Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Mary Pat Hyland: There’s Always Another Goal To Set

Today I'm welcoming Mary Pat Hyland as guest blogger. Make sure you check out her giveaway below this post...

I embrace the concept of writing down your goals, and believe that the action of doing so fixes within your subconscious an importance to the items listed. Even though you may have forgotten them, your subconscious prods them to the surface of your mind as a gentle reminder once and a while.

For the past three decades I’ve made the commitment to spend quiet time on the last day of every year to reflect upon what was achieved and list my goals for the New Year. I would wager that some sort of writing goal has made every one of those lists.

With the publication of my seventh book—my first collection of short stories; the others are novels—I’ve been thinking about my goals over those years and how many of them have been reached. I can check these ones off:
  • Published my first novel.
  • Someone I didn’t know purchased it.
  • Got a five-star review from someone I didn’t know.
  • Sold a book in a foreign country.
  • Published another novel. (Repeated four more times.)
  • Got interviewed on radio, TV, and the newspaper.
  • Reached No. 1 bestseller in a category (oddly enough it was for 3/17, my St. Patrick’s Day parody of Dante’s Inferno and the country was France).
It’s amazing to see what has been accomplished since 2008, my first full year of being an author. Can I rest on my laurels? No way! There are so many more goals to be met.

The next list of will be tougher to crack—a lot tougher. Someday I hope to…. Strike that! Someday I will reach at least one of these goals:
  • Sell enough books so writing will be my lone profession.
  • Make it onto a book recommendation list. Are you reading this, Oprah?
  • Make it onto one of THE bestseller lists.
  • Have one of my works translated into either a movie or TV show/webisode.
How do I get from here to there? Probably the same way I ran my first 5K race. Every day just put one foot after the other—er, just write one word after the other, and keep repeating and repeating.

This is my sixth year competing in National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo. The goal is to write 50,000 words in 30 days. It doesn’t have to be pretty. It most certainly will need massive editing when I’m done. But when the goal is achieved I will have completed the main gist of a basic novel in an extremely short period of time. In the past five years I’ve succeeded three times in reaching the goal. Trust me, it’s tough!

This year, I’m sure to make it. By the eighth day of the month I had already passed the halfway point. How was that possible? I think it’s because at this stage in my writing career I’m truly in the groove, committed to writing as a daily habit. A writer is not unlike an athlete; the more you keep “in shape” by writing every day, the easier the words will flow.

Goals such as NaNoWriMo keep you focused. Sometimes authors drift with their imagination, and reeling that back in can be like herding cats. So if you want to become an author, I strongly suggest making a list of goals for yourself and sticking to them. What makes achieving them easier is to make them in three categories: easily attainable, ones that will require an extra oomph of effort, and finally the dream big/reach for the stars ones.

May you reach every important goal you set!


MARY PAT HYLAND is the author of six Amazon Top 100 bestselling novels, all set in Upstate New York: The House With the Wraparound Porch (a family saga), The Terminal Diner (suspense), 3/17 (parody) and the Maeve Kenny Series comprising three books: The Cyber Miracles, A Sudden Gift of Fate and A Wisdom of Owls (humor, chick lit). Mary Pat enjoys gourmet cooking, gardening, teaching the Irish language and exploring the Finger Lakes region of New York State.

LATEST RELEASE: In the Shadows of the Onion Domes, collected short stories set.

DESCRIPTION: By the confluence of the Susquehanna and Chenango rivers in New York's Southern Tier lies a verdant valley called the Triple Cities. The shoe factories that originally drew thousands of immigrants from across Europe have long moved on. What remains are the distinct ethnic flavors of a gritty community determined to overcome economic woes, adapt to the rapid changes in society and find true meaning in life. Consider these stories as pages ripped from a sketchbook. Some are quick studies; others are more detailed portraits inspired by observed characters, whispered gossip, overheard conversations and the local lore of the residents whose neighborhoods are framed by the gilded Orthodox Church domes that span this valley. You'll find that each tale has its own tone: some are humorous or poignant, others are surprising and haunting.

Available in paperback worldwide through Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other major retail outlets and in ebook through Amazon Kindle.

ISBN-10: 1502358646
ISBN-13: 978-1502358646

For more information, visit the author’s links:

Website http://marypathyland.com
Blog: http://www.marypathyland.com/thehylander/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1282032.Mary_Pat_Hyland
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/marypathyland

Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway contest to win an autographed copy of In the Shadows of the Onion Domes, copies of her ebooks or a piece of original art created by the author.

In the Shadows of the Onion Domes Rafflecopter giveaway

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