New Year, New Goals

  • By: Jessica Faust | Date: Jan 04 2022

You all know I love my goals and with each new year, I have a new opportunity for a reset. Both in my goals and in the ways I work to achieve them.

I actually start working on my goals in October. As I see the year’s end in sight I also see a chance to look back and ahead. But at BookEnds, we use the fresh year to really establish what we want.

An Action Plan

Goals are one thing. It’s great to want to quit your job or finish your novel but to truly succeed at achieving those goals you need the action plan to make it happen.

At BookEnds we work backward. If we want to sell a certain number of books each year (goal) we need to establish a plan to make it happen. It’s not enough to just set the goal. So if I want to sell 50 books, I’m going to need to send out at least 50 submissions and if I don’t have 50 clients, I might need to take on new clients.

So once you figure out what you want for 2022, figure out how you’re going to get it. How many hours are you going to write? How many queries are you going to send? How many books are you going to finish? What steps do you need to take to hit that goal?

Goals Can Move Sideways

Goals and our achievements don’t always need to move up to work. Sometimes they move sideways. I’ve seen this especially as agents become more and more successful. While at one time a goal might have been to sell 50 books, now the goal is to still sell 50, but at higher advances.

Or maybe there’s a larger shift in the career. Maybe it’s less about selling a certain number of books and more about selling a certain type of book. Years ago one of my goals wasn’t to sell more but to shift my list to more upmarket and literary fiction. Happy to say I feel I’ve done that.

This year a lot of my goals will be about finding balance–between my list and growing it and building BookEnds. There are definitely some plans to go up there, but there were also be a lot of sideways movement.

Goals Should Scare You

Just a little. Not the hide under the bed scared, but the heart is beating a little faster at just the thought. If it doesn’t scare you, I always say, it’s not big enough. Even if you’ve already set your goals take another look at them. Do they scare you? If not, they aren’t big enough.

Don’t make your goals easily achievable. Work for them. You’ll achieve more if you do.

4 responses to “New Year, New Goals”

  1. Excellent comment about thinking big. My problem is trying to get the other guy/gal to think as big as I do.

  2. Love the backwards approach with a clear plan in mind. Good luck with surpassing expectations.

  3. Avatar Jose Velazquez says:

    Thanks Jessica… always inspiring!

  4. Avatar AJ Blythe says:

    I love making goals and have them for all sorts of lengths of time, from day to year. I am certain I achieve more because of them.