Other Cool Blogs: Magical Words 1/16/2012 and 3/26/2012

Ambition and Tenacity

Half of the year gone and not having half the goals met. Is that because the goals were too ambitious or my inner drive not tenacious enough?

What ambitions did you start the year with and what have you reached? Do you need a new set or to retool the old? Or just turbo charge that old tenacity?

When thinking about your goals, you might want to read the Magical Words – “On Writing: The Value of Ambition” by David B. Coe. It can be found here:

He mentions three ambitions:

  1. Material Ambitions – For me, this would be publication credits and sales numbers. Things I have no control over other than production.
  2. Output Ambitions – Which leads to Word Count, Complete Stories, and Anthology Submissions. To get #1, I have to meet #2.
  3. Creative Ambitions – How do I want to push myself as a writer?

In 2019, I started my patreon page at the beginning of the year (https://www.patreon.com/ErinPenn) and an Editing Rant Vlog (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4qqZ3dYm_OlXfecgzWRi1g) at the end of the year. One related to my material ambitions and the other related to my creative ambitions of exploring the video and sound field. In 2020, my goals include completing a novel and 500 words per day every day – both output ambitions.

I think I am ambitious enough, but am I tenacious enough for my ambitions?

Mr Coe covered that in “The Writing Life: The Value of Tenacity”:

The tenancies covered include:

  1. Day-to-Day Tenacity – That 500 words per day, or one hour, or every weekend or whatever it takes.
  2. Project Tenacity – Finishing that thing.
  3. Market Tenacity – Selling that finished thing somewhere.
  4. Career Tenacity – Finishing the next thing, and the next, and sell, and sell. Repeat.

For me, I think Project Tenacity is my major downfall. Between fighting the Oo-shiny syndrome and my mixed-up schedule forcing me to take a break a week at a time sometimes (or four months during tax season), once the “right now” issue settles and I reach to pick up an ongoing project, I rarely reach for exactly what I was working on before.

The dreaded “meeting week” being the worst offender. The second week of the each month I have a meeting Monday night, Tuesday night, Wednesday night, and Thursday night. I get NOTHING done this week other than meeting prep and meeting cleanup.  I collapse over the weekend (if it isn’t filled with a convention or other obligation) and try to restart the fires of ambition as soon as I can. I need to work faster so everything is completed in three weeks or figure out how to integrate the Meeting Week into an ebb-and-flow.

WRITING EXERCISE: Review this year’s goals. What have you been able to do and why? What has been a barrier? Should the goals be changed?