It’s time for this month’s group posting with the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. I encourage everyone to visit at least a dozen new blogs and leave a comment. your words might be the encouragement someone needs.

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OPTIONAL IWSG Day Question: What are your ultimate writing goals, and how have they changed over time (if at all)?

That’s a brilliant question because it really made me sit back and think. My goals have changed a lot. When I started penning kids’ fiction as a seventeen-year-old, I was far removed from the reality of being an author.

Believe it or not, when I started out, personal computers were not yet a thing. Although some people had them, no one I knew owned one. And the internet was just a twinkle in the eye of a brainiac, somewhere. I spent the first decade writing the good old fashioned way, with a pen and paper. I was a teenager, starting out in the 1980’s, just following the thread of what interested me in terms of subject matter and genre.

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I worked a string of other jobs and often second jobs as well. Writing stories was what I did in my spare time, and it still is.

When I started out at seventeen, I wasn’t thinking of publication. I was impelled to share my creativity through children’s stories, so I followed it. It took me another ten years to start submitting to publishers. My ultimate writing goal at the age of twenty-seven was simple, to get published and make money.

I have an old book of ‘Intentions,’ which I write up each year like resolutions. I discovered that by the age of thirty my ultimate writing goal had morphed into: “I want my books to be a huge success like Harry Potter.”

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Wow, I sure didn’t aim low in those days. I was quite surprised by the audacity of my intention.

I admit I’ve reduced my ultimate writing goals as I’ve gone along. Which I think boils down to figuring out what you really want to do with your time. As you grow older, time becomes more precious. The entry for 2017 reads: I raise people’s awareness and bring joy, inspire and make people feel better through the power of story.

And with age, you get more realistic. I might not be the next J. K. Rowling.

These days, I’m a stay-at-home mum and caregiver to my thirteen-year-old and my middle son who has Downs’ syndrome. I write part-time. I have two stories published and two books which I self published. My wish list these days tends to focus on more meaningful things like wanting joy, and a sense of fulfilment.

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These days my ultimate writing goal is to write more of what I love.  However, the series I’m writing is anthropomorphic fantasy fiction about insects. It gets some strange reactions at times.

I’ll never forget the response of one assessor to my book,  The Or’in of Tane Mahuta. She said, “Great story, but lose the insects!” I couldn’t lose the insects, they were an integral part of the machine of the story.

One day, I will move on to new fields in fiction. For now, I want to see this series out and do the best I possibly can.

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One of the authors I like is Lee Child, author of the Jack Reacher novels. He’s a real storyteller. Asked to give a tip recently for writers, he said, “Ignore all the tips. It’s got to be 100% your own product. As soon as you start thinking about what you should do, there’s a compromise and the spark goes. You’ve got to do what you want to do.”

Child really gets it. He’s talking about listening to the gut and the heart of the story. I love it. I’m ignoring all the tips. It’s 100% my anthropomorphic fantasy fiction about insects. If I want little critters creeping and flying and turning into human hybrids, I must write them. You’ve got to do what you want to do, right?

I wonder what my intention for 2019 will be? I think it’s going to be something along the lines of ‘I just want to be myself and enjoy the process!’

What about you? What are your Ultimate Writing Goals for 2018? Have you met them yet?

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Keep Writing!

Yvette K. Carol

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In a totally sane society, madness is the only freedom. ~ J. G. Ballard

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Subscribe to my Newsletter by emailing me with “Newsletter Subscription” in the subject line to: yvettecarol@hotmail.com

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Comments
  1. Oh, we’ve all had the Harry Potter success dream 🙂 As long as your writing fulfills you, keep writing about those insects.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Juneta says:

    I agree I think we all have that Harry Potter dream. I want to make a living or better than just a living really so … Happy IWSG!

    Liked by 1 person

    • yvettecarol says:

      More power to you, Juneta. Yes, making a living is absolutely possible to anyone and so is making a good living doing it.
      I was thinking, maybe I should just carry on foolishly believing in the dream forever. Forget all this growing up business! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My family got our first computer in the late 80s I think. Dos! I played a couple of games on it, but this was before word processors. Commander Keen was this really game that I’d love to find a version of. Anyway, I wish I had been writing fiction since I was 17! Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • yvettecarol says:

      Thanks, Raimey. Wow, your family had their own computer in the eighties? That’s impressive! I remember borrowing a friends computer for a while in the nineties, and it was a big box with another box on top of it. The technology was so limited then!
      I can remember going with my friends into town as a sixteen-year-old to this one particular café, because it had Space Invaders. You could sit at a table and play this very simple but addictive digital game. I haven’t heard of Commander Keen but I wouldn’t mind playing Space Invaders. 🙂

      Like

  4. I love your post, Yvette! 🙂
    For me, the main goal in this crazy journey is that writing has to be fun. I don’t want to be pressured by unrealistic expectations, so I agree with you when you say – “I just want to be myself and enjoy the process!”
    Writer In Transit

    Liked by 1 person

    • yvettecarol says:

      Hi Michelle,
      sorry I didn’t see this was waiting in “pending” all month! Thank you for stopping by. I agree wholeheartedly that it has to be fun, because it’s such hard work to write a book that if the fun element wasn’t there, I wouldn’t be able to keep it up!

      Like

  5. Pleased to meet you, Yvette. There are so many shape-shifter stories published today, but I’ve never yet heard of any involving insects. Sounds cool!

    Liked by 1 person

    • yvettecarol says:

      Thanks, Rhonda. Nice to meet you, too.

      In the Animorphs series by Applegate there are one or two characters which can morph into insects, but the majority of shape-shifters in fiction are usually animals or other creatures.

      I didn’t start out wanting to write about insects. I wrote about boys and girls. Then, a successful writer friend asked why the one story I’d written about an insect was my favourite. I said, ‘because an insect can do seemingly impossible things. They can fly, they can leap great distances, they have super strength, etc.’ My friend said, ‘if that’s what you like to write, why don’t you write about them?’ I tried my hand and a love affair was begun. The illustrations, which are on the left hand side of my blog, are from some of the picture books I wrote in the early years. And, the middle grade series I’m writing now evolved from them.

      Like

  6. Toi Thomas says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog.
    “wanting joy, and a sense of fulfillment”
    “You’ve got to do what you want to do, right?”
    Great post. No pun intended, but you do have a way with words.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Olga Godim says:

    Yeah, we all dream big in the beginning. Our goals change with age and experience, and it is a good thing too. Your series about the anthropomorphous insects sounds nifty.

    Liked by 1 person

    • yvettecarol says:

      You’ve got to love a person who uses the word “nifty!” Hi Olga, yes, I agree that it’s a very good thing to gain a realistic perspective, while it’s still important to have goals.

      Like

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