Like gazillions of people around the globe I want to start 2015 off better. Better than I was before. Better… stronger… faster…

Like the six million dollar writer. Huh. I wish.

Though resolutions are often sneered at, Chuck Wendig, writer extraordinaire, puts it really well on his blog, 2015 Resolution for Writers, where he writes that all human culture is basically artificial, but none the less significant to us. Yes! Personally, I like making goals. I enjoy dusting off last year’s goals, shuffling them around, playing with them, streamlining them, honing them.

I especially like achieving them.

I have a lot of goals this year but the main theme for the year is organization—because someone, whose aim in life is to do ALL THE THINGS, can’t afford not to have her shit together. And there are so many tools now to help me organize ALL THE THINGS so they won’t fly off into oblivion like My Little Pony on crack.

One of the many things I want to do this year is go deeper into my study of the writing craft. Continuing education is important, especially as I get older and I forget more things. I was putting together a lesson plan for a college class I teach and was again awed by the intricacies of the craft of writing—the loveliness of stringing words together to create a story.

ID-100100444So this year I’ve resolved to break out the craft books and study writing like I’ve never studied it before— scene, structure, plot, character, etc. I’m pretty excited and in honor of my year of organization, I made the following list of books I hope to read, (or reread), and study.

Break into Fiction by Mary Buckham and Dianna Love
Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass
Write Tight by William Brohaugh
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne & Dave King

I broke out a notebook/planner for my writing studies and separated sections into topics like plot, scene building, characters, etc. As I read, I’ll put my notes under the appropriate topic and include the book and the page number. I think it’ll be easier for me to look up specific information that way.  I’m going to start with Break into Fiction because it comes highly recommended by my friend and author, Shirley Jump, and I’ve done an intensive with Mary Buckham that was phenomenal.

I can’t read any more than that because my schedule is pretty full, but I’m stoked for my independent study. My goal is to deepen my understanding of my craft. Too often, I read or hear something amazing and then I forget it on my way out to the garage to get something that I’ve also forgotten…

What was I going to say?

Anyway, that is one aspect of how I’m organizing my year. Are you trying to organizing your year? Have any good craft books to recommend?



image courtesy of Adamr at