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2019 Writing Goals – Q3 Review

Finally. We’re starting to get back into the nice weather part of the year. Just don’t tell Ohio that. When I wrote this on the 30th of September, it was nearly 90 degrees. Because we can’t have nice weather.

In going to write this post, I noticed I was a bit of a failure in my Q2 goal post — in that when I copy/pasted the post from Q1 to get my formatting, I completely forgot to change the opening paragraph away from what I had written in Q1. So um…oops?

If you want to go back and read the original goal post, you can find it here. That said, I’ve also put something of a summary of the goals in with my progress on each of them below. This is mostly for those who are lazy and don’t want to click back to the post, but it’s also for me and ease of copying when I write posts later in the year. Because deep down, I was the lazy one all along.

Goal 1: Blog Growth?

I’m not going to bury the lede here. It’s been a great year for my blog’s traffic. The blog recently crossed the 12,000 hit threshold for the year. It’s on track to more than triple my traffic in 2018. I’m overwhelmed by the support I’ve gotten on this blog, particularly for the video game posts I’ve written, along with the short stories that have been my bread and butter since this blog started.

As for more specifics for Q3, see the chart below. I’m hoping to say we’ve broken the 15,000 hit threshold by the end of the year, though we’ll have to see how that goes as we get closer.

Q3 2019 Site Stats

Goal 2: Finish a Second Draft of the WIP by July (WIP Update Section)

Since I finished this goal prior to July, I’m going to use this post to give a short update as to where I am with my current work in progress. I’m technically on draft four at this point, though this is a pretty recent development. I sat the manuscript down and didn’t touch it for nearly two full months. In mid-September, I picked it back up again and am currently reading through it and making minor changes here and there to wording, flow, and other grammatical things — as well as the occasional continuity error I find. Once I get my feedback from my editor, I’ll be working on that, as well as trying to frame out my entire plot visually so that I make sure I’m not making any massive continuity errors as I write. I think I’ve done a pretty good job with that to this point, but I’m sure I’ll catch something as I’m working through it.

Update: I’ll be talking about this goal in a bit more detail later this month.

Goal 3: Take on Four New Freelance Projects This Year

Much like Q2, this is a good news, bad news entry. I actually have three major projects lined up to work on in the future — including one I’ve read a very early copy of and am excited to shout about from the rooftops once it’s published. The down side is that at least one of those projects has been pushed to 2020 for sure at this point. I’d much rather not make this goal personally and have the writers I’m working with turn out the best version of their projects. It’s still a tad saddening though, as I like hitting goals.

How are you doing on your 2019 goals? If you’re a blogger, podcaster, YouTuber, or other creator, I’d love to hear how you’re doing. Sound off in the comments.


Like the work I do? Want to help me make more, better-written content? Consider pledging your support on Patreon.

2019 Writing Goals – Q2 Review

Happy July! Did you know that no one noticed I forgot to change this opening paragraph for three months?

If you want to go back and read the original goal post, you can find it here. That said, I’ve also put something of a summary of the goals in with my progress on each of them below. This is mostly for those who are lazy and don’t want to click back to the post, but it’s also for me and ease of copying when I write posts later in the year. Because deep down, I was the lazy one all along.

Goal 1: Blog Growth?

The easiest of my three goals to put hard numbers around is the growth of my blog in terms of visits. I took a month off from writing in June, so I fully expected this to get off pace. Let’s check in and se…

Q2 2019 Site Stats

Oh. Well then. Um. That’s great! For context, through the month of June, I’ve had a total of 6,359 visits to my blog in 2019. I only need 907 visits to surpass my blog’s entire traffic total for 2017 and 2018 combined. While I had what I felt were pretty aggressive growth goals in 2019, I certainly didn’t expect this. Maybe I need to rethink this goal in the second half of the year.

Goal 2: Finish a Second Draft of the WIP by July

I’ll share a lot more about this goal in next week’s post, however I do want to address it for a moment in this one. Technically speaking, I finished the second draft of my book in late April. With that said, the way I’m looking at drafts is much different now than when I originally wrote this goal in January. What I was then defining as my second draft has become my third draft in practice. I got started on said draft in late May with a lot more rewriting to undertake in one draft than I was initially expecting — admittedly all for good reasons. At this stage, I’m done with three drafts of the book and am hoping to start working on draft #4 in the near future.

I’m going to consider this goal itself as done (as we’re now in July), though I likely will still share something related to my WIP in this space in Q3 and Q4.

Goal 3: Take on Four New Freelance Projects This Year

This goal is a bit of a mixed bag at this point. On one hand, the projects I have coming later in the year are drawing closer. Additionally, I did get my first new freelance project of 2019 in April. The down side is that I’m still trying to chase down payment for said project. While it wasn’t for much, it’s frustrating that it’s happened yet again after some issues with it in 2018. While I’m behind pace on this goal, I still feel decent about it, if for no other reason than I know what’s on the way.

How are you doing on your 2019 goals? If you’re a blogger, podcaster, YouTuber, or other creator, I’d love to hear how you’re doing. Sound off in the comments.


