Childish Nonsense

Exploring Children's Literature

Looking Forward

on December 30, 2012

2013As one year comes to a close and the next one starts, we inevitably look to expectations, accomplishments, and unfulfilled promises. This could take a long time, so I’ll try to restrict it to my writing life.

As with new year’s resolutions, my goals for 2013 are very similar to 2012, though slightly modified.

1. Submit more manuscripts. There are mini-goals within this. First, I need to continue to do my homework. Market research, both for the entire market and for the publishers to which I submit manuscripts. Second, attend writers conferences and workshops. Get to know the editors, agents, and writers and pick their brains with this regard. All other strategies are encapsulated in my other goals.

2. Improve my writing and make it the best it can be, improving the chances I will get more recognition. First, practice, practice, practice. Sitting down and writing is always a good strategy. Second, participate in challenges that make sense. I have a lot of ideas on paper from Tara Lazar’s Picture Book Idea Month. I’m now in a group on Facebook called Sub Six, as in submit six picture book manuscripts this year. I’m looking at other groups. Along with this, most of the how-to books have exercises and writing prompts to help keep me going.

3. Learn to recognize small steps can be big boosts. Is that rejection useful? Does anyone read my blog or the reviews I write? Where is that constructive criticism coming from? Is it a quick fix or am I totally missing on this one?

4. Continue reviewing. I’m continually amazed at how helpful reading like a writer is.

5. Be helpful to other writers. In March, my friend Sue Peters and I will be the new Co-Regional Advisors for the Maryland/Delaware/West Virginia region of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). I’m still a little frightened at the prospect. I’ve seen how hard my friends Edie Hemingway and Lois Szymanski work to make this a good region. But I care about this group and know I do have the skills necessary. Thank goodness Edie and Lois will still be around. Sue and I will hit the ground running, but I’ll need a lot of help. In that regard, I already have events planned – for organizing or for attendance alone – in March, April, August, and September. More later.

I think most of these are attainable. We shall see.

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