Beautiful People: In Which I Have Lots of Writerly Goals

12:35 PM

Just in case you weren't tired of hearing me talk about New Year's goals already.

I'm linking up with Cait and Sky for Beautiful People, a monthly link-up all about writing and showing off our characters and good stuff like that. The theme this month is writerly resolutions and goals. Let's do this. 


What were your writing achievements last year?
Well, Pariah got a new plot, so that's exciting. I was really stressed about it but I pushed through and it worked out well. I wrote out three or four first drafts as well which was more than I had planned. 

And I also got third place in a writing contest??? Wow.
My Hamilton obsession may never end and I'm not sorry.
Tell us about your top priority writing project for this year?
Yeah...let's face it, it's probably Pariah. I'm hoping this is the last major rewrite I'll have to do, so most of the year will be just whipping it into proper shape...again...

List 5 areas you’d like to work the hardest to improve this year.
Are you participating in any writing challenges?
It goes without saying that I'll be doing NaNoWriMo. Also both Camp NaNo challenges, if I can manage that and I don't have anything else come up. As for things I need to improve... 

- Everything. 
- having a definite writing schedule. I suck at that and not a lot gets done as a result. 
- descriptions. ugh.
- chilling out about perfectionism because that is my downfall. 
- plot holes because there are too many always.
- on that subject it would be cool to learn how to outline beforehand??? My pantser self hates that. 

What’s your critique partner/beta reader situation like and do you have plans to expand this year?
It would be cool to have a definite critique partner, but I haven't got one yet. So maybe I'll find someone I click with this year? That should be a goal of mine too. *sigh* 

Other than that...I had beta readers last year and they were awesome. Seriously, I love you guys. I have a rapidly growing list of people who will read the next draft of Pariah when it's finished, so...pressure. But that should be interesting. yo, if you're interested in being on that list, let me know? 

Do you have plans to read any writer-related books this year? Or are there specific books you want to read for research?
Yep! I would absolutely love to read more writing books this year. (Have any suggestions? Let me knowwww.) As for specific books...I have The Victorian City and The Invention of Murder, both by Judith Flanders, for research purposes. (For Pariah, yes.)

I'll probably also read The Iliad again, more in-depth this time, to prepare for my sci-fi adaption. *flails* And lots of Greek plays/poetry. As you do.

Pick one character you want to get to know better, and how are you going to achieve this?
Ughhh I need to work on Scarlette, my lovely rich girl/ ultimate hardcore person from Pariah. I love everything about her, but she's the total opposite of my personality and she always gives me the most difficulty out of anyone. As for plans...lots of character sketches? Mostly just writing her more? I don't know. I'll figure it out as I go or not
Let's face it, she's the Cosette of the story. And I never understood Cosette.
Toni Morrison once said, “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” What are the books that you want to see more of, and what “holes” do you think need filling in the literary world?

I want to see more books like Challenger Deep, that approach mental illness from the perspective of something that doesn't make you any less of a person but still needs to be fought and conquered. I want more mental illness books that have a hopeful outlook and feature characters who have a support system and are okay with medication because it's a helpful thing and work hard to be more than their mental illlness and all that good stuff. Also, more sci-fi/fantasy/dystopia books with characters with mental illnesses that aren't just mental illness books. 

Less "chosen one" books and more books like Unwind, about actual normal people who have to work hard to be the hero. More books that make you think. I think the literary world, especially YA, needs more books that make you think and don't cut corners when it comes to tough decisions. 

Also: we need more steampunk. YA steampunk especially. PLEASE. 
Except not and I'm planning another post about this.
What do you hope to have achieved by the end of 2016?
Oh, so many things. 

I want to be happy with Pariah. I want to have finished another draft of Havard. I want to write my Iliad adaption. I want to get published in a magazine or something like that. I want to be a more consistent daily writer. Allll the things, as usual. 

Also: I will never apologize for Hamilton. Ever. 

What do you want to accomplish this year when it comes to writing? Do you have better goals than I do? Somehow? 


  1. Aimee, I've been stalking you and Pariah for a bit now. I can listen no longer in silence. I am half-agony, half-hope. (SORRY, QUOTES YOU KNOW) And I was wondering...I don't know when you'll have Pariah ready, or if you thought it would be my thing, but I would absolutely love to be a beta reader if time and circumstances permitted. My strengths are character development and fuzzy cuddles for author woes. So it's up to you, and I won't be offended if you say no--but just wanted to let you know the offer is out there. :)


    1. As you know, I'd love for you to read Pariah <3

  2. I think your goals are pretty awesome. I want to finish my WIP because I've been writing it for 2 years and that's a really long time. I don't think I will start something new because I learnt I'm not good with writing two different stories at the same time. It just messes with my head. But yeah, that's my main goal. Pretty boring but if I accomplish it I will be super excited. Good luck with yours. :)

  3. Oh my gosh I forgot about that writing competition. That's when I feel in love with Pariah. xD

  4. Okay I LOVED READING THIS SO MUCH. You crack me up. XD Also I get this vague feeling you just want Neal Shusterman to write more books and teach us all how to be as awesome as him. *nods* I THINK THAT'S A FABULOUS IDEA. (Srsly though, I want more books like Challenger Deep too, and I want more books that deal with things like mental illness but where the characters actually have a fantasy or adventure plot to go with it. *nods* I also want less books about being "broken" and more books about managing who you are and your limitations and things like that. If that makes sense. hehe. Obviously that's my favourite question out of this week's set. ;D)