Like the work I do? Want to help me make more, better written content? Consider pledging your support on Patreon.

2019 Writing Goals – Q1 Review

Happy April! For those of you in the Northern Hemisphere who like oppressive heat, constant sunshine, and other generally depressing things, it’s about to be your favorite time of the year. That said, while I’m quite fond of early spring months, the fact that they give way to summer always makes me sad. What better time to talk about uplifting things like whether or not I’ve kept my new year goals for writing?

People say I have weird priorities. I just think I’d rather not be constantly sweating.

If you want to go back and read the original goal post, you can find it here. That said, I’ve also put something of a summary of the goals in with my progress on each of them below. This is mostly for those who are lazy and don’t want to click back to the post, but it’s also for me and ease of copying when I write posts later in the year. Because deep down, I was the lazy one all along.

Goal 1: Blog Growth?

Part of the reason I’m adding a bit of summary to the goals section is specifically because of this incredibly vague goal title I created at the beginning of the year. I ended up settling on averaging one visit an hour — 24 visits per day — over the course of the year. My hope was to get to a point where I’m regularly seeing traffic on my blog regardless of the time of the day. So how’s that going?

I mean…pretty well. Though January ended with me being a bit behind pace on this goal, both February and March made up for it in spades. If this continues, there’s a decent chance I could end 2019 with no months from previous years in my top 10 traffic months. That’d be pretty neat for my growth. I’m hoping that the direction change I mentioned a few weeks ago continues this trend, but it’s far too early to get any sort of gauge as to how well it’s going so far.

I did make a bit of a change to the table formatting I’m doing here versus previous goal posts. It’s mostly because I accidentally deleted the massive spreadsheet I used in 2018 when cleaning up my Google Drive. But considering how traffic has been consistently going up over the past year, I feel like this format works just as well.

Goal 2: Finish a Second Draft of the WIP by July

I have to admit. When I wrote this goal, I figured this was arguably the most ambitious of the goals I’d set for myself. Progress on the WIP was not going well to say the least. Even though I had made some progress early this year, I was figuring that my first draft would be done sometime in June if I was lucky, meaning the second draft would happen sometime in the fall. That said, I ended up getting the first draft done in mid-February, thanks in part to my old job giving me literally nothing to do during my last three days at work — meaning I went home without stress and just wrote at night. I’ve gone through two rounds of my own edits so far (one for grammar and one for continuity) and I have two beta readers going through now to give me feedback. One of them is giving me genuinely the best editing feedback I’ve ever received, while the other is an author whose work I aspire for my own work to be as good as, so I feel like I’m in great hands. There’s a decent chance I’ll hit this goal, though there’s still a ton of work to be done before that point.

Goal 3: Take on Four New Freelance Projects This Year

Of all of the goals I put on this list, this goal is definitely the one going the least well. That’s not to say there isn’t progress being made, as I do have a couple projects in the pipeline for later in the year. That said, there’s not a solid timeframe on either of them at this point, so I’d still like to pick up a couple of more before then — just in case they go into 2020. Granted, Q1 of this year was busy for several reasons, including my new job. That doesn’t mean I hadn’t wished I’d made more progress on this goal though.

How did you do on your 2018 goals? If you’re a blogger, podcaster, YouTuber, or other creator, I’d love to hear how you did, as well as your 2019 goals. Sound off in the comments.


Like the work I do? Want to help me make more, better written content? Consider pledging your support on Patreon.

2019 Writing Goals

In 2018, at the suggestion of Optimistic Millennial writer Kaytie Zimmerman, I decided to create some goals for my blog in an attempt to grow my blog and, by extension, build the community around it. Last week, I talked about how those goals went throughout the year of 2018 (not to mention doing periodic checkins throughout the year), as well as trying to explore whether the results of each of those goals was a success or a failure.

I’m happy I went that route in 2018, however, I don’t think it’s the right way to go in 2019. That’s not because I succeeded in every goal, nor am I completely happy with the results I did achieve across the board. While things did go alright, there’s always room for growth and improvement. Instead, I’ve decided to diversify my goals a bit in 2019. This is in an effort to better reflect what I’m looking to achieve not just as a blogger, but as a writer and freelancer. I’ll be sticking with three goals, in 2019, only instead of three blog based goals, there’ll be one each for blogging, story writing, and freelancing.

Goal 1: Blog Growth?

Last year, I had three separate blog growth goals that I set for myself. Needless to say with how things went, I have zero clue how to set goals for myself for blog growth. Since I clearly have no clue what I should scale my goals to, let’s go with the one that’s at least the easiest for me to measure: raw traffic.

This year, I’d like to average one view per hour for every day of the year. That’s 8,760 views for the year, which would represent a massive amount of growth from 2018 to 2019. Then again, that’s what I thought by setting a goal for 3,000 views for 2018 when coming off of 2,369 in 2017. I was wrong. I was over 3,000 views in September and 4,000 views in November. If the first four months of the year would have had better traffic, 5,000 would have been a realistic possibility. While I’m not expecting months upon months of traffic like November 20181688 views, my single best traffic month ever on this blog, and my best traffic month on any blog since 2013., I think breaking the 8,000 visitor barrier is an attainable goal, even if it might be a bit of a reach.

