Monday, January 1, 2024

01 - January 2024 - Happy New Year ?


Oh, No, Not Another New Year's Resolution!

Do you despair at making New Year's Resolutions?

Considering the failure rate statistic is that 90% of those who make resolutions never achieve them. But, kudos to those that do.

Another research statistic says 23% of people quit their resolution by the end of the first week, and 43% quit by the end of January.

Resolutions are usually about bad habits we want to undo or end. It takes desire and willpower to overcome such ingrained patterns of behavior or desires.

It's also a fact that the joy of a New Year, those bright and shining days ahead, lead us into a state of euphoria that cannot be maintained 365 days of a year. 

Then there is the human nature factor— Reality will always trump the illusion. And yet, setting resolutions is also a long-standing tradition. Can't win, right?

Experts on human behavior like to substitute goals for resolutions. Setting goals is far better if one understands the goal must be specific and realistic, meaning the goal is concrete, something tangible. For instance, I want to achieve publication by a quality New York publisher. That's doable if I write a popular genre-themed novel that's a page-turner no one can put down until The End. 

Goals should be broken down into smaller goals. That helps insure reaching the primary goal, say to write a novel. To novice writers, I tell them to start small. Go from the developed short story to a novella to a novelette to a novel. That's because it's far easier to learn craft in a short form than draft a novel that has so many flaws it's better to leave it in one's Achieved Story File on one's computer. 

But do save the idea and characters. They can be recycled when one learns what story is and the ins and outs of the technical aspects of plot, characterization, theme, dialogue mechanics, cause-and-effect sequences, etc.

So, did you make resolutions last year on January 1st?

        Did you keep them? And— are you setting resolutions or goals for 2024?

I wish you all the best in learning and growing as a writer in this new year of 2024.

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