How to Set Goals As the Year Winds Down: 18 Before 2018

Originally posted at

Summer’s almost over, and the last few months of the year are coming up quick. Which means it’s time to do a little bit of assessment and see where I’m headed with my yearly goals.

One unique way to take stock of your life is to participate in what Lisa Jacobs calls the “18 Before 2018.” The concept is simple: write up a list of 18 goals to accomplish before 2018. These can be big or small goals, or a combination of both. I did a bit of brainstorming, and this is what I came up with…

My 18 Before 2018

  1. Finish my World’s Coolest Jobs book proposal and start pitching it to agents
  2. Write a second proposal for a totally different book and start pitching it to different agents (this one is still in the kernel phase, so I don’t want to say much more about it, for now!)
  3. Write a novel about middle-school ninja during the 3-Day Novel Contest (Sept. 2-4)
  4. Edit and publish my ninja novel
  5. Take a train trip to LA

    “Surfliner” image by Flickr user Nick Chill
  6. Visit with my BFF, Jenna, in November and try to convince her to write a joint novel with me, à la Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke COMPLETED! (Well, okay, I’m still working on convincing her to write that book, but we did have a great visit in November.)

    Have you read this book? It’s super fun, and written by two ladies who are BFFs from high school, Liz and Lisa. How cool is that?
  7. Visit with my parents during the holidays in December
  8. Sell books at the San Diego Festival of Books – August 26 COMPLETED!
  9. Sell books at the San Diego Zine Fest – October 8 COMPLETED!
  10. Attend San Diego chapter meetings for SCBWI beginning in September COMPLETED!
  11. Read 52 books COMPLETED!
  12. Get a new mattress (my old one is already sagging, and it’s only been 4 years… I thought these things were supposed to last at least 10?!)
  13. Journal daily, on paper (I’ve recently started Bullet Journaling, and want to start doing some art journaling as well)
  14. Walk 10,000 steps every day
  15. Attend John Lithgow’s free lecture at UCSD WHOOPS! Missed this one…
  16. Make a French Silk pie for my birthday – October 14 Christmas
  17. Try one new recipe every week (for some reason, I’ve decided I need to start with a pot roast – something I have never cooked before – but I am also reading a lot of cookbooks that I’ve borrowed from the library)
  18. Start a NaNoWriMo write-in at my local library COMPLETED! And here’s the write-up about it, from a local magazine, in case you’re curious…

As you can see, some of these are pretty big goals, others are pretty small, and some are just for fun.

I need a little more fun in my life!

What about you?

What are YOUR 18 Before 2018? Let me know in the comments section for a chance to win a 2018 Get To Work Book!