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#WriterlyResolutions: Day One

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What’s one goal you achieved in 2017, and what did you learn in the process?

I set five writing-related goals for myself in 2017, but the one I’ll focus on in this post is the following:

Record and publish at least 12 writescast episodes with guests.

And I’m proud to say that’s something I’ve (more than) achieved!

By the time 2017 concludes with this episode, I’ll have published a total of 25 podcasts in 2017 featuring 18 unique guests.

In the process of achieving this goal, I learned

  • flexibility is important.
  • there are a ton of fantastic guests-in-waiting out there.
  • the writing community is incredibly supportive.
  • perhaps I should have set a quarterly goal instead.

Flexibility was a major lesson in that by April of this year, I knew the one-episode-per-month model I originally planned to pursue would result in me leaving a lot of quality content unpublished for far longer than was necessary. It also required a great deal of flexibility to balance guests’ schedules against my own, and then, when recording the interviews, to remain flexible as conversations sometimes meandered their ways toward topics we originally didn’t plan on exploring.

The above was also a valuable lesson to have learned once I realized how many awesome potential guests there are just waiting to be interviewed. I’d say of the 18 guests that were on the show this year, about half of them reached out to me about appearing on the show, rather than the other way around. And I’m glad they got in touch!

A number of them were already listeners to the show, but they had a topic they wanted to explore in more detail. So, after some conversation by email, we got some questions together, planned a digital hang-out, and got to recording it, all for the benefit of the community at large! I like to think I and every guest learned something along the way, too. 🙂

The response to the show also vastly exceeded my expectations, which showed me how supportive this community can really be. Like all projects, the writescast started slow, but over the course of the last six months alone has grown in listenership by nearly 550%! Not only that, but the launch of the show’s Patreon page and the feedback I received on Twitter and as part of the essay contest were direct signs of how engaged and supportive the writing community has been with the show. Thank you, everyone, for your support. I hope we can keep learning from one another in 2018 and beyond!

Lastly, when evaluating my goal itself, perhaps I should have taken a more piecemeal approach and re-evaluated my vision for the show each quarter of the year. In a sense, I did switch to the more aggressive production schedule at about the midpoint of the year, but that happened more by coincidence than it did by conscious choice. I feel pretty locked in to my vision for the show in 2018, though, but I’ll certainly be taking a quarterly goals approach in some other avenues once the new year begins.

Now it’s your turn. Tell us about one of your 2017 #WriterlyResolutions. How did you achieve it, and what did you learn in the process?

Then, on Friday of this week, tune in for a new writescast episode all about setting goals and maximizing our takeaways from our success (and failures, too!).

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