Writing Milestones To Aim For

By on September 19, 2017
Writing Milestones To Aim For - Writer's Life.org

Every writer should make goals for themselves. Goals help a writer to plan our their time, to have a clear picture in their head of what they are aiming for, and to keep pushing themselves and stay on the right track - even when times get tough.

But what are good milestones for novice writers to set themselves? If you are just starting out, use this helpful list to outline some writing milestones and start you off on the right track.

A completed story

It’s easy for new writers to make their first writing goal something huge, like finishing a novel. But starting off smaller will help you set the ball rolling. Finish a short piece of writing, a short story perhaps or a blog post or even a poem. Once you have your first completed piece of work in hand, and experience that feeling of satisfaction and elation for doing so, you can then begin to broaden your horizons and set bigger goals.

First time you share your work

Many writers write for years before they are brave enough to share their work, even with family or close friends. Still, while doing to may seem daunting, it is necessary. It’s OK to start sharing your work with people you know are likely to be enthusiastic and complimentary - it will give you that boost to keep on going.

A proper critique of your work

While sharing work with family and friends is great, the next step is to get a proper critique of some of your pieces of writing from an impartial expert. Be prepared not to love everything you hear, but doing this is invaluable and will help you see how you can improve your work.

A publication

Try to gt one of your pieces published. This might be by entering a local competition or sending off a short story to a magazine. Keep trying until you get something in print (either online or in paper). This will help you to understand what it takes to get published and also be an amazing confidence boost when it happens to you.

Getting paid for your writing

Money may not be your main motivation for writing, but getting paid for your work validates it and also opens up doors for many writers. Getting your first payment for a piece is also a fantastic feeling for any writer too.

First draft of your novel

Now it’s time to set your sights on bigger and better things. Getting that first draft of your novel completed is a game changer for many writers.

A fully completed and edited manuscript

There is nothing quite like the feeling of getting your first manuscript finished. Once you have done everything you can to get it into a publishable condition, it’s time to let it go, send it off to agents and publishers and see what happens.

First rejection

The chances of your work getting snapped up as soon as you send it off are extremely minimal. Getting a first rejection is a rite of passage for many writers. Don’t be too downhearted when you get yours. Instead, celebrate it - you’re a real writer now!

A published book

Whether you find a publisher or decide to self-publish, holding that first physical copy of your book in your hands is an unbeatable feeling and something which is cause for celebration.

First reviews

Getting your first book reviews can feel daunting but seeing a book review pop up from someone who has taken the time to buy and read your book is incredibly satisfying.

First fans

Finally, establishing a fanbase should be something on every writer’s to-do list. Doing so will not only feel very rewarding but make marketing your next piece of work so much easier!

These writing milestones will take you from first setting out as a writer to having your very own published novel. Of course, once you have achieved these you need to set new goals to complete - for the key to being a good writer is to keep writing and keep improving every single day!

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

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