“The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter. ’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” Mark Twain

Looking Forward: My direction, etc. for 2012

Now that I've reviewed my goals from last year, and reported on how I did (check out Monday's post if you missed it), it's time to look forward into 2012.

One thing that I am planning to change (somewhat, anyway), is my blog. I'm taking on something of a new schedule.
Mondays: A devotional post - connected to Living By Grace , a Christian community on Facebook. Living By Grace is a modern-day, gather at the well experience designed to foster relationship-building while encouraging a closer walk with the Savior. Five amazing women and I each host one day each week.

Wednesdays: God Is So Good - a new weekly series sharing God's work in struggles - mostly written by me with an occasional guest post. Some posts may be stories I've written, though most will be true. If you have a blessing you think might fit, drop me a note (click here to drop me an email)

Thursdays: 3rd Thursday: As of Late (hosted by my dear friend Critty Joy). Another Thursday (not sure which): Writing stuff I've learned (more info below).

Fridays: Finds for Fridays - linkups to my favorite friends'/etc/ blog posts of the week.

Of course, I'll be doing other posts as I am so inspired, but these I'm hoping will be my constants. I'm certain I'll be participating in Patty Wysong's resurrected A2Z4UandMe at least some in the new year, as well as these goal and progress posts once a month. And who knows what else?

Another thing that is changing is my focus. God has given me a new verse for 2012, and a graphic to go with it.

The Child continued to grow and become strong, increasing in wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.(Luke 2:40 NASB)
I know the Child in this verse is Jesus, but I am ALSO the Lord's child. God has impressed on me the need to learn more about the craft of writing - and novel-writing in particular. NaNoWriMo taught me that writing novels does not come "naturally" to me - my writing style is more episodic, and I have trouble extending conflict.

So, I'm taking this year to learn as much as I can about writing in general, and novel writing in particular through classes, blogs, conferences as feasible, craft books, magazines. I will then apply it to what I have written in 2011, and improve it - writing more using that information. PLUS - sharing what I learned in a monthly  blog post (see above :D).

And, to be a bit more specific, here are my four goals for 2012:
  1. Learn as much as I can about writing from various places, applying what I've learned to Handmaiden To A Princess and any other writing I do.
  2.  Restructure my non-fiction book Ailing Body, Nourished Soul into more of a "help" book, and get the new version out to publishers/agents.
  3. Work with Jennifer Slattery to put together the second Story of Faith devotional book (New Testament biblical fiction devotionals for tweens).
  4. Continue to build my name recognition/platform.
So, there are my plans for 2012. With God's direction - and your encouragement - I know I will make much progress this coming year.

Have you set goals for 2012? Have you determined a focus for the new year?

Traveling Rough Roads With God's Strength


  1. You seem very motivated! You go girl!

  2. Your focus is admirable. Wishing you all the best in the New Year.

  3. You inspire me, Joanne. I'm so glad we've gotten to know each other through Living by Grace. You're such a blessing to me.

    I love your life verse for 2012. I have one as well and growing strong is part of it. I'm blogging about it next Wednesday, but reading your life verse only confirmed further what God wants to do in my life this year.

    One of my favorite craft books is Thanks but This isn't for Us by Jessica Page Morrell. And of course, Stein on Writing. I'm sure you've already read Plot & Structure by JSB, so I won't include that, although, I kinda did,huh? LOL

    Have a great week!

  4. These are great goals Joanne! I am going to be writing and learning too. It should be a fun year for us! :)

  5. What an awesome blog...I absolutely love your header.

    First-time visitor and NEW FOLLOWER



  6. Very motivating, Joanne. I'll try and work on mine in the next day or so. I have a very few goals, but I enjoy the reflecting process.


  7. After watching you diligently chase your goals over these past couple years, I know you'll do well with this list. Praying God blesses you as you've committed your plans to Him.

  8. Kristen SchiffmanDecember 29, 2011

    You know I love goals too. :) Did most of mine for 2011 and just set my 2012's in stone:

    be still:: unplug one weekend a month (fully)
    create a labyrinth mat & walk it while unplugged
    write out & work through the book of Colossians -
    keep a journal - must. not. be. digital.
    27 random acts of kindness in honor of turning 27
    complete 20 of my 101 in 1001 goals
    document our year through digital videos - one video a month
    commit this year to learning pure barre technique

    Praying this is a year that takes a break from the hard and ushers in good!

  9. Jo, I can't begin to tell you what an encouragement you are to me. I appreciate you more than words can express. I'm behind you a hundred percent in anything you put your mind and heart to. Thank you for lifting me up and spurring me on. It's a true honor to know you as a friend and a writer. Best wishes in the coming year and may God bless you the way you've blessed me. I love you, sister.

  10. Looks good! It's always so exciting to set goals and see how it works out :)

    Good luck!


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