writers / writing

#IWSG Changing Goals as Writers

writers groupThis post is for Alex Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writers Support Group (click the link for details on what that means and how to join. You will also find a list of bloggers signed up to the challenge that are worth checking out. The first Wednesday of every month, we all post our thoughts, fears or words of encouragement for fellow writers.

This month’s insecurity – What are your ultimate writing goals, and how have they changed over time (if at all)?

I never planned to be a writer. I wouldn’t have even dipped a toe in if Born in a Treacherous Time hadn’t nagged at the back of my mind forever, refusing to be ignored. When my kids grew up to high school, I had a bit of extra time and set out on what I understand now is an endless journey. Now with children moved out, my job home-based, I have much more free time, enough that without writing, I would be bored.

So, I suppose my goal has changed over time:

Old goal: Silence my muse.

New goal: Avoid boredom.

I’ll be checking your blogs to find much more erudite answers to this question!

More IWSG articles:

#IWSG Will my new book be a bang or a whimper?

#IWSG March: Goals

#IWSG–Steps taken for my writing and publishing


Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers, and the upcoming Born in a Treacherous Timefirst in the Man vs. Nature collection. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice reviewer,  a columnist for TeachHUB, monthly contributor to Today’s Author and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. You can find her books at her publisher’s website, Structured Learning.

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92 thoughts on “#IWSG Changing Goals as Writers

  1. Great goals, particularly avoiding boredom. I have withdrawals when I can’t write, which is most of the time especially through the school terms. 😦

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  2. Silencing the muse is the best way to get started on writing. 🙂 I saw your post for the 4th and also want to say thank YOU for raising such wonderful people who serve our country. I salute you all.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve found silencing my muse is depressing. Avoiding boredom is so much more fun!
    Since I’m part of a Got Goals? blog hop, I chose not to answer the optional question this time. Also, I couldn’t resist posting on the actual 4th of July.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sometime back, you said that Treacherous Times was a niche book, and that stopped me. There will, of course be folks who read it just because it has your name on it, and others who love a prehistoric setting, but it’s hard to hold a candle to “romance” or “mystery” genres.
    Some time ago, I too, had to rethink this whole writing-thing. I’d finished a series about “change” and small town culture being lost to folks who only want vacation homes. I said it well, with lots of humor. The books have won national awards and folks who like stories about small-town-America love the series. The rest of the world…meh.
    It drove me back to the question…why do I write?
    I finally figured out that I’d write, no matter what. Always have. The question then became, “Why do I publish?”
    And that’s why I love your acknowledgment of writing about “fringe” “niche” subjects. Not everyone wants to read them, but those who love the topic, breathe a thankful sigh that there’s a well-researched, intriguing book about it.
    There’s a whole group of people who love having their minds stretched, pondering questions they’d taken for granted, peeking into another world, and wondering what they’d do if they were dropped in the middle of it.
    Bored? Maybe? But I’m guessing you write because you’re creative, intelligent, and have a story to tell. Keep ’em coming.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your point is so right, Barb, about niche stories. I spent many hours hunting out stories in my niche, thrilled with every one of them. They didn’t sell a lot but to me they were/are gold.

      Which is your point.

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  5. Jacqui, like you, I never planned to be a writer.
    My main goal is to keep on enjoying the writing life. It must remain fun.
    I came across a really interesting comment this month, where the author stated that her goals are more focused on what her writing is saying and the messages she is planting in readers heads. That’s taking writerly responsibility to the next level. Food for thought.
    Happy 04th of July to you!
    Writer In Transit

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is so true–that writing really must be fun. Otherwise, it’s work. Personally, the responsibility to plant ideas in readers’ heads is daunting to me. I’m pretty much fringe in my thinking (I think my latest book is proof!), I will say that one of the reasons Born in a Treacherous Time became a novel-length book was so I could better explain the ideas.

      OK, I think I see where that author was going with her comment.

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  6. It’s hard to silence that muse – except perhaps when the screaming of kids drowns her out. (My step-grandkids do – and they’re due here for 4+ weeks soon. Muse has announced she’s taking a vacation.)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Goals change as life evolves itself and we find new activities to keep ourselves busy. Certain paths are unknown and we don’t even know when we take the turn towards the new avenues we find. Same happened with me and I am glad I have grown up to understand what makes me happy and calm. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jacqui, I think our plans and goals are constantly changing … and that is what makes life so exciting, a constant adventure. At the moment I long for more time to concentrate on the writing so I’m looking with one eye to a year’s time – I will miss my son so much when he goes to uni but realise I will have lots of time!! Absolutely no excuses!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Is the Uni close to home? So he might come visit often? My daughter went 4000 miles away to a military university so our contact became very conscribed. Luckily, my son was still home. And he decided to live at home while going to school. that made the separation so much easier.

      Liked by 1 person

      • We’ve just started visiting the ones he’s looking at and at the weekend went to his first choice. He & we loved it – the campus, course & lecturers so much better than we could have imagined. He wants to live away, experience living in another county, but not too far so we can’t visit (or he can come home!) – just a couple or so hours drive! Everyone happy! 400 miles is a lot and that must have been tough.

        Liked by 1 person

        • What you are saying–living away from home for all those good reasons of independence–I agree with. My son even got a scholarship (he was a state-ranked string bass player) but he couldn’t live at home so passed on it. After I choked a bit, and bit my tongue, I got over it.Even at 18, it’s important to listen to your kids!

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  9. As far as writing went, I used to always try my hand at the odd type – on the style of Dean Koontz, S. King, Neil Gaiman, etc. – bombed out terribly. It was only when I switched to non-fiction that anyone actually took notice, but I do not consider myself a professional writer.

    Liked by 3 people

    • ‘Professional’ connotes making money at it. Of course, I’m not sure if that’s net or gross and that would make a big difference in whether I am professional or amateur! Your blog, though, is a wonderful find for all military folk, especially WWII. There just aren’t a lot like it, not only because of the content but the community that participates with comments and contributions.

      OK, enough said.

      Liked by 2 people

  10. I’ve always wanted to share the stories bursting out of my head – as a child I even created my own comic book, complete with terrible drawings (I’m no artist, for sure). Then I wanted to get them published.
    Now, having embraced the indie world, my new aim is to tell and self-publish the stories as I want them to be, and not as some editor dictates.
    Power to indies!

    Liked by 3 people

    • You’ve summed it up well, Deborah. It’s hard to imagine, having read and loved The Prince’s Man, that it wasn’t picked up. But that’s how agents are (and I don’t mean that in a snarky way at all–they look for a certain theme at a certain time).

      Truly, there is nothing boring about being an Indie author is there?

      Liked by 1 person

      • There sure isn’t!
        Actually, Prince’s Man WAS picked up by an agent, and went to the Big Six (as they were in those days). It took 6 months for all the replies to come back, and all said the same thing – really liked the writing, but not what we are looking for at this time 😦
        I was so thrilled when I discovered indie publishing, as it meant I didn’t have to bin the book after all!

        Liked by 1 person

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