    Congrats on placing in that writing contest too! WOOOOT. That's awesome. :D


      And yessss characters with mental illnesses are very important to me, and I wish there were more of them who were learning to deal with it and also flying dragons or spaceships or something. xD

  5. I'm super happy for you. Good job on the writing contest! I hope all your writing goes well this year (yay awkward compliments).
    I very much agree with you on the need for more books that approach mental illness realistically. Mental illness is an all-too-common thing in our society, and it is seldom portrayed as it actually is.
    I was up until 2 watching Parks and Rec, hence the incoherent phrasing in this comment. Anyway, good luck with everything! I'm sure you can do it.

  6. Mental iiiillness. Alright, I have an entire host of characters with mental illness and personality disorders and conditions to boot, and I have feelings about them. There's my lovely INTJ kind-of lead who is a recovering addict and autistic, and his ESFP match with PTSD in one project

    In another, there's another autistic man, this time an INTP, and his manic-depressive ESFP brother. And then, in concepting, a lovely handicapped I-don't-know-yet girl who can't speak or write because of her disability, and the villain of my newest project, who I love a lot more than I should, an INFP with borderline personality disorder and possible comorbid malignant paranoia.

    And then my lovely ESTP with amnesia and a schizoid ISTP woman.

    They are my babies and I've already messed them up... can't be good.

    1. Ahhh good for you! I think we definitely need more mental illness characters and it's awesome to see people contributing to that. We need it so badly.

  7. I would love to beta for you. What writing contest, did you place in? Congrats on placing.

    1. Yay I have you on the list also! It was the Kingdom Pen writing contest a while back:

  8. Yay exciting goals!
    I'd love to be a beta (sure you aren't up to delta or gamma or epilson?) reader! My schedule might be a little frantic this spring, but I'd love to get a chance to read some good steampunk.
    Also, speaking of drafts, how on earth do you do the whole editing revision process? How do you even fill in plot holes and find what needs fixing (besides spelling issues, which are usually straightforward). I've only just finished one WIP and I don't know what to do with it. it's sitting in a notebook-y lump and giving me the evil eye. How do you make it stop??

    1. Huzzah! I love having beta readers. :)

      Hah, I'm still learning that myself. *sighs* I usually write a new draft completely from scratch, so I can fix all the holes and still work in the things I like and such. it's a whole lot less overwhelming than trying to dive back into the first draft and fix up everything, I guess? A fresh start can be good.

  9. Congratulations on making it to third place! *throws confetti* And congrats on making it so far with Pariah! (I would totally love to beta read it, when and if you still need beta readers. :D)

    I defiantly would love to see more steampunk out there, and I haven't read Challenger Deep, but I get the feeling I would love to read it and books like it.

    Good luck with all your goals!

    1. I'll put you on the list too, of course, and let you know! *nodnod*

      Read Challenger Deep. Do itttt.

  10. Third place in a writing contest? Congratulations!
    I've found that writing down my wordcount each day helps a lot with keeping a daily writing schedule- mostly because I feel mildly guilty if there's too many 0s in a week/month/whatever amount of time. As for plotting . . . I'm a pantser too, at heart, but I have learned to plot in a very loose "Ok, here's some bullet points of what I hope to have happen in this story, roughly in order" sort of way. It does help. Except when I decide to throw the thing out the window because I got a better idea for how the plot should go on the evening before NaNoWriMo begins.
    Finally: STEAMPUNK. YES. The world will always need more steampunk.
    Loved reading your answers!

    1. Ooh, that sounds like something I should try to work on!

  11. Congrats on getting third place in a writing contest! That's awesome! Also, I agree that I'd like to see more books like Challenger Deep out there, and while I don't mind the "Chosen One" trope, I do like books where people are just the people in the story. And sure, they're special for some reason, but they still are just who they are at the core. I really hope you have a good writing year!

  12. Congrats on third place for the contest! I definitely feel you on needing to improve... everything, particularly scheduling writing. Also researching Illiad for your next story? Awesome dedication (research is so hard for me to actually sit down and do, lol) plus it sounds really cool. And yes to more steampunk!

  13. YES we need more steampunk! Hence why I'm writing one. XD All of your goals look great! I'm hoping to work on four books this year. Best wishes with all of your writing endeavors!

  14. HAMILTON. Have you seen it?! My mother and I are plotting (or at least dreaming) a roadtrip to New York... (Furthermore, I appreciate your Les Mis references.)

    Ooh, I hope to undertake a study soon of the Greek classics. Do you have any particular favorites (aside from, I assume, the Iliad)?

    I would love to read more books dealing with mental illness. I have an incubating story with a couple of characters with different mental illnesses, and now that I'm thinking about it I really want to plunge into it, but alas! I have other things to write first.

    "I think the literary world, especially YA, needs more books that make you think and don't cut corners when it comes to tough decisions." Mm, yes. I'm doing my part by writing a novel with ethical dilemmas galore. :D

    Oh, right. Goals. I wish you all the best in yours!


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