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Monday, January 13, 2014

Motivation By Accountability

Staying motivated to keep writing can be tough for many of us. We have lives that demand our time, jobs, families, exercise, shopping, paying bills, the list goes on and on. It can be easy to lose site of our writing goals and fall by the wayside. We start out a few days behind, then it turns into a week behind, then a month, and can spiral out of control from there until we never finish our novel.

To help myself stay motivated I set small, achievable goals. The size of your goal should reflect your writing time and ability, so that you don't fail continually and lose enthusiasm because of it. Even better than goals though is a counter, a way to record and monitor my progress with a physical thing that I update and see every single day. Watching the line move up toward my goal is a huge motivator.

For a counter of your own follow this simple method. Copy and paste the following HTML code onto your blog or website by adding a gadget, then clicking on Add HTML. Within this code are the numbers that you'll see on the gadget when you save it. Put in your own numbers for the goal. Mine is set at 85,000 so that's the numbers you'll change to reflect the overall goal length of your novel. Then, go into the HTML code and update your numbers at the end of every day (first set of numbers you'll see). Don't change anything else, just the numbers. It will look like the counter on the top left hand bar of my blog. And there you have it, a visual indicator that you can see your progress on.

Here's the code:

<img src="http://www.critiquecircle.com/wordmeter.asp?col=blue&amp;font=georgia&amp;curr=11674&amp;goal=85000&amp;" />

8 comments:

  1. So agree that it's hard to stay motivated with writing with all the other pulls in life. It's a great idea to keep track of our progress and to celebrate the small steps we make in our writing.

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    1. I love celebrating the small steps! It keeps me moving forward.

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  2. I used to use counters like this. It can be helpful. I agree with motivation being hard to come by at times. It's a great thing to have each other. :)

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    1. I couldn't agree more! Having each other is the important part!

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  3. That is a great idea for motivation, Heather. Lately I've been writing my goals on post it notes that I can't escape. They site in front of me beside my laptop so I can't ignore them. Being pastel yellow, they don't yell at me, but keep me on task :-)

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    1. I love that idea! I might have to try that.

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  4. I like the counter idea, Heather. I created a spreadsheet to chart my word count for the different projects I'm working on. It's been pretty motivating so far. I agree that the word count has to be realistic and achievable. I set pretty unrealistic, daily goals for myself on January 1st. Been amending them as I go :-)

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    1. A spreadsheet, that sounds like a great idea! Yep, achievable goals definitely make it seem less daunting, but it's tough to do, I know. :)

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