The following are the words of Pete Honsberger, Archway Publishing author of “Don’t Burn Your Toast.” For more on the author, visit his website and Facebook. Download the Archway Publishing free publishing guide for more information on our supported self-publishing services.
Don’t Let Life Get in the Way of Your Goals
If you ever feel like your day-to-day life gets in the way of bigger goals, whether they are personal, professional, or both, I can empathize. When I’m busy fulfilling my full-time job’s duties, attending meetings, sending emails, being a good family member, and so on, I often lose sight of the bigger picture.
But despite this reality of our busy lives and daily tasks, many of us have dreams of writing a book, owning a business, scaling a mountain, or even getting that promotion. Perhaps the biggest lesson I learned in the 100 days it took me to write the first draft of my book is that such laser-focus and bite-sized activity on a consistent basis can apply to just about any project or dream.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.”
This Chinese proverb makes almost too much sense! Regardless of what we’ve done in the past, how tough it’s been, how much success we’ve had, or what we wish we’d have done differently, today is a new day. Whether you’re an aspiring author or already halfway done with your book and need a final push, the ONLY time to act is right now.
Set Goals and Follow Through
On October 1st, 2016, I set a 100-day goal for myself to finish a rough draft of a full book, and committed to using a journal resource to keep me accountable. Before January 10th, 2017, I had finished my rough draft, and a few months later I held my own book in my hand.
- Set the goal (100 Days to a Draft of a Full Book)
- Find a resource to help me stay accountable to the writing process (I used The Freedom Journal by John Lee Dumas)
- Set either a word count (i.e. 500 words today) or time-bound (i.e. write for minimum 45 minutes today) goal at the beginning of each day using the journal.
- Schedule time on my own calendar to wake up a little early a few days a week, visit a local coffee shop 2-3 evenings during the week, and carve out time on the weekends just to sit down and write.
- Get used to the fact that some of my writing was terrible! And that’s perfectly OK! Not everything that comes out of your brain is going to be golden, but it’s more important to get quantity down in a rough draft because the quality lies within.
- Keep other human beings posted about my progress. This additional accountability kept me even more motivated.
- Show up and do the work. A journal by itself doesn’t make a book. A fun goal or dynamite vision without the execution means very little. The consistent effort (broken down into small pieces) is what turned a blank Word document into a book for me.
- Find Archway Publishing to help with the entire publishing process (Duh!)
Now it’s Your Turn
So that’s the challenge. Whether you have your topic, you’ve already started, or are dying just to start, follow these steps and you’ll have a rough draft of an ENTIRE BOOK in 100 days.
I promise you it will be worthwhile, and your capability will surprise you.
If a regular guy like me can do it, you can too. Plant that tree today!
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