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When 2017 started, I deemed this my #yearofwriting and gave myself some serious writing career goals for the year. I created a basic business plan, hired a writing coach to take my career to the next level (which she did), organized my published clips and planned to do five *major* things this year.
My BIG goal for 2017 was to be published in 17 publications, and I am THRILLED to say that I accomplished this goal! It was actually done by August, thankfully. Here is what I wrote per publication:
- I’m Cuban-American And Glad ‘Wet Foot, Dry Foot’ Is Being Repealed [The Establishment]
- 7 Things You Can Do for Your Writing Career in 2017 [Epic Freelancing]
- The Secret Shame Of The Mostly Healthy Eater [Dose]
- Even Women in Jail Are Entitled to the Right to Choose [Mom.me]
- INFOGRAPHIC: The Ultimate Guide to Everything You *Need* in the Kitchen [Brit+Co]
- I Didn’t Need A Partner Or A ‘Perfect’ Body For Boudoir Photos — And Neither Do You [Ravishly]
- 4 Apps to Help You Stay Sane When Running Your Own Business [Paste Magazine]
- 6 Latina singers who are more than just a pretty face & voice [MamásLatinas]
- How Willow from ‘Buffy’ Helped Me Come Out [VICE]
- Marrying a Man Doesn’t Make Me Straight [A Practical Wedding]
- I’m Not Ready for Kids — but Waiting Might Not Be an Option[CafeMom]
- Teetotal Like a Boss: Tips for Enjoying a Party When You’re Not Drinking [The Kitchn]
- ‘I Fell In Love With THIS Food—And It Helped Maintain My 90-Pound Weight Loss’ [Women’s Health]
- What Is May The 4th? It’s Very Important To ‘Star Wars’ Fans [Romper]
- I Got Engaged With a $35 Engagement Ring, and the World Didn’t End [Glamour]
- Why meditation was crucial to my recovery from alcohol [Headspace]
- As a Cuban-American, I Can’t Help But Feel Jealous of My American Friends Traveling to Cuba [HipLatina]
But as the year wore on and I was accomplishing my #1 goal, my priorities start to change and shift. For one, I wasn’t really writing my 52 essays… and I’ve basically given that up now. I also didn’t really have time to focus on the newsletter or book proposal… and we used my tax savings to pay off a hefty credit card bill.
So you would think that I was kind of failing at my writing goals, right? Well, the truth is that I wasn’t so much failing as I was realizing that I wanted to shift my goals and give myself something new to accomplish. In this vein, I gave myself some adjusted goals.
I still plan to save for my taxes (which I “paid back” with some of my extra income from those 17+ articles), but now I am actually working on my book proposal. For my third goal, I wanted to still launch my newsletter but am holding off until the end of the year to do that. And for my last two goals, which are the ones that are new, I want to earn $2,000 per month in freelance income and I want to write five travel articles.
The freelance income quote is in order to make up for the money that I am no longer making since I let go of my gig at Romper at the end of August and the travel article bylines is because I have decided that I’d like to do more travel writing in general (especially since I just came back from a wonderful 2-week trip).
The main thing I learned by adjusting my writing goals is that I need and want to focus more on my freelance career rather than the writing I am doing at home. When I was setting some of those goals at the beginning of the year, I hadn’t yet realized that I do better with outer expectations than inner expectations. But thanks to me following the writing of Gretchen Rubin, in particular her work with The Four Tendencies, I now know why I do better with work deadlines and how crucial it is for me to make sure I get them (from others).
Basically, I was setting myself up for disappointment by saying that I will do all this writing for myself, including the #52essays2017, my newsletter and my book proposal. Instead, I am now focusing on goals that are actually achievable for me: Earning a higher income with freelance writing and doing more travel articles.
So far I actually have my first travel byline, WOO HOO. It’s an article I wrote for HipLatina that I am very proud of: 7 Things to Do in Fort Lauderdale When You’re Tired of SoBe.
And now… to tackle all those other writing goals in these last three months of the year!