Goal 2: Finish a Second Draft of the WIP by July

Let’s just say it’s, um, been a while since I’ve given you all an update on my work in progress. There’s several reasons for that, some of which are understandable, others of which are not2All of which I will not be mentioning on this blog, for now.. That said, I’m planning to do another update on the project within the first six weeks or so of 2019.

That all said, I know for sure that once I get the initial draft finished, there will be some massive rewriting that needs done to make it presentable for beta readers. My alpha reader’s feedback, plus some of my own changes to the direction of where I want the story to focus, has proven that needs to be the case. As a result, once I finish the first draft, I’ll be re-writing my story (particularly the first 3-5 chapters) heavily.

In an ideal situation, both of these drafts will be completed by the end of July. I’m not going to set an official goal deadline for completing the first draft (mostly because January is particularly insane for me), however I feel like as long as that draft is done by mid-April, I should be in good shape to get my July goal for draft number two.

Goal 3: Take on Four New Freelance Projects This Year

2018 was an up-and-down year in terms of the freelance projects I took on. I had a large project come to me early in the year, as well as a ton of smaller projects that I took on. The problem was that the only one of those projects that I got paid for was the large project — all of the small ones came about as the result of my former company closing our office, which in turn meant resume editing work I did for free. While I did pick up a second, much smaller, project near the end of the year, the year was slower than I had hoped.

That isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I ended up needing more of my free time than I expected on several other things that came up this year, including minor things like a redesign of my blog and launching my Patreon account. Even with that in mind, I’d like to do more this year.

I’m setting a somewhat flexible goal of taking on four new freelance projects in 2019, ideally one per quarter. I say this goal is somewhat flexible, as if I were to take on a particularly large project, I’d consider revising this down to three. That said, the project would have to be major in either complexity or the amount of time I have to dedicate to it (or both) for me to make said revision.

2018 Blog Goals – Year End Review

Welcome to 2019. How are you feeling? Excited? Confused? Hungover? Yes to all of the above?

2018 was an odd year for me, if for no other reason than I actually followed through on keeping track of my blog goals for the first time ever. As I’m thinking about it, this might be the first time ever that I’ve kept track of non-work related goals for an entire year. I know that might be a weird statement to make as a 31 year old, but here we are. I’ll be sharing my 2019 writing goals in a post coming on the first Monday of the year, however before I do that, let’s take a moment and look back on the 2018 goals.

When we last peeked in at the midway point of this year, I was only meeting one of the three goals that I had set for the year. While I was destroying the one goal I was meeting, the other two goals had continued to fall behind pace. The final quarter of 2018 was insane in real life for various reasons, so aside from my NaNoWriMo Tips series, the marketing I wanted to go into the blog never came to fruition. With that said, let’s see where I ended both Q4 of 2018 and the year as a whole.

Goal 1: 20 New WordPress Followers

Well. This had some ups and downs out of no where. Granted, I understand going from 5 to 6 to 7 and back down to 6 isn’t that big of a swing, but it is a volatile time considering how steady this value has been over the course of the year year and a half or so. This ended up being only 30% of my goal pace for the year. Even with that in mind, I’m not completely disappointed in how this turned out because of the way the next two goals ended the year.

Goal 2 – Average 250 Visits Per Month

Remember how in last quarter’s update post I said that 4,738 visits — exactly double my 2017 traffic — wouldn’t be a completely unrealistic number to hit? It was kind of nice to hit that number in the lead up to Christmas while talking about our charity drive. Though I didn’t quite get to the 5,000 visit barrier, this was still over 100% growth year over year, which is amazing to see. The final six months of the year were the six best months in this blog’s history, while nine of the top ten months all time also come from 2018. I’d love to see this upward trend continue into 2019, though (as you’ll see from my goals next week) I’ll be doing some refocusing on my priorities in my writing in 2019, so I won’t be trying to replicate my 100% growth next this year.

Goal 3 – Grow Comment Count by 20% Again

2018 was weird when it came to my comments. Consider the following:

  • January – March: 48 comments (16 comments/month)
  • April – September: 45 comments (7.5 comments/month)
  • October – December: 57 comments (19 comments/month)

What the hell happened in the middle of the year? I understand that my comment explosion in December had a couple of factors working in its favor — those being the fact that comments for 10 days in December caused a donation to charity, as well as an 11th hour commenter who tipped me over my comment goal. That said, it was still nice to hit this with how weird (and frankly not well) the middle two quarters of 2018 went from a comment standpoint.

How did you do on your 2018 goals? If you’re a blogger, podcaster, YouTuber, or other creator, I’d love to hear how you did, as well as your 2019 goals. Sound off in the comments.


Like the work I do? Want to help me make more, better written content? Consider pledging your support on Patreon.

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