific tasks and going to put forth the effort to reach said desired result.

My biggest goal for 2018 is to see my novel, in print, in my hand by Christmas. I will be ecstatic if this comes true, but there are so many factors that go into this becoming a reality that I feel like making it a resolution leaves me either a success or a failure. Either it happens or it doesn’t. By making this a goal, even if I’m close, but not there, in the desired timeline, I will count it as a win, a success.

There are many parts of being a writer that are cut and dry like resolutions. A story was accepted for publication. It was rejected. A story was finished by the deadline. The deadline passed and the project was not completed.

I’m hoping that by looking at my aims and goals with a little less stringent set of guidelines I will remain committed, encouraged, and excited for everything I can accomplish in 2018.